086_Anthem Annual 2016 Feb Edition.p1

2016 Anthem Annual Feb Web PDF

Talladega Superspeedway 2016 NASCAR SCHEDULE APRIL 30 Talladega 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series Race MAY 1 Geico 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race OCTOBER 22 fred’s 250 Powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race OCTOBER 23 Alabama 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race Talladega Superspeedway, the biggest and baddest race track on the planet, will once again play a key, pivotal role in the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup with both of its traditional weekends. The winner of May’s GEICO 500 will secure a spot in the Chase, just as Dale Earnhardt Jr. did a year ago by capturing his sixth triumph at NASCAR’s Most Competitive track. October’s Alabama 500 will serve as the third and fi nal “must-win” race of the Contender Round, where the fi eld of title contenders will be trimmed from 12 to eight at the checkered fl ag. While the racing is second to none, enhancing the fan experience has been an important endeavor for Talladega Superspeedway since the beginning. The past decade has seen upgrades throughout the facility, including installation of comfortable 21- and 22-inch fold-back seating across the entire frontstretch grandstands, as well as the construction of an all-new concourse social area in the tri-oval outfi tted with new signage and a full-service bar. High-defi nition video screens (an ISC initiative) line the frontstretch, giving fans an incredible crisp view of all the action on the track. The “fan-fun track” is known as NASCAR’s “Party Capital’ for its legendary Saturday night concerts and the newest tradition — the Friday night “Big One on the Boulevard” infi eld parade, featuring NASCAR stars like Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick and many others. Talladega is steeped in tradition. On an assuming stretch of land suited for soybean farming located next to a couple of abandoned airport runways, crews constructed the biggest, fastest and most competitive superspeedway in the world — Talladega Superspeedway. When Alabama International Motor Speedway (as it was called until 1989) fi rst opened its doors in September 1969, the sheer size and speed of this brand new “superspeedway” nearly scared the drivers away. Due to the high speeds reached during practice and qualifying, several drivers left the track Saturday afternoon. Organizers were able to wrangle up some of the brave drivers who stuck around from the race the day before, though, and the fi rst Talladega 500 was completed without a major incident on September 14, 1969 — Richard Brickhouse came away victorious. It was not long before the track came into its own with unprecedented speeds and unparalleled competition. The combination of the two also played a major role in the development of many drivers’ careers as they built reputations for setting records and taking victories at the largest, fastest and most competitive track on the circuit. Two of the greatest NASCAR drivers who hold important records at the mammoth 2.66-mile tri-oval are named Earnhardt. Dale Earnhardt set the record for most victories at Talladega with 10 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series trophies over the years, while his son, Earnhardt Jr., has picked up six — and four of those were consecutive, setting the record for longest winning streak in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition at Talladega. Another dominating family that is a part of the Talladega tradition is the Allisons. Brothers Donnie and Bobby were the fi rst hometown stars of the track that formed the legendary “Alabama Gang.” Over the years, the Allison family scored nine victories at NASCAR’s “Most Competitive Track” — four for Bobby, two for Donnie and three for Bobby’s son, Davey. The Allisons, along with Red Farmer and Neil Bonnett — both Alabamians and winners at Talladega as well — were known as “The Alabama Gang.” In tribute to them, the speedway’s backstretch is known as “The Alabama Gang Superstretch.” For tickets and information, visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 888.Go2.DEGA (462.3342). 86 ANTHEM MOTORSPORTS ANNUAL


2016 Anthem Annual Feb Web PDF
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