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The GEICO 500 at Talladega

The GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway is the 10th race on the 2015 Sprint Cup Series schedule. Originally known as the Alabama International Motor Speedway, construction of this 2.66-mile racetrack began on May 23, 1968. The name changed to Talladega Superspeedway in 1989. The fourth and most recent repaving there was done between the spring and fall races in 2006.

 

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Talladega has 33 degrees of banking in all of its turns as well as 16.5 degrees of banking on the frontstretch and 2 on the backstretch. The length of the frontstretch is 4,300 feet, and the backstretch measures 4,000 feet.

There have been 91 Sprint Cup races held at Talladega, including one event in 1969 and two races each year since 1970. Richard Brickhouse won the inaugural event at Talladega on Sept. 14, 1969. The series will return to this track the fourth weekend in October for the sixth race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.

Dave Marcis and Terry Labonte share the record for most starts at this track with 61 each. Michael Waltrip’s 57 starts there is tops among those drivers on the entry list for this race.

Dale Earnhardt holds the record for most victories at Talladega with 10. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with six wins there. Dale Earnhardt Jr. has five victories, including four in a row from October 2001 to April 2003.

Richard Childress has the most car owner wins at this track with 12, followed by Rick Hendrick with 11.

Bill Elliott holds the record for most pole wins at Talladega with eight. Gordon’s three poles there is tops among those drivers entered.

The race winner at this track has started from the pole 13 times. Gordon was the last driver to accomplish the feat in April 2007.

Since NASCAR began using electronic timing and scoring in 1993, the closest margin of victory in a Cup race at Talladega occurred on April 17, 2011 when Jimmie Johnson beat Clint Bowyer by only 0.002 seconds. The margin for that race is tied with the March 2003 event at Darlington, won by Ricky Craven, as the closest finishes since the start of electronic timing and scoring.

The furthest back a driver has started and won a Sprint Cup race at Talladega is 36th. Gordon did it in the spring of 2000.

Brad Keselowski is the only driver on the entry list that scored his first career Sprint Cup victory at this track (April 26, 2009).

Two drivers entered claimed their maiden pole wins at Talladega: David Gilliland (October 2006) and Brian Scott (May 2014).

Jamie McMurray is the only driver on the entry list that made his first career Sprint Cup start at this track. McMurray started fifth and finished 26th there on Oct. 6, 2002. He substituted for the injured Sterling Marlin in the No. 40 car for Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Marlin suffered a neck injury during an accident in the Kansas race the week prior to Talladega.

Bobby Hillin Jr. holds the record as the youngest driver to win a race at Talladega. Hillin took the checkered flag there on July 27, 1986 when he was 22 years, 1 month and 22 days old. When Harry Gant was 51 years, 3 months and 26 days old, he became the oldest driver to win at this track on May 6, 1991.

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