Alabama’s Talladega Superspeedway ‘gives fans what they want’

Alabama’s Talladega Superspeedway ‘gives fans what they want’
The Open Air Club is one of several new ways fans can connect with NASCAR drivers at Talladega Superspeedway. (Dennis Washington / Alabama NewsCenter)

NASCAR driver Matt DiBenedetto said the infield renovations nearing completion at Talladega Superspeedway are exactly what fans want.

DiBenedetto visited Talladega Superspeedway on Thursday, cutting the ribbon on the remodeled Media Center and touring other parts of the infield being remodeled. The construction is part of the track’s $50 million “Transformation” as it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

“The fan experience is the most important thing,” DiBenedetto said. “That’s what makes or breaks a family’s experience at a racetrack. When I was a kid, I would have killed to have some of the experiences that will be here. It would have been a dream for me.”

Fan experience key to upgrades at Talladega Superspeedway from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

The centerpiece of the construction is the Talladega Garage Experience, which includes the Open Air Club and fan access to new garages housing NASCAR’s top 22 drivers. The track is also building a new Race Operations tower high above the tri-oval, as well as a new Pit Road Club for guests who want a bird’s-eye view of team pit stops. Track chairman Grant Lynch said the project is on schedule, but a lot of work still remains to be done during the next four weeks to get everything ready for race weekend Oct. 11-13.

“Some of the groups are working 24 hours a day,” Lynch said. “They’re working feverishly out there, but we continue to be on schedule.”

The Talladega Garage Experience is the second and final phase of the track’s Transformation project, celebrating the track’s five decades. A new Finish Line Premium RV area, infield shower trailers and a new, oversized two-lane vehicle tunnel were built in the first phase, which was completed in April.

Lynch said fan access to the drivers and crews is the most exciting upgrade for fans.

“What we’re building here is going to be really exciting for race fans,” Lynch said. “We’re going to be able to let them touch the sport in ways they’ve never been able to before.”

DiBenedetto said the fun fan experience Talladega Superspeedway creates around race weekends is noticed by other tracks around the country.

“I think everybody is picking up on how cool the experience is versus just going and watching the race,” DiBenedetto said. “You have options to do whatever you want to do.”

The drivers are also excited, DiBenedetto said.

“I can feel pretty comfortable for speaking for every driver that that’s what they want,” he said. “We don’t have these jobs or get to do our dream or do what we do without every single one of the fans. We want the fans to have every bit of that experience. All of the drivers have been fans at some point. Nobody’s forgotten that. We all want that because we want them to see what goes on behind the scenes and appreciate how amazing this sport actually is.”

Fly through the new Talladega Garage Experience from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

Admissions to the VIP fan experience for the fall race are on sale. Advance-priced admissions are $89 for adults for Sunday, Oct. 13, in the Talladega Garage Experience. There are also special advance-priced offers for the Talladega Garage Experience for children 12 and younger ($39 for Sunday), military members and first responders ($60 for Sunday). Full weekend options are available as well. Each Talladega Garage Experience pass must accompany a grandstand or infield admission ticket for that day’s on-track event.

To learn more about the project or purchase tickets, visit talladegasuperspeedway.com.

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