HomeSportsNascarNASCAR: This POV Video From Inside the Talladega Semi-Truck Will Get You Amped

NASCAR: This POV Video From Inside the Talladega Semi-Truck Will Get You Amped

by TK Sanders
(Photo by David John Griffin/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Every year at Talladega’s opening race, a golden semi-truck with a massive American flag takes a lap to celebrate the spirit of high-octane entertainment in all its forms. This year, the truck driver gave Talladega fans an inside peek of NASCAR’s storied raceway directly from the cabin.

The semi-truck, known as ‘Johnny Ray’s Big Rig’ to spectators, climbs up over 120 mph during the ceremonial opening lap at Talladega. The oversized flag affixed to the back of the truck waves proudly in the wind as the truck speeds around the 2.66-mile track following the National Anthem.

The Talladega tradition began about 20 years ago following 9/11 and the death of Dale Earnhardt just seven months prior. A local truck driver named Johnny Ray wanted to memorialize the tragedies of 2001 with a show of patriotic support his country and his fellow NASCAR fans. The local Alabama native decided to run his gold, brown, and chrome-colored Peterbilt semi-truck before the next year’s race; and a new tradition grew from the ashes of heartbreak.

Now two decades later, Johnny Ray has since passed on; but his small contribution to the annals of patriotic NASCAR lore lives on with vigor. And thanks to the power of on-demand video and social media, we all get to revel in the magic from inside the truck, itself. So if you ever get the chance to attend the all-American race yourself, when Johnny Ray’s Big Rig takes its lap, be sure to pour one out for the American heroes who made this country great before you.

A ceremonial semi-truck lap is just one of many exhilarating experiences at Talladega

Talladega’s pre-race festivities may make the hair on your arm stand at attention; but after the race ends, the party just begins.

After Ross Chastain and Trackhouse Racing took the checkered flag unencumbered on the final straightaway, musician Kid Rock made his way to victory lane to celebrate.

It’s unclear whether Kid Rock brings a vested interest in the team besides just pure fandom; regardless, though, he let it be known that he appreciated the effort from NASCAR’s hottest team.

“Best NASCAR finish ever,” he quipped, when asked by a fan for his thoughts. Trackhouse Racing has some ownership roots within the music industry, including Latin artist Pit Bull; so perhaps Kid Rock privately supports his friends by pulling for Chastain.

Chastain is ninth in the championship standings, and his two race wins come with 10 playoff points. A stage win at Las Vegas adds another point for a total of 11 points. Currently, Chastain has the second-most playoff points in the NASCAR Cup Series after 10 races.