Driver Bubba Wallace waits for the start of a NASCAR Cup Series auto race Wednesday, June 10, 2020, in Martinsville, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

NASCAR Bans Confederate Flag

Hours before the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500, NASCAR moved to ban the Confederate Flag at its races. NASCAR released a statement saying the flag contradicts the goals of the organization: a welcoming environment for all.

ESPN’s Marty Smith said the current climate called for change. He said “he could overstate enough” how historical of an event it was that NASCAR made this decision.

There has been mostly a positive reaction by the racers with NASCAR’s decision to ban the flag. Race care driver Martin Truex Jr said this move puts emphasis on the idea that NASCAR is for everyone.

Truex said as well that it was a situation that many of the racers were ignorant about or didn’t really give much thought to. The calls for change, especially by fellow racer Bubba Wallace, were eye-opening.

Wallace Proud of Move

Thursday morning, race care driver Bubba Wallace praised the decision. He said he was proud the organization stepped up. Wallace is NASCAR’s only African American driver. The decision came just one day after Wallace made a call to action on the matter.

Wallace participated in the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 on Wednesday. He showed his support for the Black Lives Matter cause with the car he raced in that evening. Wallace raced in a ‘blackout car.” The car featured a black hand and a white hand joining together on the hood. Wallace said he saw the race as a perfect opportunity to spread the message.

Results of Blue Emu 500

A month after the race was postponed, the Blue Emu Pain Relief 500 took place Wednesday. Despite not leading for most of the race, Martin Truex Jr won the race by three points. Joey Logano finished in fourth despite leading in the most laps. Bubba Wallace finished in 11th.

Below is the Cup Series Standings following the race:

  1. Kevin Harvick
  2. Joey Logano
  3. Chase Elliott
  4. Martin Truex Jr
  5. Brad Keselowski
  6. Ryan Blaney
  7. Alex Bowman
  8. Denny Hamlin
  9. Kyle Busch
  10. Kurt Busch

About Harrison Smajovits

Harrison is a sports coordinator at ESPN 98.1 FM/850 AM WRUF. He served as a beat writer for Florida Gators football for the 2019 and 2020 seasons. He also contributes to WRUF's Gainesville Sports Center segments and makes appearances on the Clash on Harp on Sports. Harrison has been a content writer for WRUF since January 2019 as well.

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