Sunday, May 4, 2008

SPEED Is Suddenly On The Sunday Night Hot Seat


The antics of several drivers during the Richmond Sprint Cup race were amazing in hindsight. Michael Waltrip and Denny Hamlin certainly have some explaining to do.

While Kyle Busch was pretty clear in his opinion of his tangle with Dale Earnhardt Jr., it should be interesting to get some additional information about the situation.

Normally, The Daly Planet is previewing the big Monday night face-off between This Week In NASCAR on SPEED and the one hour NASCAR Now on ESPN2. This week, however, is different.

With the races on Friday and Saturday night, there is no Sunday edition of NASCAR Now. The day belongs to SPEED, and the spotlight is going to be on that network to make some sense of the late race chaos that the NASCAR on Fox crew could not.

Michael Waltrip has deep ties to the SPEED Channel, and this Sunday he is a big topic of conversation. Waltrip will be on the TWIN panel with Chad Knaus on Monday, but the three hours of NASCAR related programming on Sunday night will tell the tale. SPEED can choose to bury this incident or report it completely and totally.

Denny Hamlin's dirty dealing was on TV for all to see. Despite the fact that the NASCAR on Fox gang chose not to deal with the topic, that is not going to be the case for SPEED. Hamlin's move to purposefully bring out a caution flag determined the events in the race after that point.

SPEED starts with the newly-renovated SPEED Report at 7PM Eastern Time. This show is one hour of general motorsports reporting that has been re-vamped since the "Drew and Nicole" days. A rotating panel of SPEED announcers fills the dual host role, and this approach has been quite effective.

It is nice to see some of the SPEED play-by-play announcers hosting this program, and other on-air talent like Adam Alexander have been doing a great job as well. Whoever is standing at the desk tonight has their work cut-out for them where NASCAR is concerned.

Normally, it is Bob Dillner who provides the post-race interviews for this show. It should be interesting to see what personalities talked to him, and what Dillner asked. Dillner also plays a key role in the next show in the SPEED line-up.

Victory Lane at 8PM is truly the "little show that could." A radical idea of putting three announcers quite literally in the Victory Lane area has proven to be a great success. On this show, we see Kenny Wallace and Jimmy Spencer without the hype and noise associated with RaceDay. These two are on-the-spot with probing questions for the winning driver, his crew chief and owner.

This program will be the key show of the night for NASCAR fans in terms of having one hour of solid NASCAR to get the highlights replayed and the lingering questions answered. As many Daly Planet readers have pointed out, the practice of SPEED holding this show until Sunday night is not working out too well this year.

ESPNEWS has made a strong move to present a live post-race show immediately after the Sprint Cup race is over. The network includes the top three drivers comments from the Infield Media Center and mixes-in commentary from NASCAR experts who are often on the ESPNEWS set. ESPNEWS now takes the wind out of the Victory Lane sails when the show is held until Sunday night.

As usual, it is Dave Despain and Wind Tunnel that gets the last word at 9PM. Since he left his Monday night NASCAR duties, Despain has been back to his old self on-the-air and that is exactly what viewers enjoy. The self-appointed "old windbag" plays host to a variety of personalities from different forms of motorsports, and certainly NASCAR will play a key role in this show.

While The SPEED Report sticks to news and Victory Lane offers Spencer and Wallace, it is Despain that often has guests who offer editorial opinions and close-out the night in style for motorsports fans. Hopefully, he will be able to throw some light on just what really transpired in the closing laps in Richmond and what might happen in Darlington.

This should be an interesting evening of NASCAR TV. This post will serve to host your comments about The SPEED Report, Victory Lane and Wind Tunnel. To add a comment, simply click on the COMMENTS button below. The rules for posting are on the right side of the main page. Thanks for taking the time to come by and share your opinion with us.

59 comments:

Skip said...

OK, I know what Hamlin did, because Fox did mention it at the time the 2 lap penalty was assessed. What did Waltrip do?

Newracefan said...

TWIN should be really interesting. I was listening to JJ scanner and Chad (I think) said "He's going to kill him" in referance to Mikey pushing Casey at pretty much full speed after Casey pushed him into the wall. There was prob a little more to it than that on the CM/MW end but still. When the spotter said that the 55 was parked by Nascar Chad said something along the lines I should hope so. I also think Jimmy Spencer will not be kind to Mikey but I think they will say that Denny was trying to bring out the caution to keep himself on the lead lap and not to help Kyle. Needless to say I will be watching SR, VL and WT. Oh my you can hear the tunnel heads now.

SophiaZ123 said...

Casey Mears and Waltrip got together and cars crashed...Mikey was behind Casey and his car had already bumped the wall several times that night. I think it was total frustration and anger, but after the two cars separated, the in car cam clearly showed and let us hear, Mikey accelerating and tunning into Mears ago (I think they were under caution at this time?)

Thus he was parked.

Still, shocking to me as I love Mikey and as one normally seen as a NASCAR "shill" he has some explaining to do.

The more I think about what Denny H did, the less I like him.

SophiaZ123 said...

meant to say RUNNING into Mears car.

Skip said...

Ah, ok. I remember seeing that wreck, but didn't realize he was parked afterwards. I wonder what the response will be by NASCAR, or if they'll just let the on-track penalties suffice?

Newracefan said...

If Kurt Bush is a precedent it will just be the parking. Kurt got the extra because of the risk to crews on pit road, that did not occur with this. I think Mikey got penalized enough I just hope Nascar agrees, he also does not have a history like Kurt does.

Geez said...

I saw an article where NASCAR said that parking him is enough and no further penalties will be forth coming.

Daly Planet Editor said...

geez,

I think what we were referring to on this TV blog is the fact that Waltrip has never been shy to take his fellow drivers to task for their actions when he is on the Monday night TWIN show.

He will be on this Monday after fans will have seen these three shows on SPEED. It should be interesting to see and hear what he has to say with Chad Knaus and Steve Byrnes alongside.

It will be VERY interesting to see what he has to say about both Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch.

JD

Geez said...

JD, I understand. A comment was made about hoping that there will be no further penaly in the post above me. I was just answering that.

This should be the best Sunday night on Speed in quite awhile.

Vicky D said...

On TWIN Michael will be contrite and explain that he and Casey had a difference of opinion. I don't think he'll say anymore than that.

Anonymous said...

OT, but I hope being parked by NASCAR is enough for both of them to have been given a a bottle to pee in last night. Being parked by NASCAR should be reason enough to be a random pick for a drug test!

Tracy said...

I was there with a clear view of what happened going into turn 2 - there was no caution when Waltrip pushed Mears. They were racing hard, Mears shoved Waltrip out of the way, Waltrip retaliated. I don't see the big deal. There was a whole heck of a lot of dirty driving going on - you should hve heard Mark Martin ranting about Kvapil. No one on Fox mentioned that, huh?

Deborah said...

When has Speed ever buried a story as it relates to Michael? I seem to remember everything from him leaving DEI, to the Robby Gordon incident, to the Daytona mess, to partgate, etc... all being topics of discussion. Why would there be something different this time, and especially on TWiN, when part of what they're there for is to discuss what happened during the race just past?

Daly Planet Editor said...

deb,

The challenge is that it was not a major TV story like Junior vs. Kyle.

Waltrip was also not available to the TV crew after the race.

The point is that unless he is seen on the Sunday night SPEED programs, the first time he will appear on TV is TWIN on Monday.

No one is accusing anyone of anything, just going to watch tonight and see how it is handled.

JD

Anonymous said...

JD - What's SPEED's reasoning for waiting until Sunday to air "NASCAR Victory Lane" ?? They used to do it live after the Saturday night races ...

I remember a couple of years ago when Smoke won the rain-delayed Pepsi 400 ... It was almost 2am eastern ... and SPEED actually aired NASCAR Victory Lane LIVE right after the race ...

The almost 24 hour delay is a major letdown ... as we've already heard / read / seen all of the interviews and critiques ... It's to the point where one almost doesn't want to watch NVL since we've already been there, done that ... The excitement of the race is gone ...


With the new format of TWIN ... They won't delve into all of the dirty dog sneaky snake tricks & drama that went on during the race ... and I think that is a major disappointment ...

They should make TWIN 90 minutes ... That way they can review the races of the past weekend AND then do all of the previews for the upcoming weekend ... They tried it a couple of years ago, but got burned when the only race was the Busch race in Mexico City ... We'd also see more interviews, etc ...

Daly Planet Editor said...

SPEED indicated last season that for the Saturday night races they were going to hold Victory Lane and keep it a part of the three hour Sunday night "wrap-up" block.

Nice to see SPEED giving Krista Voda a shot in the studio on the show.

JD

Newracefan said...

I agree Krista was a great choice, I am sure it was decided ahead of time but works out well having one of the Nascar people there this week considering what went on

Daly Planet Editor said...

Kind of ironic that the ARCA highlights were messed-up on The SPEED Report. Andy Hillenburg and the ARCA folks just can't buy a break from SPEED.

JD

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

The Steve W and KB interviews were ok. SW did the right thing. KB may be a good driver. But respect still has to be earned.

Gymmie said...

@anon 5:46--I agree, even with the "agenda" of IWC, Allen always let the panelists discuss/vent/explain/etc. but I don't see Steve allowing that. Not that Steve himself doesn't want to allow it, but just how the show is set up, wouldn't allow it.

@JD--I also wish they'd bring it back on Saturday nights. As I mentioned in the other thread, it's still early on the west coast and many of us who don't know to take ourselves to bed or as we're finishing up can still watch it or record it and watch it during the day. They used to show it after the race and still kept the Sunday line up.

Heck, when they used to have the Speed News on Saturday nights, they'd often have a new show to bring us the interviews/updates/etc.

Gymmie said...

That's a shame to hear the ARCA highlights were messed up as well :(. I have TSR recording and will watch it later.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

Ok, Jimmy Spencer is starting already. Good for him. Glad he spoke up at the start of the show. Is Kenny walking the line?

SophiaZ123 said...

Thank God, Jimmy Spencer commented on the PC in the booth Sat night about the Kyle and Jr crash. DW is really getting to be too much..and he was reading shrub's mind apparently.

If only Spencer were still driving so he could give a "Kurt Busch" reminder to Kyle.

Where's that old school driver when you need him. :)

Frankly, many think Kyle is a loose cannon driver (pun intended) but he seems to be NASCAR's darling this year.

And as Bevo mentioned, the sincerity just oozes out of KB in all his interviews.

AMS fan said...

Kenny said it best, we have a good guy and bad guy

SophiaZ123 said...

The VL Jr interview was already seen on the S R.

Kind of anti climatic having VL delayed a day.

Wo, Jr interview was chopped up earlier..just accused Dilner of putting words in his (jr ) mouth and starting crap. Good for him..the boy was greatly disappointed. PLUS Jr knows the media is going to make a big deal out of this.

Jr is a class act.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

For those who don't. That is one reason he is a popular driver in NASCAR. A class person. Yes, we are talking about Dale Jr. Right answers in the interviews and with feeling.

SophiaZ123 said...

Love the SPENCE!!

Kyle needs to learn RESPECT. Ok, worth the delay to hear Jimmy have the guts to speak the truth as he sees it.

JR and Kenny staying neutral. Kinda surprised about KW.

AMS fan said...

Dale Jr is a class act. Dilner tried but Dale didn't bite. Great job.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

Jimmy S. is one for one. Do we think he will comment on Mikey and C. Mears? I hope so.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

Ok, Jimmy is two for two. Thanks Jimmy. Good Job.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

trying for three

AMS fan said...

At least Kyle knew who is #1. I thought it was a good interview. Good discussion by VL crew.

SophiaZ123 said...

Oh, Kenny! Kyle did not mean the comment about ruining his career or his status~he was speaking tongue-in-cheek.

I wonder if they are going to even bring Mikey up??

I have a feeling Mikey is going to keep things short on TWIN. Not sure I will tape that show now or what, since Mikey was not available after the race. But then, how will he and Chad do? But Mikey said before how you feel DURING the race is not how you feel a couple days later.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

agree w/ams fan, good interview and discussion by VL panel

Newracefan said...

I agree with Jimmy Kyle needed to say he was sorry. He got close but not quite. I also wonder if Speed will mention that one of his former crew had words with Kyle (it was the same crew member that got JR to drive the car at Texas last year). The guys are on it tonight but except for Clint and his crew chief it's been a pretty somber show.

SophiaZ123 said...

Spencer, three for three but kept it pithy.

:)

ri88girl said...

How much does JR hate Dave anyway? The whole CM MW thing handled well I thought

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

Ok,Jimmy
You are three for three. Good comment on the Mikey and C.Mears issue. Is it me, or has this been one of his better shows this season? As it pertains on issues from the race.

SophiaZ123 said...

Since the gang is there DOING VL, SPEED needs to really reconsider showing this show LIVE imo.

These guys are great tonight. I am enjoying Spencer though I know he is not everybody's cup of tea...or coffee.

:)

SophiaZ123 said...

No Lou, it's been an OUTSTANDING show which is why I made the comments in my previous post.

JR does not hate Despain...just likes imitation his deep voice.

AMS fan said...

At least Jimmy told the truth. Two wrongs don't make a right. Mikey let his temper get the best of him. Maybe a little reserved in their comments, but they did say something. Good job.

SophiaZ123 said...

I bet WT will be good and I have a phone call coming in I have to take...will tape Dave for sure!!

BTW, would SPEED PLEASE make WT LONGER!!! Show flies by and needs more air time.


And deserves it.

SophiaZ123 said...

LOL, Spencers comments about Kyle's introduction next week!!

LMAO!

Jr on Trackside. Cool beans.

ri88girl said...

ya Soph, JR just likes to immitate his voice, OK.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

Say what you want. But this was Jimmy Spencer's best show this year. Jimmy are you reading this?

Newracefan said...

This was one of the better VL. Spencer was on his game and his opinion was focused and without the tirade that sometimes occurs.

AMS fan said...

Stir the pot Jimmy!
That was an outstanding show.
I'm as excited now as I was after the race.
Well I gotta let the better half watch that housewife show so I'll have to catch the "Windbag" on the replay in the morning.
LETS GO RACIN' BOYS (and girls)!!!

SophiaZ123 said...

OMG!!! Despain is hilarious over this Kyle - Jr and SW stuff.

:)

No video on Daves show..MORE technical difficulties on SPEED...what's going on. Dave said we are supposed to be seeing video.

Lou,Kingston,NY said...

I think the phone calls on WT are interesting concerning the 88 and 18. Kyle B should be watching.

Anonymous said...

JD,
Why didn't SPEED air VL after the race Saturday night?

Also, why are more people not upset that Beyond the Wheel isn't on SPEED after winning 2 Emmys?
How can this signature show only be available on the Zoom network?

Newracefan said...

WT us the first to show us the video of the 88 crew member arguing with Kyle. Thanks Dave. I am surprised that there are so many calls in favor of KB or it's just a racing deal. I haven't heard Dave give a percentage of where the calls stand but I'm just surprised I thought it would be a blood bath. They could also be picking and choosing which calls to use but I've hesrd Dvse give percentges before so maybe he will for this

Anonymous said...

Gotta love Dave D's closing comments on WT. Even w/ the disclaimer that the opinions expressed are not those of SPEED or WT. LOL

Lou,Kingston,NY said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
SophiaZ123 said...

Tonight's show is FURTHER PROOF Despain needs at LEAST two hours of TV.

PUHLEASE, some big shot at SPEED, give him a two hour on Sunday night. It would rock.

Amy/HarpAmy in FL said...

For those of us who did not get a chance to see any of the shows that you are talking about, could you please fill me in on what was said about the CM/MW issue? I am curious. Also, on the same issue, what did the Speed Report and Wind Tunnel say?

Thanks.

SophiaZ123 said...

about MW

I don't remember MIkey being mentioned on SR, still watching my tape of WT..saw the end and part of the beginning.

On VL Jimmey Spencer said he understood Mikey's frustration and maybe said he would;ve done the same thing but two wrongs don't make a right (Jimmy thought Casey should have known Mikey was there) But kept the comment short and sweet.

If DD discussed it on WT, I have not gotten to the tape...everybody seems obsessed with Kyle/Jr thing..I love Jr but what is happening is what everybody figured...even Jr seemed to dread what the media would say all week. :( *jr meaning the media would harp on this all week(

Kevin in SoCal said...

Newracefan at 9:38

Perhaps Dave Despain is giving equal airtime to different opinions, instead of flooding the airwaves with Jr's brown-nosers after Talladega 2006 when Brian Vickers got together with Jimmie Johnson and Dale Jr. That was a horrible show with people calling in and wanting Vickers thrown out of NASCAR and one guy even said Vickers should be killed for that racing accident. What a bad cross-section of fans that was. And unfortunately, most of Jr's fans I've seen are that crazy.

Kevin in SoCal said...

Amy in Fl:

Sophia at 12:41 and Tracy at 4:48 mentioned what Waltrip and Mears did. You can also go to nascar's website and see the video.

Sophia: Wind Tunnel definitely needs to be on for two hours on Sunday night. Its the best show all week and I really enjoy listening to Dave's recaps and opinions on the racing events of the weekends.

Kevin in SoCal said...

Oh, one more thing I forgot, Waltrip has a history of trying to push people out of the way after accidents. I remember back in 2003 or 2004 at Darlington when Waltrip crashed with someone in turn 4 and then stayed in the gas trying to push the other car out of the way. I dont remember who it was or what he said on IWC afterwards, but I remember the accident and him pushing the other car.