He just turned 20, but Darrell Wallace Jr. is now a household name.
Saturday, Wallace became the first African-American driver to win a national NASCAR series event since Wendell Scott’s victory back in 1963.
The young driver discussed his historic win Monday on NBC Sports Network’s “SportsDash.” Wallace told host Dave Briggs competing and winning in a predominantly white sport has come with a variety of challenges.
“It means everything,” Wallace said of his victory at Martinsville Speedway. “To go out there and just do the best that I can is all I can do.”
Briggs asked Wallace why NASCAR has historically struggled to develop minority drivers. Wallace didn’t put the burden solely on his sport, instead pointing out there were no bonafide black stars in racing.
“There’s no one that minorities can look up to in [NASCAR],” Wallace said. “Like football, basketball has the Kobe Bryants, LeBron James. It’s just hard to look up to somebody for the young kid [hard to say] ‘I want to be like him’ when there’s no one that looks like him in the sport.”
Wallace continued: “It’s easier to pick up a basketball or football at your local sporting store than to go get a go-cart.”
The full interview with Wallace is embedded below:
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