Wallace and 23XI Racing entered the weekend with a season-best result of 11th. But in the first leg of the Pocono doubleheader, Wallace ran a quiet race and finished 14th.
On Sunday, he improved on that with yet another solid showing. In the closing laps, he was among a group of drivers trying to stretch the fuel and make it to the checkered flag without an additional stop.
Kyle Busch won the race on that strategy with Kyle Larson second. Wallace ended up fifth in his best result since August, 2020 at Daytona International Speedway. For 23XI Racing, it was both their first top-ten and top-five since entering the Cup Series this year.
“It’s big. A lot of confidence for myself which is huge,” said Wallace post-race. It came down to fuel strategy there, but I appreciate Wheels (Mike Wheeler, crew chief), J.R. (Houston engineer), Freddie (Kraft, spotter), telling me what to do – 80% there, 60% here, the whole time. It got so annoying, but it worked out. That’s what it takes. It takes a team effort to pull off this. Great day for us.
“Really good weekend for us. We knew that we had the speed. Bossman was here – MJ (Michael Jordan) was here. We had the whole staff out, so it was a good day. Good weekend.”
Wallace now sits 51 points outside the playoff field. The goal for 23XI over the summer months is to reach one of those 16 coveted spots in the postseason.
“We wanted playoffs when we started the season so we got a lot of work to do. We know we’re in a hole, but it’s finishes like this that we have to capitalize on,” he said, adding that he and the team just need to ‘execute’ better when they have fast cars like they did this weekend.
“Today shows what we can do. We’ve got to keep up the momentum.”