NASCAR Investigating After Noose Found Inside Bubba Wallace's Garage Stall
A noose has been found to have been inside the garage stall of NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace.
The sporting body has released a statement, 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.
"We have launched an immediate investigation, and will do everything we can to identify the person(s) responsible and eliminate them from the sport. 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."
Bubba, who is NASCAR's only full-time black driver, has campaigned against the flying of the Confederate flag during races. Last week, the sport acknowledged there was no place for the flag and banned it from all future events.
That didn't stop a plane flying the controversial flag over the Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, Alabama on the weekend.
Mr Wallace says the discovery of the noose was devastating.
He wrote on Twitter: "Today's despicable act of racism and hatred leaves me 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.
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"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. As my mother told me today, 'They are just trying to scare you.'
"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."
NASCAR hasn't stated how it will stop fans from flying the flag during its events and there will be more pressure than ever following the noose incident.
In addition to campaigning against the flag, Bubba has been wearing 'I Can't Breathe' t-shirts around speedway tracks in support of the Black Lives Matter movement in the US.
UPDATE: The FBI has released a statement on the issue.
"The FBI learned that garage number 4, where the noose was found, was assigned to Bubba Wallace last week. The investigation also revealed evidence, including authentic video confirmed by NASCAR, that the noose found in garage number 4 was in that garage as early as October 2019. Although the noose is now known to have been in garage number 4 in 2019, nobody could have known Mr. Wallace would be assigned to garage number 4 last week."
Featured Image Credit: PA