16 Sep 14
When I witnessed Darrell Wallace Jr. winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series’ Kroger 200 I froze I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. It took a few seconds to gather myself but I knew it awoke something in me, here’s why.
My entire life I have been involved in NASCAR, or wherever there was a happening in reference to my grandfather. It became routine certain times of year our family would be called upon for appearance events and we would be there. The prospect of me or my brother or any of my cousins being involved in motorsports was never presented or even discussed. When I got to college I began to pursue it in a different way.
My mission became to promote my grandfather’s legacy. If I could do just that then I would be able to provide not only hope but opportunities for youth who simply just would never get the chance. Little did I know that my journey would be long, tumultuous and many times would bear no fruit. I’ve shared visions and ideas to no avail, not been called back, taken advantage of, and for anyone who has put their all into a dream these things are normal.
What I find refreshing about Darrell is that he has what my Papa had, belief in himself, he is deeply driven to be the best, and willing to long suffer for it. “To enjoy fruits you must labor” sound familiar anyone? I didn’t write it.
Here’s a quick story. My wife and I bought our son a toy called” The Plasma Car” when he was 2 years old, and she filmed him playing on it in our home for the first time. My uncle Wendell Jr. saw the video and fell in love with it. Now, when we gave him the car I said to myself that my son would have a chance that I didn’t, and hopefully he will like this car so much that we will have to get him another car to drive after he out grew this one. Bottom line was that in our own special way we were affording him this experience, we wanted him to fall in love with speed.
Back to my uncle (he was one of the first people to recognize Darrell Wallace), He would say “Wa Wa I’m telling you that video of Warrick Jr. is special, look at his eyes, look at how he leans in to the turns, he’s got the instinct your Papa had, and he’s fearless”!
So I say to Darrell Wallace thank you, thank you for dedicating yourself, thank you for being a student of your game. Thank you for maintaining a humble presence even in the midst of a landmark victory, thank you for staying focused on your next 3 races. Your achievement is huge for our youth, all colors all races. Thanks to you I can turn on the TV and tell my son (who is the last male in our family that bears the last name Scott), look at him go just like papa used to!