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1977 Talladega 500

The 1977 Talladega 500 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race that took place on August 7, 1977, at Talladega Superspeedway in the American community of Talladega, Alabama.

1977 Talladega 500
Race details[1][2][3]
Race 19 of 30 in the 1977 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Layout of Talladega Superspeedway
Layout of Talladega Superspeedway
Date August 7, 1977 (1977-August-07)
Official name Talladega 500
Location Alabama International Motor Speedway, Talladega, Alabama
Course Permanent racing facility
2.660 mi (4.280 km)
Distance 188 laps, 500.1 mi (804.8 km)
Weather Hot with temperatures approaching 100.9 °F (38.3 °C); wind speeds up to 9.9 miles per hour (15.9 km/h)
Average speed 162.524 miles per hour (261.557 km/h)
Attendance 65,000[4]
Pole position
Driver DeWitt Racing
Time 49.698 seconds
Most laps led
Driver Donnie Allison Ellington Racing
Laps 92
No. 1 Donnie Allison Ellington Racing
Television in the United States
Network CBS
Announcers Ken Squier
Lee Petty

By 1980, NASCAR had completely stopped tracking the year model of all the vehicles and most teams did not take stock cars to the track under their own power anymore.



Talladega Superspeedway, originally known as Alabama International Motor Superspeedway (AIMS), is a motorsports complex located north of Talladega, Alabama. It is located on the former Anniston Air Force Base in the small city of Lincoln. The track is a Tri-oval and was constructed by International Speedway Corporation, a business controlled by the France Family, in the 1960s. Talladega is most known for its steep banking and the unique location of the start/finish line - located just past the exit to pit road. The track currently hosts the NASCAR series such as the Sprint Cup Series, Xfinity Series, and the Camping World Truck Series. Talladega Superspeedway is the longest NASCAR oval with a length of 2.66 miles (4.28 km), and the track at its peak had a seating capacity of 175,000 spectators.[5]


Roger Penske withdrew his entry following fines to DiGard Racing, Bud Moore Engineering, the Junior Johnson team, the M.C. Anderson team, and Hoss Ellington's team; the fines came when NASCAR chief Bill Gazaway announced that an unnamed team was caught with an illegal fuel cell and an official watched members of the above-mentioned teams at garage pay phones calling for legal fuel cells. Hank Williams, Jr. served as the honorary starter of this race; joining a list of celebrities that came before and after him like Bart Starr and Will Ferrell.[6]

188 laps were accomplished on a paved oval spanning 2.66 miles (4.28 km);[2] the race was completed in three hours and four minutes; the lead changed hands 49 times among ten drivers.[4] Donnie Allison (who would lead 92 laps overall) needed relief help after drinking a soda during a pitstop and falling ill soon after. Darrell Waltrip relieved Allison and defeated Cale Yarborough by less than a lap under the caution flag.[2][3][4] Notable speeds were: 162.524 miles per hour (261.557 km/h) for the winner's speed and 192.684 miles per hour (310.095 km/h) for the pole position qualifying speed.[4] Sixty-five thousand people would attend this live race from the opening ceremonies to the final yellow flag (which marked its official finish).[4]

Most of the entries were manufactured by Chevrolet.[2][4] There were 39 male participants and one female participant (Ms. Janet Guthrie).[2][3][4] Unfortunately, Ms. Guthrie suffered an engine problem[2][3] on lap 61 and did not finish the race.[4] One of the most unusual facts of the race is that Marty Robbins (who was also a country music star) did not qualify in his own vehicle; Freddy Fryar did that for him.[7]


Grid[4] No. Driver Manufacturer Owner
1 72 Benny Parsons Chevrolet L.G. DeWitt
2 1 Donnie Allison Chevrolet Hoss Ellington
3 27 Sam Sommers Chevrolet M.C. Anderson
4 11 Cale Yarborough Chevrolet Junior Johnson
5 3 Richard Childress Chevrolet Richard Childress
6 92 Skip Manning Chevrolet Billy Hagan
7 88 Darrell Waltrip Chevrolet DiGard
8 47 Bruce Hill Chevrolet Bruce Hill
9 68 Janet Guthrie Chevrolet Lynda Ferreri
10 14 Coo Coo Marlin Chevrolet H.B. Cunningham

Finishing orderEdit

Section reference: [4]

* Driver failed to finish race
† signifies that the driver is known to be deceased

Standings after the raceEdit

Pos Driver Points[4] Differential
1   Cale Yarborough 3125 0
2   Richard Petty 3093 -32
3   Benny Parsons 2819 -306
4   Darrell Waltrip 2772 -353
5   Buddy Baker 2583 -542
6   Dick Brooks 2348 -777
7   Cecil Gordon 2251 -874
8   Bobby Allison 2181 -944
9   Richard Childress 2153 -972
10   James Hylton 2104 -1021


  1. ^ "1977 Talladega 500 weather information". The Old Farmers' Almanac. Retrieved 2011-02-23. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f "1977 Talladega 500 information (second reference)". Ultimate Racing History. Retrieved 2010-12-06. 
  3. ^ a b c d "1977 Talladega 500 information (third reference)". Everything Stock Car. Archived from the original on December 2, 2008. Retrieved 2015-12-07. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "1977 Talladega 500 information (fourth reference)". Racing Reference. Retrieved 2011-02-27. 
  5. ^ "Track Facts". Talladega Superspeedway. November 1, 2012. Archived from the original on November 1, 2012. Retrieved April 27, 2015. 
  6. ^ "1977 Talladega 500 honorary starter information". Talladega Superspeedway. Retrieved 2011-02-23. 
  7. ^ "Quirky fact about NASCAR driver Marty Robbins". Archived from the original on 2012-03-12. Retrieved 2011-02-27. 
  8. ^ "Marty Robbins' engine information". Retrieved 2011-03-01. 
Preceded by
1977 Coca-Cola 500
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
Succeeded by
1977 Champion Spark Plug 400
Preceded by
Talladega 500 races
Succeeded by