Trump Attacks Bubba Wallace Over Noose and Says He Should Apologize, Caused NASCAR's 'Lowest Ratings'

President Donald Trump also criticized Bubba Wallace for his successful campaign to encourage NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag

President Donald Trump lashed out at NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace on Monday morning, alleging on Twitter that the noose found in Wallace's garage last month was a "hoax."

On June 21, a noose was reported found in Wallace's garage to NASCAR as he prepared to race at the Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, Alabama. A follow-up investigation by the FBI discovered the noose was a garage door pull rope that had been in the location since at least October 2019.

However, Trump, 74, insisted the incident was a "hoax" and questioned if Wallace has apologized to NASCAR.

"Has @BubbaWallace apologized to all of those great NASCAR drivers & officials who came to his aid, stood by his side, & were willing to sacrifice everything for him, only to find out that the whole thing was just another HOAX?" Trump wrote on Twitter.

Donald Trump; Bubba Wallace
Donald Trump, Bubba Wallace. MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images; Will Lester/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

"That & Flag decision has caused lowest ratings EVER!" the president added, referencing Wallace's successful campaign to encourage NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag from events.

In response to an inquiry for comment from PEOPLE, Richard Petty Motorsports, Wallace's racing team, said, "the June 25 statement released by NASCAR and the following press conference by NASCAR president Steve Phelps answered all questions regarding the situation at the Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway."

"At this time, the team does not have anything to add," Richard Petty Motorsports added. "Wallace has extensively exhausted the topic via a multitude of interviews in recent weeks. It is clear there is nothing more to say."

bubba wallace
Bubba Wallace. Chris Graythen/Getty

Despite Trump's claim, NASCAR viewership on the FOX networks is actually up eight percent since returning from hiatus in May, the Charlotte Observer reported.

Last month, NASCAR released an image of the noose found in Wallace's garage after the FBI determined that no federal hate crime had been committed in the incident.

According to NASCAR's statement, after the noose allegation was announced, they asked tracks to sweep their garages from anything similar. Out of 1,684 garage stalls at 29 tracks, 11 had pull-down ropes tied into a knot, and only the one at Talladega was tied into a noose.

"As you can see from the photo, the noose was real, as was our concern for Bubba," NASCAR President Steve Phelps said. "With similar emotion, others across our industry and our media stood up to defend the NASCAR family — our NASCAR family — because they are part of the NASCAR family too. We were proud to see so many stand up for what's right."

Phelps also said that Wallace and his team "had nothing to do" with the noose incident.

"Bubba has done nothing but represent this sport with courage, class, and dignity and he stood tall for what he believes in," he continued. "And we all need to stand with him. I know I’m going to.”

RELATED VIDEO: LeBron James Supports Bubba Wallace After Noose Is Found in NASCAR Driver's Stall: 'You Don’t Stand Alone'

After the FBI released their findings, Wallace thanked them for the "swift" investigation.

"I think we'll gladly take a little embarrassment over what the alternatives could have been," Wallace said. "Make no mistake, though some will try, this should not detract from the show of unity we had on Monday, and the progress we've made as a sport to be a more welcoming environment for all."

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