NASCAR

NASCAR investigating noose found in Bubba Wallace's stall at Talladega

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USA Today

NASCAR investigating noose found in Bubba Wallace's stall at Talladega

Updated: June 23, 2020 - 4:57 p.m.

NASCAR announced on Tuesday that following an FBI investigation, Bubba Wallace was not the victim of a hate crime. According to the investigation, it was a pull rope, tied like a noose, and had been in place since 2019, before Wallace's garage assignment at Talladega.

NASCAR says someone put a noose in Bubba Wallace’s Talladega garage stall on Sunday.

NASCAR condemned the “heinous act” in a statement released on Twitter.

Wallace is the sport’s only Black driver and drew attention to racial inequality protests two weeks ago after he sported a Black Lives Matter car.

ESPN reports that Wallace never saw the noose himself. It was spotted by one of his crew members.

Late Sunday he tweeted a statement of his own, saying he was “saddened” by the “despicable act of racism.”

Sunday’s race at Talladega was postponed to Monday due to weather. After the noose was found in Wallace’s garage stall, some of racing’s most prominent figures voiced their support for him, including Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

RELATED: NASCAR bans confederate flag displays at all races, properties

NASCAR star Jimmie Johnson tests positive for COVID-19, out indefinitely

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USA TODAY

NASCAR star Jimmie Johnson tests positive for COVID-19, out indefinitely

NASCAR star Jimmie Johnson has tested positive for COVID-19, Hendricks Motorsports announced Friday.

Johnson, a seven-time NASCAR Cup series champion, has not experienced any symptoms and was tested after his wife tested positive. He will miss Sunday's race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Justin Allgaier will race in his place.

“My first priority is the health and safety of my loved ones and my teammates,” Johnson said in a statement. “I’ve never missed a race in my Cup career, but I know it’s going to be very hard to watch from the sidelines when I’m supposed to be out there competing. Although this situation is extremely disappointing, I’m going to come back ready to win races and put ourselves in playoff contention.”

Per NASCAR protocols in accordance with the CDC's guidelines, Johnson cannot return until he is symptom-free and has two negative coronavirus tests at least 24 hours apart. He also must be cleared by his physician before returning.

NASCAR has granted Johnson a playoff waiver. He is currently 12th in the standings.

FBI, NASCAR announce noose found in Bubba Wallace's garage not hate crime

usatsi_14424578.jpg
USA Today

FBI, NASCAR announce noose found in Bubba Wallace's garage not hate crime

Following an FBI investigation, it has been determined that Bubba Wallace was not the victim of a hate crime when a noose was found in his Talladega garage on Sunday.

NASCAR made the announcement on Tuesday.

NASCAR and the FBI launched the investigation after the rope was found by one of Wallace’s crew members. ESPN reported that Wallace himself never saw the noose.

After its discovery, the entire NASCAR garage banded together in a show of solidarity against racism. NASCAR drivers and crew members walked the track and pushed Wallace’s car to the front of the starting grid before Monday's Geico 500.

In addition “#IStandWithBubba” was painted on the infield grass.

Wallace is NASCAR’s only Black driver.

RELATED: NASCAR bans confederate flag displays at all races, properties