Construction began on what was then known as the Alabama International Motor Speedway on May 23, 1968
The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race was held on Sept. 14, 1969 - won by Richard Brickhouse
The name changed to Talladega Superspeedway in 1989
formerly known as Alabama International Motor Speedway
3366 Speedway Blvd.
Talladega, AL 35160
PO Box 777
Talladega, AL 35161
Ticket Office Phone: (256) 362-RACE (7223)
Department Phone: (256) 362-2261
Department Fax: (256) 761-4717
Ticket Office Phone: (256) 362-2261
Superspeedway: 2.66-mile trioval 48 feet wide (12-foot apron)
Turns: Banking: 33 degrees Length: 3,750 feet Radius: 1,100 feet
Trioval: Banking: 18 degrees
Frontstretch: Chute length: 2,150 feet (from turn to middle of trioval);
Total length: 4,300 feet Banking: Minimal for drainage only
Backstretch: Length: 4,000 feet Banking: Minimal for drainage only
Seats: 78,000 [was 78,000 was 109,000 and before that, 143,231}
Length: 30 feet
Width: 17 feet
Track Websites and Social Media:
Talladega SuperSpeedway - Facebook
Talladega SuperSpeedway - Twitter
Talladega Superspeedway - Google+
Talladega Superspeedway - YouTube
Talladega Superspeedway - Pinterest
Talladega-Texaco Walk of Fame
International Motorsports Hall of Fame(Talladega)
Track Stats - Racing-reference.info
May 2015 Race Winner: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., 159.487mph, started 4th
October 2014 Race Winner: #2-Brad Keselowski, 160.302mph, started 5th
Track Race Record: Mark Martin, May 1997, 188.354mph
Slowest Race Record: Jeff Gordon, April 25, 2004, 129.396mph
Worst Starting Spot to Win: Jeff Gordon, April 2000, started 36th
Oldest Race Winner: Harry Gant, 52 years, 3 months, 26 days, May 1991
Youngest Race Winner: Bobby Hillin Jr., 22 years, 1 months, 22 days, July 1986
May 2015 Pole Winner: #24-Jeff Gordon, 194.793mph, finished 31st
October 2014 Pole Winner: #55-Brian Vickers, 196.127mph, finished 20th
Track Qualifying Record (no restrictor plate): Bill Elliott, April 1987, 212.809mph
Track Qualifying Record (Restrictor Plate): Bill Elliott, May 1990, 199.388 (15/16th inch plate)
Track Qualifying Record (Restrictor Plate): Kyle Busch, May 2014, 200.574 (1st round qualifying)
Oldest Pole Winner: Mark Martin, 52 years, 9 months, 14 days, 10/22/2011
Youngest Pole Winner: Brian Scott, 26 years, 3 months, and 21 days, 5/3/2014
Most Wins: 10 - Dale Earnhardt
Most Wins - Active Driver: 6 - Jeff Gordon & Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Most Poles - All Time: 8 - Bill Elliott
Most Poles - Active Driver: 4 - Joe Nemechek & Jeff Gordon
Most Top 5s - All Time: 23 - Dale Earnhardt
Most Top 5s - Active Driver : 15 - Jeff Gordon
Most Top 10s - All Time: 27 - Dale Earnhardt
Most Top 10s - Active Driver: 19 - Jeff Gordon
Most Lead Changes: 88 - 4/25/2010 & 4/27/2011
Fewest Lead Changes: 13 - 5/6/1973
Most Leaders: 29 - 4/25/2010
Fewest Leaders: 4 - 5/6/1973
Most Laps Led: Pete Hamilton, August 1970, 153 laps
Fewest Laps Led by a Race Winner: Jeff Gordon, 10/7/2007 and Brad Keselowski, 4/26/2009; 1 lap led
Most Cautions: 11, 4/25/2004
Most Caution Laps: 62, 5/7/1972
Fewest Cautions: 0 - three times, most recent 10/6/2002
Fewest Caution Laps: 0 - three times, most recent 10/6/2002
Most on the Lead Lap: 32 - 10/19/2014 & 5/3/2015
Fewest on the Lead Lap: 1 - two times, most recent 7/27/1986
Most Running at the Finish: 40 - 4/22/2001
Fewest Running at the Finish: 14 - 7/27/1986
Most Wins by Manufacturer: 40 - Chevy; 21 - Ford; 7 - Mercury; 6 - Buick; 6 - Oldsmobile; 4 - Dodge; 3 - Plymouth; 3 - Toyota; 2 - Pontiac
First time Sprint Cup winners at Talladega:
Ten NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers won their first Sprint Cup race at Talladega. Of those 10, only Davey Allison, Ken Schrader, Brad Keselowski and Brian Vickers ever won another Sprint Cup race.
driver, career wins
Davey Allison, 19 (3 at Talladega)
Brad Keselowski, 17* (3 at Talladega)
Ken Schrader, 4
Brian Vickers, 3*
Ron Bouchard, 1
Richard Brickhouse, 1
Dick Brooks, 1
Bobby Hillin Jr., 1
Phil Parsons, 1
Lennie Pond, 1
(* = active)(5-3-2015)
A Record Fit for a King: Richard "The King" Petty won twice in 46 Talladega starts. But his two wins managed to set an unusual record. The first win came on August 11, 1974. The second came on May 1, 1983, setting the mark for longest stretch between wins at the 2.66-mile oval.(10-2-2004)
Slowest Cup race ever at Talladega 2004: A track record 11 caution periods over 55 laps caused the average speed to be 129.396mph, the slowest in a NASCAR Winston/Nextel Cup race at Talladega. The record (130.892) was set in 1975 in a race won by Buddy Baker.(4-27-2004)
Drivers to appear at youth autograph session at Talladega: Danica Patrick, Aric Almirola, AJ Allmendinger and Ryan Blaney are scheduled to appear for a Talladega Superspeedway special youth autograph session during the Alabama 500/fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola race weekend upcoming Oct. 23-25. On Saturday, Oct. 24 at 10:45am/ct in the track's Hospitality Village, located behind the Birmingham Tower outside the frontstretch, the first 100 kids (12-and-under) to arrive will have the chance to get an autograph from each driver (limit one per child and time permitting). Participants will be allowed to start lining up for the youth autograph session at 10:00am/ct. Talladega Superspeedway has great ticket offers for kids 12 & under for both Saturday and Sunday, which will showcase the final race of the Contender Round in the NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup in which the list of 12 eligible drivers to the title will be reduced to eight at the checkered flag. Those kids' deals include $50 off the regular price throughout the lower grandstands and towers while they can sit free in the fourth turn Gadsden grandstand while supplies last.(TSS)(8-29-2015)
The biggest meatball in racing on the menu again at Talladega: After its sellout debut in the spring, "The Big One" Meatball will once again be available to race fans who want to try one of the most unique concession items in all of racing during the upcoming Alabama 500/fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola race weekend at Talladega Superspeedway Oct. 23-25. "The Big One" Meatball, like Talladega Superspeedway, is the biggest and most unique of its kind, weighing in at over a pound. It has a center of blended Mozzarella and Pepper Jack Cheeses mixed with smoked BBQ Pulled Pork and a little house BBQ sauce for an extra kick. It is then covered by a layer of Ground Beef, rolled in a panko bread crumb and parmesan mix before being deep fried to a golden brown. And, there's more - it is then topped off with a dollop of BBQ sauce and a spaghetti garnish. It is the creation of Americrown, the leader in motorsports catering and concessions. The company's Executive Chef at Talladega, Leilani Contemprato, and Corporate Executive Chef Michael Pappas from Daytona were looking for something that caught the feel of Talladega, and they succeeded in, well, a big way.(Talladega Superspeedway)(8-28-2015)
Talladega Superspeedway offers an "Unrestricted" VIP package: Talladega Superspeedway once again offers an "Unrestricted" VIP package like no other in sports, one that will give fans incredible behind-the-scenes access throughout the upcoming Alabama 500/fred's 250 race weekend, Oct. 23-25. These very-limited quantity packages will provide fans up-close and personal accessibility to the garages, pits and other exclusive track activities leading up to the fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR XFINITY Series event on Saturday, Oct. 24 and the Alabama 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event on Sunday, Oct. 25 - the final event of the Contender Round in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup where the field of 12 eligible drivers will be cut to eight at the checkered flag. The "Unrestricted" VIP package is available for only $475 (must be purchased in addition to a grandstand ticket) for fans 18 and over. It includes a parking pass for the weekend and other amenities.The unmatched access that the "Unrestricted" VIP package provides is available by calling the Talladega Superspeedway ticket office at 855.518.RACE.(Talladega Superspeedway)(8-24-2015)
Dale Earnhardt Jr. First Driver Named for Talladega's Q&A Session: #88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Talladega Superspeedway's most recent winner, has been named the first driver scheduled to take part in the track's Pre-Race Fan Question & Answer Session at the start-finish line on Sunday, Oct. 25, prior to the start of the Alabama 500. Race fans will get to ask Earnhardt Jr. questions in advance of the most anticipated race of the season where the field of 12 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup contenders will be trimmed to eight at the checkered flag of the Alabama 500. Fans that purchase Talladega's "Pit Pass Upgrade" can have access to this special session, which is tentatively scheduled from 10:00-11:20 AM (CDT). Not only can they get an up-close look at NASCAR's finest with the Pit Pass Upgrade, but they can also take in all the festive activities at the pre-race stage, including Driver Introductions. Additional drivers/personalities that will be part of the fan Q&A line-up will be announced in the near future. In addition to the Driver Q&A, pre-race festivities at the Driver Introduction stage will include introductions of special guests and VIPs, as well as the Honorary Starter and Grand Marshal of the Alabama 500, which is set for a 1 PM (CDT) start. The "Pit Pass Upgrade" is $75, but also includes more opportunities for up-close access on race day. The "Pit Pass Upgrade" allows fans to enjoy a crew member's perspective on race morning. Fans can stroll down Pit Road where the cars will be placed in position to start the race, and have the opportunity to see the crews set up each pit stall. It also allows access to The Red Carpet Entry into the Drivers Meeting. Fans will see drivers, crew chiefs, team owners, celebrities and NASCAR officials walk the red carpet into the meeting, where race procedures and protocol will be explained. The Pit Pass Upgrade will be in effect on Sunday, Oct. 25, from 8 a.m. until the conclusion of Driver Introductions. To purchase, simply visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 1-877-Go2-DEGA.(Talladega Superspeedway)(8-24-2015)
Talladega plans no changes to fencing before fall race: Talladega Superspeedway track president Grant Lynch told USA TODAY Sports he doesn't foresee changes to the fencing or fan seating before NASCAR returns Oct. 24-25. The Sprint Cup race there will carry even more weight for some drivers than Sunday night's Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway, where Austin Dillon's car sailed into the catchfence during a multi-car crash triggered as the congested blob of cars going about 200 mph careened past the start/finish line during a green-white-checker finish. At Talladega, any driver in the Chase for the Sprint Cup playoff will be racing to advance to the round of eight. Four more competitors will be excused from the postseason field and a chance at the championship after the Talladega results are posted. Lynch said he believes the first row of fan seating is about 22 feet from the catchfence. Some seating rows were removed - forcing fans back - after the Kyle Larson wreck at Daytona in 2013 injured more than two dozen fans. Spectators used to be about 16-18 feet from the fencing, according to Lynch. "We were looking at it after the Nationwide wreck at Daytona. That's when we made some changes," Lynch said. Lynch also said they won't consider moving out more rows of seating before October. "I think we're back to the distance recommended."(USA Today)(7-8-2015)
Talladega Superspeedway offers "Two for $88" Dale Jr. Ticket Package: In honor of #88-Dale Earnhardt. Jr. capturing the last two Superspeedway races in the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Talladega Superspeedway is bringing back the popular "Two for $88" ticket package, named for NASCAR's most popular driver and Talladega's latest winner, for the October 25, Alabama 500. Earnhardt, Jr., who went to Gatorade Victory Lane in the GEICO 500 at NASCAR's Most Competitive track - Talladega Superspeedway - in May, claimed his second dramatic victory of the year last night at Daytona International Speedway in the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola. The "Two for $88" Dale Jr. Talladega package gives fans a $32 savings off the regular price for two Lincoln Grandstand tickets to the Sunday, October 25, Alabama 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race -the final race of the Contender Round in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup where the field of 12 eligible drivers for the title will dwindle to eight. The "Two for $88" offer is for a limited time. For more information, visit talladegasuperspeedway.com/dalejr.
In addition to the "Two for $88" package, Talladega Superspeedway is offering up additional savings for the fall weekend, Oct. 23-25, which also includes the fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (Saturday, Oct. 24)., Fans save $10 off all regular price tickets for the Alabama 500 for a limited time, and kids 12-and-under receive a $50 discount on all seats. Log on to www.talladegasupespeedway.com or call 877-Go2-DEGA for more information.(TSS)(7-7-2015)
NASCAR's reason for not throwing yellow flag on last lap at Talladega: On the final lap [of a race], NASCAR's stance is to 'let 'em play". When NASCAR Senior Vice President Steve O'Donnell joined SiriusXM NASCAR Radio he acknowledged that while Sunday's decision in the Geico 500 [at Talladega Superspeedway] was indeed "a judgment call," fans prefer to see races end under green flag conditions. "It's going to be a judgment call," O'Donnell said. "We've stated that we're going to make every effort to try and finish a race under green conditions - that's what the fans want to see. But we have to be obviously mindful of what's occurring on the track. It's a split-second decision. I think if you go back to Daytona, where we saw a driver hit the wall at what we thought to be fairly hard and wanted to dispatch our emergency crews quickly, we elected to throw the caution. If you look at yesterday, if you saw the circumstances that played out with Carl [Edwards], when we initially saw him get loose, he was down on the apron. As we made that quick decision, it was 'ok, he's clear we can go'. Just as we make that, his car slides up the track and that's something you don't want to see green or yellow flag conditions. But at the time, if we would have thrown the yellow, then it's already too late because he's already up and across the track. We elected to let it play out. We certainly didn't like to see how Carl come across the track but ultimately, we were able to come back under green flag conditions." O'Donnell plans to discuss Talladega with the drivers. He also realizes that some fans might feel that NASCAR was late to make a call due to who might or might not be leading a race at the time. However, he reiterated that the sanctioning body reacts no differently than an umpire calling balls and strikes in baseball.(Motorsport)(5-5-2015)
Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins at Talladega: #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the GEICO 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway for his 1st win of the season, 6th win at Talladega and his 24th career win. The win is the first Sprint Cup Series race win for #88 crew chief Greg Ives.
#48-Johnson finished 2nd [the 45th 2nd place finish of his career] followed by #27-Menard, #21-Blaney (best career finish), #78-Truex Jr., #31-Newman, #9-Hornish Jr., #4-Harvick, #11-Hamlin and #98-Wise (his career best finish).
Harvick maintains the points / Chase lead with 394, 40 points over #78-Truex Jr.
Pole winner #24-Gordon led 47 laps and ran up front most of the race until late in the race when he sped on pit road and had to start at the rear, then was caught up in #19-Edwards wreck at the end of the race.
There were 27 lead changes among 15 drivers. There were 6 cautions for 23 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 159.487mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(5-3-2015)
Talladega Officials Encourage Fans Attending Races to Purchase Their Ticket Through TSS Avenues: With sunny "picture perfect" skies in the forecast for this weekend's GEICO 500 and Winn-Dixie 300 at Talladega Superspeedway, track officials are expecting incredibly large crowds to witness the preeminent events at NASCAR's Most Competitive track. To ensure that customers get tickets that are guaranteed to gain admittance, Talladega Superspeedway is encouraging fans to purchase their tickets by calling 1-877-Go2-DEGA, on the track website at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com, or by visiting ticket locations on the track grounds. With the demand for tickets to these premier races continuing to increase yearly, numerous sets of tickets have been lost and replaced as a customer service. Lost or stolen tickets will have invalid bar codes, and will not get the bearer entry to the facility.
In 2014, Talladega created a "kids program" designed to increase family affordability to witness in person the greatest racing on the planet by discounting those admissions by $50. The kids ticket is clearly identified as a "KID'S 12-AND-UNDER TICKET "on the front and is only good for children 12-and-under. Numerous sets of kid's tickets have been placed on the secondary market and misrepresented as Adult admissions, so please remember that kid's tickets only allow a child 12-and-under to enter the grandstands. Adult fans trying to enter the facility with a kid's ticket will only gain admittance once they purchase an adult ticket from the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office. For ticket information, call 1-877-Go2-DEGA or visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.(TSS)(5-1-2015)
Honorary Officials, National Anthem Performers Named for GEICO 500: Talladega Superspeedway announced the Honorary Officials for the GEICO 500 on Sunday, May 3, the 10th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race of the 2015 schedule.
Senior Airman James A. Sottile, a Biomedical Equipment Technician, from Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, AL, will serve as the Grand Marshal by giving the most famous command in motorsports - "Drivers, Start Your Engines." Waving the green flag and serving as the Honorary Starter will be Technical Sergeant Jason D. Floyd, also of Maxwell Air Force Base, while the 313th United States Army Band will perform the National Anthem.
Sottile was assigned to the Medical Maintenance Shop, 42nd Medical Support Squadron, 42nd Medical Group at Maxwell AFB in February 2014. While at Maxwell AFB, he blazed through two sets of Career Development Courses and completed over 210 core tasks four months ahead of schedule. He achieved a phenomenal 94% on his first end of course exam and a near perfect 98% on his second exam. After just seven months on station he was selected as the 2014 42nd Air Base Wing's Airman of the third Quarter, and three months later he was selected for promotion to Senior Airman Below-the-Zone. In addition to being named one of Air Education and Training Command's 12 Outstanding Airman of the Year, his other awards and decorations include: National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Small Arms Marksman Medal, Air Force Training Honor Graduate Ribbon and the Air Force Training Ribbon.
Floyd is the Non Commissioned Officer in Charge of the Cadet Management Section for 145 Detachments at Headquarters Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (Maxwell Air Force Base). Floyd prepares cadets for entry into the United States Air Force and contributes to the commissioning of approximately 2,400 Second Lieutenants annually. Currently, Technical Sergeant Floyd is assigned to HQ AFROTC as the NCOIC of the Cadet Management Section where he provides guidance on five AFROTC programs (145 AFROTC detachments), 4 AFROTC region commanders and HQ personnel. His awards and decorations include: Joint Service Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster; Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters; Joint Service Achievement Medal; and Air Force Achievement Medal.
The 313th United States Army Band, formed in 1943, is comprised of 40 citizen-soldiers. They train and perform as Army musicians during monthly Battle Assembly weekends. Its mission is to provide music throughout the spectrum of military operations, to instill in our forces the will to fight and win, to foster support of our citizens, and to promote our national interests at home and abroad.
As previously announced, Ole Miss Head Football Coach Hugh Freeze will serve as the race's Honorary Pace Car Driver, and lead the field during warm-up laps prior to the start of the GEICO 500.
The invocation will be given by Allen Singley, volunteer for Alabama Raceway Ministries and Student Pastor at Grandview Baptist Church in Dothan, AL.
Talladega's weekend kicks off this Friday (May 1) with practice sessions for the GEICO 500 (NASCAR Sprint Cup Series) and Winn-Dixie 300 (NASCAR XFINITY Series), as well as practice, qualifying and green flag for the International Motorsports Hall of Fame 200 ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards event, set to start at 5 pm (CST). The evening concludes with "The "Big One on the Blvd" Mardi Gras-style parade, which will feature NASCAR drivers and fan competitions on the track's infield Talladega Blvd.
Saturday's slate includes qualifying for the GEICO 500 and Winn-Dixie 300, followed by the start of the Winn-Dixie 300 at 2 p.m. (CST). The day concludes in the evening with the Talladega Superspeedway traditional Infield Concert featuring country music maverick and Columbia Nashville recording artist Chase Rice. Buddy Brown & Dee Jay Silver will get the party started prior to Rice taking the stage. The concert is free with the purchase of a Sunday GEICO 500 (12 noon CST start) admission ticket. For ticket information, call 1-877-Go2-DEGA or visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.
All seating along the fronstretch grandstands and towers are equipped with roomy and comfortable 21- and 22-inch wide chair back seats. Large High Definition Sprint Vision video boards that were implemented in 2014 will be back - three are permanent - and placed along the frontstretch to provide views of the whole track to every seat in the house. The video boards, three of which that are now permanent, are an initiative that is planned to be implemented at all International Speedway Corporation (ISC) tracks in the coming years.(TSS)(4-30-2015)
Sweet Home Alabama Has A Lot to Offer with Food, Destinations: Talladega Superspeedway is all about the fan experience, making sure that when families come onto the property, they get the best of everything - the greatest racing on the planet with limitless amenities to make their visit a fun and memorable one. The Alabama Tourism Department has come up with an easy way for travelers to do this and more while visiting the great state of Alabama.
When fans make their journey to the GEICO 500 and Winn-Dixie 300 this weekend during their trip to the state of Alabama, they will find that "Sweet Home Alabama" has lots more to offer in addition to NASCAR's Most Competitive Track, one of our country's top sporting venues. From delicious food delicacies to incredible road-trip destinations, Alabama has it all. Fans are encouraged to slow down, enjoy the trip, explore the cities and towns, experience the culinary side of the state and stay a little longer or come back sooner.
Alabama is rich in tradition, especially when it comes to our barbecue, so much in fact the Alabama Tourism Department has deemed 2015 as "The Year of Alabama BBQ." The tourism campaign focuses on Alabama's barbecue heritage, award-winning restaurants and talented pit masters. Highlights of the campaign include the launching of their website alabamabbq.com, a new smart phone app that alerts users when they are getting close to one of the state's top barbecue restaurants, a photo exhibit of legendary pit masters, a new documentary film about the state's barbecue culture and the announcement of the first inductees into the Alabama Barbecue Hall of Fame.
The website www.alabamabbq.com helps travelers discover some of the state's best places for ribs, pulled pork and chicken barbecue. The site features a barbecue themed road trip and has a calendar listing of top barbecue events across the state. Links can also be found on the website to the new smart phone app "Alabama BBQ Trail" which can be downloaded for free and has information on more than 75 barbecue restaurants in 52 cities across the state. The app has background information on each of the restaurants and their best dishes. It will also allow users to set an alert so their phone will notify them when they are within 20 miles or less of one of their chosen barbecue spots.
Rest assured, however, there are other impeccable mouth-watering dishes that Alabama has to offer, and one can find those easily with the "100 Dishes To Eat In Alabama Before You Die" smart phone app. Discover the food scene like a local, whether you're an Alabama native or a visitor to the Sweet Home State, plan dozen of road trips to any of Alabama's signature cities and get the authentic experience. The app allows users to browse by city, cuisine or restaurant and you can bookmark their selection of favorite dishes to track travels, as well as submit photos and reviews of the famous dishes. No matter what part of the state someone is in, there are opportunities to take in the diverse culinary adventure. Learn more by visiting: www.ilovealabamafood.com. The official "Alabama Road Trips" smart phone app is an easy, interactive guide which makes it simple to plan an unforgettable road trip with friends and family to discover Alabama's countless destinations, from the sugar-white beaches and world class golf to some of the most historic civil rights landmarks. It helps users live like a local by giving search options for road trips catered to specific interests such as dining, shopping, history, arts, outdoor activities and much more. So, the message for fans attending this weekend's exciting events at Talladega Superspeedway is simple. Enjoy the races, and take in all of what Alabama has to offer. For additional travel information, visit www.alabama.travel. For ticket information, call 1-877-Go2-DEGA or visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.(TSS)(4-29-2015)
The Biggest Meatball in racing meets the Biggest Track in NASCAR: Talladega Superspeedway, known for its extraordinary one-of-a-kind racing, is now delivering a new menu item that is just as anticipated as the action on the track - "The Big One" Meatball. Fans coming to enjoy the GEICO 500 and Winn-Dixie 300 on May 1-3, will want to sink their teeth into this "softball-sized" meatball that's being sold at concession stands in the Gadsden and O.V. Hill South Grandstands along the frontstretch. "The Big One" Meatball has a center of blended Mozzarella and Pepper Jack Cheeses mixed with smoked BBQ Pulled Pork and a little house BBQ sauce for an extra kick. It is then covered by a layer of Ground Beef, rolled in a panko bread crumb and parmesan mix before being deep fried to a golden brown. It's topped off with a dollop of BBQ sauce and a spaghetti garnish. This mammoth meatball, like Talladega Superspeedway, is the biggest of its kind and weighs in at over 1 pound.(TSS)(4-26-2015)
Bowyer, Blaney & Hall of Famer Wallace join Talladega pre-race Q&A: A former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winner at Talladega Superspeedway, a young, promising rookie driver for a legendary team, and a legendary Hall of Famer are scheduled to be a part of the track's Pre-Race Fan Question & Answer session at the Start/Finish Line on Sunday, May 3, prior to the start of the GEICO 500. Hear first-hand how Clint Bowyer, who has two triumphs at the 2.66-mile track, and Ryan Blaney, who pilots the iconic #21 for the famed Wood Brothers, plan to tackle the biggest and baddest race track on the planet. Plus, NASCAR Hall of Famer and International Motorsports Hall of Fame member, Rusty Wallace, will give his thoughts on who he thinks will win the GEICO 500. Fans who want to crank up their race day experience have the opportunity to be a part of the Fan Q&A session, which will be hosted by a Motor Racing Network (MRN) personality. The pre-race experience is available to all fans with the purchase of Talladega Superspeedway's "Pit Pass Upgrade." The "Pit Pass Upgrade," which can be purchased for $75, grants access to the special Q&A session, which is tentatively scheduled from 8:45-9:45am/ct. It also gives fans the unique ability to get up close and personal with NASCAR's warriors as they take in all the festivities at the Pre-Race stage, including Driver Introductions for the GEICO 500, which will include an array of special guests and VIPs, as well as the Honorary Starter and Grand Marshal for the event. The Pit Pass Upgrade goes into effect on Sunday from 8:00am until the conclusion of Driver Introductions.(TSS)(4-18-2015)
Chase Rice to perform at Talladega: Country music maverick and Columbia Nashville recording artist Chase Rice, who has NASCAR ties, will be the featured artist for Talladega Superspeedway's traditional Saturday Night Infield Concert, May 2, during an exciting weekend that will feature the Winn-Dixie 300 and GEICO 500. Rice will take the stage at NASCAR's "Party Capital" just hours after the conclusion of the Winn-Dixie 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race, and the night before the GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event, in which the winning driver will all but be guaranteed a spot in the season-ending Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. In what has become a Talladega tradition with top music acts, the Saturday Night Concert will feature Rice, whose edgy music will match perfectly with the rowdy infield crowd of the biggest and baddest racetrack on the planet. With hits like "Ready Set Roll" and his current single "Gonna Wanna Tonight" on the set list, Rice will have the intersection of Eastaboga and Talladega Boulevards rocking well into the night. The best part about the concert is that admission is FREE with the purchase of a Sunday race ticket for the GEICO 500. A former linebacker at the University of North Carolina, Rice has worn many different hats so far in life. In the sport of NASCAR, he served as a part of the Hendrick Motorsports team pit crew before moving to Nashville to pursue music full-time.(TSS)(4-13-2015)
New permanent high-def video boards at Talladega: The fan experience at Talladega Superspeedway just got bigger and better for the upcoming GEICO 500 and Winn-Dixie 300 weekend, May 1-3. Some of the Sprint Vision Digital High-Definition Video Screens that line the frontstretch, giving those in attendance a spectacular view, have increased in size while some will be permanent structures at NASCAR's Most Competitive track. The large video boards, which were introduced at Talladega a year ago as part of an International Speedway Corporation (ISC) initiative (multi-phase plans are to implement video boards at other ISC facilities over the next few years), will showcase pictures that will be bigger, brighter, crisper and clearer. In addition to the five screens on the frontstretch, a video screen will be placed along the Alabama Gang Superstretch. Two of the video boards will now be mammoth 40' x 80' in size and will have permanent homes behind pit road in the tri-oval area - one atop Gatorade Victory Lane and one in front of the Media Center. The other permanent structure will be a 26' x 52' video board which will be located at the exit of Turn Four near the Care Center. Other locations include the Start/Finish Line (26'x '52) and Turn One (18' x 33'), along with the Alabama Gang Supersptretch (20' x 27'). Both the 40' x 80' video screens have 5,120,000,00 LED Pixels (X7mm HD) and are 28,000 pounds each while the 26'x52' structures have 1,263,600,00 LED Pixels (X10mm HD) and are 16,000 pounds each.(TSS)(4-9-2015)
Ole Miss Football Coach Hugh Freeze to Serve as Honorary Pace Car Driver at Talladega: University of Mississippi Head Football Coach Hugh Freeze, who has adopted the name "Talladega" for the Rebels' fast-paced offensive plays, will serve as the Honorary "Pace Car Driver" for the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, May 3. Prior to the start of the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR's mammoth palace of speed, Freeze will lead the 43-driver starting grid around the track's 33-degree banked turns in the track's Official Ford Mustang Pace Car.
"I love watching the competition that goes on at Talladega," said Freeze, who led Ole Miss to a 9-4 overall record a year ago. "One of my favorite races to watch is obviously at Talladega Superspeedway. The term 'Talladega' is one we use around here a lot for our up-tempo offense. Our kids know it as our fastest pace, and I get excited every time Talladega has a race. I am so jacked (about driving the pace car)."
A huge NASCAR fan, Freeze has developed a good friendship with two NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers - Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. and Danica Patrick. Last year, Stenhouse, Jr., a native of Mississippi, made a Talladega Superspeedway appearance on the campus of Ole Miss to educate students about NASCAR's Most Competitive track. During his visit, Stenhouse, Jr., a life-long Ole Miss Rebels fan, worked out on the practice field with the Rebels' football players after receiving a personal guided tour of the sports facilities by Freeze.
In addition to piloting the pace car during his visit to Talladega, Freeze, who is entering his fourth season at Ole Miss (of the Southeastern Conference), will be a part of pre-race festivities on the Driver Introductions Stage at the start/finish line. Fans can witness pre-race activities with a Sunday "Pit Pass Upgrade" for $75 (in addition to an admission ticket), which allows access to pre-race festivities including: Driver Introductions, Driver Question/Answer Session, view of the Red Carpet Entry to the Drivers Meeting, and access to pit road prior to the start of the GEICO 500.
Only seven days remain where fans can get save $10 off pricing on single-day GEICO 500 tickets. The special offer ends on Friday, April 3. Log on to www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 877-Go2-DEGA for more information.(TSS)(3-31-2015)
"Unrestricted" VIP package avialable at Talladega: Talladega Superspeedway's new "Unrestricted" VIP package is like no other in sports, putting fans in the center of the action during the GEICO 500/Winn-Dixie 300 weekend (May 1-3) at the biggest and baddest race track on the planet. The behind-the-scenes package gives fans exclusive, up close and personal accessibility to exciting activities leading up to the Winn-Dixie 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, May 2, and the GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event on Sunday, May 3. The "Unrestricted" VIP package includes: "Cold" Garage Pass that Allows Access to Area Behind Pit Road (when race cars are not on the track), Special Guided NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Garage Tour (Saturday or Sunday), Parking Passes. On Saturday: Hot Lap in Talladega Pace Car Around the 2.66-mile, 33-Degree Banked Track, Gatorade Victory Lane Photo Opportunity with Winn-Dixie 300 Winner's Trophy, Reserved Area at Driver Introduction Stage for Winn-Dixie 300, VIP Area access for Saturday Night Infield Concert. On Sunday: Reserved Area for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Question/Answer Session, Gatorade Victory Lane Photo Opportunity with GEICO 500 Winner's Trophy, Reserved Area at Driver Introduction Stage for GEICO 500, Guided Pit Road Tour Where Teams Ready the Pit Stalls, and Cars are Lined up for the Start, and Reserved Area at Red Carpet Entrance to Driver/Crew Chief Meeting. The unmatched access that the "Unrestricted" VIP package provides is available for only $475 (must be purchased in addition to grandstand ticket) by calling the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office at 855.518.RACE.(TSS)(3-22-2015)
Talladega adding SAFER barriers: Talladega Superspeedway will add an energy-absorbing barrier to three areas of its inside wall prior to its May 1-3 NASCAR race weekend. The high-banked track, configured much like Daytona International Speedway, will add SAFER barriers on its inside wall at the entrances to pit road, Turn 1 and Turn 3, track chairman Grant Lynch said Thursday in a statement. "We are committed to making Talladega Superspeedway a safe environment for drivers as well as our fans," he said. Kyle Busch broke his right leg and left foot when he crashed into a concrete inside wall near the entrance of Turn 1 in February at Daytona. He is out for months, with no timetable announced for his return. NASCAR mandated that the steel-and-foam energy reduction barriers be placed on the outside walls of all ovals 10 years ago. Tracks have added them in select other areas -- often in reaction to crashes. Busch's crash resulted in NASCAR announcing it would re-evaluate its tracks to determine if more SAFER barriers are needed.(ESPN.com)(3-20-2015)
ISC to review safety at all facilities: Statement from International Speedway Corporation (ISC) President John Saunders:
"Beginning with our two superspeedway motorsports entertainment facilities, Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway, ISC is developing a significant plan for the installation of additional impact-absorbing technologies including but not limited to SAFER barriers (Steel and Foam Energy Reduction). We will utilize all available tools to ensure the safety of the drivers and our fans. It will remain our top priority. A thorough review of our other ISC facilities will continue with the focus to prioritize each track's most critical areas first. This includes but is not limited to our upcoming races at Phoenix International Raceway and Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. ISC is working very closely with NASCAR and industry experts to identify areas for additional safety protections. As we finalize our plans, we will communicate them to the drivers and necessary stakeholders ahead of our races at each ISC facility."(ISC)(2-24-2015)
Talladega adding SAFER barriers after Kyle Busch crash: Two days after Kyle Busch -- one of NASCAR's biggest stars -- broke his leg and foot in a head-on crash into a concrete wall at Daytona International Speedway, the president of the facility's sister track said more SAFER barriers will be installed before it hosts racing in May. "We'll look at our facility and reassess how we can make it better for the competitors as we've done with the catchfences and other things over the past 20 years," Talladega Superspeedway president Grant Lynch told USA TODAY Sports on Monday. "I think based upon what happened ... there will be a big focus on Talladega," Lynch said. At 2.66 miles, Talladega -- located about 55 miles east of Birmingham, Ala. -- is the biggest oval track in NASCAR and one of the fastest speedways in the world. Violent, multi-car crashes are practically staples of racing at the facility, which hosts two NASCAR weekends each year. Its 2015 dates are May 1-3 and Oct. 23-25. "I think we've put more (SAFER barriers) up than anybody, but that stands to reason because we're the biggest track with the most inside and outside walls," Lynch said. "We're certainly near the top percentage-wise for our company (International Speedway Corp., which owns 12 venues). Lynch said he didn't know what percentage of Talladega's walls is barrier-protected now. "As we've seen unusual wrecks happen, we've added more as we go," he said. "This is another opportunity to say, 'Let's ratchet it up again and take a good, hard look at the safety factors and see where we need it.' "(USA Today)(2-24-2015)
"Two for $88" Dale Jr. Ticket Package is back for Talladega: Talladega Superspeedway's "Two for $88" ticket package, named for NASCAR's most popular driver and a Talladega favorite - Dale Earnhardt, Jr. - is back for the May 3 GEICO 500. The "Two for $88" Dale Jr. Talladega package gives fans a $32 savings off the regular price for two Lincoln Grandstand tickets to the Sunday, May 3 GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race - where the winner is all but guaranteed a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. The offer is for a limited time. For more information, visit talladegasuperspeedway.com/dalejr.(TSS)(2-21-2015)
GEICO sponsoring spring Talladega race: The GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Alabama roars back into action May 1-3. The GEICO 500 will serve as the anchor event of an exciting spring weekend that will also feature the Winn-Dixie 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, May 2, and the International Motorsports Hall of Fame 200 ARCA event on Friday, May 1. "GEICO is an incredible partner which continues to show their support of our facility with tremendous activation to promote both the GEICO 500 and Talladega Superspeedway. We can't wait for the first weekend in May!" said Talladega Superspeedway Chairman Grant Lynch. "We are excited to have a great partner like Talladega Superspeedway and the opportunity to sponsor a spectacular race like the GEICO 500," said Ted Ward, GEICO Vice President. "NASCAR is a great market for our customers and the GEICO 500 attracts over a hundred thousand passionate fans from all across the country who come to take in the action and excitement that the weekend brings." Last year's spring Cup classic at the 2.66-mile venue proved to be a pivotal event in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup as Denny Hamlin claimed the checkered flag and a spot in the title battle in which he finished third. This year's GEICO 500 will be the 10th event on the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule.(Talladega Superspeedway)(2-5-2015)
Case of woman who went missing at Talladega ruled homicide: The death of a woman who vanished near the Talladega Superspeedway during October's race weekend has been ruled a homicide, authorities announced. Theresa Benn was reported missing just before 7:30pm on Oct. 19. Benn, who also went by Theresa Andrews, her maiden name, and Theresa Dulaney, her married name, was last seen the predawn hours of that Sunday on Speedway Industrial Drive in Lincoln. Authorities said Benn was with her husband prior to leaving him behind because she wanted to go to the races and he did not. Crowe said the woman's husband, Kevin Dulaney, told investigators he dropped her off on or near Eastaboga Road about 2:15am that Sunday. He said he last saw her walking toward the track. Investigators haven't determined whether she ever made it to the GEICO 500 later that day. She did not go to Saturday's race. Benn's body was found Nov. 22 in the Jackson Shoals area of Choccolocco Creek. The Lincoln Police Department today said they are still waiting on DNA test results, but are confident they will confirm the body to be that of Benn. In a press release, Lincoln Police Chief Darren Britton said the preliminary death report indicates the manner of death is homicide. Investigators have not said how Benn was killed.(Alabama Media Group)(12-24-2014)
Atlanta removing 17,000 seats, Charlotte 41,000 UPDATE: Atlanta Motor Speedway's parent company, Speedway Motorsports, Inc., announced Tuesday that they will remove 17,000 seats from the track's grandstands. The company anticipates using those areas for premium hospitality, advertising and other facility purposes. Their sister track, Charlotte Motor Speedway, is losing 41,000 seats.(wgxa.tv), see image of the CMS construction at Slugger Labbe's Twitter.(12-10-2014)
UPDATE: Alterations announced this week are in line with a trend of tracks removing seats. Charlotte, after removing 41,000 seats this winter, will be down to permanent seating of 89,000 in 2015, a startlingly low capacity considering its location in NASCAR's epicenter. But it's par for the course. Atlanta is removing 17,000 seats to get down to 75,000; Dover is removing 17,500 seats to get down to 95,500; and Daytona is removing its backstretch grandstands of 46,500 next spring to go to 101,500 seats. Other tracks on the circuit have made similar changes.
At its peak in 2007, International Speedway Corp.'s 12 major tracks had 1.1 million grandstand seats (not including suites). After the Daytona renovation, ISC will be down 30 percent to approximately 761,000 seats.
In 2013 alone, the following ISC tracks cut seats: Talladega (from 108,000 to 78,000), Richmond (91,000 to 71,000), Chicagoland (69,000 to 55,500), Michigan (84,000 to 71,000), California (81,000 to 68,000), Darlington (60,000 to 58,000) and Homestead (56,000 to 46,000). Any additional cuts likely will be revealed when its annual report comes out in January.
With the current Charlotte and Atlanta reductions, Speedway Motorsports has cut 101,000 seats (12 percent) across seven of its tracks since 2009, although it added 38,000 at Kentucky when it moved a Cup race to that track. SMI, which includes suites in its capacity estimates, cut capacity in 2013 at Atlanta (from 98,000 to 92,000), Bristol (158,000 to 153,000) and New Hampshire (96,000 to 95,000).
Dover listed 135,000 seats in 2009, so its reduction in recent years is 29 percent. At one point, it reduced 20,000 seats by replacing the current seats with wider ones for more fan comfort, a move done by many racetracks. Indianapolis and Pocono, privately owned, do not have to report their capacities, but Indianapolis also has removed seats.(see full article at the Sporting News)(12-11-2014)
Winn-Dixie to sponsor Xfinity Series race at Talladega: Winn-Dixie, a subsidiary of Jacksonville, Florida-based BI-LO Holdings, announced Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway it is entering into a new partnership with NASCAR's Most Competitive Track to sponsor the "Winn-Dixie 300" NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, May 2, 2015. With 68 Winn-Dixie stores spread throughout the state of Alabama, the company is proud to sponsor the Winn-Dixie 300 at NASCAR's biggest and baddest track, which opened in 1969. The goal is to make meaningful connections with customers throughout the state of Alabama and beyond by being a part of events they are passionate about. This isn't the first time that Winn-Dixie has had its name on races at the world's fastest speedway. From 1997 through 2001, Winn-Dixie was the entitlement sponsor for the ARCA Racing Series events, and in 2008, had its name on the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at TSS.(Talladega Superspeedway)(10-22-2014)
Larger High-Definition Video Boards for fans at Talladega: Talladega Superspeedway will host the most anticipated race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup at Sunday's GEICO 500. Fans in the grandstands will not only witness the spectacular action LIVE and in person' but will have the added luxury of seeing it with larger than life Sprint Vision Digital High-Definition Video Screens. The new screens are even bigger than what was showcased during the Aaron's 499 weekend this past May. In fact' there will be a new mammoth 40' x 80' video board which will tower above Gatorade Victory Lane' where many of the sport's top drivers hope they will be at the conclusion of 500 miles. Five video boards will line the frontstretch' offering fans in every grandstand seat an unbelievable view of the incredible content to be projected throughout the event weekend. The high-definition pictures will be even bigger' brighter' crisper and clearer. Talladega Superspeedway served as a test track for the new International Speedway Corporation (ISC) initiative in May. The multi-phase project plans are to implement the video boards at all ISC facilities over the next few years.(TSS)(10-16-2014)
NASCAR Revises National Series Qualifying Format At Talladega Superspeedway: NASCAR revised its national series qualifying format for Talladega Superspeedway which, in turn, should elevate the on-track competition for fans at the high speed 2.66-mile track. For the Oct. 17-19 events at Talladega featuring both the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, national series qualifying will take on a more rapid pace that should bring out the best in the competitors and provide fans with an extra element of excitement.
Keystone Light Pole Qualifying for the Fred's 250 powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 17 at 5:30pm/et and will air live on FOX Sports 1. Coors Light Pole Qualifying for the GEICO 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 18 at 4:30pm/et and will air live on ESPNEWS, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
National series qualifying at Talladega will now consist of the following:
· Three rounds with the first round divided into two groups amongst the competitors. The first qualifying round is five minutes in length for each group.
· Competitors will be assigned to a first qualifying round group based on the random draw held earlier in the event.
· The 24 eligible competitors that post the fastest single lap speed from either of the first qualifying round groups will advance to the second round. The remaining competitors will be sorted based on their speed posted in the first round of qualifying in descending order.
· There will be a 10-minute break after the completion of the first qualifying round and the 24 remaining competitors that advance to the second round will have their times reset.
· The second qualifying round is five minutes in length and the 12 eligible competitors that post the fastest single lap speed will advance to the third and final round.
· The fastest remaining competitors will earn positions 13-24 based on their fastest single lap speed posted in qualifying in descending order.
· Following a five minute break, the 12 eligible competitors that advance to the final round will have their posted speeds reset.
· The final qualifying round is five minutes in length and the fastest single lap speed will determine positions 1-12 in descending order.
"This revision in national series qualifying at Talladega should be more exciting for our fans," said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR senior vice president of competition and racing development. "It will feature a more accelerated pace, provide greater opportunity for team strategy to come into play and it should more closely resemble actual racing conditions."(NASCAR)(9-4-2014)
Talladega Superspeedway 2015 Weekend Dates Unveiled: In 2015, the dates for Talladega Superspeedway's two race weekends will have a sense of familiarity with race fans - one in the spring to kick off the month of May and the other in late October to again feature the all-important sixth race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. NASCAR announced the 2015 schedules for its top three national touring series Tuesday - the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck - and Talladega Superspeedway's slate will resemble 2014. The tradition of the first weekend in May will continue May, 1-3, at NASCAR's Most Competitive ribbon of asphalt with a triple header consisting of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the NASCAR Nationwide Series, as well as the ARCA Racing Series. On October 23-25, the Biggest and Baddest race track on the planet will play host two pivotal races in title chases for both the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with the fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola and GEICO 500, respectively.
"2015 will be here before you know it, and we are happy to let our fans know that the best racing in all of motorsports here at Talladega will return at recognizable times," said Talladega Superspeedway Chairman Grant Lynch. "May is a beautiful time to be at Talladega. We had picture-perfect weather with sunny skies and impeccable temperatures earlier this year, and in late October, there is nothing like being here with the feel of autumn in the air. Add to that the fact that the GEICO 500 will be a paramount, decisive race in NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup, it's going to be something else."
The 2015 GEICO 500, the sixth race in the Chase, will also be the third and final event in the Contender Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, where the field of 12 eligible drivers vying for the championship, will be reduced to eight after the checkered flag. A win in the GEICO 500 will automatically advance the victor into the Eliminator Round. A triumph in the May classic at Talladega is just as important to get into the 16-driver Chase field. By virtue of his victory earlier this year at the 2.66-mile venue, Denny Hamlin secured his spot in the Chase.(TSS)(8-26-2014)
Talladega's Tribute - "The Alabama Gang Superstretch" Unveiled: Talladega Superspeedway announced that the back straightaway will forever be known as "The Alabama Gang Superstretch", paying tribute to the original members - racing legends Bobby and Donnie Allison, and Red Farmer, all of whom have played a significant role in the track's history and are today huge supporters of the 2.66-mile venue. For this weekend's Aaron's Dream Weekend at Talladega, The Alabama Gang Superstretch name will be displayed in huge, block lettering midway down the outside retaining wall of the backstretch, which measures over 4,000 feet. The monumental, new addition to the track will "stretch" more than 200 feet.
The trio will serve in "official" capacities during what will be a busy and exciting Saturday at the track. The Allisons will serve as the Grand Marshal's for the International Motorsports Hall of Fame 200 ARCA race, while Farmer will be the Honorary Starter from atop the flag stand. The ARCA race kicks off a full day of activity which also includes the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series all-new Coors Light "Knockout" group qualifying for the Aaron's 499, plus the Aaron's 312 NASCAR Nationwide Series event.
"No honor is too big for The Alabama Gang," says Talladega Superspeedway Chairman Grant Lynch. "What we are doing in naming The Alabama Gang Superstretch is unprecedented in our sport. During our events, from TV cameras and still photography, fans will be able to see this accolade for some of our favorite people in the world. The gang has meant so much to NASCAR, Talladega Superspeedway and the state of Alabama, and this is just a small token of our appreciation."
"This place is special," said Bobby of the speedway. "We (The Alabama Gang) have always felt like we were a part of it."
"When you won Talladega, there was something extra special about it," added Donnie. "It was a huge deal to us, our family and friends."
"We made each other the best we could be since we raced against each other in the early years," quipped Farmer of he and the Allisons. "We liked racing against each other, and Talladega was the ultimate place to race."
Hailing from Florida, Farmer and the Allison brothers saw opportunities in Alabama, so they settled in Hueytown, AL. In the early 1960s, they gained notoriety through success on short tracks in cities like Huntsville, Birmingham and Montgomery. Naturally, when William H.G. France built the biggest and fastest speedway in the country in nearby Talladega, the hometown boys were going to take to the track. And as a result, devoted local fans turned out. The legendary trio galvanized the local race fans in the 1960s and 70s, giving many a primary reason to devotedly attend races at Talladega-just to lend their cheers of support for their hometown heroes as they defended their turf. Their world eventually grew to include another Alabama racer Neil Bonnett, and years later, Bobby's sons Davey and Clifford.
Hearing loud cheers from the stands, The Alabama Gang didn't disappoint. While having success in NASCAR's top division with 10 career triumphs, Donnie collected two victories at Talladega. Bobby, the 1983 Sprint Cup Series Champion and winner of 84 career races, would visit Talladega's Victory Lane on four occasions. Bonnett, an 18-time Cup winner, was a one-time victor at Talladega. Farmer, a mainstay in the ARCA Series, claimed two wins at Talladega. Clifford posted a top-10 ARCA finish in 1992, and Davey ranks second only to Dale Earnhardt Sr. in total Talladega wins with eight. They include three NASCAR Sprint Cup (of his career total 19 Cup wins), four ARCA and one IROC triumph. Davey is one of only eight drivers to post their first career Sprint Cup win at Talladega.
The Alabama Gang is also represented atop The Alabama Gang Superstretch. From the exit of turn two to the entrance of turn three, fans now have additional RV options from which to view all races at Talladega Superspeedway. They include Allison Motorhome Ridge, Farmer Motorhome Overlook and Bonnett Corporate Motorhome Summit. For information on options, fans can call the Talladega Superspeedway ticket office at 1-877-Go2-Dega.
The Alabama Gang continues to live on today with a new generation of racers. The torch of the Allison legacy is passed from Donnie and Bobby to their grandsons Justin and Robbie. Justin Allison, with the help from his grandfather Donnie, has recently emerged on the racing scene in the ARCA Racing Series. Justin competed in the season-opening event at Daytona and was in the top-10 before being involved in an accident that broke out in front of him. He will compete in this weekend's International Motorsports Hall of Fame ARCA race at Talladega. Robbie Allison, grandson of Bobby and son of Davey, now lives in Mooresville, NC and is competing in Legends and Late Model cars, as well as Pro Champion Karts. Both Justin and Robbie have high aspirations.
Another Alabama native, Grant Enfinger from Fairhope, has dominated the ARCA Series thus far in 2014, becoming only the second driver in series history to capture the checkered flag in the first three races of the season.
Interestingly enough, since Talladega Superspeedway opened in 1969, there have been more than 50 drivers from the state of Alabama to compete at the most competitive facility in the world, and all can say they are a part of "The Alabama Gang."
Some of the Alabama drivers that tasted success in either ARCA or NASCAR include: Darrell Wallace Jr. (first African-American driver to win a race in one of NASCAR's premier divisions); Steve Grissom (1993 NASCAR Nationwide Series Champ and winner of 11 NNS races), Rick Crawford (5-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series winner), Cale Gale (1-time NCWTS/1-time ARCA winner), Gary Bradberry (3-time ARCA winner), Mickey Gibbs (3-time ARCA winner), Billy Thomas (5-time ARCA winner) and Dave Mader III (1-time ARCA winner). Hut Stricklin, Donnie Allison's son-in-law, enjoyed success as well with a career best runner up finish in Darlington Raceway's 1996 Southern 500. Johnny Ray, who lives down the street from the track, competed in three ARCA races and one Cup race at Talladega, but is best known for giving Dale Earnhardt Sr. one of his early rides in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
The track was also excited to have former crew chief Larry McReynolds, a Birmingham native, who helped Davey Allison to several wins, on hand at Wednesday's event. Bonnett's widow Susan Bonnett Northcutt and Liz Allison Hackett and Krista Allison, widow and daughter of Davey Allison, respectively, joined in on Wednesday's ceremonies, as well. The Gang is all here.....and lives on through the drivers of today and The Alabama Gang Superstretch at Talladega Superspeedway! For a variety of ticket packages for the Aaron's Dream Weekend, log onto talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 1-877-Go2-DEGA.(TSS)(5-1-2014)
New Freedom Trophy Awarded to Talladega Sprint Cup Series Winner: Winning a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway - NASCAR's Most Competitive track - brings with it history, tradition, prestige and honor. Now, it has taken on a new meaning that has a special place in everyone's heart. In support of the United States Military, Talladega Superspeedway is thrilled to announce the "Freedom Trophy," which will be awarded to every winner of a Sprint Cup Series race at the 2.66-mile grand venue, beginning with the May 4 Aaron's 499. The special trophy showcases all five branches of the United States military - Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. Military personnel will be on hand at each Talladega Sprint Cup Series race to make the presentation of the Freedom Trophy in Victory Lane. Not only will they be in the winner's circle to award the coveted trophy, but they will also participate in pre-race ceremonies as well. Each Talladega Superspeedway race weekend, a different United States military base will be given the opportunity to present the Freedom Trophy.
The creation of Talladega Superspeedway Vice President Brian Crichton, the Freedom Trophy is an honor to all military men and women on behalf of the speedway, a patriotic entity since 1969. Crichton enlisted the assistance of Fast Forward Marketing Owner Mike Barth (Spring, TX), who has custom designed trophies in motorsports since 1996. MTM Recognition in Oklahoma City, OK spearheaded the design.
"Winning a Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega just got extra special," said Talladega Chairman Grant Lynch. "With the Freedom Trophy, we pay tribute to our race winners, as well as our servicemen and women who make so many things possible for us on a daily basis." The Freedom Trophy is five-sided, reflective of each branch of the military. Silver aluminum panels, complete with a design of each military branch soldier and branch logo, are showcased, along with a star that is waterjet cut in the center. The base is black stained wood with circular discs at the bottom and top made of black acrylic, and includes the Talladega Superspeedway logo, the date of the race and the name of the base awarding the trophy.
"As a symbol of our military we thought it was fitting to start with a pentagon shaped base'" said Crichton. "The artists did a great job by bringing together all five branches of the military, incorporating the star in the center and showcasing each branch seal on the individual pillars. It is a trophy we hope every Talladega Sprint Cup winner will be proud of - that it will mean a little something extra when they display it with the rest of their trophies." In addition to recognizing the military through the Freedom Trophy, Talladega Superspeedway is proud to offer special ticket prices for all members of the military and their families for its race weekends. For more information, visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com/military.(TSS)(4-15-2014)
GEICO's Gecko Talladega Superspeedway, new title sponsor: Officials from GEICO and Talladega Superspeedway announced that the fall NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, Oct. 19, at NASCAR's Most Competitive track will be known as the GEICO 500. The GEICO 500 weekend will be held October 17-19 and will also feature the fred's 250 Powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. As part of the agreement, GEICO will be named the Official Auto, RV, Motorcycle and Powersport Insurance Provider of Talladega Superspeedway.
The GEICO Gecko, which travels the country spreading good news about GEICO, was recently at Talladega Superspeedway with track Chairman Grant Lynch showing excitement and anticipation for the GEICO 500 at NASCAR's Most Competitive Track on Sunday, October 19. Officials from GEICO and Talladega announced the new race entitlement partnership last week. As part of the agreement, GEICO was also named the Official Auto, RV, Motorcycle and Powersport Insurance Provider of Talladega Superspeedway.. NASCAR's Talladega Superspeedway offers both reserved and unreserved campgrounds throughout the property, 13 of which have been sponsored by GEICO since 2011. "We are thrilled with our expanded partnership with GEICO, a Fortune 500 company with a sterling reputation and a perfect fit with our passionate fan base," said Lynch. "While GEICO has been our partner for years with their sponsorship of various campgrounds around the facility, having the entitlement of our October Sprint Cup Series race will allow the company to extend its reach to all Talladega and NASCAR fans. The wild card race at Talladega (sixth race in NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup Series Championship) has long been a tradition in the sport and we couldn't be happier that it's now the GEICO 500."
NASCAR first returns to Talladega Superspeedway in 2014 with the Aaron's Dream Weekend on May 2-4. The NASCAR Nationwide Series Aaron's 312 will take to the track on Saturday, May 3 while NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series machines take the green flag on Sunday, May 4, in the Aaron's 499. For ticket information, log onto www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.(TSS)(2-7-2014)
Talladega cutting seating capacity: Talladega Superspeedway, which once boasted some of the largest crowds to see NASCAR races, will see its seating capacity reduced to approximately 80,000 seats by next season, tracks officials confirmed on Wednesday. The largest change will come from the recent demolition of the Allison Grandstands, a large swath of seats located on the backstretch of the 2.66-mile speedway which had a seating capacity this season of 18,000. In recent seasons, many of the track's frontstretch seats have been tarped over while the speedway still sold tickets - usually at lower price - for the backstretch. "The changes are simply a reflection of our current attendance trends," track spokesman Russell Branham told The Observer. "The goal will be a better fan experience and that will be entirely on the frontstretch from now on." As recently as 2007, track attendance estimates had more than 307,000 fans attending Talladega's two Sprint Cup Series race weekends. At the time, the track's listed capacity was 147,000 grandstand seats. This season, the track's listed capacity was listed at 109,000.(Charlotte Observer)(11-28-2013)
Two records tied at Talladega: April 2001's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway tied two Sprint Cup Series records - number of lead changes and closest margin of victory. There were 88 lead changes at the start/finish line, tying an all-time NASCAR record set in last season's April event at Talladega. The final lead change occurred on the last lap - eight of the last 12 Talladega races featured a last-lap lead change. Jimmie Johnson edged Clint Bowyer by .002 seconds, which matches the closest margin of victory since the inception of electronic scoring in May 1993. That mark was originally set at Darlington Raceway on March 16, 2003, with Ricky Craven beating Kurt Busch. Since 1993, every race at Talladega finishing under green - 29 in all - has had a MOV under .400 seconds. Passing numbers - for the lead and otherwise - also were high. There were 159 green flag passes for the lead all around the race track, with a total of 11,025 green flag passes throughout the field.(NASCAR)(4-18-2011)
Wild, Record-Tying Finish At Talladega: April 2001's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway tied two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series records - number of lead changes and closest margin of victory.
There were 88 lead changes at the start/finish line, tying an all-time NASCAR record set in last season's April event at Talladega. The final lead change occurred on the last lap - eight of the last 12 Talladega races featured a last-lap lead change.
#48-Jimmie Johnson edged #33-Clint Bowyer by .002 seconds, which matches the closest margin of victory [MOV] since the inception of electronic scoring in May 1993. That mark was originally set at Darlington Raceway on March 16, 2003, with Ricky Craven beating Kurt Busch. Since 1993, every race at Talladega finishing under green - 29 in all - has had a MOV under .400 seconds.
Johnson, with his 54th-career victory, moved into a tie with NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Lee Petty for ninth on the all-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins list.
Passing numbers - for the lead and otherwise - also were high. There were 159 green flag passes for the lead all around the race track, with a total of 11,025 green flag passes throughout the field. Sunday's race capped off a record-breaking weekend at Talladega Superspeedway. In Saturday's NASCAR Nationwide Series race, there were 56 lead changes, an all-time record since the series' inception in 1982.(NASCAR)(4-18-2011)
Sprint Cup Series Record 28 Different Leaders At Talladega: There were 28 different leaders in Sunday's AMP Energy 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, an all-time Sprint Cup Series record. The previous record of 26 was snapped on Lap 142 when Joe Nemechek crossed the start/finish line in first. Michael Waltrip later extended the record to 28, leading lap 165. The old record of 26 different leaders was originally set July 27, 1986, at Talladega. It was tied on April 22, 2001, again at Talladega. Sunday's race also placed in the top five in terms of lead changes. There were 64 total lead changes, which is tied for fifth-most in NASCAR history.(NASCAR)(10-6-2008)
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Friday, September 4, 2015, 4:30 pm/et