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Ever since Talladega Superspeedway opened back in 1969, it has been the site of some incredible NASCAR moments. While there has been some spectacular racing and ridiculous finishes at Dega over the years, the Lincoln, Alabama tri-oval has also seen some devastating crashes in its day.

Of course, you can’t look back at some of Talladega’s craziest wrecks without mentioning Bobby Allison’s insane car acrobatics at the 1987 Winston 500. Because of this wreck, NASCAR required restrictor plates to be used on stock cars that race at Talladega and Daytona. All that considered, this has to put Allison’s crash at least in the top five when it comes to the most impactful wrecks in NASCAR history.

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Bobby Allison’s Infamous Talladega Wreck

It was on lap 22 of that infamous Winston 500 when Allison had his brush with absolute disaster, after debris from his blown engine cut his tire, causing Allison’s car to go airborne and smash into the catch fence. Allison was going nearly 210 MPH right around the time that he wrecked, which added to the seriousness of the crash (and was a major influence behind the eventual restrictor plate implementation).

While the car came just short of entering the spectator area, five spectators were injured as a result of the crash. Two of those injured required hospital treatment (the other three were treated in the infield medical center), while one of the injured LOST AN EYE due to the flying debris. Bobby’s brother, Davey Allison, ended up winning the race, which had to bring just a little bit of consolation to the Allison family.

As for the restrictor plate changes, NASCAR starting implementing those at Talladega and Daytona during the 1988 season. These restrictor plates not only made for safer (given that they slow cars down), but also more competitive, racing. So, in a way, Bobby Allison contributed to the must-watch, down-to-the-wire racing that we have seen at Talladega and Daytona over the years. Bet he never would’ve thought that would happen when he slammed into the Talladega catch fence all those years ago.


1987 Winston 500 Results

1. Davey Allison — No. 28 Ford

2. Terry Labonte — No. 11 Chevrolet

3. Kyle Petty — No. 21 Ford

4. Dale Earnhardt — No. 3 Chevrolet

5. Bobby Hillin, Jr. — No. 8 Buick

6. Rusty Wallace — No. 27 Pontiac

7. Neil Bonnett — No. 75 Pontiac

8. Ken Schrader — No. 90 Ford

9. Lake Speed — No. 83 Oldsmobile

10. Morgan Shepherd — No. 26 Buick

11. Darrell Waltrip — No. 17 Chevrolet

12. Benny Parsons — No. 35 Chevrolet

13. Dave Marcis — No. 71 Chevrolet

14. Sterling Marlin — No. 44 Oldsmobile

15. Slick Johnson — No. 12 Chevrolet

16. Richard Petty — No. 43 Pontiac

17. Mark Stahl — No. 82 Ford

18. Eddie Bierschwale — No. 67 Ford

19. Steve Christman — No. 62 Pontiac

20 Rick Wilson — No. 4 Oldsmobile

21. Ken Ragan — No. 77 Ford

22. Bill Elliott — No. 9 Ford

23. Connie Saylor — No. 63 Ford

24. Rick Knoop — No. 6 Chevrolet

25. Michael Waltrip — No. 30 Chevrolet

26. Greg Sacks — No. 50 Pontiac

27. Ed Pimm — No. 98 Buick


28. Dale Jarrett — No. 18 Chevrolet

29. Harry Gant — No. 33 Chevrolet

30. Ricky Rudd — No. 15 Ford

31. Phil Parsons — No. 55 Oldsmobile

32. Buddy Baker — No. 88 Oldsmobile

33. Jimmy Means — No. 52 Pontiac

34. Alan Kulwicki — No. 7 Ford

35. Phil Barkdoll — No. 73 Chevrolet

36. Joe Ruttman — No. 99 Chevrolet

37. Cale Yarborough — No. 29 Oldsmobile

38. Ron Bouchard — No. 1 Buick

39. Bobby Allison — No. 22 Buick

40. Geoffrey Bodine — No. 5 Chevrolet

41. Chet Fillip — No. 81 Ford

This post was originally published on April 23, 2019.

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