Michael McDowell admits that he is NERVOUS as he is set to battle Bubba Wallace for the 2023 Cup playoff spot

Only three points differentiate Michael McDowell and Bubba Wallace in the championship table.

Michael McDowell admits that he is NERVOUS as he is set to battle Bubba Wallace for the 2023 Cup playoff spot

Bubba Wallace (Credits: @23XIRacing/Twitter) and Michael McDowell (Credits: Pinterest)

NASCAR veteran Michael McDowell made an impressive return to the Cup front grid with Front Row Motorsports in 2021 after years of struggle during his full-time and part-time stints in the premier stock car division. He made headlines by winning that season’s Daytona 500 and was among the most consistent midfielder last season in the Next-Gen Ford.

He has the perfect opportunity to secure only his second playoff entry in the Cup series this season. McDowell currently sits at P16 in the Championship table without a win and is three points ahead of 23XI Racing driver Bubba Wallace who is positioned at P17. Wallace’s poor form and impressive run in the last couple of races earned him the spot.

Alongside Wallace, three drivers are fighting alongside him for that playoff spot—Trackhouse Racing’s Daniel Suarez and Kaulig Racing’s AJ Allmendinger. McDowell is nervous ahead of the fight with the trio as the upcoming tracks slightly favor his opponents more than him. Wallace will be strong in the coming five non-road course races, while the road course races are the stronghold of AJ. Suarez also poses the same ability as McDowell and has a better car.

When I look at the guys around us, I’m definitely nervous because we know Bubba has some great tracks coming up, and the Toyotas have been fast. AJ is super strong on road courses; I feel strong on road courses as well. It’s hard to bet against AJ on those. If you look at the guys we’re racing, Suárez as well, he’s good at the same tracks that I’m good at,” McDowell told the media in New Hampshire.

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Bubba Wallace makes his intentions clear about winning races

Bubba Wallce Heavy Metal (1)
Bubba Wallace (Credits: RollingStone)

After a good qualifying, the 23XI Racing driver will start the NHMS Cup race P8 Sunday. He finished P3 last at the track, and it is one of the tracks that suit Toyota Camry giving him an edge over his rivals in securing a spot in the playoffs bubble ahead of the upcoming race weekend.

While talking to the media after the qualifying round, Wallace expressed his intentions to secure the win he is desperate for. He pointed out that it would be unfortunate for him to go winless in the regular season. The TRD driver admitted that to secure a spot in the last 16 based on points, he has to eliminate mistakes committed during the races.

We want to win. We know we have to win. We can’t point our way into a championship, so we need to win. We need to win early enough to lock ourselves in. If we can’t do that, it would be unfortunate, but we have to point our way, too. Mistakes don’t create points, so we have to eliminate mistakes to get points,” Bubba Wallace said on Saturday.

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