NASCAR Investigating After Noose Found In Bubba Wallace’s Garage
NASCAR has launched an investigation after a noose was found in race car driver Bubba Wallace’s garage stall.
The disturbing discovery was made yesterday, June 21, at the Talladega Superspeedway track in Alabama, where a race was set to take place before being rescheduled due to bad weather.
Wallace is the only Black driver in NASCAR’s top circuit, and in recent weeks he has fought against racism by showing support for the Black Lives Matter movement and calling for Confederate flags to be banned at NASCAR races.
NASCAR released a statement after the noose was found, saying:
Late this afternoon, NASCAR was made aware that a noose was found in the garage stall of the 43 team. We are angry and outraged, and cannot state strongly enough how seriously we take this heinous act.
As we have stated unequivocally, there is no place for racism in NASCAR, and this act only strengthens our resolve to make the sport open and welcoming to all.
The organisation launched an investigation and stated it will do everything possible ‘to identify the person(s) responsible and eliminate them from the sport’.
The garage area where the noose was found is restricted to essential personnel, which includes race teams, NASCAR officials, security and health and safety personnel, according to a statement NASCAR made to CNN.
ESPN’s Marty Smith reported the noose was discovered by a member of Wallace’s team who immediately brought it to the attention of NASCAR, and that Wallace didn’t see it.
Wallace spoke out about the discovery on Twitter, saying the ‘despicable act of racism and hatred’ left him ‘incredibly saddened and serves as a painful reminder of how much further we have to go as a society and how persistent we must be in the fight against racism’.
Over the last several weeks, I have been overwhelmed by the support from people across the NASCAR industry including other drivers and team members in the garage. Together, our sport has made a commitment to driving real change and championing a community that is accepting and welcoming of everyone.
Nothing is more important and we will not be deterred by the reprehensible actions of those who seek to spread hate…
This will not break me, I will not give in nor will I back down. I will continue to proudly stand for what I believe in.
Earlier this month, NASCAR banned fans from displaying Confederate flags at races following Wallace’s comments on the matter.
Protesters fought against the ban at the racetrack on Sunday as a plane flew across the venue bearing a huge banner displaying the Confederate flag alongside the words ‘DEFUND NASCAR’.
A procession of drivers joined the protest by driving past the racetrack with Confederate flags waving from their windows, while across the road people were selling Confederate memorabilia.
NASCAR Executive Vice President Steve O’Donnell condemned the protests on Twitter, sharing a picture of a Black person and White person shaking hands and writing: ‘You won’t see a photo of a jackass flying a flag over the track here…but you will see this…Hope EVERYONE enjoys the race today.’
Wallace previously stated there was ‘no place’ for Confederate flags at NASCAR races.
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk