“We Came. We Saw. We Conquered.” @bubbawallace
It was history in the making as Darrell Wallace Jr. crossed the finish line at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway with tears in his eyes. The 20-year-old driver’s first-place finish was not only a personal victory, but also a victory for the whole sport. Darrell became the second African American driver to win a NASCAR National Series race in the history of the sport.
“I’m speechless right now,” Darrell said. “I couldn’t even hold it together coming off (turn) four with the checkered. I still can’t.”
Darrell dominated the Saturday evening race at Martinsville leading 96 laps and winning a final restart with five laps to go to bring home the checkered flag. It was his 19th start in his rookie season as a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver for Kyle Busch Motorsports, and his first win in a NASCAR National Series.
A win was certainly pending for the young driver, but had kept eluding him. Darrell was confident, however, as he went into the weekend race at Martinsville. He had come close to winning several times before, but costly wrecks had ruined those opportunities. At Martinsville, he was not going to try to win. He knew he was going to win before the green flag dropped.
“I had so much confidence coming into this race,” Darrell said. “I told my guys that I did, and I told everybody that asked if I was going to win I said, ‘Hell yeah’ every time. So, it was no maybe we’re going to try, this one was for sure and we capitalized.”