Bubba Wallace is happy he isn't a victim of a hate crime. On Wednesday morning, the NASCAR driver appeared on the TODAY show and talked about the FBI's investigation of the noose that was discovered in his garage at the Talladega Superspeedway. The FBI said there was a rope tied like a noose in Wallace's garage, which was there for the race last year.
"I was relieved, just like many others, to know that it wasn't targeted towards me," Wallace said. "It's still frustrating to know people are always going to test you and always just going to try to debunk you. That's what I'm trying to wrap my head around now, from saying I'm fake and all this stuff, and that I reported it when it was news that brought to me and information that was brought to me that was already reported. So I was following suit, but all in all, it's another day."
Wallace went on to say that despite the rope, which was for the garage door, was no doubt a noose. "It was a rope pull for the garage door...but it was definitely in the shape of a noose," he added. "It wasn’t a functioning noose...The photo evidence that I've seen and that I have in my possession [shows] of what was in our garage is exactly a garage pull. It is. That is a noose. I don’t know when we'll get to the point to release that image…It’s alerting and it makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up."
It was a member of Wallace's team that reported the apparent noose to NASCAR president Steve Phelps who then told Wallace. NASCAR then made a statement on Sunday night with Wallace's statement be made later. It led to all NASCAR drivers coming together and pushing Wallace's car to the front of the line before the race on Monday.
Wallace, the only full-time Black driver in NASCAR, has been outspoken on the Black Lives Matter movement. Earlier this month, Wallace said in an interview he wanted NASCAR to ban Confederate flags at races. NASCAR listened and made the decision to ban the flags, which led to some backlash among fans. One NASCAR driver, Ray Ciccarelli, announced he's quitting at the end of the season due to NASCAR's decision to ban Confederate flags.