Ricky Craven’s Talladega 1996 Crash
“Listen, I don’t want to predict doom,” Ricky Craven told Sirius XM Speedway.
There was a side of me that wanted to get even with Talladega.
“I got sick to my stomach going to Talladega. There was a side of me that wanted to get even with Talladega. Because, I broke my back there in 1996.”
Contact between Jeff Gordon and Mark Martin caused a chain reaction crash at Talladega Superspeedway. As the accident took place the announcers stated, “Oh Shit!”
When Ricky Craven came out of the air and back to earth, he was stuck for a 2nd time. The result was a broken back.
“Every time I went there with an attitude that I’m gunna get even… I always left with my feelings hurt.”
Talladega is this weekend
“It is what it is. It’s the most unpredictable track on the schedule. You’re gunna run flat footed 98% of the time. 2-3-4 wide, and you won’t have a choice,” Craven describes the upcoming race weekend.
“With the stage racing and the points you’re going to have available… You’re going to have drivers doing things they wouldn’t ordinarily do. I don’t think they’ll be many strategies.”
That track pulls you into complacency.
“At Talladega, what happens is… That track pulls you into complacency. It’s so big and so wide and really not that difficult. You can easily become relaxed and that’s when all hell breaks loose.”
“The drivers who have had the most success at Talladega are those who fight to lead, every single lap. There has been a few examples of drivers that have tried to outsmart the track, lag back, they succeeded with a teammate. But, only a few.”
“The drivers who have had the most success are the one’s that push the issue and run up front all day long.”
“The drivers who lag back, you’re not going to see it this week. It won’t exist. It can’t exist.”
This weekend NASCAR heads to Talladega Superspeedway. The Alabama 500 is scheduled for Sunday October 15th. The race coverage will begin at 2 P ET.
1996 Talladega Crash Video