Decorative trees behind pit road at a race track? That is absolutely the case for the greatest track in the world and NASCAR’s Most Competitive - Talladega Superspeedway - as it is being prepped for fans across the globe for the upcoming doubleheader NASCAR Playoffs weekend (Oct. 11-13) featuring the 1000Bulbs.com 500 and the Sugarlands Shine 250.
Amongst freshly poured concrete, the trees will be a part of the all-new Talladega Garage Experience, the focal point of the Transformation Infield Project presented by Graybar that will allow fans to be immersed into the sport like never before at the famous 2.66-mile venue that is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year.
Wednesday, track President Brian Crichton was diggin’ the beauty of the scenery so much that he decided to show off his green thumb and grab a shovel, along with Hoar Construction Senior Superintendent Gary Merriman, to plant one of the final trees that will be a part of the landscape in the Garage Experience’s 140,000-square-foot area. Approximately 30 to 35 trees will be planted throughout the space. Soon after, Crichton wasn’t finished as he took a rake and assisted construction crews in spreading gravel throughout some of the picturesque, natural areas.
In addition, the interior and exterior work continues on the one-of-a-kind Open Air Social Club, the centerpiece of the Talladega Garage Experience. Crews are installing lighting, wood paneling and outside railing for the massive 35,000-square-foot building that will be lined on both sides by two of the four Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series garages. Both will house the top 22 drivers (11 in each) in the premier series, and fans who purchase a Garage Experience admission will receive “up-close” access inside each garage bay via the fan viewing walkway where they will be just feet away from where the race cars are being prepped by the race teams.
In other areas, such as the Watch Zone, Game Zone and Beer Garden, tables, chairs, picnic tables, and comfortable lounge seating have been delivered and will be placed throughout those areas in the coming days.
Other buildings showing advancement include the Pit Road Club, concession and restroom complexes, two other garages (not affixed to the Open Air Social Club), and Guest Services. Windows have been installed and interior work is progressing on the Race Operations building that sits high above the Tri-Oval that will house NASCAR Race Control, LIVE Network Television and Radio, as well as public address announcers.
The Talladega Garage Experience will stretch from the center of the Tri-Oval down near the start-finish line and will also have FREE Wi-Fi. Other items fans can enjoy include incredible $4 or less Value-Priced Concessions (except for the $9 Big One Meatball), an entertainment stage for local music, Driver Q&A’s and other interviews, social areas, and a reserved area at Gatorade Victory Lane where fans will get the chance to witness the victors’ celebration after each race in Celebration Plaza. Guests with a Talladega Garage Experience pass will also have access to Sunday’s pre-race ceremonies and Driver Introductions at the Start-Finish line!
The Transformation Infield Project presented by Graybar is part of International Speedway Corporation’s (Talladega’s parent company) long-term capital allocation plan and reinvestment into its major motorsports complexes. DLR Group is the architect of the entire project while Hoar Construction leads Phase II. GT Grandstands (Plant City, FL) is constructing the Race Operations tower, as well as the Pit Road Club Suites that will house 600 guests who will get a birds-eye view of team pit stops from behind pit road, along with food and beverages.
Fans can learn more about the project and view the progress 24/7 via the construction cam by visiting www.talladegasuperspeedway.