|Brothers Mike (L) and Kenny Wallace|
Veteran NASCAR driver and television personality Kenny Wallace will pilot JGL Racing’s No. 26 NASCAR XFINITY Series Toyota next weekend at Talladega Superspeedway, joining teammates JJ Yeley (No. 28 Toyota) and Eric McClure (No. 24 Toyota) for the running of the Winn Dixie 300.
The JGL Racing team planned on having Kenny’s brother, Mike Wallace at the wheel of the No. 26 Toyota at Talladega, as he was in the season opener at Daytona International Speedway. However, the elder Wallace underwent triple bypass heart surgery in the Charlotte area last week, and will be unable to compete at Talladega.
"I felt a little chest pain last week, so I went to the doctor,” explained Mike Wallace. “The next thing I know, I am going in for surgery. My dad had heart surgery about 35 years ago, so I thought I was being proactive and taking all of the necessary precautions. There are a lot of people walking around out there in the same situation. No matter how healthy we think we are, no one can be careful enough when it comes to our health. Everyone needs to go get checked out.”
Kenny Wallace said he is looking forward to returning to the XFINITY Series at one of his favorite tracks.
"Talladega is where I have some of my best finishes in my NASCAR career," he said. "I think to have success at Talladega you have to enjoy racing there and that style of racing - and I like it. I look forward to teaming up with JGL Racing and especially my longtime friend Gregg Mixon."
Wallace has over 900 career starts in NASCAR's top three series, and will be making his 545th career start in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. His best Sprint Cup Series finish at Talladega came in 2000, when he finished second while pushing the late Dale Earnhardt to his final NASCAR win.
Mike Wallace said he hopes to be in attendance to watch his younger brother work, adding, “I am focused on getting back to full strength and returning to the driver's seat in the near future."