Sunday, April 27, 2008

In-Car Cameras Rule The Day In Talladega

Watching the Sprint Cup race at Talladega from the grandstands is a great experience for fans. Watching the race on TV is quite another.

Earlier this season, the NASCAR On Fox production group seemed to be focused on their new track-level camera. They created a personality called "Digger" and then "extended that brand" into a marketing and sales program. They sell "Digger" t-shirts and merchandise on both and Darrell Waltrip's personal website.

With the big wide track at Talladega, it looked like "Digger" would be featured extensively on Fox's Sprint Cup coverage. As it turned out, the NASCAR on Fox Director had already determined that it would be another group of "TV toys" that would be featured during the race. That one decision affected the viewing experience for everyone at home in a big way.

In-car TV cameras have been around for a very long time. At NASCAR races, the cameras are provided and serviced by an outside company. All the different networks that televise races from the NASCAR TV compound can use them. This season, those cameras are even in HD.

The dynamics of racing at Talladega in the Sprint Cup Series make for some good pictures from the bumper cams. It never fails to generate excitement when one car pulls up and puts a big bump on the other. The topper is that these cameras also have audio, and the hum of a Cup car at speed is something to hear.

The downside of the new COT cars is that the bodies do not allow for a very good bumper cam view. Nothing else can be seen but a big nose piece and hood from the car behind when they are drafting.

Inserting the in-car shots into the race is simple, the Director just calls for the camera. Knowing when to use this angle and how it should be integrated into the race is something all together different.

Once underway, the new and extended pre-race show from Fox was a mix of the semi-informative and the utterly ridiculous. While Darrell Waltrip and Jeff Hammond answered some good questions from host Chris Myers in the Hollywood Hotel, there were several items that left NASCAR fans steaming.

For some strange reason, the Fox Producer decided to place a staff member in the grandstand and have him eat junk food. Located in a section that offers fans an "all you can eat" option with the ticket, this staffer was supposedly eating an obscene amount of "track snacks." If this was some sort of inside joke, it failed miserably.

The bigger issue is the struggle for fans to be represented as what they really are, a good cross-section of this country. What Fox chose to do, intentionally or not, was to present NASCAR fans as gross over-eating slobs. None of this made sense, especially when mixed-in with the upcoming challenge and very real danger of racing at Talladega.

The hot dogs and hamburgers were quickly forgotten when the race got underway for one simple reason. Lead change after lead change was missed on-the-air because viewers were watching the in-car cameras. It was being made clear that this race would be very different, and fans would simply have to accept this new approach.

While "Digger" made an appearance or two, there was no problem with this track-level camera and it wound-up providing a some memorable replays. The issue on the table was whether or not the Fox Director would continue his new fascination with the in-car cameras. Fans had little idea of just how big a role this issue would play in the critical parts of the race.

The Fox announce team had a great event. Larry McReynolds and Darrell Waltrip were simply outstanding in pointing out the strategies and the scenarios that teams may be considering as the race progressed. Talladega is always strange, and regardless of who was lingering at the back of the pack and who was trying to take the lead, Mike Joy and company kept things in perspective.

The production team used the double video box effect throughout the race in a wide variety of ways and it worked quite well. Other than actually trying to show two in-car cameras at once, this tool was the most effective in the network's coverage. With a limited amount of pit stops under caution, the quad-split was no problem and the few races off pit road were captured complete with live graphics.

Often, Joy and company would be calling the action on the track while the folks at home were once again seeing an in-car camera shot of some kind. As the race wore on, the racing took a backseat to the fundamental problem of the TV viewers. They were simply not seeing what Joy was talking about. What they were seeing was a lot of big COT hoods.

Accidents or incidents were often seen on replay, while passes for the lead were sometimes not seen at all. This was a shame, but the in-car camera emphasis continued unabated. Even in the closing portions of the event, there was no change in the approach.

With 29 laps to go, Fox was in-car during the Paul Menard spin. Viewers saw it on the replay, even though Menard was in the lead group. With 9 laps to go, all viewers saw of Jimmy Johnson pushing Michael Waltrip into the lead was the big Lowe's logo on Johnson's hood.

Ultimately, it was a crash at the back of the pack that ended the race. Fox handled the Victory Lane and post-race interviews in veteran fashion. They had time to fill while the scoring was being sorted out, and left the air giving as much information as they could. It was a bittersweet ending to an exciting event.

Next week, the short track in Richmond should pose a challenge of a very different kind as there is usually action throughout the pack all race long. This true bull-ring will demand intensity from start to finish and feature lots of caution periods.

Talladega is a memory, but for many TV viewers that memory may be tinged with the the frustration of missing some key moments while the big hood of a COT car filled the TV screen.

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 for stopping by and leaving your opinion.


Newracefan said...

I agree totally JD, I have been unhappy with all the car camera shots for some time but this race was just over the top. I really don't understand how this can happen. It's not like the race is 1 hour long. Someone should have been able to get a hold of who ever was making those decisions before all the wheels totally came off. Was there anyone out there that thought that was the way to televise this race?

Ryan said...

FOX uses way too many in-car cameras (and gopher angles) for my taste. They are cool shots, but I'd rather watch the race. They need to learn how to use their "technology" sparingly and quit shoving it down our throats.

Anonymous said...

"Ultimately, it was a crash at the back of the pack that ended the race. Fox handled the Victory Lane and post-race interviews in veteran fashion."

JD, I disagree. I thought the postrace coverage today was subpar, especially with the added time they had. Why did FOX have that super long-range shot of Kyle getting out of his car in Victory Lane? That's was the furthest shot out I've seen for someone getting out of a car in VL in a long while. Why didn't they get a closeup at some point so we could see his reaction and his team reaction? We didn't get close up until the interview started.

This was the first time this season I turned off the postrace long before FOX signed off - that's how bad it was.

" The Fox announce team had a great event."

Disagree again. I thought the way the end of the race was covered (What actually happened at the end, Mike, Larry, and Darrell? Do you even know yet?) was awkward at best and unprofessional at worst. How can you not explain what happened at the end of the race to viewers? Going back to the Hollywood Hotel instead of tracking down more interviews - especially of some drivers involved in the last crash to see what info they had - was not what this viewer wanted to see. Also didn't need to see DW telling me what a great race this was. All of these actions led to me changing the channel.

"C-" for overall coverage from me. And that's being generous. I don't think the announce team or the pit reporters had a good event at all. How you finish leaves the biggest impression. Basically, they didn't finish.

SophiaZ123 said...

I would' have changed the title to In=Car Cameras RUIN the Day at Talladega.

Agree with the over use JD. Gotta disagree on the post race...honestly, can't judge the guys in the booth at the end as it was such a mess (And THEY QUICKLY CUT TO IN CAR CAM while the big one was still going I the only one that noticed this?)

Thank GOD MRN was free and I listened on the laptop since the FM station for MRN did not work well today inside the house for some reason.

It was the worst camera work I have EVER SEEN in a race and that's saying something after LAST YEARS ESPN!!

Ken-Michigan said...

Allow me to start this by saying, I taped todays Talladega race, just got done watching it, and I HAVE NOT even checked ANY blog entries.....

Was it just me ?.... or were there about 300 too many In Car / Bumper cam shots.

It was disgusting and disturbing.

I'm glad they ran the FOX production team credits at the end of the show so I could read the names of those responsible.

What a joke !!!

Anonymous said...

Just a few more comments:
I do not care for the DIGGER T shirt promotions. We knew this would happen from the start. And the Male/Female presentation did not seem tasteful. Just seems as dollars for somebody. The junk food segment to me had no bearing on the race coverage, what a waste of time. Larry Mac and DW did OK. And this time I did like the Quad view

Anonymous said...

This was a really good race.

Too bad we didn't see much of it on TV.

Anonymous said...

Great Coverage by the FOX broadcast team today.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Ken , there were many car/bumper shots. Only FOX knows why. But for a change atleast we had a race. And it did seem to be a good race from one to thirty something and there were stories during the race. Although coverage could have been better. I do not have an answer to that. But I did enjoy this race for a change w/FOX and Hotpass.

red said...

talladega has historically been a great TV track: over 2 miles of track, great racing all over, all sorts of amazing angles to present and replays just begging to be run all afternoon. but fox pulled off the near-impossible and destroyed the coverage today.
the director used a technology that, simply put, took us to a micro level of race watching and took away from us the very feature of talladega that makes it so wonderful to watch -- the scale of the place. by constantly using the in-cars and bumper shots, it became so disruptive that the entire race presentation felt disjointed and unprofessional. it seems that there was great racing happening at talladega again this spring but, after watching fox today, i can't confirm that.

i can't seem to say it enough and jd, maybe you can help get this simple message to the fox team? please show us the racing and limit the use of the technological "stuff." the racing is the story, the racing is why we tune in, the racing is what we came to see. anything and everything you choose to do that isn't showing us the racing is superfluous. it's really that simple, honest: just show us the race. once you do that, i'll wager you'll see an quick change in the content of the comments and feedback from this and other sites.

Tracy said...

Good race. I wish I'd seen more of it. As someone else said, I'd have expected more interviews with drivers/crew chiefs after the race, since there clearly was time.

After the race, why was Waltrip pushing his car down the track with flames coming from under the hood?

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

I agree that the in car cameras were WAY over used. When they used the front facing in car cameras the shaking was so bad I had to look away. just wait till FOX gets their hand on the 360 gopher cam.

I think FOX, TNT and ESPN should ask that NASCAR allow them to have the rear facing camera mounted on the roof of the car. I HATE that unless they put a graphic up you have no idea who you are looking out the back of.

I give fox a D for the end of the race. 00 spins and they keep the camera on him, instead of the rest of the field. Even after the announcers say they are not going to throw a yellow we were stuck watching a single car. Next thing we HEAR that there is a big one, and cut to an in car camera rather than show us the wreck or anything that was going on. I am actually starting to look forward to ESPN's coverage this year.

stricklinfan82 said...

The Fox broadcasts have been getting progressively worse and it has nothing to do with Mike Joy, Larry Mac, DW, Chris Myers, Jeff Hammond, Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda, Matt Yocum, or Dick Bergerren. All of these on-air personalities are excellent at what they do and are solid performers week in and week out.

But every week it is the production decisions that are ruining the viewing experience. Someone behind the scenes makes a conscious decision to rob the fans of seeing anyone else but the winner finish, because that one individual thinks everyone but the race winner is a loser on that day and their finishing position is irrelevant. Someone behind the scenes also decided to kill the Martinsville Truck race with roadkill cam overkill and kill the Talladga Cup race with in-car camera overkill. And today someone behind the scenes created the most unwatchable pre-race show in history. The focus was on modeling roadkill cam T-Shirts and seeing how much food one of the Fox production assistants could stuff in his face in a one-hour period. And even that guy was modeling the roadkill cam merchandise and the "I Kid Because I Care" T-shirts.

On top of that there is the continued problem of the very outdated scoring crawl technology. ESPN has a fantastic system in place that updates intervals and position changes with up to the millisecond accuracy. Fox on the other hand is still using the ESPN 1993 style technology of presenting a full-field summary of positions as of a lap or two ago, and quite often this information has been filled with errors like incorrect car numbers and arbitrarily knocking lead lap cars off the lead lap at points throughout the day.

Many of us cried for changes at ESPN after last year's debacle and they responded by stepping up and fixing most of their glaring issues during this past off-season. I really hope someone at Fox has been listening to our comments and will consider making a similar overhaul during this upcoming off-season.

The necessary upgrades to the scoring crawl should be an easy fix. Get with the times, figure out what ESPN has, and emulate it.

And while I'm sure these individuals are great people and work hard at what they do, I think a major overhaul needs to be done in some of the critical behind-the-scenes decision-making positions. These individuals that are responsible for making judgment calls with the best interest of the fans in mind are making very questionable decisions from my point of view. Simple things like over-use of gimmick cameras and choosing to ignore everyone but the race winner on the final lap are just inexcusable and I would highly recommend bringing in some fresh voices with different philosophies to take over those positions during this next off-season.

Anonymous said...

JD, I posted this on an earlier commentary you made, but obviously, should have posted it here:

JD you mentioned awhile ago that Krista and Steve B. would be doing another session of answering our questions. I would really like to know their opinion on some of these issues from the digger cam to the way Fox shows the cars crossing the finish line.

You mentioned also that Mike Joy said they would be discussing some of these issues during their weekly meeting. Have you had any further feedback from Mike on the thinking in the director's truck? Thanks.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 10:01PM,

The announcers are hired to announce. Production decisions are made by a different set of people. Sometimes, announcers may work with several different sets of producers and directors in just one weekend.

Each producer and director are responsible for how the show looks on-the-air, and the content it contains.

While many of the on-air announcers (you would be surprised at just who) read this blog and participate both in-front of and behind-the-scenes, we are not going to be able to quiz them on production decisions.

I feel your pain my friend, and continue to believe that the best way to affect change is to clearly and politely offer input from the fans on a public forum like this.


batchief said...

Watched and enjoyed the race broadcast from beginning to end. I think being able to watch the race on tv as an alternative to not being able to be there in person more than offsets any shortcomings the production of the race may have had. Thanks Fox for bringing me the race.

Kyle said...

The ammount of in-car ruined the race for me. If it would have been a boring single file 499 miles, in-car would have been fine. Seeing the track for a diffrent perspective can liven it up somewhat.

But this race was EXCITING, tons of 3 wide racing for almost the entire 500 miles. I think Victory Lane said 52 lead changes between 20 drivers!!!!! What did we see at home? Lots of hood ornaments.

Worst race coverage of the season. Such a shame considering what was really going on, on the track.

One other thing, after putting up with the hot dog eating contest for 2 spots on the pre-race, they never paid it off in the end giving us a total. It was a stupid segment anyhow, but why waste the time and not finish it.

Someone at FOX needs to get their walking papers.

kang said...

With Fox it just isn't going to get any better.What we saw today, or didn't see today as the case maybe is all we are going to get.This network is out to lunch when it comes to covering Nascar.Espn has improved a great deal over last year.Speeds truck coverage last night was real good over all.Speed had the "time interval" that Fox needs,last night.Espn and Speed are making a effort, Fox is to busy selling t-shirts to care about covering a race.

Anonymous said...

I had trouble following the race on TV, but I thought it was just me. The leaderboard seemed off the mark, the cars on the track were hard to identify, and the cameras seemed to jump from one thing to another. "Disjointed," as a previous poster put it.

Please, no more food-eating contests.

At least we did get to see the opening ceremony, which is an important part of the race.

SallyB said...

While we all know that bump drafting is how cars make progress on a restrictor plate track, trying to show the thrills of a race by limiting one's view to the hood of the car behind it portrays nothing of what is happening on the track. Fox has continually made bad decisions on how to show the races to the viewer at home. Talladga may have reached a new low. Since it's highly probable that the fall race at Dega during the capshoot will once again be a conga line, it's a shame that Fox's overuse of their gimmick cameras robbed viewers of what may have been (according to what the announcers were saying), the best race of the year so far. Missing lead changes and the final crash that led to the race finishing under yellow simply made Fox look totally inept and unprofessional. What a shame that they can't find someone who understands the scope of racing and what can make it compelling to watch.

glenc1 said...

I pretty much hate plate racing to start with, but even with that being so (and I realize I'm in a minority there) I thought the coverage was poor. They never properly slowed down the film to show what really caused all the wrecks (particularly the last one, as others have noted.) Way too many of the in car and rear car cameras. While I ordinarily only watch these for the 'fear factor', I would at least like to see some occasional racing (if one wants to call it that.) I have no real issue with the on air talent, only the production people.

Speedcouch said...

My husband and I were driving home from Concord Motorsports Park yesterday and like last year for this race, we listened to the entire Talladega race on MRN. Because there was so much great action described by MRN and because I had Tivoed it, when we got home we did watch most of the TV broadcast. Fox showed some of the racing, but seemed to miss a lot and certainly found a way to make it all a lot less exciting than the boys on MRN. WAY too many bumper shots that really sucked the life out of a lot of the close racing and jockeying around for position up front. When they showed the blimp shots, you couldn't even recognize which car was which.

I tried to grit my teeth and suffer through all of DW's "commentary," but even his manical laugh grated on my nerves after a while. And like I was surprised he'd "take my brother on one of these tracks," yet he had to repeat that more than once in about five minutes. Ugh!

Thankfully, with Tivo I could ff'd through the useless 4-way pitstop graphics and all the commercials.

And what was up with Fox only allowing until 6:00 for the race? It didn't have an inordinate amount of cautions, yet they barely had time to show the winner and couple of other guys before they went off the air.

It's getting to the point, I'd take Barney Hall and professionals at MRN any day over what we get on Fox these days.

It just seemed like Fox found a way to suck a lot of the life out of a really awesome race.

Jayhawk said...

The driver has such a poor view of what's going on that rhey give him a spotter up on top (where the cameras are) to tell him. So what does the tevevision production crew decide to show the viewer? Either the driver's view or a view that is even more restricted than the driver's view.

The race is a boring conga line, so the camera stays long and shows us the boring conga line. As soon as a pair of cars starts to pass the camers cuts to a closup of the trailing car's hood. It cuts back to the long view after the pass has been completed.

The Fox production crew would fail at "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader."

Ken-Michigan said...

FOX really needs to develop a NEW scoring crawl / ticker or simply minimize it's use.

It took us a while to get use to this style from FOX when they started using it 6 or 7 years ago, but i think it's ran its course.

Do we really need to have the scoring ticker all the time, every lap ?

How accurate is it ? At Talladeaga, positions thru the field were changing every 100 yards. At some other tracks, like Bristol and Martinsville and this weekend at Richmond, an entire lap will be completed before that scoring ticker even gets thru the entire field of drivers.

Do we need this ticker using up the upper 3rd like this ?

Solution :
Along the left side of the screen, utilize a "scoring pylon" that regenerates the scoring positions as each lap OR as each pass is completed. (ESPN NEWS HD has recently started using a similar technique since they went to HD)
This would not be a "crawl", just think of it as the scoring "pillar" they have had for years on the frontstretch at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

In this day and age of GPS and TV technology, it's finally time to upgrade this current way of presenting the TV audience the scoring.

The current FOX scoring system should be buried along side Digger.

Anonymous said...

I actually jumped when the big one happened & digger was in the middle of it.

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

I thought face full of hood bumper cam was interesting the first time I saw it. The was over ten years ago.
They seem to be acting like it was a new toy to be used time and time again.

It did take a lot away from the action.

greg8370 said...

The #24 car was first scored as finishing 11th on FOX, then as FOX was wrapping up it was scored in 21st place. When I went to a hour after that it was in 12th place with updated standing. Then later it was scored in 19th place. What's up with that?

Anonymous said...

Watched the race yesterday with my wife, who is not a fan but indulged me on a rainy afternoon.

Her 2 salient comments were "why are they showing the bumper cmaeras for so long? you can't see what else is happening on the track!"
Later, on the last lap disasterous coverage, she complained about the director cutting away from the finish line to show the same old crew hugs etc etc. She said"can't the guy wait for 10 seconds and let us see who is crossing the line"?
Even though the field was frozen, you could get an idea of who missed the wreck...but NOOOOOOO, we gotta see Bubba hugging Billy-Bob in the M&M's pit.
Anyone else feel like the booth was totally caught off guard by the crash and the fact that the race was over? I felt there was alot of hemming and hawing until DW finally said 'uh, the uh, the race is over...they took the white flag...'
Grade D+

Speedcouch said...

Ken from Michigan, thanks for saying what I've been saying for the last few years about that stupid ticker! If it's not always accurate, take it off the screen once and a while! The scoring "pylon" like ESPN used to use was just fine!

playingtime said...

From now on, Mr. Director, just use the full face shots of the three men in the booth as they describe the action on the track. You will no longer have to pretend you are covering the race, something that seems to be anathema to you. You have more graphical and technical toys than training for their use, and the biggest favor your bosses could do for us all is prohibit their use by you. Perhaps after your internship is complete, they may reconsider. MRN's broadcast indicated this was a good race, but no one could tell from your work.

Amy/HarpAmy in FL said...

One positive about the in-car cameras. I actually enjoyed it when they showed Mikey as he was taking the green on the restart that he was leading. It was interesting to see him constantly looking in the rearview mirror instead of looking ahead. He was even doing that as he was entering the corners. I really liked DW's take on that.

To answer Tracy, I was listening to the free trackpass that they had this past weekend and was watching raceview and listening to Mikey's in car audio. If I heard him correctly, he either ran out of gas or his engine let go. I am not sure what was the case. All I know is that he was disappointed as he had a car that could have won the race.

JD, thank you for the great insights on the tv coverage. I have actually started critiquing other tv coverage after getting your inside info. Keep up the great work.

I am grateful for the tv coverage though. When I actually attend a race in person, I usually will watch the replay to see things that I missed.

As a disclaimer, I multi-tasked the race yesterday and watched the FOX coverage and watched Race View.

glenc1 said...

greg8370--I think that had to do with when the yellow came out and using the scoring loops around the track--happened to a lot of cars, not just the 24. NASCAR says they rely on visual evidence as well when it ends a race, so it must have taken them some time to sort it all out. I can't fault Fox or NASCAR on that one; it's a pretty confusing mess when they're all over the place like that.

GinaV24 said...

I tried watching the race on TV since it was raining here in NJ, but was so disappointed in what I was seeing (or not seeing) in this case that I pretty much muted the TV and followd the race on MRN and via If TV isn't going to show me the race, what is the point in tuning in? I was watching the last 30 laps though because that's when it usually gets exciting and was really upset when I didn't see all the cars finish and no one told me what happened in that big pile up at the end. No way to know what happened to the drivers I was interested in. I called a friend who I knew was tuned in also and asked him if I had just "missed" the replay and the explanation. His answer was no, I didn't miss it. I realize it's all about Fox and digger and t-shirts and food -- do I care about watching some junk food eating moron or people modeling t-shirts? In a word, NO.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 10:19AM,

Please come back and repost with NASCAR content please. Your views are welcome, but do not reference other non-NASCAR personalities.

The rules for posting are on the right side of the main page.


Anonymous said...

Fox should have brought up NASCAR's gross inconsistancies regarding throwing the caution on the last lap. It was fine for people to be wrecking all over the place behind the field at Daytona and have the leaders race to the finish, but not at Talladega.

Fox never does anything to question NASCAR's judgement. They are just Mike Helton's and Brian France's puppets.

Anonymous said...

greg8370 - the 1st scoring that Fox and had was the immediate checkered flag info and since the race ended under caution it didn't take into account the the accident. Then NASCAR goes back and reviews the video and the timing and scoring loops and then changes it. FOX updated the viewers before they went off air but things change after they go off air. Officially results aren't final until Monday or Tuesday so really we don't know where a driver finished until the OFFICIAL results come out.

Anonymous said...

On the positive side, I liked the use of the in-car camera before the race showing Juan Pablo Montoya's daughter inside his car on pit road as he spoke to her while standing outside the car. A very charming shot. I've seen pictures of his toddlers and they could both be print advertising models or work on TV commercial productions - they're unusually photogenic. Not that they need the money, I suppose!

Other than that, I can't say much positive about yesterday's coverage. Sorry, FOX. I had to listen to MRN while watching.

Vince said...

Ok FOX exec's, listen up. Yesterdays race WAS probably one of the best races of the year. Too bad we, the viewers, didn't get to see it.

I've said this before and I'll say it again, get Directors and Producers who are longtime race fans. People that go to their local track to watch a race on Saturday night just because they love the racing. Your current Directors/Producers are obviously NOT race fans.

Go back to how the gimmick cams were used back in the day. The main cams back then were the wide shots. The gimmick cams (in car, bumper and gopher) were mainly used to emphasize something that had already happened in the action on the track. They were never used as the main cameras.

I resorted to listening the race on MRN yesterday and using to track the rest of the action seeing as your Director wasn't showing us the race. Sorry I have to listen to the race on MRN (you guys do a great job) but I can't take DW, Myers and Hammond. I've been listening to DW flap his gums since the 70's and I can't take him anymore. There's a reason Cale gave him the "Jaws" nickname.

I challenge you FOX execs to give us an "old school" broadcast like we used to get on ESPN with Ned, Benny and Bob Jenkins. Just for one race, forget all the gimmick cameras. Quit selling your stupid gopher cam t-shirts during the broadcast. That is so unprofessional. Are you listening DW? Quit promoting your web site and selling t-shirts.

I just talked to a friend of mine who was at the race yesterday. They also DVR'd the race and just finished watching what they'd DVR'd. They couldn't believe the difference in what they had seen live at the track and what FOX gave us on the broadcast. They said it was the best race they'd been to since Big E won his last race there. Lots of passing all over the track. Lots of passes for the lead. Too bad we missed most of it.

JD, do the FOX "personalities", booth announcers and pit guys, ever DVR the race and watch the replay after they get back home? I can't believe Mike Joy would be happy with what we're seeing vs what he is seeing as he's calling the race live.

Pathetic effort yesterday FOX. I give you a D-. Worst race I've watched since TNT's melt down at Senoma last season.

SophiaZ123 said...


LOVED YOUR POST!!! I think it was a guest group of cub scouts running the cameras (babies love new toys and over use them to death)

To the others griping about the scoring ticker:

THANK YOU! THANK YOU! I hate all channels that have this up constantly (and the ESPN bottom ticker STINKS)

At least 1/4 screen is taken up during truck, ARCA, NW and Cup races with this crap. If the guys in the booth would do a rundown, we would have more racing on the tv.

but first, that would require TV production folks that 'know how to bring a real race to tv land" and not their over inflated, narcissistic driven ego of what they THINK IS ENTERTAINMENT.

SPEED has started mentioning DIGGER. DW mentioned it on WT last week.

Oh, by the way SPEED, STOP COPYING ESPN's nauseating habit of a ticker at the bottom of your shows. I HATE IT.

Ok, great to see others griping about things I loathe and detest about the race coverage.

My grade D minus.

ASCORS said...

I have to disagree. I thought the coverage was great, and I love the way they use the on board camera views.

Daly Planet Editor said...


If you have a chance, could you expand on that a little bit? Thanks.


Desmond Hobson said...

There was so much good racing on Sunday afternoon. Too bad we didn't get to see more of it.

And why did not Fox not tell its viewers that Kyle Busch was the race winner because he crossed the start-finish line to receive the final lap before the caution came out? And why did Fox not interview anyone involved in the final-lap crash that ended the race early?

That's right. Fox telecasts are now all style and no substance.

Anonymous said...

You may want to tell your readers that although the "in-car" shots may be purely eye-candy, and little toys and gimmicks for the director, they really cannot appreciate the value they add to the show. This is especially true for people that are making critical comments of the coverage and watching the show on an old Standard Definition set. They are critisizing their own equipment and not enjoying the show as it is being presented ... in an HD world. I am not defending the director or the coverage, only pointing out that you cannot be a food critic by just tasting the noodles...if you do not have the means to buy the whole dish with the sauce, you do not have any right to be critical. Talladega was a production fiasco, yes, but it cannot be wholly or even partially blamed on over-use of in-car cameras. If you are trying to critique the show from a 4x3 perspective, you are missing a large part of the coverage.

I am not TVGUY but I do work with him and can tell you that our entire group was collectively told that this type of behavior would cost you your job. It is disrespctful to those paying your check to be blogging while you are supposed to be working. That is why you have not heard from him.

Anonymous said...

Well there were PLENTY with HD griping about the oversized views of hoods on their tv's too so get over your arrogant snootieness that most of the world still watched 4.3 you elitist jerk.
Thankfully only 4 more races of the Fox and crappy camera work.

Anonymous said...

Well, anon @1256am...if you are going to stoop to name calling then I must say that you are an ignorant fool.

Do you honestly think that there are a different set of camera operators that work for ESPN on saturday and then FOX on sunday?

Well the elitist jerk is here to enlighten you. They are the very same camera operators for the majority of the year. The difference is in what they are "Directed" to do...hence the title "Director"

I read this blog as I reviewed the race on tuesday(my earliest opportunity)...and could only conclude (and sympathize) that most critics were still watching in 4x3.

I actually tried to see what 4x3 viewers were seeing...and from that perspective, I could see their frustration...but in 16x9 it looked fine to me....but I guess 5 Emmys do not make me an expert.

OOOooohh...there goes that arrogance again.