Senior Airman Donald L. Googe, Jr., to Award Prestigious Freedom Trophy to Talladega’s Sprint Cup Winner during GEICO 500 Weekend


TALLADEGA, AL – Talladega Superspeedway is known for history, tradition, prestige and honor that come with winning a Sprint Cup race at NASCAR’s Most Competitive track. In May track officials announced a new tradition at Talladega: the presentation of the new and unique “Freedom Trophy” to each NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winner by a member of one of our countries five military branches.

Senior Airman Donald L. Googe Jr., from Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, AL, will greet the winner in Gatorade Victory Lane at the conclusion of the GEICO 500 - the all-important third and final race of the Contender Round of NASCAR’s revamped Chase for the Sprint Cup in which the eligible drivers for the title will be cut from 12 to eight.  There, Googe, Jr., will award the impressive pentagon-shaped Talladega Superspeedway Freedom Trophy, which represents the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard.

“We are extremely proud to continue this new tradition of awarding the Freedom Trophy to our Sprint Cup winner in Victory Lane at Talladega Superspeedway,” said track Chairman Grant Lynch. “There’s nothing we like more than showing support for our country’s troops who fight each and every day for our freedom so that we can put on NASCAR events here. They deserve all the recognition in the world.”

The Freedom Trophy is a spectacular work of art. Silver aluminum panels, complete with a design of each military branch soldier and branch logo, are showcased, along with a star that is waterjet cut in the center. Black stained wood makes up the trophy’s base, with circular discs at the bottom and top made of black acrylic, and includes the Talladega Superspeedway logo, the date of the race and the name of the base awarding the trophy.

Googe, Jr., is a paralegal assigned to the 42nd Air Base Wing Legal Office where he is responsible for managing a comprehensive legal assistance program to 4,685 military and civilian personnel. He assists commanders in ensuring good order and discipline within 14 units assigned to Maxwell AFB and Gunter Annex, and provides legal opinions to over 50 on-base private organizations.

Talladega Superspeedway has always proudly brought patriotic elements to the 2.66-mile grand venue, showcasing some of the most recognizable displays to celebrate troops in all of NASCAR. Talladega, works closely with numerous military bases throughout the southeast to bring members of the military to NASCAR’s biggest and baddest track.

In addition to recognizing the military through the Freedom Trophy, Talladega Superspeedway is proud to offer special ticket prices for all members of the military and their families for its race weekends. For more information, visit

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