Talladega Superspeedway offers the most
unique and memorable tailgating experience in
professional sports – and there’s much more to it
than simply being surrounded by fans and cars.
At 2.66 miles in length, Talladega Super- speedway is NASCAR’s longest track. It’s also, according to fans, the site of some of the
sport’s most epic tailgates.
Talladega has long been known as Earnhardt
Country, so fans trekking to the track are sure to
see Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s No. 88 on countless flags
and banners throughout the infield. Earnhardt’s
the defending GEICO 500 winner, too, so members
of Junior Nation are likely to populate quite a few
tailgates this year.
But there’s also always a cast of characters such
as the “Dega Do Club,” which includes fans named
“Dega Man,” “Target Man” and “Copenhagen Man”
who tailgate at the track. In addition to meeting
some enthusiastic fans, the track has added some
fantastic upgrades for tailgaters.
The famous Party Pack has grown in popularity in
recent years. Talladega’s Party Packs are suitable
for fans in groups ranging from 10 to 40 people.
The 40-person Party Pack includes pork butts, a
beef tri-tip roast, baby back ribs, chicken wings,
As an added incentive for tailgaters, Talladega
features a rocking infield concert in the days leading
up to its Sprint Cup Series races. Anyone with a ticket
can attend the concerts, which have included acts like
Easton Corbin and Florida Georgia Line. With plenty of
space to play games, meet friends and grill delicious
food – and tons of it – Talladega Superspeedway isn’t
merely a must-see: It’s a must-tailgate.
WHEN DID YOU GET
INTO NASCAR RACING?
A friend took me to Michigan a long time ago. Since
then, I bought a motorhome
and now we go to all kinds
WHICH RACES DO YOU
I go to Las Vegas every year,
and Bristol for both races.
I’ll be at Homestead and at
Talladega in October.
WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE
Jeff Gordon. I’d say Kyle
Larson now. Both boys came
out of sprint cars.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD
A lot of drinks and good
WHAT CAN FANS FIND
AT YOUR TAILGATES?
I’ve got a charcoal cooker
that can do 30 halves of
chicken. It folds up, we put
it in the motorhome and we
bring it out when we arrive.
HOW MAN Y PEOPLE
ARE AT YOUR
Once they see the food
we’ve put out, you get people
from every where. We don’t
do your regular hot dogs and
hamburgers. We do steaks,
Nothing looks cooler
and keeps a drink cooler
than a NASCAR Tervis
Tumbler with your favorite
driver’s name and number
on it. The NASCAR.com
store, as well as the official
Tervis website, features many drivers’ tumblers that
are sure to improve the tailgating experience. Even
better, most of them can be had for around $20 –
not a lot of pocket change for a durable tumbler
that features your favorite driver.
But if you’re looking to simply show off your
NASCAR fandom, there are also tumblers with the
NASCAR logo or individual track logos. In a sport
with something for everyone, tumblers are something for every tailgate.
Canadian Karen Thorne has a banana bread recipe that is suitable for race-day breakfast or to take into the track for a mid-race snack.
■ Ingredients: 1 cup butter; 2 cups white sugar; 2 eggs;
2 tablespoons mayonnaise; 6 very ripe bananas,
mashed; 3 cups all-purpose flour; 1/2 teaspoon salt;
1 teaspoon baking powder; 2 teaspoons baking soda;
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips; 1/2 cup chopped
■ Prep: 10-15 minutes. Cook: 60-75 minutes
■ Preheat oven to 350 degrees
■ Grease two 9-by-5-inch loaf pans
■ In a large bowl, cream together the shortening and sugar
until light and fluffy. Stir in the eggs one at a time. Stir
in the mayonnaise and bananas. Mix together the flour,
salt, baking powder and baking soda. Blend the flour
mixture into the banana mixture; stir enough to combine
the t wo. Add in chocolate chips and/or walnuts.
■ Bake at 350 degrees until a toothpick inserted into
the center of the loaf comes out clean, about 50 to 75
minutes. Cool bread in the pan for 20 minutes before
removing to cool completely.