Friday, August 1, 2008
ESPN Gears-Up For A Long Saturday Of NASCAR
Update: Raining at Pocono and Jerry Punch is trying his best to lead the network through two and a half hours of rain fill. Punch and company are in the Pit Studio, so no Allen Bestwick and Brad Daugherty.
Now that SPEED has finished coverage of the Friday Sprint Cup Series practice, ESPN2 becomes "all NASCAR all day long" on Saturday.
The network will kick things off with live coverage of "happy hour" from Pocono for the Cup Series beginning at 10:30AM ET. It will be Dr. Jerry Punch, Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree calling the action.
ESPN has everyone on site including Allen Bestwick, Brad Daugherty and Tim Brewer. The pit road reporters in Pocono are Dave Burns, Shannon Spake and Jamie Little. Mike Massaro and Rusty Wallace are on-assignment in Montreal for the Nationwide Series.
It will be qualifying for that series that is up at 12:30PM from Montreal on ESPN2. Marty Reid will be handling the play-by-play with Wallace and Randy LaJoie alongside. On pit road and in the garage will be Jack Arute, Vince Welch and Massaro.
It will be Massaro that gets the opportunity to host the one hour NASCAR Countdown show at 2:30PM. This road course is very different for the drivers. As fans saw last season the mix of Cup drivers, Nationwide Series "regulars" and road course ringers is a rather volatile combination. It will be up to Massaro and company to set the table for this event during the pre-race show.
The race coverage will start at 3:30PM and there will be a new post up for in-progress comments. While Reid and LaJoie have worked together and have a fun on-air presence, the insertion of Wallace into the booth should be interesting to watch.
Wallace is an series team owner, his son races the car and Steven Wallace on a road course should make for some memorable moments. During the Friday practice TV coverage, the Wallace entry blew the driveshaft right out of the car and onto the track causing a lengthy caution.
This Nationwide Series race is scheduled to go until 7PM and lead into continuing coverage of the X Games. At the present time, the threat of rain is viable for Saturday and the cars are going to use rain tires, windshield wipers and brake lights if the weather turns damp. Did I mention this could be memorable?
SPEED sneaks-in NASCAR Performance with Larry McReynolds, Bootie Barker and Chad Knaus at 7:30PM and then follows with Tradin' Paint at 8PM. This week's media guest is Tom Jensen from SPEEDtv.com and Kyle Petty will be on the program despite not driving in the Cup race.
This post will serve to host your comments about practice and pre-race activities on ESPN2. The Nationwide Series in-progress post will be up at 1:30PM. To add your TV-related opinion on the topics above, just click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the easy directions.
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