Thursday, May 15, 2008
It will be the Craftsman Trucks that take to the track at 9AM Eastern Time on SPEED for practice. Rick Allen and Phil Parsons will call the on-track action, with veterans Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander reporting from the garage area.
Immediately after that action, the NASCAR on Fox crew of Mike Joy, Larry McReynolds and Darrell Waltrip will begin to cover the Cup cars on the track. Matt Yocum and Dick Berggren will cover the garages during the two Cup practice sessions.
At 3:30PM the NCTS gang returns for qualifying. The SPEED crew of Parsons, Allen, Dunlap and Alexander will also return for the live telecast.
At 5PM the Cup cars roll-out for two very different qualifying sessions. First, the Sprint Showdown cars will have a normal session of two laps at speed. Then, the All-Star cars come out for three laps at speed with a four tire change done on pit road. This always makes things interesting as teams use different strategies. The Cup cars bring the NASCAR on Fox crew of Joy, Waltrip and McReynolds back to the air. They will call both qualifying sessions.
This post will serve to host your comments about the on-track action on SPEED during the day on Friday. To add your opinion, just click on the COMMENTS button below and follow the directions. The rules for posting are on the right side of the main page. Thank you for taking the time to stop by.
There will be a new post up for The Set-Up and the NCTS race on SPEED at 6:30PM Friday night.
Update: For those of you who just finished watching the Pit Crew Challenge on Thursday night, please tell us how you enjoyed the program in the comments section below.
Back in the mid-1990's the Pit Crew Championship was a mess. Held at Rockingham Motor Speedway, the competition took place before the Busch Series race on Saturday afternoon.
Believe it or not, the actual Cup Series primary cars were used and all of the drivers lined-up single file. It was then that the reality of just how long it was going to take to get all those cars through the pit stop sequence sunk-in. It quickly turned-into the 24 Hours of Rockingham.
Sunbelt Video from Charlotte, NC taped the whole thing in a big TV truck, and then post-produced the event into a finished television program a while later. Once all the cars and crews had gone through the line, the Busch Series teams filled the two pits used for the contest and the Busch race began. My, how things have changed.
The 2008 Pit Crew Challenge will be held on Thursday at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte at 7PM Eastern Time. There will be five rounds of side-by-side eliminations on a specially constructed set built by JHE Productions. SPEED will air the program at 9PM that same night as a two hour special.
There are competitions in individual skills as well as with the full pit crews. JHE, NASCAR and SPEED have combined to turn this into a great night for the normally under-the-radar crew members. With a big crowd expected, it should make for a very raucous atmosphere. It is absolutely true that family members make the most noise.
It will be Steve Byrnes hosting SPEED's coverage. He will be joined by two former crew chiefs, Larry McReynolds and Jeff Hammond. The "pit" reporter will be Bob Dillner. There should be an interesting dynamic at work as many of the drivers and crew chiefs will be on-hand to root for their respective pit crews.
In today's tightly-controlled NASCAR environment, TV viewers do not get to see most of the stars out of their element. After a season of some high-profile whining about pit stops, the interaction between the drivers and the crews should be interesting to see play-out. Thursday night's intense atmosphere should be fun for all.
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Wall-to-wall NASCAR comes your way all day on SPEED this Friday, and we do mean "all day."
SPEED starts with a two hour block of All-Star Race highlight shows at 7AM Eastern Time. Titles like The Pass In The Grass and The Tide Slide tip-off veteran fans that these four shows are going to be worth recording or watching as they air.
At 9AM, the Craftsman Trucks take to the track for practice. It will be Rick Allen and Phil Parsons calling the action. Down in the garage area will be Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander. There is an unconfirmed report that Michael Waltrip may be stopping by the announce booth.
Down on the NASCAR Live set will be Steve Byrnes and John Roberts. Bob Dillner will be the reporter from the garage. This show will fill the gaps during the transitions as the Trucks end practice and the Cup cars take to the track.
The Sprint Showdown practice is first, and it will be the NASCAR on Fox crew of Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds in the announce booth. Down in the garage area will be Dick Berggren and Matt Yocum. At 1:30PM, the Sprint All-Star cars take to the track for practice, and the announce crew remains the same with one addition. Jeff Hammond joins the team in the Hollywood Hotel.
At 3PM, there will be another version of NASCAR Live. This show will serve to update the events of the day and the remaining programs. John Roberts will host this program with Hermie Sadler and Bob Dillner patrolling the garages.
At 3:30PM, the Craftsman Truck Series crew returns to host qualifying. Rick Allen, Phil Parsons, Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander will call the action. Once again, a Michael Waltrip sighting is rumored.
The "big boys" come out at 5PM when the Sprint Cup cars take to the track. The first order of business will be qualifying for the Sprint Showdown cars. That will be the standard two laps for all of the cars in this event. Immediately following that action will be the very unique qualifying for the All-Star Race itself. This will be three laps long with a mandatory four tire change on pit road.
The NASCAR on Fox gang will again handle the Sprint Cup action with Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds on-the-air. Matt Yocum and Dick Berggren will handle the reporting duties.
John Roberts, Randy Pemberton and Bob Dillner will provide a flexible NASCAR Live show that will take the network to 7:30PM. As race fans know, trying to keep an on-track schedule on the Friday before the All-Star race has never worked out very well.
Krista Voda makes her return to the Craftsman Truck Series pre-race show on Friday night. She anchors The Set-Up at 7:30, which is one of the most focused and fan-friendly pre-race shows on-the-air. Voda's simple and straightforward style make this show always informative.
The Truck Series action gets underway at 8PM. Rick Allen and Phil Parsons return, this time with Michael Waltrip actually alongside in the booth. Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander will appear in The Set-Up and then handle the reporting duties from pit road.
Immediately after the NCTS race, it will be a full hour of Trackside. This show is hosted by Steve Byrnes with Larry McReynolds, Jeff Hammond and Darrell Waltrip on the big panel. Guests on the set this week include Casey Mears, David Ragan and the one and only Humpy Wheeler, the King of Lowe's Motor Speedway.
For those of you who may have missed the Wednesday night premier of Wendy Venturini's Hometown Heroes special, the program re-airs at 11:30PM to close-out a full day of NASCAR on SPEED.
This is one of those days when fans with DVR's or TiVo's have lots of fun. There is something for everyone in SPEED's airing of over seventeen hours of NASCAR TV on Friday. There will be a new post up for the live on-track action Friday morning for your comments all day long.
The Daly Planet welcomes comments from readers. Simply 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.