Tuesday, January 6, 2009

TLC Brings A New NASCAR Wives Show To TV


As they say in reality TV land, this could be interesting. Below is the story from Reuters and The Hollywood Reporter about a new NASCAR TV show on TLC:

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - TLC is gearing up a new reality show tracking the spouses of NASCAR drivers.

The cable network has ordered a docusoap series titled "NASCAR Wives," starring women with surnames familiar to racing fans.

TLC will air an hour of the series as a stand-alone special January 24 with a lead-in from the network's most-watched annual event, the Miss America pageant. A full season, including an undisclosed number of episodes, will follow in the spring.

The concept mixes racing with the "wives genre" peppering cable primetime, from Lifetime's drama "Army Wives" to Bravo's reality show "The Real Housewives of Orange County."

Lest it seem too male-skewing for a female-skewing genre, TLC president Eileen O'Neill said 40% of NASCAR fans are women.

Participants include Delana Harvick (wife of Kevin, who has 11 career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins), Shana Mayfield (wife of Jeremy, a 15-year Sprint Cup veteran), Kelley Earnhardt (sister of Dale Earnhardt Jr., NASCAR's most popular driver) and Angie Skinner (wife of Mike, who competes in NASCAR's top three national series).


Well, of all the years to create a series like this, 2009 is a curious choice. Also interesting is the "docusoap" label put on the project by TLC. The series will be produced by The NASCAR Media Group.

"Throughout a 10-month season, the drivers' wives are the glue holding together each racing family," NASCAR Media Group COO Jay Abraham said. "This show provides an honest and emotional peek into their experience with our sport."

Several features and TV series over the years have tried to go behind the scenes in terms of both racing families and the wives of the NASCAR drivers. Most of them were short-lived.

TDP applauds The NASCAR Media Group for getting NASCAR-related programming outside of the SPEED and ESPN box. Both of those networks have essentially stopped ordering any original series and Wednesday will see the only new NMG series debut on SPEED...at noon. It does not re-air.

TLC was originally The Learning Channel, but has long since left those days and become a solid destination for all kinds of family programming. This may be the best destination for a series like this.

As the press release mentions, there will be a special stand-alone episode on January 24th and the regular series will begin airing later in the spring. TDP will keep you posted on the dates and times of the series this season.

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28 comments:

Gymmie said...

Sounds interesting I hope it works out for them. What am I missing that Jeremy's doing that his wife would be on?

I am glad to see that they're bringing it to a channel that most folks have access to.

I'll be sure to check it out :)

Anonymous said...

Does Mayfield still even race? After the bad mouthing they did of Ray i'm surprised. But look forward to seeing Delana, when her and Kevin were featured on the 360 show, they were hilarious, not to mention she actually knows the business more than looking hot on a pit box(she does that well too)

Lou said...

I had also read about this show on TLC overnight. I look forward to it. The point I want to make here is, just another reason to have a NASCAR channel for an outlet of things NASCAR, to go along with all the other reasons that have been posted. Or to SPEED, what stopped you from doing a program like this? I remember previous programs of the same and enjoyed them(NASCAR related). The program may be sucessful or may flop, but let the fans of the sport and viewers decide.

Anonymous said...

Does Jeremy even have a ride? And why Kelley Earnhardt? I can think of MANY other WIVES they should follow instead of Jr's sister. LAME

Anonymous said...

Normally I would be thrilled about this (as a person who enjoyed NASCAR Drivers 360, 7 Days, and other similar programs). But reading the cast list quickly made me a little less enthused.

Shana Mayfield? Are they kidding? How many series of this type has she already been in? (Three, that I can think of offhand). Her husband hasn't really been fulltime in NASCAR since mid 2006 so I think this is a poor choice.

Delana is great on TV, but only ranks second to Shana in how many of these shows she has been in. (In addition to 360, both Shana and Delana had their own 30 minute episodes of 7 Days, as did Buffy Waltrip). Kelley Earnhardt was seen in NASCAR 360 and of course in Dale Jrs Shifting Gears, where she played a more prominent role.

So I'm asking where is Chandra Johnson? Where is Katie Kenseth, Krissie Newman, Connie Montoya? Where is Nicole Biffle or Eva Busch? Where are the some of the newbies, like the wife of AJ Allmendinger or the fiancees of Carl Edwards or Jamie McMurray? Carl Edwards' fiancee would be especially interesting since she is a working physician.

I'm asking rhetorically because I have a feeling these women (or their husbands) said no to the whole thing. Which is why we get Shana, Delana, and Kelley again. Sigh.

Still, TLC is a good match for this show, so kudos to NASCAR Media group for getting it on air somewhere. Unfortunately, a lot of men don't watch TLC, and I know a lot of men who watched and liked NASCAR 360 on the more general network FX. NASCAR Media group might have to do some specialized marketing to get men to remember to turn to TLC.

JD, an FYI: Publicist Jade Gurss said on his website that a new NASCAR-themed episode of "Cribs" will premiere on CMT on Jan. 10. (It's an MTV show but is now apparently doing original episodes for other networks which are under the same umbrella.) The show will tour the homes (and garages) of Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, and ...Kevin and Delana Harvick.

Anonymous said...

So I'm asking where is Chandra Johnson? Where is Katie Kenseth, Krissie Newman, Connie Montoya? Where is Nicole Biffle or Eva Busch?

They have to agree to do the show.

Maybe they didn't.

Daly Planet Editor said...

There are some new posts up, please refresh your browser.

Thanks, JD

diane said...

What a load of crap. Another program of rich, entitled woman who have an existence due to who they married, or an accident of birth. No thanks.

Anonymous said...

TLC usually does a very good job with shows like this. It should be very interesting. Except for the part where we watch the Mayfields sit around waiting for the phone to ring.

Photojosh said...

TLC rarely has stuff I'm interested in. But heck, I'll give it a shot just as a "thanks" for somebody in nascar getting off their butt and branching out to other media outlets.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if they didn't steal at least some of the video from the earlier shows...otherwise, who would approach Shana Mayfield in the first place for this show in 2008/2009?

Jennifer said...

So I'm asking where is Chandra Johnson? Where is Katie Kenseth, Krissie Newman, Connie Montoya? Where is Nicole Biffle or Eva Busch? Where are the some of the newbies, like the wife of AJ Allmendinger or the fiancees of Carl Edwards or Jamie McMurray? Carl Edwards' fiancee would be especially interesting since she is a working physician.



I believe if they followed Carl's wife it might cause problems where she works with the Hippa rules and all.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
TLC usually does a very good job with shows like this. It should be very interesting. Except for the part where we watch the Mayfields sit around waiting for the phone to ring.

January 6, 2009 12:06 PM


LOL! What's funny is the Mayfields being out of work was already covered on the (little-seen) "NASCAR Drivers Non-Stop" on ESPN2,which was just like NASCAR 360 with a different title. If it's anything like that show, we'll see a lot of the Mayfields on their farm, with Jeremy amusing himself by digging big piles of dirt with his bulldozer, or chasing cattle around with his golf cart while a terrified Shana cringes in fear. (So heads up, NASCAR Images, if you try to reuse that footage, rest assured that some folks DID see "NASCAR Drivers Non-Stop". And have it recorded, too.)

As JD noted, I'm also curious about the "docusoap" label. From what I remember, the people involved in NASCAR 360 got to view the episodes before they aired and could have anything taken out that they wanted. To the drivers/wives' credit, I think the producers said nobody asked to have anything taken out.

But the term docusoap is often used when there is "manufactured" reality, i.e, there is some loose scripting of events. If anyone has ever seen "The Real Housewives of Atlanta/New York/Orange County" on Bravo or "The Hills" on MTV, then you'll understand "manufactured" reality. Even some of the TLC shows like "Jon and Kate Plus 8" have a scripted element in them. I hope that's not the case here.

Anonymous said...

I agree that I really wish there were some more new faces in this program. As is, it feels like a re-hash of all the other shows. I enjoy Delana but I've seen both her and Mayfield's wife in similar shows so many times. And Jeremy hasn't had a fulltime ride in how long now? Same with Kelley Earnhardt who was just a major part of Shifting Gears. Some new faces would have really gotten me excited for this.

Sophia said...

I am tired of the same faces...one in particular strikes me as SHALLOW and just into shopping and other minutia....sigh

Anonymous said...

I guess I'll wait til I see the show before I rate it, but please, Shana Mayfield? Why?

I think some of the wives probably really value their privacy and so would never agree to a "NASCAR" style of the rich and famous. You have to give them a reason to do the show.

How about offering to do an in-depth show on their husbands' foundations? Have each wife act as host to the program. In this time of hard times for many in the country, how great to show the great work that they do with part of their fame and fortune?

With Petty leaving, how great to do 30 minutes on Victory Junction Gang? How about Jeff Gordon, who has granted something like 500 Make-A-Wish wishes for ill children and built a Children's hospital? How about Ryan Newman and his work with pets and animals in general? There's a big list.

These kinds of shows would be a win-win. You'd get a different group of women, and you could highlight the good work done by foundations.

Vicky D said...

Sorry but this won't work out although I saw Shana on Nascar 360 (I think that's what it was called) and thought she was a hoot! I don't think the viewers want to see anymore video of the Harvick's 10,000 (yes that's 10,000) sq. ft. house. Although Kelley and Dale are very close maybe that will come across on tv.

Newracefan said...

I will be watching but agree with others I would love to see Chandra and some of the other wives. (I too think they passed on the idea).

darbar said...

Perhaps some of the wives saw the hatchet job they did on Cortney Sauter a couple of years ago. Do you remember that show where they followed certain teams, and they focused on Cortney? They made her appear vapid and stupid, saying that Johnny should crash anyone in order to win. I remember she had to apologize for how she came across.

To compare this new show to the Housewives of Orange County is a stupid move. If anyone has ever seen that show, it's comprised of the most silly, drunken, borderline insane, spoiled and embarrassing women on the planet.

And I agree with everyone on the choice of women. Shana is a TV hound who loves being in front of the camera. And I do not understand why Kelley Earnhardt Elledge is on, other than she's Jr's sister. Everyone knows her marriage to Jimmy is over so she's not really a Nascar wife, and is Jimmy even employed in Nascar this season?

This is a show that I will probably Tivo and then speed right through.

Anonymous said...

How about offering to do an in-depth show on their husbands' foundations? Have each wife act as host to the program. In this time of hard times for many in the country, how great to show the great work that they do with part of their fame and fortune?

With Petty leaving, how great to do 30 minutes on Victory Junction Gang? How about Jeff Gordon, who has granted something like 500 Make-A-Wish wishes for ill children and built a Children's hospital? How about Ryan Newman and his work with pets and animals in general? There's a big list.


THIS is a great idea and something I would really enjoy watching. There are so many great foundations and things that drivers do that get a quick mention during the weekend and that's that. It would be great to get a more in-depth look at some of the wonderful things that these drivers and their families do.

PammH said...

Not really anyone new here-glad they are doing a show, but disappointed in the gals chosen. Guess they are the only ones that agreed to be on camera. I will watch, but sounds like a rehash of stuff we've already experienced. I believe it was on Nascar 360 when Kevin tossed dog poop over the fence into the neighbors yard! Me & a friend still crack up about that!!!

Dot said...

I'm looking forward to this show. Aren't DeLana and Shana best friends? Maybe that's why she's on.

If this show is a hit, maybe some of the other wives/gfs will want to be on it.

Adam T. Martin said...

I don't see the point in a program like this.

Anybody care to explain.

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps some of the wives saw the hatchet job they did on Cortney Sauter a couple of years ago. Do you remember that show where they followed certain teams, and they focused on Cortney? They made her appear vapid and stupid, saying that Johnny should crash anyone in order to win. I remember she had to apologize for how she came across."

Cortney did the hatchet job, so to speak, on herself. No one made her say the things she said about Johnny or other drivers or act the way she did. (personally, I thought she made the fairly boring show, NASCAR in Primetime, halfway interesting with her antics, and I don't think the TV producers were out to get her in any way. They just knew she was good TV. I think they actually kind of liked her based on the sweet little clip package of her and Johnny they showed on the finale after they got engaged.)

That NASCAR reality show was also her second reality show (she was on one of the Bachelor-like dating shows a few years back, Outback Jack), so that wasn't her first experience with the cameras. She knew exactly what it entailed. So I doubt Cortney is/was a factor in anybody's thoughts about being on a NASCAR wives show because most of them probably wouldn't act like her.

"Although Kelley and Dale are very close maybe that will come across on tv."

Their close relationship and Dale Jr's close relationship with her children has already been shown on reality TV quite a bit. But TLC is obviously trying to make sure the fanbase of the most popular driver watches the show.

Anonymous said...

"Throughout a 10-month season, the drivers' wives are the glue holding together each racing family," NASCAR Media Group COO Jay Abraham said. "This show provides an honest and emotional peek into their experience with our sport."


Is Jay sniffing "glue?" This show is being produced by NASCAR Media Group. We will see nothing more than a poor attempt at yet another PR piece. And the whole "honest and emotional????" Who is he trying to fool?? There's NO WAY IN H*!! NASCAR, the drivers, their wives, and/or sponsors would/could ever allow the broadcast of what truly goes on....

That being said, it might have a little entertainment value for those who are desperate for ANYTHING NASCAR....

Anonymous said...

Other women in the show are Lynne Allmendinger (wife of AJ), Amanda Mathis (Scott Speeds fiance), and Nicole Shapiro.

Kate said...

As of January 20, NASCAR Wives has disappeared from the TLC scheduled timeslots at the end of this week, and gets no hits when searched on their website!

Robin Saylor said...

How come Nascar Wives was not shown on Saturday after the Miss America Pagent. I got an RSS feed on Friday saying it would be shown on Saturday. What a mess