A Look Back In Talladega History: An Exclusive Club


Mark Martin knows a thing or two about winning races at Talladega Superspeedway.  As a multi-race/multi-series winner at the 2.66-mile tri-oval, he is in an elite group of drivers.  Only Dale Earnhardt, Davey Allison, Bobby Labonte and Martin have won in three or more racing series at Talladega.  And, as the only driver to win in four different racing series at NASCAR’s Most Competitive Track, Martin is in a league of his own.

While other drivers earned more wins, Earnhardt (14 total) and Allison (8 total) for example, only Martin can say he has competed and won in each of the four series currently racing at Talladega (ARCA RE/MAX, NASCAR Craftsman Truck, NASCAR Nationwide and NASCAR Sprint Cup).  Earnhardt, Allison and Labonte recorded wins in three separate series, (Earnhardt – 10 NSCS, 1 NNS and 1 IROC, Allison – 3 NSCS, 4 ARCA and 1 IROC, Labonte – 1 NSCS, 1 NNS and 2 IROC). 
Martin however, has five race wins at Talladega (2 NSCS, 1 NNS, 1 NCTS and 1 ARCA) and has seen both the cars and the track change over time.  Martin’s first start at Talladega came in the 1981 ARCA 200, a race in which he qualified second and would go on to win.  His next win would not come till 14 years later in the 1995 Winston Select 500 (now Aaron’s 499).  In 1997, Martin swept both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide races during the Winston Select 500 weekend.  In doing so, he also set a record for the fastest 500 mile race run in NASCAR, with an average speed of 188.354 mph.  Martin’s final win at Talladega also came during a significant milestone in the track’s history, the inaugural NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race. 
Martin’s winning ways may not be over at Talladega Superspeedway either.  In 2008, he announced he would be driving for Talladega juggernaut Hendrick Motorsports in 2009.  Hendrick leads all car owners with ten team wins at Talladega.
Talladega Superspeedway proudly celebrates forty years of the most competitive racing in NASCAR.  While the track has seen changes made to the cars that circle its high-banks, the surface that they race on and the grandstands that thousands of fans fill twice a year, one constant remains; Talladega Superspeedway is authentic NASCAR racing at its finest. 
Race fans should make plans now to experience part of Talladega’s history in 2009 during the triple-header Aaron’s Dream Weekend, featuring the ARCA RE/MAX Series, the NASCAR Nationwide Series and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.  For tickets, 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.
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