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Blaney wins at Talladega after NASCAR unites behind Wallace

Blaney nipped Ricky Stenhouse Jr. at the finish line for his fourth win and first since Talladega in October
Credit: AP
Driver Bubba Wallace, right, is overcome with emotion as he sits in his car prior to the start of the NASCAR Cup Series auto race at the Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega Ala., Monday June 22, 2020. A noose was found in the garage stall of Wallace's car yesterday. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — Ryan Blaney held onto the lead after a restart with two laps to go, earning his second straight win at Talladega Superspeedway on a day that began with NASCAR drivers throwing their support behind Bubba Wallace.

Fellow drivers lined up and pushed his car to the front of pit road in a show of solidarity after which Wallace climbed out, sat on the window ledge and sobbed. The move came one day after a crew member found a noose in his garage stall. Wallace is the only fulltime Black driver in the top NASCAR series. Two weeks ago, he successfully pushed NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag at its facilities.

Blaney nipped Ricky Stenhouse Jr. at the finish line for his fourth win and first since Talladega in October, albeit this time before a mostly empty venue. It was a race marked by support for Wallace instead of another Big One at Talladega, though there was mayhem behind Blaney on the final lap and he also pushed Erik Jones into the wall near the finish.