Kyle Petty says Bubba Wallace’s actions were ‘Unacceptable’

“If mentally he is that fragile, then maybe this is not the game for him, honestly.”

On Saturday, the NASCAR Cup Series raced on the 2.5-mile of Daytona International Speedway. The track hosted the regular-season finale, the last opportunity for drivers to claim a spot in this week’s playoffs.

Bubba Wallace entered the race 32 points above the cutline. And with the pressure, Wallace elected not to do any pre-race interviews.

Ty Gibbs, who drivers for Joe Gibbs Racing entered the raced below the cutline and he also elected to skip the pre-race interviews. Wallace drives for 23XI Racing, a team with ties to JGR.

After the race, Wallace narrowly advanced into the playoffs, grabbing the last of the 16 playoff spots. Once he advanced, the pressure was removed and he completed post-race interviews.

Kyle Petty doesn’t approve of the pre-race antics. It’s worth noting that Wallace previously drove for Richard Petty Motorsports in 2020.

Daytona Results: August 26, 2023 (NASCAR Cup Series)

Kyle Petty says it’s unacceptable for Bubba Wallace to refuse interviews

“Listen, for professional athletes to refuse interviews is unacceptable in any game,” Kyle Petty stated via NBC Sports.

“Unacceptable to your fans, unacceptable to your sport. Ty Gibbs did the same thing.”

“I don’t know how these guys think that’s acceptable. Because, that’s what you’re here for. That’s what they pay you the money for.”

It’s that stupid saying, ‘That’s why you make the big bucks dude.’ “

“You gotta handle it. Put it on your shoulders and carry it. If mentally he is that fragile, then maybe this is not the game for him, honestly.”

“Being in these positions will make him stronger. It’s trial by fire.”

“When you win, if you want us to come talk to you. Expect to come talk to us, also when you lose. That’s a slap in the face, in a lot of ways, to the fans, media and everybody.”

Bubba Wallace’s radio hijacked during NASCAR race at North Wilkesboro (Audio)

Bubba Wallace comments after the race

As noted, Wallace did finally speak with reporters after the race.

“I’m just mentally exhausted,” Wallace said.

“This week was probably the hardest week I’ve had in a long time, just trying to stay hyper-focused. Stressed out to the max and waking up at 2:30 in the morning.”

Bubba Wallace spins and the crowd erupts with cheers (Video)

Kyle Petty talks Bubba Wallace

Bubba Wallace | Daytona International Speedway | NASCAR