TALLADEGA, Ala. (WBRC) - UPDATE: NASCAR announced a plan to introduce the return of fans to its race events, which includes the GEICO 500 NASCAR Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, June 21.
NASCAR worked with public health officials, medical experts and local, state and federal officials to come up with guidelines for fans to return.
In order to adhere to local social distancing guidelines, a limited number of guests (5,000) will be allowed in the frontstretch grandstands/towers for the GEICO 500 NASCAR Cup Series race.
In addition, there will be limited motorhome/5th-wheel camping spots available outside the track high atop the Alabama Gang Superstretch.
“Our frontstretch grandstands and towers are massive, measuring an incredible eight tenths of a mile long,” said Talladega Superspeedway President Brian Crichton. “That provides us ample room to be able to welcome race fans back with plenty of safe distancing between guests. NASCAR and the track staff will continue to work with health and government officials, and be ready to provide a safe experience for the NASCAR fans in attendance.”
The offer is open exclusively on a first-come, first-served basis to fans who purchased tickets or reserved camping for the originally scheduled GEICO 500 on April 26 and live within 0-150 miles of the track in the state of Alabama. The geographical limitations are being implemented to limit travel and reduce risk. Eligible fans may use their April event credit to select new seats or may purchase seats, if preferred, through the following options:
“We have a great respect for the responsibility that hosting fans brings, and it’s an honor for Talladega Superspeedway to be one of the first sports facilities to bring fans back to the race track,” added Crichton.
All fans in attendance will be screened before entering the facility, required to wear face coverings, and mandated to social distancing of six-feet (throughout venue). All protocols, including decontamination, thorough staff training, routine cleaning, Grab & Go packaged food items, can also be found here.
“As we continually work to safely reopen our economy, I am excited to see our NASCAR fans have a chance to attend the upcoming race at Talladega Superspeedway,” Alabama Governor Kay Ivey said. “The folks at Talladega have been working hard to ensure they are prepared to welcome their fans back with all of the necessary health and safety protocols.”
No guests will not be allowed to enter the infield, as that will remain restricted to essential personnel. There will be no tailgating outside the property – prior, during or post event with the exception of those customers who purchased admissions for the motorhome/5th-wheel RV spots on the Alabama Gang Superstretch.
The GEICO 500, again set for June 21, will get the green flag at 2 p.m. LIVE on WBRC FOX6.
The track’s weekend of racing kicks off on Saturday with a doubleheader, featuring the General Tire 200 for the ARCA Menards Series at 1 p.m. CDT followed by a 300-miler for the NASCAR Xfinity Series at 4:30 p.m. CDT. These two events will compete without fans in attendance and be broadcast LIVE on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Racing at Talladega has been going on since 1969.
“Racing is what makes Talladega great, but the fans is what makes it special,” said Talladega Superspeedway President Brian Crichton.
It’s hard to imagine Talladega Superspeedway going from thousands of fans to empty stands, but come June 21st, empty seats is all that drivers will see.
For more information on race weekend, click here.