I went out to Talladega yesterday for the last available Saturday of high-speed ride-alongs with the Andretti driving instructors ...and it did not disappoint. Sure, I drove almost an hour each way and paid $70 (Groupon) for three whole laps, but I would still recommend it. The high banking made all the difference — the G-forces and visual angles play crazy tricks with your mind, and the whole thing felt much more like flying in a high-performance aircraft than driving in a car. Doing this for 200+ laps (at even higher speeds, surrounded by competitors) is mental insanity, even if it's not as fast or technical as IRL or F1. They also offer a costlier and more time-consuming driving experience, but those tend to be about 20-30mph slower and more restricted, so there’s a tradeoff. Something about holding 5600RPM in a V8 just inches from your feet, the 160mph wind blowing through the cabin on a balmy 98-degree day just really made it an experience. A nearly empty Superspeedway made it even more ethereal. And ride-alongs don’t have to wear Nomex, so I did the whole thing in t-shirt, shorts, and sandals. Not a bad Saturday afternoon!