Bubba Wallace was assigned garage stall No. 4 – where a rope with a noose knot was found – at Talladega Superspeedway based on the points standings and COVID-19 protocol, according to a report by The Washington Post.
A federal investigation concluded earlier this week no hate crime had been committed when a Richard Petty Motorsports team member found a “noose,” which was later described as a garage door pull.
There have been questions that we are now starting to get answers to.
The rope, the investigation has concluded, had been in the stall since October. So, people have asked how Wallace was assigned that particular garage stall at Talladega.
By rule, NASCAR assigns garage stalls based on the point standings. The leader gets the best stall, which, according to The Washington Post, is “typically the one closest to the track entrance, for easy access on and off during frenzied practice sessions, the number of which varies from track to track.”
Therefore, the second-place team gets the next stall and so on.
Under those rules, Wallace – who was 20th in the standings – would have been assigned, accordingly.
However, due to coronavirus protocols, that wasn’t the case.
NASCAR is now grouping multi-car teams in adjoining stalls to limit social interaction in the garage.
So, on Sunday at Talladega, points leader Kevin Harvick as the points leader was in stall No. 1, then his teammates at Stewart-Haas – Clint Bowyer, Aric Amirola and Cole Custer – were assigned the next stalls.
Joey Logano, who was second in the standings, and Team Penske were then assigned.
According to the report, Wallace’s Richard Petty team were assigned to Stall No. 4.
On Wednesday, Wallace identified mechanic David Cropps as the team member who found the rope in his stall. He also revealed Cropps went to other stalls to see if other teams had similar garage pulls.
Mark Heim is a sports reporter for The Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @Mark_Heim.