Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Kyle Petty News Dominates "NASCAR Now"


It was Nicole Manske who had the duty of hosting the Tuesday edition of NASCAR Now and dealing with the news that Kyle Petty had stepped aside for the Texas Cup race.

After reporting the facts, Manske brought in David Newton who was diplomatic in his comments about the topic. Newton offered that driver Chad McCumbee may in fact be the best solution for Petty at the moment with the Texas race in the COT on the horizon. There were only facts, no hype, and that was not lost on NASCAR fans.

This season, ESPN has been tapping into its NASCAR resources in support of this program with good results. ESPN analyst Andy Petree was next on the show, and immediately indicated that he felt Petty's announcement signaled a "transition period" at Petty Enterprises.

Petree pointed out that Kyle was now out of the Top 35 in points and the key issue on the table was making the Texas race on time. They needed someone who could qualify the car, and perhaps at this stage of his career Kyle understood he was not the best choice available. Petree pointed to the fact that McCumbee qualified second at Texas in the last Craftsman Truck Series race and then almost won it. In Petree's mind that was the deciding factor in making this decision.

The best part about Andy Petree's appearances on NASCAR Now is that he always has an interesting thought in parting. Tuesday, Petree said very plainly that fans could expect to see McCumbee "a lot" in the Petty car throughout this season. Fans may remember that Kyle takes six races off in the summer to work as a broadcaster on TNT, and Petree seemed to be hinting that there could be a bigger transition about to occur in the Petty camp.

Chad Knaus was a panelist alongside Michael Waltrip Monday evening for the full hour of This Week In NASCAR on SPEED. Host Steve Byrnes got lots of opinions from Knaus on a wide variety of issues, including the team and company situation for Jimmie Johnson and Hendrick Motorsports.

It was a bit of a surprise to see Knaus as the featured interview on the Tuesday evening edition of NASCAR Now. Knaus talked about the upsurge in both his group and the other Hendrick teams. Manske asked Knaus all the right questions, and his answers echoed the content seen on Monday's show on SPEED.

Andy Petree came along once again to "tag" this interview and state his opinion that Chad Knaus was the best crew chief in the Cup Series. Petree spoke to the reality of a big team having a tough time early in the season. He reminded viewers that it was only "the details" that Johnson's team was struggling with, as the car was running well.

Another great production decision resulted in Martinsville NCTS winner Dennis Setzer being interviewed on NASCAR Now. Manske did a good job of putting the emotion of this win in perspective, and bringing the memory of the late Bobby Hamilton into the conversation. Setzer is exactly the type of driver that typifies the Truck Series, and exposure like this on national TV is a great idea.

Since Dale Earnhardt Jr. was running a retro paint scheme at Texas, Tim Brewer came along to explain the painting and decaling process of a Cup car. The new vinyl wrapping available to teams was interesting to see firsthand, and the report was interesting. If his features could have just a little bit more time, they might be able to pay-off his technical perspective on racing issues a little better.

Manske rolled the show off-the-air with a nice music video piece that incorporated a lot of good footage and sound from the weekend. Both races were recapped, and this season ESPN is using audio from Fox and MRN freely to add the element that was missing from last year.

Hearing Dave Moody, Mike Joy and Darrell Waltrip on ESPN2 shows just how far things have come for the NASCAR Now production team.

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

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

The Tim Brewer segment was good. Agree more time would have been nice. But we only had 30 minutes.

Lou
Kingston, NY

Anonymous said...

Good show, and Andy Petree and Chad Knaus are valued guests.

But when I went to ESPN.com's NASCAR page I was surprised to see they are proceeding with the "in-car reporter answers fan questions during cautions" during the Nationwide race this weekend. Bobby Labonte is the reporter and fans can submit questions for him now.

Let's hope that ESPN has the courtesy to let Bobby know he'll be answering fan questions - unlike when one of the pit repoters mentioned it to Carl Edwards during practice before the race and he didn't have a clue about it. ("Hi Bobby - are you leaving Petty for RCR since General Mills is going there?")

Let's also hope they've done something with that closeup camera angle that made Carl so uncomfortable he mentioned it on air.

I think this in car reporter fan question segment is going to become the new version of the dreaded draft tracker, except worse since it involves the drivers directly while they're on the track.

Sophiaz said...

Sophiaz said


i only caught bits and pieces of this show and had not read about Kyle Petty...thanks for the great article, JD.

I enjoyed the TB segment, too. I found that most interesting but yea, wish he could've lasted a couple more minutes. Had I known Nicole was hosting, would have programmed this to tape.

I can't believe I am saying this but I think Nicole is better than Ryan on NN.

If y'all knew how I felt about her on Speed report, you would know what a HUGE COMPLIMENT that is..and she is attractive and knows how to make a transition and if she stumbles, corrects herself and keeps on going.

Sophiaz

(suddenly this site is not remembering me each time I come here today...anybody else??)

Ken-Michigan said...

Once again, they just might be listening to some of our comments.

I've noticed that the host (Nicole) has eliminated the "corny" question that almost always ended the feature interviews with drivers.

Previously, the interview would be going just fine until the very last question when they ask some off the wall question that the guest either wasn't ready for OR clearly had nothing to do with the topic of THAT interview.

For dropping that last (insigificant) question.....THANKS

Daly Planet Editor said...

ken,

Believe it or not, I am getting great feedback about the comments from the NN gang. The changes in the show are not only in front of the camera.

JD

Tracy said...

Normally, I have no use for montages, but the one at the end of this program was tres cool. Enjoyed the whole sheebang.

Newracefan said...

This continues to be a great show. I was glad to see the news about Petty Enterprises and Kyle/Chad was handled well, no sensationalism, any specualation was stated as speculation not as fact. The interview with Chad K went well, I was wondering what silly question he would be asked and thankfully there were none. Chad does not suffer fools. I'm actually surprised he gets along with Mikey on TWIN, maybe he respects him a little better now that he has worked with him. Tim's segments are growing on me and I do like the way he goes to different shops. Overall a good show.

PammH said...

It was an excellent show tonite! I also could have used more of the Tim Brewer segment & I disliked him ALOT last yr!
And once again, it just makes me feel a tidbit important to think that we have an iota of imput into what we actually see on TV. Many, many thanks again JD for this blog!!

stricklinfan82 said...

But when I went to ESPN.com's NASCAR page I was surprised to see they are proceeding with the "in-car reporter answers fan questions during cautions" during the Nationwide race this weekend. Bobby Labonte is the reporter and fans can submit questions for him now.

LOL, that's a fantastic and very funny April Fool's joke! Certainly ESPN isn't stupid enough to even consider using up caution flag time at Texas to ask Bobby Labonte viewer questions when they should be using up their commercial inventory to preserve more green flag racing later in the broadcast....

Really, this is just an April Fool's joke right?

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Going against my own vow I made about NOT watching anymore NASCAR shows on ESPN, I watched parts of this show. I wanted to see how they handled the PE/GM/BL story and I was utterly shocked. Shocked that they actually reported just facts without all of the drama and sensationalism which they seem to favor.

I can't say that I'll go out of my way to watch this show again, though. With all of the inconsistent reporting that I've seen this season, I still don't trust ESPN as a reliable source for information on racing.

Anonymous said...

anonymous@7:52 said...
"But when I went to ESPN.com's NASCAR page I was surprised to see they are proceeding with the "in-car reporter answers fan questions during cautions" during the Nationwide race this weekend. Bobby Labonte is the reporter and fans can submit questions for him now."


Ooh...bad idea, ESPN. Watching Edwards in Nashville with it was not good b/c you could tell he didn't like it, and he doesn't seem the type to complain about much. But if they're going to use it (and ESPN folks are stubborn enough that they'll keep trying until they have a on-air disaster), why not use a Nationwide regular instead of Labonte? Labonte runs about 8-10 races a year.

There are five Nationwide-only guys in the top 10 in points and nine in the top 15. How about aiming the fan questions at one of them instead of a Cup guy?

Not the best way to promote the drivers in your only-on-our-network NASCAR series, ESPN.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 9:08AM,

What a good point and a great comment.

JD

Anonymous said...

Why McCumbee in the 45 and not a guy like Johnny Benson??
He's talented, never destroys equipment, clean record.

Anonymous said...

why not use a Nationwide regular instead of Labonte? Labonte runs about 8-10 races a year.

Because ESPN wishes it actually had the Cup series?

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Anonymous said...

Johnny Benson = Toyota

Petty Enterprises = Dodge

Other than that the suggestion was fine...