All good things must come to an end. For Kenny Wallace, his wild ride will see its final checkered flag at Iowa Speedway.
In his 26 years behind the wheel of a NASCAR ride, Wallace has 344 starts at the Sprint Cup level and 546 in the Xfinity Series. His 546 starts and 101,673 laps completed in NASCAR’s second series are the most all time.
“To me, this isn’t a sad moment; I’m at a truly happy place in my life right now,” Wallace said. “After all, not too many guys get to have the privilege of being a NASCAR driver, especially for as long as I have. I really wanted to end my long career on a positive note and I’m very excited about our chances in Iowa.”
For his last start, Wallace will man the No. 20 Xfinity ride for Joe Gibbs Racing that has previously been driven by Erik Jones, Matt Kenseth, Ross Kenseth, Denny Hamlin and David Ragan this season.
“The No. 20 team is one of the best in the sport and I’m looking forward to having a chance to end my NASCAR career with a great finish,” Wallace noted. “I really want to thank U.S. Cellular for helping me make that happen.”
Known for his uproarious personality on and off the track, Wallace has been named the Most Popular Driver at the Xfinity level three times. In 1989, the former fill-in for Dale Earnhardt was named the Rookie of the Year in the Xfinity Series.
While he never reached the same success as his brother Rusty Wallace at the Sprint Cup level, Kenny compiled 27 top 10s in the premier series along with three poles. Thanks to his success at both levels and lovable personality, the outpouring of respect from the NASCAR community was immediate on Twitter.
— Rusty Wallace (@RustyWallace) July 15, 2015
— Jeff Gordon (@JeffGordonWeb) July 14, 2015
— Kenny Wallace (@Kenny_Wallace) July 14, 2015
@Kenny_Wallace congratulations on an outstanding driving career my friend 🏁
— Ricky Craven (@RickyCravenESPN) July 15, 2015
Wallace may be stepping away from competing in NASCAR events, but he’ll still be on the dirt track and in the booth. Carving out a career for himself with FOX, Wallace will remain prevalent in the sport.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to turn my NASCAR driving career into another career doing something else I love—working with FOX Sports on television,” Wallace said. “Those guys have been great to me and I get a lot of happiness from being able to educate the fans about the sport that I love.”
Whether it was at the Xfinity or Sprint Cup level, no fan of NASCAR over the last 20 years will forget Wallace’s impact on the sport. Thanks to him remaining in the booth, even new fans will get a chance to enjoy Wallace for years to come as one of the most charismatic drivers to ever hit the track.
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