Tuesday, December 30, 2008

NASCAR Not Good Enough For Primetime On SPEED

Finally, a brand new TV series from the professionals at The NASCAR Media Group is coming to SPEED in January. The title of the series is NASCAR 39/10 and it is a big chunk of programming that should be a blast for fans.

Consisting of ten shows each three hours in length, this series will review the 2008 Sprint Cup Series with lots of never-before-seen-footage and interviews. Just what NASCAR fans want after a long holiday break.

“January is all about getting jacked up for Daytona,” said SPEED President Hunter Nickell. “We’re going to give race fans a chance to relive their favorite moments from 2008 in a unique way, while at the same time, setting the stage for the new season."

What Nickell did not tell fans is that they may have to take a very long lunch break to see any of the thirty hours of NASCAR 39/10.

The shows air from noon to 3PM Eastern Time on Wednesdays and Thursdays starting January 7th. Say it with me, noon to 3PM.

SPEED has decided to keep the "reality lifestyle" programs like PINKS, Living the Low Life and Wrecked in primetime. NASCAR apparently does not make the grade.

Looking at the SPEED TV schedule on the network's website, there does not appear to be a re-air of NASCAR 39/10 currently scheduled. Perhaps, that might change before next week.

This situation once again forces fans to get their hands on a DVR, VCR or TiVo in order to record and then watch the NASCAR-themed programs on SPEED. Thirty hours of brand-new quality shows from NMG that sum-up the entire 2008 series should be a great way to start the new year. If you can see them, that is.

It seems strange that SPEED chose to bury this entire program series in an afternoon timeslot. The NASCAR Media Group only had six episodes of NASCAR Confidential on SPEED during the entire 2008 season. This type of glossy and high-end programming has been missing from SPEED for years.

With shows like Trackside, The SPEED Report and Daytona specials set to begin later in January, it certainly would have been nice to see a new NASCAR TV series be given one airing in primetime.

Given the current issues affecting NASCAR and the fact that SPEED is currently one of NASCAR's key TV partners, watching thirty hours of quality NASCAR TV air up-against the local news at noon and the soap opera block is more than just a little painful.

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