Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Shane Hmiel Returns To NASCAR...Almost
The nationally syndicated TV series Three Wide Life has been undergoing some major renovations. Just like many NASCAR teams outside of The Chase, the producers of this TV show are making changes now with an eye for 2009. One of those changes is the addition of Shane Hmiel to the line-up.
Producer Parker Williams has reached-out to Hmiel, who is currently driving Sprints, Midgets and Silver Crown cars in various series with a new outlook on life. Click here for an article by SI's Tim Tuttle on how Hmiel got his life together.
NASCAR used to have many national and regional TV series that served different purposes and aired across various areas of the country. Since the time that NASCAR consolidated its race footage and TV production, those shows have faded from the landscape.
Three Wide Life is an effort by an independent group to concentrate on interviews and conversation with NASCAR personalities. They are looking for the kind of behind-the-scenes perspective that cannot be conveyed on shows like RaceDay and NASCAR Now.
Three Wide Life has also added local Charlotte writer and reporter Brittney Cason as the new host. Originally, the current "Miss Sprint" Monica Palumbo was being considered for this role but things did not work with her current employer. Cason is a graduate of Virginia Tech and has been working on a variety of media-related projects in the Charlotte area over the past several years.
While Cason will be hosting the show, Hmiel will be featured in a very different way. As the Producer, Williams made contact with Hmiel to get his perspective on the current NASCAR scene. What he found was a clean and sober Hmiel happy to participate.
In the first new episode airing this week across the nation, Hmiel speaks-up about what he has been doing and how his new life is going. Viewers will be able to send email questions to Hmiel and he will be answering them on each episode. It should be interesting to hear Hmiel's point of view on topics ranging from Kyle Busch to The Chase. Hmiel is a person who has literally grown-up in NASCAR because of his father, Steve.
Cason will host this episode from the Richard Petty Driving Experience over at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Her feature interview is with Rick Wren, who is Ron Hornaday's crew chief in the Craftsman Truck Series. Excellent selection. There will also be a segment with Brit Goodrich from Penske Racing who talks about his pit crew role with Talladega on the horizon.
DirecTV and radio reporter Tony Rizzuti will also appear in the show with a segment called Tech Zone. Rizzuti will be speaking with veteran engine builder Keith Dorton. Topics should range from Dorton's experience with both NASCAR and the Hooters Pro Cup Series to shared memories of his late brother Randy.
To top it all off, Cason visits with IRL driver Graham Rahal, the youngest winner in IRL history. Bobby's son shares his thoughts on the current state of the unified IRL and racing in general.
This is an ambitious agenda for the re-vamped show. Since there are almost no independent TV series covering NASCAR in the marketplace today, it should be interesting to see just how Three Wide Life does over the next several months.
Click here for the Three Wide Life website that has details on where the show airs across the country.
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