Monday, March 3, 2008

Phil Parsons Helps SPEED Fill The Void


The original idea of having three drivers stop by the TV studio and talk about the race on Monday was a good one. In one form or another, the Monday night NASCAR show on SPEED has been around for over a decade.

This Monday night, there was only one small problem. All of the "usual suspects" were in Phoenix, AZ testing with the Cup Series. Luckily, SPEED had a great "replacement player" in the wings.

Phil Parsons joined host Steve Byrnes to make-up the studio panel for This Week In NASCAR. It was interesting at first to see only two people, but Parsons was the perfect choice. His personal experience in the sport and his calm and easy-going on-air presence worked very well.

Byrnes hooked-up by satellite with both Carl Edwards and Greg Biffle for a timely interview. Both drivers have good relationships with Byrnes, and the interview was informative and covered the right ground. The two drivers were more at ease than in normal media interviews, and the effort to get them on-camera during testing was appreciated.

Byrnes leaned a lot on edited features throughout the show, and the quality of the NMG video in almost every piece was outstanding. Parsons was great in following-up many of the video pieces with his own veteran take on the subject.

As the show progressed, it was easy to understand why Craftsman Truck Series viewers have enjoyed Parsons for years. His style and sense of calm just draws viewers into what he is talking about. His plain-spoken manner gets NASCAR issues across to all kinds of fans with all levels of knowledge.

When Biffle and Edwards returned later in the show, Biffle was outstanding in addressing the safety concerns surrounding the Jeff Gordon accident in Las Vegas. Without interference, Biffle also talked about several other subjects in the same informed manner that he brought to Inside NEXTEL Cup.

It was a nice touch to dig deep in the NMG archive and bring out a Jeff Gordon interview from his rookie year. Mixed with footage and soundbites from the present day, it made for an outstanding feature that fans will remember for a long time. Parsons and Byrnes did a solid follow-up on the Gordon feature and put the impact of Jeff Gordon teaming with Rick Hendrick into a good perspective.

Each week, Dave Despain appears to offer his opinion on one topic. This time, it was Jeff Gordon. Despain put into perspective his unique open-wheel experiences with Gordon, and the pathway that ultimately led Gordon to NASCAR. All comparisons to Andy Rooney aside, this Despain feature is going to lead to great discussions when the full panel is on the program.

In the next-to-last segment of the program, Parsons did a great job of answering viewer mail. His NASCAR knowledge really hints to SPEED that perhaps the Craftsman Truck Series needs some additional TV programming during the week with Parsons in the mix.

Byrnes did a good job directing traffic, and dealing with a situation that called on a lot of his TV skills. After a rough start, this program seems to be sorting itself out in terms of features and sponsored elements. Once the full panel returns next week, it will be the first time that Byrnes and the gang will be together this season. That show might be one to circle on your TV calendar.

The Daly Planet welcomes comments from readers. Simply click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the easy instructions. The rules for posting are on the right side of the main page. Thanks again for taking the time to stop by.

69 comments:

Anonymous said...

WTF...I hope your joking....I guess I liked the old show too much to get into this new version of the show.

TexasRaceLady said...

I almost turned to another channel when I saw only Steve and Phil --- sure am glad I didn't.

A good show under somewhat difficult circumstances.

SophiaZ123 said...

Sorry, I do not care for this show at all.
Too many pre taped canned bits. It's nothing but a boring magazine format show to PROMOTE SPEED imo. Lots of commercials and talk of what is coming UP on SPEED for the 'next race.'

Last year Despain and the guys managed to do INC every week even if the guys were on the road.

No Mikey and No KENNY and NO LIVE TALKING equal BORING SHOW.

The whole SOUL of INC was to have guys with great chemistry ENJOYING rehashing the RACE we watched on SUNDAY with inside scoop of what we missed, ALONG with laughter. and LIVE conversation (ok, live to tape)

but to show rehashed highlights from SPEED of RACEDAY, and TRACKSIDE, and VL and SPEED Report or whatever? A 15 yr old interview with J Gordon?? There were no drivers available for this show? Silly me..that's no LONGER the plan.

NOT what I was expecting. If they are trying to copy ESPN NNOW, I will say it, ESPN wins.

Without a consistent panel, like Mikey and Kenny this show is nothing.

Hope all who hated DD and Mikey and Kenny are happy. You got rid of all of them and have a boring magazine show. Most depressing. :(

A huge jump the shark moment for me after the FUN of the guys for years.


P.S. I preferrred DD live as oppposed to canned on tape.

SallyB said...

You're absolutely right, that Phil Parsons was great. One of the few announcers on any of the networks that doesn't get so overwrought that it's painful to listen to him. My problem is that what used to be an entertaining look at the past weekends races from an 'inside' view, has been turned into just another rehash of the same information that bombarded us through the painfully extended 'pre race' shows and recaps. While competent, it certainly is in no danger of replacing the original 'Inside Winston Cup'. I can easily live without this show.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Sophia,

It is decaf time dear. The teams were testing in Arizona. All the panelists were there.

Dave Despain was on the show, and did a great job putting into perspective his ESPN experience with Thursday Night Thunder and Jeff Gordon.

I completely agree that the first true test of this show will be next week when the full panel will be on the set with Byrnes.

Waltrip, Schrader, Biffle and Knaus should be an interesting mix that we have not seen so far this season.

With the success of the Monday NASCAR Now, it should be interesting to watch and see what adjustments SPEED makes to this program as the weeks go by.

It is the ultimate irony that Bestwick is leading the Monday NASCAR TV charge.

JD

Newracefan said...

I already had a heads up that Phil would be part of the group and wasn't sure how TWIN was going to work with the rest of the guys off testing. It turned out OK, I missed Mikey and Schrader but can understand why they were not there (MWR testing speeds are not good). The DD piece was interesting and I agree hearing the guys comments after could be potentially hysterical and the JG piece was excellent. Greg and Carl did a decent job and Carl's comment is that when you passed me was the funny. Obviously there would have been more funny if Mikey and Schrader were there. My biggest request is to do the race recap first and the talk about the upcoming race last, it would end on a can't wait to the next race kind of note.

Anonymous said...

While I thought the show was OK as I was prepared for a look forward to the next race instead of a recap of yesterday's race, I would like to offer SPEED some constructive criticism:

- Previewing a race that's six days away, especially when the last race isn't even in the books (penalties have not even been handed out) is just too soon for me to digest. Perhaps this show should be moved to Thursdays.

- The set is very dark and gloomy and the music is eerie and haunting. I keep thinking it's Halloween. They need some energy on that set.

- If there's going to be a regular panel, could they please do the viewers the courtesy of appearing? If TWIN wants to have a revolving panel, that's fine. But to continue to mention the regulars, and some have not even made an appearance this year, is just deflating to the viewer.

- I noticed when Steve introduced the regulars, Ken Schrader was not mentioned. Is he or is he not a regular panelist? JD, I noticed in your response to Sophia (9:40 P.M), you mentioned Schrader as a "regular". I recall that Steve did not mention Schrader as a regular. Perhaps I didn't hear it properly?

- It would be nice to show the point standings. Even if they are unofficial. For all three series.

- Steve was complimented for "directing traffic", however, there really wasn't much traffic. The only traffic was a couple of segments of Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards in Phoenix. The rest of the traffic was canned segments. I sometimes felt I was watching an infommercial or a very long promo for the next week's racing show lineup.

- Keep the Dave Despain commentary. His vocabulary mesmerizes me when he gets the opportunity to compose (JD, you come a very close second). This is one of the reasons I enjoy Wind Tunnel (and JD's blogs).

- NewRaceFan (9:41 P.M.) mentioned an amusing exchange between Carl and Greg. I think if Mikey was on the panel, he would have given Biffle grief for not having on his racing uniform while Carl did. Biffle missed a "sponsor name on TV" moment. Just think how humorous that exchange would have been.

I get the impression that this show is still trying to find it's feet, and I hope it succeeds. But, I've watched every episode now, and it just misses the mark. Hopefully, SPEED will give them time to refine this show and turn it into one of the "must not miss" shows.

Anonymous said...

It appears that this new show format will be a little different than before. Not as much as a recap of the previous week but an outlook on the week ahead. I guess that works, because by Monday night all that's left to cover is the Cup Race and VL has basically already done that. I did enjoy tonights show the best so far. Looking forward to the show getting into it's groove. It's different, we just got to adjust to looking forward. It would be nice to recap in the first segments and then move on to upcoming events. JMO
Glenn

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 9:49PM,

Your Schrader question is a good one. SPEED originally told me it was the same three plus Chad.

I will ask them Tuesday about who will be regulars on the program. Good point.

JD

Seiko said...

Ive tried to watch this for the second time. I just don't get it...


Parsons and Byrnes are both people I enjoy watching on TV but the format has turned me off.
Why have next week first up on the program. I cant wrap my mind around starting with next week then coming back to last night. Ruins the flow of the show in my opinion.

I like the old 3 racer guys and a traffic cop format alot. Could have just changed up the players and made it another fine show from the folks at Speed. But this format is not working for me.

I'm going to give it another shot, but not holding out much hope of staying with it through the season.

Anonymous said...

Phil Parsons was impressive, as was Dave DeSpain.

The chairs looked comfortable yet the lights were too dark to go with the dark furniture.

But this show is supposed to be fun. No fun, not watching.

Anonymous said...

Tonight's show was good under the circumstances. Steve and Phil did a good job, and I did enjoy the piece on Jeff Gordon. However, I admit I had the urge to channel surf a bit during the other segments of the show.

The thing I loved about the previous format of the show was that it was a recap of the previous weekend's race from an inside perspective with some fun, humor, and unpredictability mixed in. The way the format is now is basically the same as the Monday roundtable on NASCAR Now, and honestly, ESPN might do it better (and after last season I can't believe I just typed that).

Maybe I'm like the first poster and liked the old version too much to adapt to this one. But I believe most fans who were becoming increasing critical of INC weren't asking SPEED to reinvent the wheel so-to-speak. They were just asking them to put a host in place that the panel has better chemistry with. The way the show is now it's just a run-of-the-mill review/preview show with no real difference from the others.

For right now, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. They haven't had their entire "A team" on air yet this season, so we'll see how it goes when that happens.

~S.A.

Anonymous said...

No fun. No more DVR for this.
In shows passed, if drivers were missing/going to miss, it was mentioned on the show.

Fans weren't left wondering where everybody was at.

This is the show that barely mentioned the Daytona500 the day after the race. So many excuses made for Speed.

Poor execution even if regulars UNavailable. Last year the show still had the same format no matter what. Discussing the weekends race with inside scoop and fun.

Just another run of the mill show for sure.

Dan said...

I only got to see the first half tonight, although the whole episode is recorded. From what I saw, I have some opinions:

I thought leading off with Atlanta for as long as they did was too much. I understand that they are expanding the time spent discussing the next race, but with Vegas only 24 hours old, reminiscing about past Atlanta races right after the opening felt wrong to me. Also, the "looking forward" information that was presented was rather general and no different than any of the other previews that will cover the same ground throughout the week.

One of the things I really liked about the old INC was the amount of "inside" info that the drivers discussed that wasn't covered on any other program. Yes, everyone was off testing, but even with the amount of canned footage shown and two drivers "live", I still felt like there was very little that was unique on tonight's show.

I didn't like the amount of sponsored highlights. The old "Enterprise Turning Point of the Race" was hard enough to swallow. Now it seems like every highlight has to be framed to fit a sponsor's tag line. Too much!

With the rain-out and testing, this revamped show has really been handicapped for the last couple of weeks. Unfortunately, the issues I have with the portion of show I saw tonight are production decisions and do not have anything to do with who is in front of the camera. At this point, I'm concerned for the future.

SophiaZ123 said...

dan

Bingo. It matters not one whit if the 'regulars' are there or not.

The "HYBRID" is format change and canned stuff and lots of selling.

Except for this place, I have not seen anybody "happy" with the new format that loved the CONVERSATION of the old show.

and even if the REGULARS were there, we would only get maybe one segment.

nothing against Phil Parsons or Steve. But most of us treasured the conversing of racers and the fun they had kibbitzing with each other.

That's all.

I am simply stating an opinion.

Peace out

P.S. If they want to continue to IGNORE the Sunday race, have this show on later in the week. Man, it pains me to prefer ESPN on Monday nights but it is what it is.

Dwight said...

I think that Bestwick got the best on his old spot tonight. (Could never understand why he lost that gig, or was replaced by Webber on NBC/TNT) TWIN is still a little rough, and Steve Byrnes was struggling and seemed unprepared. I don't fault him but the producers for that, I think they left him scrambling. Phil Parsons was very good. He is underutilized by SPEED.

Viewers need to get over the fact this is not Inside Winston Cup any more. Things change, often for the best. Kenny Wallace and Jimmy Spencer have moved on. Johnny Benson got dumped long ago (we could stand to see him back somewhere in some context). Schrader was only around part of the time the last couple of years.

TWIN is going to have to put some effort in to keep up with NASCAR Now. (I can't believe, after last year, that I just wrote that but it's happily true.) Give SPEED some time to hit their stride. It is certainly unreasonable to expect any of the drivers or crew chiefs involved to be giving TWIN priority over testing in Phoenix.

Anonymous said...

I watched half the show,got bored and switched channels

Ritchie said...

I enjoyed this format much better than the old format. It was fast paced, and we weren't locked into watching the same point of view.

I thought the commentary from Mr. Biffle and Mr. Edwards was good, although I think they were struggleing to adapt to the sattelite feed.

I am not a big fan of Mr. Byrnes constant NASCAR/SPEED promotions. I know there has too be some promotion of SPEED since he works there, but it needs to be minimalized. Also, this is the second week I have noticed that he is schilling for NASCAR. Last show he ignored the Kyle Busch no call on passing below the yellow line, and this week we get the "every Atlanta race is great" line. This needs to end, imediately.

The Jeff Gordon piece was very professional and enjoyable. Mr. Despain was excelent as always, and Mr. Parsons was the perfect balance to Mr. Byrnes' cheerleading.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Continuing the thoughts of many about the pre-produced features, what would you like to see changed on this show and why?

JD

jfs-va said...

I'm ready to give it another chance with all the guys in studio next week, however, if they follow the same format I'm not sure I'll like it.

As some others have mentioned, I don't like starting off with a preview of the next race. Do that at the end. Seems logical.

Also as others stated, I liked hearing some inside stuff about the race that was just finished. I realize Chad couldn't be there but I would have loved to have heard what the heck happened to the 48 car and how they were so off with the setup.

I enjoyed Despain and the gang and that format much more than last night's show. Let's see what next week brings.

Anonymous said...

Obviously, this show was a little rough.Its hard to find your feet when you haven't even had a chance to even get everyone together in the same place yet. But while not as lively as it might have been and though the organizational flow stumbled a bit, it was informative.

I think that it might be best to devote the first 10 minutes or so of the show to whatever the hottest issue from the past week's race was (Carl Edwards' oil tank cover this week), and get that special, insider's perspective on it. As they say in journalism, Don't Bury the Lead!

How that hot issue will affect the next week's race would make a natural transition into the inside look at the week coming up that the show's format promises.

I'd like to see less tape and more live discussion and I expect to see that when the cast is available. I also think that Dave Despain shines at his brightest when given just such an opportunity to focus his considerable experience on a single topic that way.

I don't know about the old Jeff Gordon interview. I was probably a nice trip down memory lane for his fans, but I'd have rather seen another segment with some driver interviews from Phoenix testing or even seen Steve and Phil review, in the context of the Vegas wrecks, the progress of the safety systems that let Tony, Kurt, and Jeff walk away sore but intact.

TWIN isn't really up to speed yet, but its accelerating. They just need to remember to first address what's on people's mind and to take advantage of that special, insider's perspective that no one else has.

Deborah said...

I like Phil Parsons, but I shut this show off as soon as I saw it was just him and Steve Byrnes. I'm so disheartened by the new format of the show I have zero interest to watch without any of the regulars (or other drivers) on the panel. I suppose someone will say that I should have given the show a chance last night, but I have so much else going on that I'm not about to spend an hour in front of the TV for promos of Speed shows, taped segments and a preview of next weekend's race that I can find in countless other places.

TexasRaceLady said...

I, too, would rather see the discussion of the upcoming race moved to the end, or at least the last half of the program.

Going forward a week, then backward to the races just past is a lttle disconcerting.

I'm reserving my opinion about the show until the whole crew can finally get together in same place.

And, as some else mentioned, the set seems somewhat gloomy. Can we brighten it up a bit?

Anonymous said...

GET OVER IT people, this is NOT INC! It's a NEW show. It doesn't look like it either. Nothing wrong with that. I like the set and lighting, it doesn't look like crappy local news.

ri88girl said...

I haven't been a regular watcher of INC since AB was replaced. When I did see it, the chemistry was all wrong, and aside from seeing that Greg Biffle was a very good addition; I was still put off by the lack of chemistry. I atributted the bad karma to DD, but I also wondered why they didn't just completly change the panel to try and fix that.

I had no preconseved notions about TWIN so have not been disapointed. I think its a fine show for what it is, but if they wanted something as compelling to the fans as IWC they need to do what the one poster said an do another show with drivers and a traffic cop.

I don't think you can make a final judgement until everyone is there after a 'normal' race weekend. IMO inside whaterver cup was dead when AB left and so I've never expected to find something to replace it.

glenc1 said...

you know, I'm surprised at so much negativity here...the guys were *testing*--as for 'it wasn't like that in the past', well, the testing schedules have changed dramatically from what they used to be, and even the oldest 'INC' version would have had to to deal with that regardless. Interrupting their work is probably more intrusive than it used to be as well.

I am never unhappy to see Phil Parsons--I think he is simply the most underrated broadcaster in racing--as much as I miss Benny, I've always thought Phil was the best. He can even make having the hyper Mike Waltrip in the booth tolerable. As for the prerecorded material...the show was limited *again* because the usual 'live' guys were not there. I found the material interesting. Do we not have enough of live discussions with the endless analysis from all the shows on all the networks to do a little taped material? Big deal. After a while they're all discussing the same things anyway; I can only listen to so much.

I did find Greg and 'The Carl' seem to be pals...either it was good acting or they've buried the hatchet; their segments were comfortable and informative.

As far as promoting--this happens on ALL networks, and it happens 'in reverse' as well--American Idol was showing ads promoting the race broadcasts on FOX. (In fact, I was thinking it would have been smart promotion to get some drivers involved in "Idols Give Back".) In any case, they all do it; it's not going away, you either need to get used to it or stop watching coverage altogether, cause it's not going away.

I guess it makes sense to preview the next race nearer to the end rather than the beginning. I would like to see a little more 'recap' from the previous week but they don't need to cover every caution. I don't think we've really discovered what the show is going to be until the real panel is there. As for Kenny, I'd rather he be there all the time, but I think people have to be realistic about how much time he has to spend with his various race teams--he was out a lot last year too.

Anonymous said...

Show was just okay, not anything against Phil, but the SHOW is supposed to review the race with the 3 drivers.
Telegram to SPEED execs.....if everyone is in Phoenix, then send Byrnes to Phoenix and shoot the show there!!Duh!!!!
Think of the number of guests they could have had in addition to Mikey and Schrader. Record the show, bike the tape to a local station and feed it to SPEED. Pretty simple, right JD?
The format of the show stinks as it is.

Anonymous said...

Well, obviously no final judgements can be made until they have the entire panel in studio, but in my opinion this show is on the wrong night.

If they aren't going to give the viewer the unique opportunity to see drivers in a loose and casual atmosphere, they shouldn't do it on Monday. Fans aren't ready to move on to the next week yet.

Granted, the show was very well done last night. Good features. Very professional "traffic directing" from Byrnes. Other than a few glaring errors in information (Parsons had the 43rd starting spot close but not entirely correct, Byrnes mentioned the "four" Roush teams) they both did a good job.

The part I enjoyed most was the laid back interview with Biffle and Edwards. Imagine that - seeing drivers in a casual atmosphere which is the one thing INC did best and what TWIN was alleged to be brining.

If they want to do a preproduced feature type show that focuses on the next race, it should be on Wednesday or Thursday. Monday is still a day to fully concentrate on the recently completed race.

At the very least they should start with the recap and then move to the preview. Starting a show at 8PM Monday night talking about Atlanta just seemed jarring to me.

Anonymous said...

JD,

In response to your question, I'd at least like to see a review of the previous week's race before they go into the pre-produced features so there's some order and continuity. Right now, they're jumping from piece to piece, starting with next week's race then going back to the previous week's race, and it just isn't flowing well in my opinion.

Plus, there might be too many pre-produced segments currently. If at all possible, live conversation should make up the larger percentage of the time.

But as I've said before, along with others, I'll withhold total judgment until they get the entire crew on set at the same time.

~S.A.

Anonymous said...

Okay, it's not INC. What was wrong with INC that it should be replaced by yet another show with a bunch of canned features limiting the amount of time the panelists get to expose their true feelings about the previous week's activities?

The time limits necessary for the present format reduce the program to the same, short, superficial "insights" every other program on television is already doing.

And putting next week's preview at the beginning, providing only more idle speculation that will be repeated again and again and again for the next 6 days just signals the similarities this show will have to everything else we will have to endure until the next race happens.

The concept of INC that actual participants will give us viewers feed back on what they saw on the track at the very event they were discussing, is the idea that made INC different, special and better than the others. NASCAR Victory Lane is one approach but tends to be superficial and histrionic, thanks to Kenny Wallace and its immediacy. It also follows three or four continuous hours of race watching, evaluation and speculation. More speculation about the event is not what I need.

INC had the advantage of time, both in the driver’s attempts to explain what happened and distance from the event, which allowed perspective to come into focus.

Get rid of the majority of the canned stuff. It is not a racer’s perspective. It is the perspective of yet another reporter (producer, editor, and anybody else who gets their fingers in it) on what they think the racer’s intent and purpose to be.

Let them tell us directly! And without the constraints of satellite segments fitting between speculation (commercials) about the next event!

Anonymous said...

"The concept of INC that actual participants will give us viewers feed back on what they saw on the track at the very event they were discussing, is the idea that made INC different, special and better than the others. "

I agree with anon 10:28. Per what needs to be changed (back), the use of driver communication audio from the race needs to be added back in immediately. That helps a lot with context during the last lap, after accidents, etc. I recall that those communications had a Nextel logo across the screen when broadcast on the show in the past. Are the segments not being sponsored by Nextel/sprint so TWIN can no longer use them? Seems like they could use HotPass communications if that's the case.

The inside information and comments about the race is what's missing now.

Diane said...

Well, add me to the list of people who will not be watching this show due to them adding Ray Evernham to the line up. I tried to watch this show, but it just sceved me out every time he opened his mouth. Also, I would question any comment he makes in the future about Mayfield, or any female competitor (Chrisse Wallace, etc).

Its too bad, because I really enjoy Boris Said, but I will no longer record or watch this show.

Anonymous said...

Honestly, they should have skipped even trying to give us a show this week. Poor Steve Byrnes was sick all weekend and they dragged him in to tape the show that was going nowhere. I couldn't watch & I'm sure Byrnes would have rather been resting up for Atlanta.

Diane said...

Oops, I put my last comment on the wrong thread.

Newracefan said...

I also want to add that my favorite part of INC and hopefully this show is the inside information or the guys perspective on the big issues from the weekend. For example Carl mentioned that the oil tank cover was something that teams had been doing for 20 years. I would have loved to hear Kenny and Mikey on that one after the grief they gave Biff on the fuel/no fuel win last year. Steve and Phil really couldn't pounce on that the way fellow drivers could. Chad would also have been interesting to hear after the awful race in Vegas for the 48, with the perfect transition to Atlanta and how a team can bounce back and fix the problem. Maybe it would help MWR cause they didn't so to well either

Anonymous said...

OK - I gave this new show one more shot. I lasted 12 minutes. It's just another fluff show like any of the other Speed programming like Race Day, Trackside, The Chase is On.

Too much pre-produced material. I get enough of that all weekend long. I loved INC because it was different. This show is just a continuation of all the other stuff and I find myself totally unintertested.

Getting un-rehearsed, candid driver feedback from the past race was unique and provided for some great moments on the air. I couldn't wait until next week to see what would happen.

I won't be coming back for any more of this new show.

INC - RIP

Tracy said...

Boring, boring, boring. Too many promos, the same clips we've seen before of drivers' talking heads, and too much blather about nothing. Only Phil Parson's answers to fan questions was mildly interesting. The piece looking back at a young JG belonged somewhere else, not on THIS WEEK in Nacar. Ten year old comments are not topical. I'll give it another week. If there's no change, I have other things to do at 8 on Monday.

batchief said...

Judging this show right now would be like saying you didn't care for a baseball or football game broadcast before the teams even took the field. When the cast of characters is in place in the studio, then I will judge the show. As for sending Steve to Arizona as mentioned by another poster, I'm betting, after being sick with the flu late in the week, that he was more than happy to be back in the Charlotte area to recover.

Anonymous said...

Where was the announcement that TWIN was going to be INC or anything that resemebled INC???

Some folks here seem to think that someone promised them that INC would be back with a different name... Seems that SPEED was up against the wall without any drivers available in studio, but I think they did well to bring on Biffle and Carl (the race winner by the way).

Despain's piece is good and it was pretty cool to see Gordon's rise to the top.

A little rough but not bad for only 3 shows.

boyd said...

I guess from now on I have to give ESPN my Monday racing time. I tried to watch last night, but zoned out about 15 minutes in. My wife said,'if a racing show doesn't interest you, there's really something bad about it'.
I am sad that IWC is gone and couldn't believe that Steve referenced it right off the bat. This show isn't even a good imitation of it.
More conversation between drivers (and friends) is what can cure this show. Just be sure to mention when it will happen, so I can tune back in.

Anonymous said...

Diane said...

I basically want some "inside" info. Stuff we didn't hear in the pre-shows, race, etc. Dig deeper into some of the issues; tires, teams that did better/worse than expected, top 35/GOGH'er status with just 2 races to go, etc. It should come from individuals who were at the track and participating...drivers, crew, owners, media, in that order of preference (with exceptions of course when travel/previous obligations get in the way). A knowledgable and congenial host (Steve in fine). The content should be Cup, Nationwide, Truck, next week race. Yes, it isn't "Inside" anymore. But the issue last year wasn't the intent of the program, more who was hosting and the, at times, out of control nature of it. I for one would prefer more, rather than less of the fun part. I want to feel like I'm in the middle of a bunch of race people just telling it like it was, no spin.

Anonymous said...

Just curious.....they have yet to give any mention at all to the Nationwide Series. Now, someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I've been under the distinct impression that the Nationwide Series is still a part of Nascar. At least it used to be when the show was in it's previous format. What gives with the total lack of coverage?

KoHoSo said...

Daly Planet Editor said...

Continuing the thoughts of many about the pre-produced features, what would you like to see changed on this show and why?


I realize the idea is that this is a new show -- although I am still stumped as to why Speed felt that it had to fix something that wasn't broken when they dumped Bestwick. However, what made the show great was that it allowed the panel to make extended comments on the questions and highlights that were presented to them.

There are just too many pre-produced features now to allow the panel to either get in deeper to the subject or to go off on those hilarious tangents that made so many people love the original program. I also feel that the content of what we have seen so far is mostly meaningless -- too much fluff, too heavy on making the show a Speed infomercial, and far too slanted towards the many-days-away next event.

The changes? Cut down the amount of these features by at least half...focus on the actual racing, preferably from the previous day's event...don't force the panel to respond in mere sound bites...those would be a great start.

One thing that I do like in the new format is the weekly question/comment coming from Dave Despain. If people can get over his rough performance as host of the show, they will realize that he will give some very good fodder for the panel to chew on...assuming that they are given the time to truly feast upon it.

I realize that we still haven't seen this show in full force. But, while the panel has been ever changing since the opener in the infield at Daytona, the format has been the same each time. I have to agree with many others here that, if there are not some tweaks to the show made very shortly and I am not getting the information and laughs out of it that I have enjoyed for so long, I'm going to take it out of my DVR's "record all new episodes" list and stop watching. As is, the program is giving me no reason to watch it other than to hope it gets better. Even last year's "foul mood" episodes were better than what we have seen so far.

JMHO. But, what do I know? I'm 42 now and am thus too old for most TV outlets to really care what I think. ;-) Sometimes I wonder if Speed is intentionally trying to run off this show so they can show more episodes of Pinks.

Anonymous said...

Well, at least there are 2 new NASCAR shows to check out this weekend on SPEEDTV. Check website for info on new shows. Still wondering if I will have HD SPEED on Comcast for F1

earl06 said...

Like most of the other posters, I have been trying to give this show a chance, and it isn't working. Yes, they haven't had the first string in there yet, and they've had four tries. So, that means that most of the time they won't be there. Neither will I, probably.

JD, the pre-produced features are generic, tiresome and artlessly integrated with the rest of the program.

The production team needs to try harder to make this show interesting, a lot harder. Right now it's an incoherent, boring mess. Many of these segments are good on their own, but they aren't put together with any flow. The whole show has the same tone, no rise and fall. Pretty bush league.

Deborah said...

Anon at 11:49, Speed were the ones who said TWIN would have all the elements of INC that everyone loved, and I believe Steve Byrnes even said something along those lines at the start of last night's show. So far just about the only thing that's been the same is that Michael and Greg have been on the show.

Anonymous said...

Amy in FL said...

I agree with what most have said.

The show just lacks continuity and flow. I think that the banter between Mikey and Schrader discussing issues and tangents was great on the old show. I think that they ought to show more of the previous race and discuss the headlines and issues stemming from that race that we will be talking about for the next week.

Maybe it could be 15-20 minutes discussing the headlines and 15-20 recapping the previous race and 10-15 minutes highlighting the next race and the remainder of the time answering questions and telling what is happening in the lives of the panelists at the close of the show. I do like the interviews and think that the panel should be allowed to interview and not just Steve Byrnes.

I like the recaps of the previous races as there may be times like this past weekend that I cannot watch any of the racing action due to having to play my harp with orchestras and in rehearsals and concerts during the racing action. It would give me some idea of what went on and be able to keep up. I don't have the time to watch all the other shows and don't have DVR or high def. I also don't have my VCR programmed.

Just my thoughts and hope that they are clear.

I used to stay up late and watch the replays of INC when I had to miss the original showing and last night missed the first half of the show and did not watch any of the replays. I just hope that Speed listens this week to us fans and try to change it to suit us fans.

As I heard earlier today while watching Fox News, if you want a perfect candidate that agrees with all of your views, then run yourself. I am just hoping to get my 2 cents in and hope that they are listened to.

Have a great day everyone and you too John. Thanks for allowing us to voice our opinions here.

Anonymous said...

It was painful watching this show after the Daytona and Las Vegas races. TWIN is more like a Fox or SPEED pre-race show than a review of the races that took place the weekend before.

I didn't want to see fantastic finishes at Atlanta. I wanted to see/hear about the racing that took place at Las Vegas.

I'll give it one more week to see how things go with the regular panel. If it doesn't pick up by then, I will cancel my weekly Tivo recording of TWIN. No knock on Phil Parsons. He did a nice job. It's just that the present format is lousy.

Geez said...

I didn't care for Monday's show very much. I would like to see some sort of preview of next weeks race and a few minutes toward the end of the show would be best for that.

Seeing as we have never seen the whole crew in one studio show yet, I'm going to give it some time to gel a bit. I'll still watch.

haus20 said...

turn on the lights.

put the show in HD.

Everyone else has said what I think about the show...right now it is ESPN with AB on Monday's for me.

Anonymous said...

This new show is a total waste compared to INC with the old "crew".

SophiaZ123 said...

So glad to see others felt the way I did about the new format!!!! Restores my faith that we miss the "art of conversation" on this show with THE PANEL!

they had the panel at Daytona and still never discussed much of the race.

and my criticism had nothing to do with caffeine, JD. :-) I slept most of last night and was groggy if anything.

I know many may think GET OVER IT, it isn't INC but the 'familiar format' is sorely missed by folks watching the show longer than I have been ...

Steve Byrnes is all over SPEED SHOWS and I like him just fine but we want the OTHER's input..=

Anonymous said...

Why do they start this show with a preview of "the next race"? This seems really stupid to me, is it just me?

Anonymous said...

I can do WITHOUT the hour-long Toyota commercial called Michael Waltrip, please test every Monday NASCAR!!! We have to hear DW promote Toyota 4 hours on Sunday and I'm SICK of it, FOX and/or NASCAR needs to do something before we all quit watching!!!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
SophiaZ123 said...

Anon 6.43

Your comment about the INSTANT jumping to next weeks race seems the most stupid move by all.

Poor production on this show..The show runs backwards..like that one episode of Seinfeld...or as somebody posted here or elsewhere (sorry can't think today) if TWIN is about THE NEXT RACE, then have the show LATER in the week.

Daly Planet Editor said...

SPEED tells me the panel next week will include Michael Waltrip and Chad Knaus.

Schrader will not be present every week, and the four panelists will kind of rotate in the same way that ESPN rotates their Monday night NASCAR Now studio panel.

Just like the ESPN show, the cast depends on the availabilty of the four SPEED panelists. If and when all four are available, they will all appear with Steve Byrnes.

I am working to get more info from SPEED about the program format and reaction to your feedback.

JD

SophiaZ123 said...

Thanks, JD!

I remembered Schrader missing a good part of the show last season and was concerned his name is never mentioned this year.

Since the FUN of the old show was the interaction amongst the boys (namely, Biff, Kenny and Mikey) will be interested to hear the update from SPEED.

If they just moved the show to Thursday --so the rest of us could 'LET GO" of the fun conversation of the old days on Mondays for the last 10 years--perhaps we old INC fans would get the message and just give it up. But I highly doubt I will watch another show of canned stuff. They did this at the Daytona IIRC.

THIS IS A COMPLETELY new show. Not a 'hybrid' as Mr. Byrnes likes to call it.

Just my two cents after home made pizza and a glass of wine. Now back to the Ohio polls information. :)

But thanks for keeping us UPDATED JD!! mucho appreciated.


XOXO

Anonymous said...

So, no Schrader? and they give us Knaus instead?
This show is done. Over> finished.

Stupid, like the "bass-ackwards" look forward off the top of the show? Well, I gues its more of the FOX arrogance-typified by more "jam it down the viewers throat" gopher cam. hey, "we invented" it so it must be good...and any viewer who says different must just be too dumb to know what really good race coverage is. ESPN had the tread cam in what, 1991???
I'm done with SPEED and done with FOX. No kidding! I'll get my info from ESPN with Bestwick on Mondays, and I have plenty else to do on Sunday other than be visually "peed" on by the pseudo-geniuses at FOX. You might dismiss this Mr Hill, but I am not alone. You have screwed the fans and viewers once too often. Boogity-Boogity-Boogity....let's go to ESPN boys!!!!

Anonymous said...

anon

Wow! you have the same feelings about Schrader that many have. I know many are all over the net screaming for their Kenny and Mikey fix but not to be.
Speed is getting good at fixing what ain't broke from all I am reading.

Damn shame. Another dime a dozen show.

Tripp said...

A bit late to the party, but I wanted to chime in on this one.

I'm trying to like TWIN. I really am, but after about 20 minutes or so I was done. It's not a bad show, it's just another Speed show. As others have said, it's too much like RaceDay, Victory Lane, Trackside and the rest. No, not the information. It's the personality. All the Speed shows have the same demeanor. Goofy-silly mixed in with good information. They all have the same one-note personality.

In all fairness, Byrnes and Roberts are very good at what they do, as are the rest of the talent on Speed, but their on-air styles are very similar. With the two of them hosting nearly all of the high profile NASCAR shows on Speed, I'm starting to overdose. Too much of a good thing is not a good thing.

Enter the new-and-improved ESPN2 and suddenly there's quality competitive product to compare with Speed. ESPN is smart, professional, informative, glossy, interesting and often times fun. It is also new and different than Speed.

My issue with TWIN as a part of the overall NASCAR product on Speed is that the network seems to be relying on the same formula for much of their offerings. And in light of the new ESPN products, it's starting to wear thin. Maybe it's time to stir the pot at Speed.

SophiaZ123 said...

Tripp, I just have to say, after last season, I had NO IDEA ESPN could be fun!!

AB's LIVE TALK CIRCLE of CONVERSATION is outstanding. Sadly, I think the 'art of conversation' is lost on the younger generation.

The Monday night Speed hour, has lost it's soul of conversation and as noted, is just "another SPEED show to promote the station". Some of us miss "eavesdropping on Kenny, Mikey, Greg and Despain"
:(

So ESPN's Monday AB Show is now the place to be!

Sandie said...

I love Phil! I think it was a great show!

I hope they let Phil come by again :)

Anonymous said...

"ESPN's Monday show with AB is the place to be." Yeah, because that's where you'll definitely see Mikey, Kenny and Schrader...NOT!!!!

And probably never will!

Mike said...

I want THE EXPERT PANEL back !!!!!!!(along with garbage truck sounds)

Anonymous said...

Did Ed Clark pay Speed to build up Atlanta ad-nauseum so they might sell 60% of the seats this weekend? Yeah, we know it's fast, great racing, and takes several hours to get home afterwards.

stricklinfan82 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
stricklinfan82 said...

This new show just does not appeal to me at all. This isn't an indictment of Steve Byrnes or anyone else that co-hosts this show, I just think this new program format is completely boring.

As a veteran fan, all the endless talk about the track surface at Atlanta, this weekend's weather forecast at Atlanta, the speeds at Atlanta, and videos of race after race that happened at Atlanta in the past just bored me out of my mind. I've seen every race at this "new" Atlanta since it was reconfigured in 1997 so I know all this stuff already. I know what the track looks like, I know how fast they run there, and I know what the racing has been like there historically. If I was a new fan and had never seen a race at Atlanta before then yes I could see how this preview format could be very informative and enjoyable to watch. The problem is that I'm not a new fan. I've been through many race weekends at all of these tracks so I don't care to watch a show that almost seems geared to new fans that have never seen a race at the upcoming track before.

I enjoyed hearing the brief couple minutes with Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards looking back on the Las Vegas race and I enjoyed the outtakes from the weekend's coverage but everything else was just unbearable to me as a fan that has seen an Atlanta race before at some point in my life and knows what to expect when I turn on the TV on Friday and see the Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Unfortunately I will now be removing this show from my DVR list. It's a shame that they abandoned the fun, race review format with insights from drivers that were in the race. I always liked being able to turn on the TV on Monday morning and hear 3 or 4 new perspectives on things that happened in the race I watched the day before.

Anonymous said...

Amy in FL said...

I had another thought as to the programming for this show. How about for the opening show have Speed follow around say 2 or so drivers during the off season and show what they did and then allow the regulars to share what they did during the off season as well. Then preview the upcoming season and the next week's races. Then the season happens and the programming goes on all season. At the end of the season, the show right after the last race can be to recap the last race and then tape a show right after that to air the next week allowing the regulars to decompress and share their thoughts on the season that just happened and give thoughts on what needs to stay the same and what needs to change. Then do a bloopers show and an outtakes show.

The above are just my random thoughts and suggestions. I hope that they are good ones. Let me know what you all think.

Of course, I think that Mikey and Kenny need to be on every show as they make the show great. JMHO.

Have a great and blessed day everyone.

Amy
Winter Haven, FL