This is crazy...50 years? Ridiculous. Especially @ how much Black guys love hotted-up cars and racing, etc.. (*I might just watch now that he's going to race) Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr. makes history... By Associated Press He follows Wendell Scott - who was the first black driver to win a race in the Grand National Series since NASCAR was founded The 24-year-old will drive the No. 43 car for Richard Petty Motorsports on Sunday Wallace tweeted: 'There is only 1 driver from an African American background at the top level of our sport. I am the 1' NASCAR research showed diversity among its fan base has grown from 20 to 24 percent over the last five years He will make history as the first full-time black driver since 1971 in the predominantly white Daytona 500 race. Wallace follows Wendell Scott from nearly 50 years ago - who was the first black driver to win a race in the Grand National Series since NASCAR was founded in 1948. The 24-year-old will drive the No. 43 car for Richard Petty Motorsports on Sunday. Wallace had driven the iconic No. 43 car to a third-place finish in a Daytona 500 qualifying race, setting off a celebration for Richard Petty Motorsports almost worthy of winning NASCAR's marquee race itself. The King strolled to the pits and hugged Wallace. The 80-year-old Petty wrapped his arm around Wallace , and they walked off smiling toward what each side hoped was the start of a fruitful alliance. 'I just had a guard walk me from pit road to the media center. His name is Richard Petty. I've never seen him so excited in my life,' Wallace said. That Wallace can energize Petty may symbolize as much a true passing of the torch as NASCAR could want: Petty and his deep kinship with old-school fans and Wallace, a video game playing, social media darling about to make history as the first black driver in decades. Busting down racial barriers in a sport long reserved for whites is heavy stuff for Wallace, and he's keenly aware all eyes are on him. The rookie invites glare from his fans and haters, starring in his own eight-episode docu-series 'Behind the Wall: Bubba Wallace ,' on the Facebook Watch show page. Wallace...has openly talked of becoming the Tiger Woods of NASCAR - a black star who can transcend the sport and prove people of all colors can race and flourish in corporate America. 'There's a lot of stuff that's riding on this weekend. I know it. I pay attention to it,' Wallace said. 'I follow a lot of people on social media, and it's being put out there. But I'm doing my best at managing it, keeping it behind me, and that's the best thing I can do.' Wallace is one of at least eight black drivers in NASCAR's 70-year history who reached the Cup level: Elias Bowie, Charlie Scott, George Wiltshire, Randy Bethea, Willy T. Ribbs and Bill Lester.