Darrell Wallace Jr. to make history
This story has been corrected. Read below
MOORESVILLE, N.C. -- Darrell Wallace Jr. will compete in the Truck Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports in 2013, making him the fourth black driver in the history of NASCAR to have a full-time ride in a national series.[+] EnlargeTom Whitmore/Getty Images for NASCARDarrell Wallace Jr. is set to become just the fourth black driver in the 65-year history of NASCAR to secure a full-time ride in a national series.
"I can't wait to get started," Wallace said Saturday in a statement. "I appreciate everyone at Joe Gibbs Racing and Kyle Busch Motorsports for working this out and providing me the opportunity to compete for Rookie of the Year and the Championship in the Truck Series."
Wallace, 19, will drive the No. 54 Toyota."We have a great deal of confidence in Darrell and this is a big step in his career," said Joe Gibbs, owner of Joe Gibbs Racing.
The only other black drivers who have competed full time in a national series are Wendell Scott, Willie T. Ribbs and Bill Lester. Scott drove for much of 1961 through 1971 in NASCAR's top series, now known as the Sprint Cup Series.
He is the only black driver who has won a race in a national series --1964 at Speedway Park in Jacksonville, Fla. That victory was initially given to Buck Baker before a review showed that Scott actually won.
Ribbs drove a full Truck schedule in 2001 for Bobby Hamilton Racing."Having Darrell run a full season along with Joey Coulter gives us two young exciting drivers to help further grow our program" KBM owner Kyle Busch said. "I've had the opportunity to race with Darrell and he has proven himself at each level. I can't wait to see him in one of our Tundras."
Lester competed full time in the Truck Series from 2002-06. He had two top-5s and seven top-10s in 142 races.
Wallace drove in the K&N Pro Series East for JGR from 2010-12. In 2010, he became that series' youngest driver and the first black driver to win a race at Greenville-Pickens Speedway.
Wallace drove in four Nationwide Series races for JGR last season, collecting three top-10s and no finish worse than 12th. He won the pole at Dover.
David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Feb. 8 ESPN.com story about Darrell Wallace Jr. incorrectly reported the number of black drivers with full-time rides on a NASCAR national series. Wallace is the fourth black driver to have a full-time ride.
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