Thursday, September 4, 2008
ESPN2: Friday At Richmond
Over the last three weeks, it has fallen to SPEED to present the Friday coverage of practice and qualifying for both the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series. Viewers have seen the smiling faces of Steve Byrnes, Jeff Hammond and Larry McReynolds all day long as SPEED worked to make these sessions fun.
This Friday, the coverage switches to ESPN2. The network will offer over ten hours of NASCAR TV on Friday alone. It will be a very long day for Dr. Jerry Punch, Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree. With bad weather threatening, there should also be a whole lot of stories for the ESPN pit reporters to track down.
Punch and company will present highlights of the 8:45AM Nationwide Series practice at 10AM. This one hour recap show will lead directly into the 11AM live coverage of Sprint Cup Series practice.
After a three hour break, the ESPN gang will return at 4PM to cover the Nationwide Series qualifying live. This session should run for about ninety minutes and will be followed by a studio-based version of NASCAR Now from Connecticut at 5:30PM.
Next-up are the big boys, as the Sprint Cup Series takes to the track for qualifying at 6PM. This will kick-off a multi-hour live block of on-track action.
NASCAR Countdown is next to set-up the Nationwide Series race and Allen Bestwick, Brad Daugherty and Rusty Wallace will handle the show from the Infield Pit Studio at 7:30PM.
ESPN2's day of NASCAR will conclude with the Nationwide Series race at 8PM. The full ESPN crew including Tim Brewer in the Tech Center will be along for this event.
SPEED will counter ESPN2's Nationwide Series race with six back-to-back episodes of Wrecked beginning at 8PM. Then, Trackside with Steve Byrnes, Larry McReynolds, Jeff Hammond and Elliott Sadler will be along at 11PM. This week's guests will be David Reutimann and Greg Biffle.
After the last three weeks of SPEED's coverage, ESPN will be stepping into what has not been the best situation for them. Since ESPN has only one announce team, by the time that the Nationwide race rolls around at 8PM Punch and company will already have done six hours of coverage. Perhaps not the best situation to then step into a fast-paced live Nationwide Series race on national TV.
This post will serve to host your comments about ESPN2's Friday coverage right up until the Nationwide Series telecast at 7:30PM. There will be a new post up for in-progress race comments.
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