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Stabler among VIPs to attend EA Sports 500

As if Talladega Superspeedway's EA SPORTS 500 Weekend wasn't exciting enough, fans will also enjoy a very festive atmosphere even before the first NASCAR Winston Cup Series car pulls off pit road.

Sheryl Crow and her band will put the morning into high gear just moments before the green flag falls on the EA SPORTS 500 on Oct. 6, 2002. Crow, who just kicked off her C'mon, C'mon Tour after the release of her most recent platinum album, will play a few songs with her band before the start of the race, including one song which will be telecast live on NBC during its pre-race show.

Legendary quarterback Ken Stabler has been hand picked by EA SPORTS to give the command for the drivers to start their engines, serving as the day's Grand Marshal at Talladega Superspeedway.

Before Crow and Stabler turn up the volume during pre-race festivities, one of country music's powerful new groups, Little Big Town, will provide fans with a concert as they begin to fill the massive grandstands during the morning hours. Moments before Stabler gives the command, Little Big Town will sing the National Anthem.

"Next Sunday will be exciting at every turn at Talladega Superspeedway - even before the green flag drops" said Rick Humphrey, the track's vice president/general manager. "The fans won't have time to catch their breath from the minute they arrive here next weekend - from the moment the concert begins to victory lane celebrations."

Plenty of seats remain for the entire EA SPORTS 500 Weekend. Fans can call the ticket office at (256) 362-RACE or purchase your tickets online. Tower seats remain as well as seats in the Allison Grandstand, a two-day $60 ticket.

Little Big Town's concert, Sheryl Crow's set and Ken Stabler's command all take place even before Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his peers steer into the high-banked turns at Talladega Superspeedway to begin the EA SPORTS 500, one of the most action-packed events of the season.

"Looking at all the different elements of the EA SPORTS 500, it's hard to imagine that day could be any more exciting," said Humphrey. "The closest points race in history, the rookie of the year chase and Winston's No Bull 5 million-dollar bonus are enough on their own. Thanks to Sheryl Crow, Little Big Town and Ken Stabler, our fans will be a part of one of the most entertaining days in Talladega history."

The EA SPORTS 500 Weekend begins on Thursday, Oct. 3, with Alabama International Auto Show Qualifying Day to set the field for the ARCA RE/MAX Series Food World 300. Friday, Oct. 4, is qualifying day to set the field for the NASCAR Winston Cup Series EA SPORTS 500. The Food World 300 begins at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 5, with a noon start on Sunday, Oct. 6 for the EA SPORTS 500.

Call the ticket office at (256) 362-RACE or purchase your tickets online at www.talladegasuperspeedway.com.