The Inside Track: Will the natives be restless? | Local News

Given the strange circumstances that unfolded at Talladega Superspeedway in the fall, I’m kinda looking forward to seeing what happens this weekend when the NASCAR’s Cup and Xfinity divisions hit one of the hottest tracks. treacherous – and haunted – of the race.

Legend says the trail is built on an old Indian cemetery and the restless natives still haunt the property.

The track’s first NASCAR Cup race in 1969 was won by Richard Brickhouse after most regular series competitors boycotted the event due to what they felt were unsafe tire conditions. The victory was the only one of Brickhouse’s career, and since that time a slew of other riders in various divisions have earned their only victory at the track.

In fact, after once finishing second in a NASCAR Cup race at Talladega, the late John Andretti – who had yet to win a race in NASCAR’s Premier League – joked that he was glad his first victory did not come at Talladega, because the first track of the track – the winners are cursed.

Alabama native Davey Allison scored his first career victory at Talladega in 1987 and died of injuries sustained in a helicopter crash at the track in 1993.

Many fans have also died on the track over the years.

Driver Larry Smith was killed in a shipwreck during the August 12, 1973 race at Talladega. Later in that event, Bobby Isaac suddenly pulled out of the track and announced his immediate retirement from racing.

Isaac said he withdrew when he heard voices telling him to do so, or something bad would happen. He returned to compete in another 19 races over the next two years. However, he died at age 45 on August 14, 1977, after collapsing during a stock car race in Hickory, North Carolina.

The speedway certainly lived up to its reputation in the fall as Tate Fogleman in the Trucks, Brandon Brown in the Xfinity Series and Bubba Wallace in the Cup Series took their first – and so far only – victories. in their respective divisions.

What could have been a big break for Brown turned into something that propelled him into national headlines and quite possibly ruined his career.

While being interviewed on the front stretch by NBC’s Kelli Stavast, Brown said “let’s go dad”, in tribute to his father, as he drives for a family team.

A crowd of fans in the stands quickly began chanting something which Stavast interpreted on air as “let’s go Brandon”. Apparently, Talladega’s traditionally unruly fans were actually chanting “F*** Joe Biden,” which had become commonplace at sporting events in some areas.

From there, a new anti-Biden slogan was born. It is appropriate that he came out of a race on a track that could well be haunted. Did the natives buried at Talladega have anything to do with it?

It’s also worth noting that Wallace scored his first – and so far only – Cup win at Talladega. It was on this lead – at the height of the latest Black Lives Matter movement – ​​that what was believed to be a noose was found in the garage where his team worked.

The FBI was called, an investigation was carried out, and the drivers showed solidarity with Wallace. In the end, the noose turned out to be leftover rope from recent construction work on the runway.

Critics of the right-wing conspiracy claimed that the noose incident and Stavast’s “Let’s go Brandon” cry were left-wing conspiracies. I don’t believe it for a minute.

Why? Because I understand the history of the Talladega Superspeedway. The track is legendary for producing the most bizarre moments in NASCAR history, and perhaps that’s thanks to the natives.

Sometimes when the series runs there, the natives are silent. So what will happen this weekend? Will the natives be agitated? Will Corey LaJoie earn his first NASCAR Cup win?

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