2018 BMCM run to Talladega Speedway

Saturday, May 19, 2018
“Are you $*%#ting me?”

As I sat, this time at the BK Lounge on Eastern, after having drunk my carafe of the world’s finest Dunkin’ coffee (that’s right Deborah, he said it again! Ed.) looking at my watch and the partly cloudy sky, it looked like it would be a party of one, along with his trusty TR6. David, however, promised he’d join me and sure enough he and Betsy arrived shortly before 8. Preceding him was Dan in his shiny new 2000 Miata, with functioning A/C, and nary a sputter nor an oil leak to be found. We happy few (we three kings?) then departed BK for points north.

Our route took us up through Wetumpka, skirting Lake Martin, then turning more northerly at Goodwater onto a nicely paved, and technical CR 7 running along the valley floor. Clearly an old logging road, she kept all of us on our toes until we reached AL 77, riding it into Talladega, which I understand is Creek for “place where white man turns left for 500 miles”. The track is actually located about 10 miles north, in Lincoln, AL, go figure.

Making the approach to the track complex, I was astounded at the number of RV parks. Clearly racing here is a huge deal. After arriving at the museum and paying our 16 bucks, we jumped on the fun bus and toured the track facility. It is simply jaw-dropping in scale You lose a TON of perspective when you watch races on TV. The grandstands alone seat 100,000 fans. The infield covers well over 200 acres, including long-dead concrete runways from a decommissioned USAF base. The track, a tri-oval, is the fastest on the circuit, and our guide lapped the track venturing off the apron only once, in a turn, to give us a taste of the banking’s steepness. Unbelievable! 90 MPH or you fall off the banking. After returning to the museum, we looked at dozens of race cars, pace cars, rocket cars, motorcycles, karts, and engine displays, along with a hall of fame encompassing racing greats from Formula 1 to Indy Car to NASCAR. Oh yeah, there was an offshore racing catamaran, too. And a picture of Air Force One with President Reagan aboard landing at the track while Richard Petty was turning hot laps.

After a delicious lunch at the best BBQ restaurant in town, (a Mexican restaurant), we piled back into our three cars and headed back home the way we came, arriving early afternoon.

Great trip.

Three participants

Clear skies

The rest of you all missed out.

Tom Miro

International Motorsports Hall of Fame,

Talladega Superspeedway