Nearly 50 years ago, the late Wendell Scott became the first and only African-American driver to win a race in what is now Nascar's Cup Series.
The Danville, Va. native is known as the Jackie Robinson of motorsports. This Sunday night, his story will have a national audience.
"Just because I was a black man out there in front of a white man, they'd knock me out of the way," said Wendell.
That was a regular occurrence for Wendell Scott as he tried to break into racing in the south, at the height of the civil rights movement. But in the face of bigotry and discrimination, Scott refused to let off the gas in pursuit of a dream in Nascar's elite series.
"He didn't believe in the words 'can't' or 'never.' Those are two words that he didn't believe in, and we were not allowed to use them in his presence, and even today we carry that with us," said Frank Scott, Wendell Scott's son.
Many will hear Scott's story for the first time Sunday night following the Daytona 500. ESPN Films and the Nascar Media Group will present, "Wendell Scott: A Race Story" at 9 p.m. on ESPN. It's a story of perseverance and passion, determination and drive.
"It's a pretty impactful story I think to anyone. And it gives you inspiration and hope about what we all can accomplish," said Paul Brooks, president, Nascar Media Group.
"It'll make ya cry, it's gonna make ya laugh, and it's gonna make ya angry," said Frank.
The movie centers on Wendell's only victory in the Grand National Series in 1963. Buck Baker was initially declared the winner, because the promoter didn't want a black man kissing the white beauty queen in victory lane. Track officials later gave Scott the winner's share of the prize money, saying there was a scoring error. But he didn't get the trophy.
"He was determined and showed so much humility and perseverance down through the years," said Frank.
Frank Scott is a middle school principal in Yanceyville, North Carolina just across the state line from Danville. In honor of Black History Month, his students and faculty are remembering his late father's accomplishments.
"I just hope that this movie will be in every media center, every home, every church, every Boys & Girls Club, because it shows what a father is," said Frank. "we said, 'Daddy are ya hurt, are ya hurt?' And he said, 'Yeah, in my damn pocketbook.' He wouldn't get in the ambulance. He said, 'Frank, you think we can get it ready for tomorrow?' And I said, 'Nah, I don't think so.'"
Now the question is, will Scott ever be voted into Nascar's Hall of Fame? He hasn't been on the ballot in the first two years, yet his numbers speak for themselves. Scott had 20 top five finishes, and a whopping 147 top tens in more than 490 Grand National races over 13 years.