Bubba Wallace was moved to tears in February as he reflected on the personal journey that had taken him to a historic second place at the Daytona 500. Wallace finished higher in the race than any previous NASCAR Cup Series rookie in history. He was the first black Cup Series driver in nearly 50 years. He was the best-performing black Daytona 500 driver ever. And he did it all on a shoestring budget relative to his Series peers.
Now that Wallace has made a splash, sponsors have come calling. In his first mega sponsorship deal since the Daytona 500, Wallace has teamed up with a technology giant in hopes of acquiring an even bigger edge on the track.
Last month, Wallace and his team at Richard Petty Motorsports announced a deal with World Wide Technology, an IT and data analytics company based in St. Louis, Mo. WWT agreed to sponsor Wallace for six races. The sponsorship kicked off at the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at the Kansas Speedway on May 12, and will also cover races at Sonoma Raceway on June 24, Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sept. 9, Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sept. 16, Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sept. 30, and Dover International Speedway on Oct. 7.
During those races, the No. 43 car and team will bear the WWT branding and the company’s “Silicon Valley in St. Louis” tagline. In exchange, WWT will help Wallace’s team identify ways to improve performance by providing data analytics consulting and technology solutions.
WWT has embedded a team of data scientists within the racing organization to evaluate performance based on a number of datapoints about the car, environment and past performance. They’re currently working with the data produced last month in Kansas to create a dashboard of digestible information, which is scheduled to be up and running by the team’s race in Sonoma.