Saturday, November 1, 2008

In-Progress From Texas: Nationwide Series on ESPN2


The college football season rolls-on and the Nationwide Series has been taking it right in the teeth again this year.

This week's race is from Texas and the pre-race show is scheduled at 3PM after a college football game that began at Noon. Good luck.

It will be Allen Bestwick along with Rusty Wallace and Brad Daugherty that kicks things off with NASCAR Countdown. They will be assisted by the NASCAR on ESPN pit reporters Shannon Spake, Jamie Little, Dave Burns and Mike Massaro. Tim Brewer will also be along from the Tech Center.

Following the pre-race show, ESPN's team of Dr. Jerry Punch, Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree are up next for the race. Green flag is currently scheduled for 3:47PM.

The Nationwide Series has once again come down to a struggle between two Cup stars. Even the story of Nationwide "regular" Brad Keselowski has been tempered by the fact that JR Motorsports is lacking sponsorship for next season and things look bleak.

The good news is that this track has been working well in terms of keeping two grooves and the racing action should be exciting. ESPN has been having fun with this series and coverage is stripped-down and basic. In complete contrast to the Sprint Cup Series chaos, this TV package is normally about the race and not the hype.

Depending on what happens with college football, NASCAR fans should be ready to turn the dial to ESPN Classic if football runs long. Nationwide fans know that drill all too well.

This post will serve to host your comments about the Nationwide Series coverage on ESPN2. To add your TV-related comment, just click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the easy instructions. The rules for posting are located on the right side of the main page. Thank you for taking the time to stop by The Daly Planet.

133 comments:

Anonymous said...

Should be fine for the green flag.

Anonymous said...

Tie Game. 1:00 left. Since I dont have classic I got my espn360 ready to go.

SonicAD said...

Pre-race is on Classic right now.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Update is on the main page, thanks.

Anonymous said...

A little late with the programming alert.

Anonymous said...

ok this makes no sense. On ESPN360 they have the ESPN2 feed playing but it says it suupose to be NASCAR Countdown. they have a scroll running the feed to say its coming up after the game. ESPN, it would make more sense to stream the actual countdown show on ESPN360 like you have done in the past!

Gymmie said...

Whose a little late? JD or ESPN? I'm sure JD updated as soon as he found out which I'm sure is about when we all found out. I don't know "when" ESPN makes the decision to "hold" the countdown or start it on Classic.

At least they put it on Classic for us :)

stricklinfan82 said...

Fifth time a 2008 Nationwide race broadcast was scheduled to start 3 hours after the start of a college football game. Fifth time NASCAR fans lose out because of the program director's poor programming decisions.

ESPN is only one race - Homestead - away from a "perfect" season in that category. One can only hope that the ESPN exclusive of a 3-hour program block for college football games will become a thing of the past in time for 2009. CBS, ABC, NBC, Fox Sports Net, Versus, MSG, YES, Big Ten Network and every other college football network I know of uses much more reasonable 3 1/2 hour blocks.

Boy I sure miss the 6 years from 2001-2006 when these races were on NBC and TNT and I didn't have to wonder when and if the race would ever make it to television.

Combine these constant pre-emptions with the Cup Series ignore-the-track coverage model and numerous tape-delays of Cup practice sessions that were previously on live TV from 2001-2006 and I don't see how this move to ESPN has provided any positives for NASCAR or the TV viewers at home.

I very much prefered the 2001-2006 TV contract when all these Nationwide races were on live and in their entirety without the worry of pre-emption and when all of these Saturday Cup Happy Hour sessions were on live television.

Anonymous said...

Game over, Countdown on ESPN2 in a minutes or two

Charlie said...

Lets hear it for #4 Smith from Northwestern getting that interception to prevent overtime.

SonicAD said...

stricklinfan:

You're remembering wrong, FX and TNT showed Happy Hour on tape delay quite often, usually after the Busch race. If there was no Busch race, they might show it live, but otherwise they delayed it, probably so they could show the NASCAR programming in one contiguous block, with people more likely to stick around for happy hour after the end of the race.

Newracefan said...

So are these the commercials that were suppose to be on ESPN2 or are they the ones the were suppose to air on Classic? How does that work anyway

Anonymous said...

"and when all of these Saturday Cup Happy Hour sessions were on live television."

Actually. FX use to play the Happy Hour sessions pre-taped after the Busch Series races, similar to what ESPN is doing now. I actually like it better that way. Better than no coverage and skipping over it.

Anonymous said...

A 3.5 hour window will just push back the start of races 30 minutes, or get rid of the pre-race show in its entirty.

Anonymous said...

well espn360 is aggravating, i didn't realize it was only open to certain service providers.

Daly Planet Editor said...

So, 17 minutes late and at least they will get the green flag.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Couple of guys hit the wall hard in Cup practice. The track is really fast right now. Should be interesting to see how the N'wide cars handle it.

JD

Dot said...

Mikey's in the race? What did I miss?

Gymmie said...

I was thinking the same thing as well Dot!

Karen said...

Way to get foot out of mouth there, Andy, re: Rachael Ray.

Dot said...

@ Gymmie, I guess not.

stricklinfan82 said...

Actually. FX use to play the Happy Hour sessions pre-taped after the Busch Series races, similar to what ESPN is doing now. I actually like it better that way. Better than no coverage and skipping over it.

I should have been more clear in my previous statement. I was referring to the Saturday afternoon Cup Happy Hour sessions and Nationwide/Busch races during this part of the season - college football season.

TNT did use to televise two or three Cup races during football season so a couple of those sessions might have been tape-delayed by an hour or two as a direct lead-in to their Busch races on Saturday afternoons. Other than that if I remember correctly every NBC Cup race (which was almost every race during this part of the year) had live Happy Hour coverage, on either CNN Sports Illustrated or Speed Channel.

How NASCAR can deem it acceptable that almost every Saturday Cup Happy Hour session during football season is tape-delayed by several hours is beyond me. The only exception so far was last year at Homestead when we got live coverage and literally missed over half of it because... you guessed it, a 3 hour college football block was not long enough.

Anonymous said...

Did I just hear info about 2 start & parkers?

No way!

stricklinfan82 said...

If Bobby Jr. is really funding that #25 team out of his own pocket I sure hope Ed Rensi isn't pocketing the money his second start-and-park car (#35) earned today, LOL.

Anonymous said...

Dot & Gymmie,

I think Mikey was down there as an owner to see David Reutimann and Josh Wise off. The difference from other owners is he had just come from his other job.

Dot said...

Wow, more mentions of the S&Ps. Maybe there's hope after all. Nice of them to start when the season is almost over.

Thanks, anon. It just looked like he was ready to get in the car.

Anonymous said...
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Gymmie said...

@anon 4:00--yes I thought about that after I posted...I was thinking at first (thinking is my first problem :p)...if he's there as an owner he would have changed. But then I thought, he's probably stinky so would have wanted a shower that he wouldn't have had time to do with what time 1st practice & HH ended and the festivities started.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Nice race recap. Hope they keep that going every fifty laps of so all race long.

JD

Daly Planet Editor said...

oops..."or so."

Anonymous said...
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ri88girl said...

I do not understand why Shannon is SO inconcistant. Some NW races she's fine or even good like today; other times not so much. This follows for the Cup races too although I would not call any of her performances in that series 'good' as of yet. I wish I could figure out what the deal is because it's a shame she isn't able to solve the issue and improve more quickly.

Anonymous said...

I love this stuff with Brewer, he knows his stuff!

Newracefan said...

I wonder if part of Shannons deal is that cup pit stops are faster by a little so she is more rushed plus more cars to cover because there are no start and park in cup. She seems pretty good today

Anonymous said...

This race looks great on my new 1080i HDTV

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Parking a car not good for sponsor>>don't get the 10 car, don't care how good car is.

Karen said...

Somebody please exlain to me how the points are given. Last night in the truck race, every car Johnny Benson passed was five more points and even though he didn't win, he's ahead in the points. Now, Clint B is back a bit and still ahead in the points but Edwards has been in the top 2-3 most of this race.

Sorry if this is off topic, JD.

Karen said...

And if know the N'wide point difference in leaders is or was 116.

Daly Planet Editor said...

This bodes pretty well for the Cup race on Sunday. Nice track with multiple grooves and no tire problems.

Anonymous said...

ESPN needs to do more to explain things to fans instead of assuming they know every minute detail of the sport..

Daly Planet Editor said...

karen,

I think Jay has a breakdown of how the points are awarded over at jayski.com for the series.

stricklinfan82 said...

The split personality that has plagued ESPN continues today.

So far today there has been no pre-taped video packages, driver comments, or video bumpers covering the screen under green. There has not been non-stop points contender hype. The pit reporters are only being used when necessary and are providing useful information on how the cars are handling TODAY when they do speak. A non-points contender fell behind the wall. Massaro was immediately there to tell us what happened and Brewer was used effectively to illustrate what the problem was. There was no "guessing" by Tim and the booth about what might have been wrong. And now the non-points contender that fell out is being interviewed by ESPN.

Good, simple focused coverage like we are seeing to this point today and have seen almost every week in their Nationwide coverage this year just makes their awful Cup coverage that much more difficult to swallow.

The network has clearly shown they have the people and motivation at their disposal to do a good job covering the sport. For whatever reason they just refuse to apply themselves when the Cup cars are on the track and turn every Cup broadcast into an over-produced, script-driven, bells and whistles dominated disaster.

WHY CAN'T SATURDAY EVER CARRY OVER TO SUNDAY????

3bud said...

They go -5 points increments throuh 6th 7-11 4 point increments then 3 points from there

TexasRaceLady said...

Is it just me, or is Doc stumbling a bit with matching names with the car numbers?

Daly Planet Editor said...

Spoke too soon there stricklinfan!

Daly Planet Editor said...

trl,

I don't think this season can be over fast enough for Jerry.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I would say just the opposite about Doc, I think he has really picked up things today!

Anonymous said...
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Dot said...

@ Strick, NW coverage has usually been better than Cup.

Tomorrow it will be business as usual. Jimmie Johnson and the Chase.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Did you read Jr.'s comments about the Nationwide Series from yesterday?

Boy, he really laid-out NASCAR on a bunch of issues.

You can Google to find it.

JD

Karen said...

Anon 4:35

Is that you, Eric, disguising yourself?

Anonymous said...
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Daly Planet Editor said...

Please folks, do not feed the trolls.

Thanks ESPN for recapping the Jr. story on the air.

Anonymous said...

It was the best thing before the car of tomorrow and the Chase

stricklinfan82 said...

Daly Planet Editor said...
Spoke too soon there stricklinfan!

November 1, 2008 4:35 PM


Well, my praise was accurate at the time it was posted anyhow. Either my timing is exceptionally unlucky or someone at ESPN hates being praised, LOL.

Newracefan said...

Come on JD googleing JR will get you 50,000+ hits how about a bigger clue

TexasRaceLady said...

JD, I read that article, and the "Friday Quotes" ---- Junior let fly on several issues. For the most part,he hit it square on the money.

Say what you will about his driving, but the young man has a good head on his shoulders.

Daly Planet Editor said...

stricklinfan,

I told you, the industry is scared of you now!

Anonymous said...
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TexasRaceLady said...

NRF, Yahoo! Sports has the article.

Daly Planet Editor said...

thanks trl,

Just jump over to Yahoo!

I think it is called Junior blasts NASCAR and it is from Jerry Bonkowski.

Karen said...

Yeah, JD. I couldn't find it Googling it. What's the website you read it on?

Anonymous said...
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3bud said...

JD where you talking about the season being to long and greed etc. Plus the layoffs on his NW team, times are tough.

Anonymous said...
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TexasRaceLady said...

Karen, you can access the article through Jayski's news page.

Or, just go to Yahoo, then the sports section for NASCAR.

Newracefan said...

I found it thanks JD. Interesting thoughts, just as long as it's not the track I can go to that loses a race anf I guess there's the rub.

OK do I really need to see TIm show me a wedge adjustment during green flag run

Daly Planet Editor said...

I'll have a story on the media impact of the tough economy in two weeks.

Sorry for the verification, just for a while.

JD

Anonymous said...

How about the #10 car. Looking good

Anonymous said...

Would it really matter when Brewer explained it, someone would find the timing wrong. Atleast they added the double box and showed the track.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Should be interesting to see if they bring the Tech Center back for year three.

Anonymous said...

I have been watching racing for a few years. I have heard them talk about adding some wedge many times. Thatwas the first time I have ever seen it shown. I liked it.

Newracefan said...

JD do you know something about about the tech center, and I'm trying really hard not to respond to the anon but it's getting difficult

Anonymous said...
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Daly Planet Editor said...

nrf,

It is a lot of money to travel and set-up at each race when 90% of what Brewer says each race is the same.

Simply by taping a large amount of content before the season and using that, the Producer could instantly access exactly the issue he wanted to be explained.

It should be all about $$ now that the thrill is gone.

PS - Let me handle them, that's why I make the big bucks.

JD

stricklinfan82 said...

I sure wish these networks would adopt the Hotpass approach of keeping the scoring crawl on the screen during caution flags. This approach would be particularly helpful for resetting the field leading into restarts after caution flag pit stops and in instances like this where a caution flag falling during green flag stops trapped some guys a lap down.

Anonymous said...
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TexasRaceLady said...

I don't mind the Tech Center --- if used properly. But to just stick it in because they have it, is not good. In the middle of green flag racing is not the place to use it.

If they want to explain what happened during a pit stop, wait a bit --- I'm sure a yellow flag will fly.

Daly Planet Editor said...

I think they are struggling to figure out how to handle that type of situation. But it is about to make for some good racing.

Bestwick and his crew are really putting the pep into this race.

JD

Anonymous said...

JD

Fair point about the Tech Center, however if sponsors are paying for us to see it there isn't much chance of it going away. And if sponsor are footing the bill then it probably has to be seen a certain amount of times.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 5:02PM,

That is the issue. If the sponsor is going to return. I don't know if you have seen the pics of the Tech Center on this blog.

It is a big tractor-trailer (50') with expando sides.

JD

3bud said...

Full Throttle would be great with the Sourround Sound, drop the chatter.

Dot said...

You're right JD. It's the same stuff week after week about the Tech Center segment. There's only so much that can go wrong with a car. The regular viewers pretty much know anyway.

Another odd wad mentioned, Cope.

Dot said...

Part two, couldn't Andy show us the broken part in question? Or, explain whatever the issue is? One less on the payroll.

Anonymous said...

thats right anonymous about the sponsors. It seems like in the hard times we are having now, the tech center sponsorship would be the first to be cut

Daly Planet Editor said...

3bud,

If they could isolate the top ten cars, it might be interesting. Then you could tell who was talking. Now it is just Anon voices.

JD

Ken-Michigan said...

It will also be interesting to see if they shrink the number of voices in 2009 due to economic issues.

Can they afford to pay 9 or 10 on air people for a given event ?

I predict a few of these voices on ESPN will be in very different roles ( IF they even have a role at all) in 2009.

David said...

On the Rensi #35 start and park thing...that is an effort to offset the cost of running the 25 car.

Jay Robinson does the exact same thing with the 49 car to help run the 28.

Dot said...

@ Ken in MI, from your lips.....

David said...

Shocked there wasnt a better explanation about how Stremme was able to get back on the lead lap.

He pitted under green and had to have been trapped a lap down because of that, let alone NASCAR holding him a lap.

thought you couldnt get a lap back from NASCAR if it was a NASCAR issued penalty?

Karen said...

A blast from the past.

Newracefan said...

Karen but not is a good way

Karen said...

nrf, I couldn't think of anything clever to say about him.

3bud said...

Good point JD great sounding V8 power then just a cluster of voices on top that you can't make out.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Hoping they think about a Nationwide Series only crew but that is not looking good for next season.

TexasRaceLady said...

Thanks, ESPN, for talking about the Sam Ard auction. He and his wife really need the help.

Daly Planet Editor said...

That might be the sweetest pace car of the season.

Dot said...

Okay, where's the debris?

Daly Planet Editor said...

Got to give the kid credit, Logano is right there. Jerry seems to be skipping over him a bit.

3bud said...

I read where Shell and KH donated the disassembled van from the commercial to Sam Ard. Reassembled

Daly Planet Editor said...

There are some pics out there of them presenting the keys. Nice deal. I think they are at NASCAR.com.

stricklinfan82 said...

It would have been nice to see that race off pit road live. In my opinion the race to the line at the end of pit road was much more important than the first few seconds of the last car on the lead lap's pit stop. Even if you have to use a split-screen we should always see the race off pit road live, particularly when that could have been the final set of stops in the race.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Need some resetting beyond fifth place here...

Ken-Michigan said...

stricklinfan82 -

I had the very same thought during that round of pit stops.

There was going to be a good race off pit road.... and then they switched to a full screen of another car pitting.

I was here shaking my head when they didnt show that race off pit road LIVE !!

Dot said...

Finally they mentioned Marcos. He's a NW regular and in the top 10. Good grief especially since his owner is on the ESPN payroll.

TexasRaceLady said...

Dot, they don't want to play favorites. ;-)

Daly Planet Editor said...

Should be fun to see if we have a Tony Stewart sighting tomorrow before or after the race.

Dot said...

@ TRL, I guess the magic last name is Wallace.

Ken-Michigan said...

ya think we can get the 33 crew chief before green flag ??

come on - stay on top of this

stricklinfan82 said...

Yet again we miss seeing the race off pit road live. A split-screen, triple-pit split, or something is desperately needed.

I will kindly remind ESPN that positions are not frozen during pit stops. They are indeed racing each other off of pit road to determine restart positions.

When you are broadcasting pit stops live the most important thing to show live on the TV screen is the cars racing to the line at the end of pit road.

Daly Planet Editor said...

With 14 laps to go? Are you kidding me???

TexasRaceLady said...

"When you are broadcasting pit stops live the most important thing to show live on the TV screen is the cars racing to the line at the end of pit road."

Instead, we're treated to Rusty Wallace in a simulator. *sigh*

Dot said...

@ JD,

Tony was pretty nice earlier when interviewed about his blown tire. Maybe because it was SPEED and not ESPN.

3bud said...

Good thing no Penske sponsor this week.

Daly Planet Editor said...

dot,

Trust me, that is exactly the reason why. I just have a feeling we have not heard the last of Tony this season where ESPN is concerned.

JD

Daly Planet Editor said...

How can Jerry get more excited reading a promo then the key race off pit road? Amazing.

stricklinfan82 said...

Very disappointing decision to conduct a long-winded interview with Joe Gibbs just 2 laps after a restart with under 15 laps to go.

While this broadcast has for the most part lacked the blatant disrespect of the on-track action that comes from full-screen video packages and pre-taped driver comments, it has suffered greatly from some very fundamental broadcasting errors.

Ken-Michigan said...

come on Doc - how about trying to keep me interested in the closing laps.

pump it up Punch !!

TexasRaceLady said...

stricklinfan, I was thinking the same thing. As much as I like Joe Gibbs, the placement was just all wrong.

stricklinfan82 said...

Daly Planet Editor said...
How can Jerry get more excited reading a promo then the key race off pit road? Amazing.

November 1, 2008 5:51 PM


Maybe because he was looking at the monitor and completely missed that key race off pit road, just like the viewers at home did?

Phathead said...

Did Punch really try to make it like Edwards was going to catch Shrub? Wow

Gymmie said...

Kylie wins again

Daly Planet Editor said...

Thanks for hanging with us, Mario Batali and Rachel Ray on RaceDay tomorrow.

That should be interesting. Jimmy Spencer and Mario together.

JD

TexasRaceLady said...

I don't know about anyone else, but I could just hear Doc deflating at the end of the race --- all the life just went out of his voice. Well, what life there was.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Don't forget World of Outlaws on SPEED tonight at 8PM hosted by Dave Despain.

Dot said...

Mario likes to cook, Jimmy likes to eat. A match made in heaven.

Gymmie said...

That's nice of Kylie to give some money to Mr. Ard :)

*giggle* Coach in a Cowboy hat....heheheehhee

TexasRaceLady said...

The coach in a cowboy hat! ROTFL

Vicky D said...

I always think those guys that wear the cowboy hats and show off those pistols is way too funny.

Sophia said...

well since it was texas, I thought I might tape the race but the vcr spit out the tape with 75 laps to go and I got in with 26 laps to go...then after reading here and seeing who won, will skip watching any of the tape.

ESPN just continues to annoy.

I will watch the SPEED shows tonight and tomorrow...not sure about the Cup race...hope on of the boomer boxes will get in radio or will listen on warp online.

Thanks for the info on the Jr interview...i had missed that, too.

p.s. oh and before 'somebody' mentions DVR, the "mystro upgrade" of TW has created HAVOC with DVRs and those of us with simple digital tv. GOOGLE it if you don't believe me. I raised cain over the horrible 'ongoing issues' and got my bill lowered 20.00 for the next year so they must be gettting boatloads of complaints :) They tried to give me DVR...i said after it quits 'eatin tv shows' I will.

AMS fan said...

Just finishing watching the race.
Not much of a broadcast.
If it wasn't for pit reporters 1/2 the show would have been real quite. The other 1/2 was split between AB, RW, DJ, AP, with a little BD, with even less of JP.
I'm really starting to feel bad for the guy.
IMO this broadcast was so dull.
Just in to comparison to last week, from A+ to this week, an F.
I heard way to much from pit road. It took to long to update the TOP 13. The booth could have done the complete running order in that amount of time. Oh I forgot, it wasn't in the script.
Was I the only one who heard all those crickets?
After last weeks race and last nights race, this one was a sleeper.
EXCELLENT finish line camera work.
Good post race reporting.