Wednesday, August 20, 2008
In-Progress At Bristol: NCTS On SPEED (7:30PM ET)
This is a big night for SPEED as they get one shot to present a Truck race in prime-time on a Wednesday. There should be quite a different audience tonight as casual viewers surf the dial for new TV shows to watch. Wait until they see Bristol.
Wednesday is going to be a great opportunity for Krista Voda to introduce this series to new viewers as she hosts the pre-race show called The Set-Up at 7:30PM. Voda handles this duty alone and is usually standing at the head of the starting grid. It is always up-close and personal.
Stories tonight include Sprint Cup Series Champ Jimmie Johnson taking his first ride in a Craftsman Truck. Thanks to some behind-the-scenes help from Chevy, Johnson will be sitting in the Truck owned by Randy Moss, the NFL player. Moss Motorsports recently made its debut and the story of how all that came about has still not been fully told. It should be interesting to see who is pitting the truck and what engine Johnson has under the hood.
NCTS veteran Johnny Benson is on-a-roll this season and his consistency has resulted in multiple wins. Benson grew-up on short tracks and for those of us lucky enough to see him during his ASA days know he will be a threat at Bristol as well.
The SPEED pit reporters Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander will also be along to update the news of the week, including some interesting names in the race. ARCA's Norm Benning, Red Bull's Scott Speed, open-wheeler Patrick Carpentier and 19 year-old Tayler Malsam who is making his NCTS debut and hails from Seattle, WA. Malsam lists his favorite band as Slightly Stoopid and one of his hobbies as pyrotechnics. Both of those fit in perfectly with Bristol.
At 8PM, the action switches over to Rick Allen to call the play-by-play from the announce booth. He will be joined by Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip. The action at Bristol is so fast that it is a challenge to keep things organized on-the-air. Allen does a good job and has worked with Parsons for many years. On the other hand, the sole purpose of Waltrip is to pump excitement into the telecast and that is certainly what he does.
Since the repaving, the track has allowed two clear lanes of racing. It will be interesting to see if the Trucks will keep things clean and race, or if cautions will result from multiple accidents like the Bristol of old.
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