“It creates tighter packs and tighter races, as well as more energy and excitement for the fans to see early on.

“I think all of these things in general make racing crazier. Then on top of all the stuff you add to the playoff storyline, what adds to it – the drama on this track is very, very high.

Built in 1959 by NASCAR founder Bill France, the track holds the record for the fastest qualifying time ever in NASCAR, set by Bill Elliott in 1987 at a staggering average speed of 212.809 mph.

Restrictor plates, which reduce engine power and therefore speed, were introduced after the 1987 Talladega race saw Bobby Allison’s car take off and tear up the guard rail, somehow staying clear a crowd.

Although top speeds are now lower, they are still among the fastest seen in the high end of stock car racing. Despite the extreme velocity suffered, or in fact perhaps because of it, it is a piece that Hemric savors.

“For a while I felt like I preferred Talladega over Daytona, just because you have more grip, the gears are a bit higher, and the balance of your car isn’t necessarily as important,” he says.

“Over the years, I’ve really come to love superspeedway-style racing, no matter where it is.

Hemric aims for a good result this weekend

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“Although a lot of people say you don’t have much control, there’s actually a lot you control. There’s a trade here, and a reason the same guys keep coming and winning over and over again.

In a championship that includes a variety of ovals, dirt races and road courses, Xfinity champion Hemric is confident his Kaulig team has the right approach to superspeedway success.


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