TALLADEGA, Ala. – Winning a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway brings with it history, tradition, prestige and honor.
Now, it has taken on a new meaning that has a special place in everyone’s heart. In support of the United States Military, Talladega Superspeedway has announced the creation of the “Freedom Trophy,” which will be awarded to every winner of a Sprint Cup Series race at the 2.66-mile grand venue, beginning with the May 4 Aaron’s 499.
The special trophy showcases all five branches of the United States military – Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard.
Military personnel will be on hand at each Talladega Sprint Cup Series race to make the presentation of the Freedom Trophy in Victory Lane. Not only will they be in the winner’s circle to award the coveted trophy, but they will also participate in pre-race ceremonies as well. Each Talladega Superspeedway race weekend, a different United States military base will be given the opportunity to present the Freedom Trophy.
The creation of Talladega Superspeedway Vice President Brian Crichton, the Freedom Trophy is an honor to all military men and women on behalf of the speedway, a patriotic entity since 1969. Crichton enlisted the assistance of Fast Forward Marketing Owner Mike Barth (Spring, Texas), who has custom designed trophies in motorsports since 1996. MTM Recognition in Oklahoma City, Okla., spearheaded the design.
“Winning a Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega just got extra special,” said Talladega Chairman Grant Lynch. “With the Freedom Trophy, we pay tribute to our race winners, as well as our servicemen and women who make so many things possible for us on a daily basis.”
The Freedom Trophy is five-sided, reflective of each branch of the military. Silver aluminum panels, complete with a design of each military branch soldier and branch logo, are showcased, along with a star that is waterjet cut in the center. The base is black stained wood with circular discs at the bottom and top made of black acrylic, and includes the Talladega Superspeedway logo, the date of the race and the name of the base awarding the trophy.
“As a symbol of our military we thought it was fitting to start with a pentagon shaped base’” said Crichton. “The artists did a great job by bringing together all five branches of the military, incorporating the star in the center and showcasing each branch seal on the individual pillars. It is a trophy we hope every Talladega Sprint Cup winner will be proud of – that it will mean a little something extra when they display it with the rest of their trophies.”