NASCAR’s Talladega Race

Since its establishment on February 21, 1948, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series has become one of the most popular sports in the world. One of its most famous tracks is the Talladega Superspeedway which has always been known for its crashes, tight racetracks, and uncertain finishes.

Initially, NASCAR was known as the Strictly Stock Division and used vehicles that were also used on the streets to race with. This changed as safety technology improved, and modifications were made to the cars. Today, NASCAR has grown from what was a small organization that on the sands of Daytona Beach to a flourishing sport.

The construction of the Talladega track began in the 1960s by William Henry Getty France who wanted to make a track that was faster and longer the Daytona International Speedway. Initial plans were to reason with local government to build the track in Orange County, North Carolina but this plan failed. William failed to secure locations near Raleigh and an area between Atlanta and Birmingham. Eventually, on May 23, 1968, he would be able to build the track on an old airfield. At the cost of $4 million, the track opened on September 13, 1969.

NASCAR’s Talladega Superspeedway was once known as the Alabama International Motor Speedway (AIMS). It is a motorsports complex on the former Anniston Air Force Base located in Lincoln on Talladega County, Alabama. The track was constructed in 1969 in the shape of a tri-oval by the International Speedway Corporation; a business owned by the France Family. Currently, this track hosts the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, and NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series. Talladega measures a length of 2.66 miles long (4.281 km) which makes it the longest NASCAR oval. The main grandstand holds about 80,000 spectators with a total peak capacity of 175,00 people.

However, even with today’s safety improvements, there have been many car crashes. The term “The Big One” is used to describe the disastrous accidents that occur on the Talladega racetrack that have taken out large chunks of the field. For example, in May 2017 of the NASCAR Cup Series, 18 cars were involved in a Lap-170 crash. Another major accident occurred in October of the same year during the playoff race. By the end of the Alabama 500, only 14 cars finished on the lead lap, and more than half the field had signs of crash damage.

Despite the possible dangers, people still love the sport. Some say that there are multiple things they love about it such as experiencing the races in real life and rivalries. With a season that spans ten months, it is sure to keep fans interested and make headlines.