On Oct. 4, Bubba Wallace made history by becoming the first full time African American NASCAR driver to win a Cup Series since Wendell Scott in 1963. This win came after the race was shortened due to rain.
The victory marked Wallace’s first win in his NASCAR career, and it comes in his first season with 23XI Racing, a team that was co-founded by basketball legend, Michael Jordan.
“It’s very rare. But it also inspires me that you’re making a difference in a sport that no one really thought could even happen. I feel gratitude, but I feel energized too. Let’s keep this thing rolling. Let’s have other Bubba Wallaces winning,” Jordan said in a recent interview with NBC’s Craig Melvin.
When asked about the historic win, Wallace preached a message about staying strong, humble and hungry even through the “plenty of times” when he wanted to throw in the towel.
“This is for all the kids out there that want to have an opportunity and whatever they want to achieve, and be the best at what they want to do. You’re going to go through a lot of bulls***. But you always got to stick true to your path and not let the nonsense get to you,” said Wallace, fighting back tears after his historic win.
Wallace’s win feels more meaningful than an average victory. It displays exactly what hard work, dedication and perseverance can do. Whether you’re a 28-year-old NASCAR driver from Mobile, Alabama or a child sitting at home dreaming of the limitless opportunities that the world has to offer. For Wallace, it took nearly two decades to bring home his first Cup Series victory, but he showed up to every race prepared to dominate. Always strive to be the best you can possibly be, because you never know when you’ll get your first win.
“Nothing will work, unless you do” – Maya Angelou