A Look Back at Talladega's History - A Different Kind of Racing
What does a Chevrolet Corvette, a BMW 2002 and an AMC Gremlin all have in common? They have all won at Talladega Superspeedway.
In the early and mid 1970’s, the infield road course at Talladega Superspeedway could be linked to the 2.66-mile trioval to create a daring four-mile track for sports cars and small Formula Vee and Formula Ford open wheel cars. Races were a test of both man and machine, as the driver would wind his way through the curvy road course before pushing his vehicle to the limits around turns 1 & 2 of the trioval, down the backstretch, through turns 3 & 4 and over halfway down the frontstretch before diving back into the road course.
The majority of races were sanctioned by the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and featured multiple classes. The IMSA RS series featured such makes and models as AMC Gremlins, Ford Pintos, BMW 2002s, Honda Civics, Mazda RX-2s and Datsun 510s. The IMSA GT series featured the larger and faster BMW CSLs, Chevrolet Corvettes and Camaros, Porsche Carerras and 911s and Datsun Z cars.
“The sports car races were a unique chapter in Talladega Superspeedway history,” said Talladega Superspeedway President Rick Humphrey. “Although the road course is no longer used for competition, I believe the various drivers and vehicles that won on it add to the lore of Talladega.”
Today the infield road course is used for motorcycle testing and occasionally driver training for the Alabama State Troopers.
Race fans can experience part of Talladega’s history this fall, during the 40th running of the AMP Energy 500 weekend, Oct. 3-5. Visit www.talladegasuperspeedway.com or call 1-877-Go2-DEGA. For our hearing impaired guests, please call TDD 1-866-ISC-TRAK (1-866-472-8725). Tickets also are available in person by visiting the Talladega Superspeedway Ticket Office from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. CDT, Monday- Friday.