Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Did You Cheat On NASCAR Last Sunday?
The results of the Dover weekend are trickling-in and the enthusiasm over the good on-track action is being tempered by lower TV ratings for the Sprint Cup Series race.
Just as NASCAR faced a while back with the Olympics, last Sunday had a bevy of sports that included baseball, football and golf match-ups. The resulting choices have sparked an on-going debate about the TV loyalty of NASCAR fans.
One unique Sunday telecast was the coverage of the final game at Yankee Stadium. The ESPN networks offered seven hours of live TV, all of that coming before the first pitch. With the Sprint Cup race on ABC, it may have been ESPN that provided the single highest-profile competition for sports viewers.
The question is simple. Did you watch the Dover race, ignore it for another TV sports offering or multi-task and wear out the remote?
One key reason NASCAR changed to The Chase format was to combat this attraction to switch channels. They created a playoff atmosphere for a sport that often limped to the finish line of the season.
In this season's Chase, Dale Earnhardt Junior has been in a tough spot and Kyle Busch fell out of the Dover race relatively early. While the racing in the final 35 laps was outstanding, Dover is a grind-it-out track where survival sometimes trumps racing. This is not perhaps the best way to combat the myriad of other sports TV offerings.
One interesting point is the fact that many NASCAR fans are already multi-tasking just to watch a Sprint Cup Series race. The clear focus of the ESPN telecasts is the Chasers and the top five cars. At Dover, the full field rundown was done once in 400 laps. For fans of those teams not in The Chase and not at the head of the pack, the only way to get information about their race is to use the Internet, DirectTV's Hot Pass or to listen to the radio call of the race.
As you take the time to comment on this topic, please make sure to tell us if you were already multi-tasking the NASCAR race before you made the decision to cheat on your old dependable TV partner.
During the Sprint Cup Series races, the ESPN on ABC gang takes the time to put the scores of other sporting events on the bottom line to keep viewers informed. It is not the constant crawl of ESPN2, but does this information help to keep you informed or just serve to tell you when an NFL game is good and it is time to change the channel?
This post is not about the ESPN/ABC announcers. If you felt they played a role in your TV selection on Sunday, then tell us. But, please abstain from getting the topic off-track with debates about personalities and performance. As veteran readers of TDP already know, that issue will certainly be with us again soon.
Thanks again for responding to this topic. It should be interesting to hear from NASCAR fans who had to deal with their hometown NFL team's game, closing day at Yankee stadium and the high-profile Ryder Cup golf tourney. Did that trigger finger on the remote get itchy after lap 100 at Dover? We look forward to your comments.
The Daly Planet welcomes comments from readers. Just click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the easy directions. There is nothing to join and we do not want your email address.
We just want your opinion on the topic of NASCAR vs. other sports at this time of the year. The rules for posting are located on the right side of the main page. Thanks again for taking the time to stop by.