Black History Month, Wendell Scott, and Race in Racing

Triple World Drivers’ Champion Lewis Hamilton gets a lot of praise for his on-track daring and aggressive, wheel-to-wheel driving, but something that’s rarely discussed in most F1 circles is Hamilton’s race. As an American used to hearing about “the first black president” or “the first black astronaut“, I’m surprised there isn’t more discussion about race in- you know, racing. All the same, despite being the first black WDC, Lewis is far from being the first black racing driver.

 

Wendell Scott | First Black NASCAR Race Winner


wendell-scott

Over at Storycorps, Frank Scott is telling the story of Wendell Scott- Frank’s father and the first African-American to race in NASCAR. The story is animated in way that is both fun and approachable, and Frank tells his father’s amazing story in a way that’s both deeply heartfelt and deeply personal.

I’ve included the video, here …

 

Driven | the Story of Wendell Scott


… and think that Frank Scott’s homage to his legendary father- who was not only the first African-American to race in NASCAR, but also the first African-American to win a Grand National race!- is a great way to talk about race in racing and a great way for Gas 2 to help celebrate Black History Month. It’s definitely worth the time it takes to watch it, anyway.

Once you’re done there, head over to BET to check out a list of groundbreaking drivers who you may not have heard about, then let us know what you thought of the video and the future prospects of black racing drivers in a post-Hamilton era in the comments section, below. Enjoy!

 

Sources | Images: BET, Storycorps, via Blackflag.

 

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.