(CNN) — Ahead of its Cup Series race Wednesday night in Martinsville, Virginia, NASCAR said it is banning the flying of Confederate flags at its races.
“The presence of the Confederate flag at NASCAR events runs contrary to our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all fans, our competitors and our industry,” NASCAR said in a statement on its website. “Bringing people together around a love for racing and the community that it creates is what makes our fans and sport special.”
This week, driver Bubba Wallace, the first full-time African American driver in the Cup Series since 1971, called for NASCAR to go further than 2015 when it asked fans not to bring the Confederate flags to races.
“No one should feel uncomfortable when they come to a NASCAR race. It starts with Confederate flags,” Wallace said. “Get them out of here. They have no place for them.”
NASCAR was formed in 1948 and runs three national series — Cup, Xfinity and trucks.
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