TRACK: Talladega Superspeedway (2.66 mile oval) DISTANCE: 188 Laps – STAGE 1: 60 Laps, Stage 2: 60 Laps, FINAL STAGE 68 LAPS, 500.08 Miles)
This race has been around since 1970 as Sunday will mark the 104th time that NASCAR’s top series has came to Talladega overall.
- The last 8 winners have come from the top 6 Rows. 12 of the last 13 have started 12th or better at that.
- Ford has won 9 of the last 11 overall Cup races at Talladega with 4 of the last 5 in the spring race.
- Both races last year went into overtime as has 3 of the last 5 races overall.
- Toyota has only won twice in the last 24 Talladega races, both were won by Denny Hamlin.
- 8 of the last 14 superspeedway race winners in Cup competition have earned either their first or second career victories. Michael McDowell won his first career race at Daytona this past February.
- 4 of the last 8 at Talladega and 7 of the last 9 at Daytona, saw drivers who won their first or second superspeedway race on them too. Ryan Blaney did so in this race last year.
This is the biggest track on the schedule. The track is wide enough to do 3-4 wide all the way around. With tapered spacer, Talladega is always a pack race to where drafting help is better than outright speed. Only pit strategy is to pit with teammates and have help on and off pit road with them.
Closest comparison is to Daytona.