When it comes to diversity, NASCAR has been making efforts to improve its image as sport for white, southern men.
Currently there are only a handful of minority drivers in NASCAR’s top series, with Bubba Wallace being the only black driver in the Cup Series, Mexican-American Daniel Suarez, and Kyle Larson, who is half Japanese. Aric Almirola, who is stepping away from the Cup Series at the end of the 2023 season, is also of Cuban descent.
There are also now multiple Cup Series teams with black owners, including former NBA players Michael Jordan and his 23XI Racing team, as well as JTG Daugherty co-owner Brad Daugherty.
But the sport has been working hard to recruit minority drivers, crew chiefs, executives, and pit crew members, establishing their Drive for Diversity program in 2004 that sought to encourage and support females and minorities to join NASCAR in various roles.
As part of the Drive for Diversity program, NASCAR helped to establish Rev Racing, which is a team that fields cars in NASCAR’s regional touring series, as well as the Craftsman Truck Series, for Drive for Diversity participants.
In fact, Larson, Suarez and Wallace are all former drivers for Rev Racing, while drivers like current Craftsman Truck Series driver Hailie Deegan and 2022 ARCA Series champion Nick Sanchez have participated in the Drive for Diversity program.
But now, a recent complaint is accusing the sanctioning body, as well as Rev Racing, of actually discriminating themselves – against white men.
According to Bloomberg, the complaint to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission was filed by America First Legal, which is led by Stephen Miller, a former advisor to President Donald Trump. In the complaint, the group is asking the EEOC to investigate both NASCAR and Rev Racing for “illegal discrimination against White, male Americans.”
The group is claiming that various programs established and supported by NASCAR and Rev Racing, including their “diversity driver development program,” “diversity pit crew development program,” and the “NASCAR diversity internship program” violate prohibitions on discrimination on the basis of race or sex established in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
According to the complaint, while these programs were previously open to only women and minorities, they were updated on September 1 of this year to specify that they sought candidates of “diverse backgrounds and experiences.”
The letter to the EEOC accuses NASCAR of engaging in discrimination “under the cloak of a ‘diverse backgrounds and experiences’ rebranding.”
America First Legal has also filed complaints against over a dozen other companies like McDonald’s and Starbucks, as well as other sports leagues including Major League Baseball, for alleged discrimination. So far the EEOC has not responded to any of the complaints.