Welcome to the Jalopnik Weekend Motorsports Roundup, where we let you know what's going on in the world of racing, where you can see it, and where you can talk about it all in one convenient place. Where else would you want to spend your weekend?
This Sunday brings us one of the scariest races in all of motorsports, if there could be such a thing. No, it's not the MotoGP race in Spain, though jamón ibérico is, indeed, scary-good. It's the Aaron's 499 at Talladega. And while you may be wondering what's so scary about an oval race in Alabama, there really is only one answer.
It's the Big One.
Huge wrecks at Talladega, and Daytona, for that matter, have become so commonplace that they actually have a name, and their own Wikipedia page. And if it's got its own Wikipedia page, you know it's official.
(Note: I do not yet have my own Wikipedia page, thus I am not official. I would create one for myself, but that's just so tacky. Then again, Jalopnik's own Wikipedia page has a section for humor, so there's that. I have no idea why. Everyone I meet tends to be pretty dour. Did you see the Jalopnik meetup last night? A very somber affair. I got challenged to go shot-for-shot. Like I said, a serious evening of much seriosity. Yes, I just made up "seriosity." You'll live.)
An engineer and a physicist might be better at explaining why huge wrecks are endemic to the big superspeedways, but I'll give it my best, incredibly dumbed-down shot. Basically, the roomy nature of the huge tracks lends itself not to small clusters of two or three cars, as would be intuitive, but rather huge packs as everyone tries to take advantage of the best aerodynamics and drafting opportunities from everyone else.
And when you've got a huge peloton, all it takes is for someone to so much as sneeze the wrong way before a chain reaction occurs, sending race cars flying. And race cars tend to be safest with the shiny side up.
So that's why it can be scary. But like so many episodes of Are You Afraid of the Dark? that you can't get out of your head from childhood, I'm sure you'll survive.
Maybe. Talladega is also rumored to be haunted.
There are a bunch of other great races on this weekend, including USCR at Laguna Seca, the aforementioned MotoGP race, and NBCSN will be airing highlights from the 100 Acre Wood Rally this evening at 6 PM.
So that should all be fun.
If you know about anything we missed, or about good livestreams out there, let us know in the comments below.
All times below are EST.
ARCA Racing International Motorsports Hall of Fame 200
11 AM Saturday on FS1
NASCAR Sprint Cup Aaron's 499 Qualifying
1 PM Saturday on FOX
NASCAR Nationwide Series Aaron's 312
2:30 PM Saturday on ESPN
AMA Supercross Las Vegas
Sam Boyd Stadium
Las Vegas, Nevada
10 PM Saturday on FS1
MotoGP Gran Premio de España
Circuito de Jerez
Jerez de la Frontera, Andalucia, Spain
7 AM Sunday on FS1
NASCAR Sprint Cup Aaron's 499
12:30 PM Sunday on FOX
TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix Powered by Mazda
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
1 PM Sunday on FS1