Talladega…and the International Motorsports Hall of Fame!
LifestyleMotorsports February 2, 2023 Corey Osborne
Ok, I’ll admit that this is less about Jeeps, and more about the enthusiast side of who we are as Jeepers. I thought it would be cool to share with you all a few of the unique places that I have had the opportunity to visit over the years while working for various manufacturers and Jeep related folks.
Way back in 2015, I happened to be traveling back across the country, through Alabama, and had a couple hours to kill…when I just happened to see the billboard and exit sign for Talladega Superspeedway! Immediately flashes of Ricky Bobby and Talladega Nights hit my brain! Dega! I had to stop! Built in 1969, “Dega” is the longest Nascar Oval at 2.66 miles, compared to Daytona at 2.5 miles.
Taken from wikipedia as to the rumors of the “Talladega Curse”, over the years there have been many strange occurrences at the track. Stories of the origin of the curse vary. Some claim that a local Native American tribe held horse races in the valley where the track currently resides, where a chief was killed when he was thrown from his horse. Others say that the site of the superspeedway was once an Indian burial ground. Still another version says that after the local tribe was driven out by the Creek nation for their collaboration with the forces of Andrew Jackson, a shaman put a curse on the valley.
Before NASCAR implemented the use of restrictor plates in 1988, Talladega held the record for the fastest recorded time on a closed oval course set by Rusty Wallace in 2004 at 216.309 mph. Wallace topped out at 228 mph in testing and said that speeds of about 235 mph were attainable.
Walking around the International Motorsports Hall of Fame is like walking through a time capsule…and I was alone and the only person in the entire place. Creepy, amazing, inspirational and even weird at times…if you ever get the chance, I highly recommend stopping by 3366 Speedway Boulevard, Lincoln, Alabama 35096.