The FBI concluded its investigation Pool Photo-USA TODAY NETWORK via Imagn Content Services, LLC

FBI: Bubba Wallace not a victim of hate crime; rope wasn't a noose

On Tuesday afternoon, NASCAR confirmed that the FBI determined an alleged noose found inside of the garage belonging to Bubba Wallace at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday was a pull rope tied to a door that had been there since at least the fall of 2019.

The official statement reads: 

“The FBI has completed its investigation at Talladega Superspeedway and determined that Bubba Wallace was not the target of a hate crime. The FBI report concludes, and photographic evidence confirms, that the garage door pull rope fashioned like a noose had been positioned there since as early as last fall. This was obviously well before the 43 team’s arrival and garage assignment. We appreciate the FBI’s quick and thorough investigation and are thankful to learn that this was not an intentional, racist act against Bubba. We remain steadfast in our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all who love racing.”

Initial stories claimed that a member of Wallace's team reported the noose on Sunday and that Wallace, the only full-time Black driver in the Cup Series, never saw it.

After poor weather postponed the race to Monday, NASCAR honored Wallace by painting "#IStandWithBubba" on the infield of the track. All 39 drivers and crew members marched down pit road behind Wallace's car before the race: 

Earlier this month, Wallace was instrumental in getting NASCAR to ban all Confederate flags from events following the killing of George Floyd.

Zac Wassink is a football and futbol aficionado who is a PFWA member and is probably yelling about Tottenham Hotspur at the moment. Erik Lamela and Eli Manning apologist. Chanted for Matt Harvey to start the ninth inning of Game 5 of the 2015 World Series at Citi Field. Whoops. You can find him on Twitter at @ZacWassink

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