NASCAR Track Facts: Talladega Superspeedway

AMP Energy 500

NASCAR heads to Talladega Superspeedway this weekend for the fourth race of the Chase.

Here is a quick run down of trivial facts and statistics for this weekend’s AMP Energy 500 at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, AL.

Talladega Superspeedway History

  • Construction began on what was then known as the Alabama International Motor Speedway on May 23, 1968.
  • The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race was held on Sept. 14, 1969.
  • The track name was changed to Talladega Superspeedway in 1989.
  • The first NASCAR Nationwide Series race was held on July 25, 1992.
  • The second NASCAR Sprint Cup Talladega race was moved from July to October in 1997.
  • Talladega Superspeedway completed its fourth repaving on Sept. 19, 2006.
  • The first NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race was held on Oct. 7, 2006.

AMP Energy 500

Track Numbers

  • NASCAR Cup Series Races: 78
  • Pole Winners: 33
  • Race Winners: 36
  • Bill Elliott leads all drivers with eight poles at Talladega.
  • Joe Nemechek leads all other active drivers in poles with four.
  • Bobby Isaac won the first NASCAR Sprint Cup pole in September 1969. Isaac went on to win the first three poles there.
  • Richard Brickhouse won the first NASCAR Sprint Cup race.
  • Dale Earnhardt Sr. has won the most races at Talladega (10). Eighteen drivers have won more than once.
  • Jeff Gordon leads all other active drivers in victories with six.
  • Hendrick Motorsports has won 10 races, more than any other organization.
  • 31 of 78 races have been won from a top-two starting position, including 13 from the pole; 21 have been won from a starting position outside the top 10.
  • The furthest back in the field a race winner started was 36th, by Jeff Gordon in 2000.
  • All of the NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Talladega have been scheduled for 188 laps, 500 miles.
  • There have been four green-white-checkered races at Talladega: May 2005 (194), October 2005 (190), April 2007 (192) and April 2008 (190).
  • Mark Martin’s pace in the 1997 spring race set an all-time NASCAR Sprint Cup record for the fastest race ever run. He won the caution-free race with an average speed of 188.354 mph and covered the 500-mile distance in two hours, 39 minutes and 18 seconds.
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 42nd and 14th in his first two races at Talladega. In his 14 races there since, he finished in the top 10 ten times, including five victories and two second-place finishes. His four consecutive victories (October 2001 through April 2003) are the most ever by a driver at Talladega. Buddy Baker (three – May 1975 through May 1976) is the only other driver to win more than two consecutive races there.

Track Records

  • Track qualifying record: Bill Elliott (212.809 mph, 44.998 seconds, 4-30-87)
  • Track race record: Mark Martin (188.354 mph, 5-10-97)

Qualifying/Race Data

  • 2007 pole winner: Michael Waltrip (189.070 mph, 50.648 seconds)
  • 2007 race winner: Jeff Gordon, 143.438 mph, 10-7-07)

Talladega Race Day Data

  • Estimated Pit Window: Every 34-36 laps, based on fuel mileage.
  • #30 of 36 (10-5-08)
  • Track Size: 2.66 miles
  • Banking/Corners: 33 degrees
  • Banking/Frontstretch: 16.5 degrees
  • Banking/Backstretch: 2 degrees
  • Frontstretch: 4,300 feet
  • Backstretch: 4,000 feet