Wendell Scott was the first African-American to win a race in what is now called the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. During his barrier-breaking 13-year career as a driver at NASCAR’s top level, he had 20 top-five finishes and 147 top-ten finishes in 495 starts. Last week Scott was honored with a historical highway maker in his hometown Danville, Virginia.
“The Commonwealth of Virginia is deep with NASCAR heritage and support,” said NASCAR President Mike Helton. “Wendell Scott is very much a part of NASCAR’s and Virginia’s history. We join others in thanking the Commonwealth of Virginia for the honor they are bestowing on Mr. Scott, one that is well deserved. The Scott family has been instrumental to NASCAR as we developed our multicultural efforts, and it was Wendell Scott who served as such an inspiration to us all.”
Mr. Scott, who retired from racing in 1973 and passed away in 1990, blazed trails that NASCAR’s Drive For Diversity participants continue to carry on.
“I think it’s incredible that Wendell Scott is still being recognized to this day. His legacy is still being carried on by friends, family and even drivers like myself,” said NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Darrell Wallace, Jr. “It is a huge honor to be one of the few drivers in the sport helping continue what he started. This symbolic piece and honor will hopefully be recognized every day and attract more people to the sport.”
During the ceremony the mayor of Danville declared April 5, 2013 as Wendell Scott day and his newly restored No. 11 race car was displayed.