Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Little Less "Digger" And A Lot More Racing

There was not a lot to talk about for the NASCAR on Fox gang from the Hollywood Hotel in Martinsville. Practice and qualifying for the Sprint Cup Series had been rained out.

The conversation quickly turned from the serious to the ridiculous. Hot dogs, birthdays and inside jokes are subjects that turned the pre-race show into a combination of the useful and the useless. Jeff Hammond appears to be tired of Chris Myers and his inability to take racing seriously. For many teams, Martinsville was a critical race.

Just like NASCAR Now on ESPN2 and RaceDay on SPEED, Rick Hendrick made an appearance on the Fox pre-race show. His story about Martinsville fits right in with the roots of NASCAR. Darrell Waltrip handled the recorded interview.

"The biggest mistake you can make in life is pulling the trigger when you don't have a plan," said Hendrick. He was talking about the changes that might be needed to help Dale Earnhardt Jr. improve this season. Waltrip raises this point on a regular basis and Jeff Hammond has already called for Tony Eury Jr. to be replaced. Hendrick himself seems to have other ideas.

Chris Myers and his recent birthday was a theme that was drummed into the NASCAR fans who watched Fox's rainout coverage of the Camping World Truck Series on Saturday. By the time Sunday rolled around, it just wasn't funny anymore. Dick Berggren is a nice guy, but isn't it time to put the whole "kid because I care" thing away for good?

Mike Joy had a tough task ahead of him. Martinsville and the COT make for a different style of racing then we used to see with the old car. Early tire problems were not followed up in the pits and only the booth announcers told us that the bead was melting because of the brake heat. Goodyear was off the hook.

Three "start and park" cars ended the day early without follow-up. NASCAR had said these cars needed to show why they came off the track and it had better be a mechanical issue. Past issues for the "valet parking" set have included...no pit crew.

The Sprint Cup teams delivered a good set of stories that included two MWR drivers running in the top ten, but everyone knew the day would belong to Hendrick. It did not matter where his cars finished, because Hendrick is a favorite of the Fox booth. Once again, the racing actually followed the suggested TV script in dramatic fashion.

It was nice to hear an instrumental version of the National Anthem and even better to see a good crowd on-hand to hear it. The TV crew never had to explain empty seats or even deal with the fan issue. The pictures told the story.

Mostly absent from this telecast was the animation of Digger. While the Digger logo was stuck in the picture in each segment, both of the annoying animations were essentially gone. That is a picture from Fox Sports of the Martinsville Digger-cam above.

This simple change deeply affected the telecast. No more forced jokes or comments from Joy, he just kept calling the race with the Digger logo on the screen. No more homemade commercials from Waltrip advertising his website under green flag racing.

It may be that Fox has finally struck a good balance where this merchandising gimmick is concerned. As many emailers reminded us, there was also no Digger cartoon before the race.

Once underway, the positive aspects of the telecast began to emerge. Good camera work on the small track, good use of the in-car cameras and effective coverage of the entire field was the early order of the day. Unfortunately, that would change.

Two video angles of the Kenseth pit road violation were outstanding and the explanation from Larry McReynolds was even better. Also solid was the triple-split on the caution flag pit stops that allowed for a view of the entire pit road.

As we have said so many times before, the technical crew delivered another flawless race with every piece of equipment working well and the pictures and sound in HD delivering the intensity of this sport on a short-track.

Tougher to figure out were the AT&T Racebreaks. Presented as an update on the race, the video highlights showed spins and some lead changes. The problem was that this was not a rundown of who was where and how they got there. Once the racebreak was over, the silent ticker at the top of the screen was the only thing telling the whole story of the race.

Fans once again had to migrate to the radio broadcast to get a rundown of the field and the progress of the teams outside of the top ten. Just like Fox used to struggle with covering the final lap, this season rundowns of the field are just nonexistent.

With many top teams a lap down or more, the Fox production team kept the focus on the leaders and brought the telecast home with another good wideshot of the finish line. Luckily, Denny Hamlin and Jimmie Johnson provided some action in the final laps.

Post-race interviews told the story of the race and it appeared that all concerned were ready to get to Texas and get back up to speed. Two short track races are done and while Martinsville may reflect the past, it certainly did not deliver the kind of energy that NASCAR has created with the larger tracks that dominate the season.

TDP welcomes comments from readers. Just click on the comments button below. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by The Daly Planet.


Anonymous said...

I thought it was a great race and another great production. I thought the pre-race was just fine...the fun parts would make sense if it wasn't always automatically built-in to the broadcast. The gopher cam was used without any extras yet again. There could have been more pit reports, but at least FOX has the triple-split down pat. All in all, everyone did a nice job. Between last week and this week, that's the NASCAR on FOX that I like seeing.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps our constructive criticism is starting to pay off!

PammH said...

No run downs of the field-bad, showing alot of cars going over the finish line-Good! Still was much better on radio...imo. But Fox did show some racing thru the field, which was great! Not enough tho.

jdh417 said...

JD, you missed the real story of this race, Ingrid's radical new hairstyle. I'm sensing a cover up. I'm blowing the lid off this scandal in my own report.


Great coverage as always.

Daly Planet Editor said...


As a single guy I have learned to avoid that area at all costs. I nod a lot and say "nice look."


Anonymous said...

Are you planning on doing a story on how the TV ratings for every single race so far this year are lower than last year? In some cases, the ratings are significantly lower.

I would have expected the exact opposite as more people are staying home to save money.

It'll be interesting to see how this race compares to NCAA basketball.

dshaf said...

It's very interesting that it looked full on TV.

There were a LOT of empty seats, there just weren't any empty sections.

I was actually surprised by the lack of people - my first race in person - and no one sat beside us, behind us, or in front of us for the whole race.

Turn 2, halfway up...

Anonymous said...

It has been done in other sports to scatter people throughout the stadium, leaving empty seats between people, to avoid having large segments of empty sections. It makes pretty TV pictures, and a better atmosphere inside the stadium.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 10:03PM,

We are all trying to figure out what exactly is affecting TV sports ratings across the board.

My feeling is the Internet but there is no way to measure folks who watch TV shows on Internet sites like hulu.com and such.

NASCAR continues to be a strong player in the sports ratings scene, but the overall totals are down across the board.

I am hoping more info is released this week about sports TV ratings for 2009 now that the first 3 months of the year are almost over.

Thanks for the comment.


Dot said...

I thought the race was pretty good.

I too, was wondering about the lower TV ratings.

Roommate and I always watch on TV. I use the internet to keep up with the leader board. Just when the ticker on TV is going to show where your guy is.....
Plus, I'm here.

I would probably only watch TV on the internet if I missed something I really wanted to see. I'm old school coach potato.

Anonymous said...
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bevo said...

I thought it was one of the worst productions by Fox in the past few years. Too much in-car camera, slow to cut to action on the track and very poor camera work on pit road. They did get the Kenseth incident but the only camera shots I remember are the entrance and exit ones.

The information from the pit reporters was virtually nonexistent. We never had a sense of what the heck was going on past the top 10.

They did however excel on one topic - hot dogs. Did you know that Martinsville has a signature hot dog? And it's only $2. And it's been $2 for like forever? And did you know they're delicious? And did you know everyone eats as many as they can while they're at Martinsville? And did you know that they eat them during commercial breaks? And did you know that when an announcer stumbles over a word it was because he was eating a hot dog? And by the way did you know that Martinsville is known for their hot dogs?

Too bad they don't make the things out of gophers.

Sorry - I just had to vent about the damned hot dogs.

Lou said...

bevo, just to funny thanks. But your point is well taken. It was kind of an overload from fox.

JD, thanks for the pic of the camera. I asked about it last year, will add it to all the closed signs I collected.

I did watch most of the race. I have been very critical of the ground hog this season. And the last two weeks I have seen less of the ground hog. Thanks to Mr. Hill for allowing me to enjoy the race this week.

Just want to repeat that I like the 3 box pit and view of pit road during pit stops. And the view crossing the finish line. Did not care for the ticker showing only the top ten near the end of the race.

Lesley said...

Why would Mike joy say this is his his favorite race track? Is he getting paid to say this?I want my racing to be more than 100mph thank you!!Id rather watch paint dry on a cold day than sit thru this race of unwanted history..Rockingham,Darlington?Give this race to anyone other than martinsville...Please!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey JD. Just wanted to comment that I agree with you on the National Anthem! I'm sooooooo tired of supposed singers murdering the anthem with their versions which end up sounding as if they're in agony. Give me a good ol instumental version any day, cept for the kids of Nascar of course

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

You are so right on this point:

"Dick Berggren is a nice guy, but isn't it time to put the whole "kid because I care" thing away for good?

Hasn't anyone told Myers this is tiresome and not funny? Not once a broadcast but about everytime Berggren's name is mentioned?

I like DB, but Myers has worn out his welcome. Please put him in the hole where the Digger-cam goes.

Anonymous said...

a good balance? - com on JD - get off the FOX bandwagon - DIGGER just does not belong - BTW did you know yesterday's race was not directed by their regular director who was off - perhaps that explains the difference - pretty cool the sub out directed their ace. Chris Myers routine is soooo fake it's just plane uncomfortable - is there anyone who crushes the englis language more then Larry Mac?

Anonymous said...

JD and annon @ 10:03 pm

regarding the ratings for NASCAR and the precipitous drop, the NASCAR viewership is running counter to most other sports tv ratings. ESPN and broadcast tv sports are staying flat or rising, but NASCAR continues to fall.
An unscientific analysis from this graduate of Cambridge concludes that NASCAR is failing because:
1- Digger (this is self explanatory)
2- Air time- When I tune in because FOX lists the race at 1pm, I expect to see the greem flag by 1:07, NOT 2:20!! I'm gone to other things by 1:05 and usually don't come back.
3-Nose-to-tail is not racing. I see better competition on the M1 at rush hour than most NASCAR venues. The COT is a failure, restrictor plates are anathema, radial tires are too forgiving.
4-Who are these guys? Heroes have been run out of the sport. Honestly, Almendinger? Speed? Ragan? No personalities. No image. No fun. No fans in the stands.
5-People producing tv simply must be fans of the sport, understand its nuances and convey strategy to the viewer. Fox and ESPN fail miserably on this count.

Responses encouraged

Bray Kroter

Ken said...

I didn't think it looked like a good crowd. A few times, they showed a good shot of the stands and it looked about half full. They have probably fired the cameraman who showed the sparse stands.

The thing that drives me nuts is when they are talking about something "exciting" that is not being shown. It's like listening to a poorly done radio broadcast and watching TV at the same time.

I think points racing has impacted the short tracks more than the longer tracks. Everyone is racing to stay in the top 12 or 35 and won't take a chance. The pushing and banging is apparently a thing of the past. Look at the cars after Bristol and Martinsville and compare them to the cars of several years ago. I remember Earnhardt Sr,. winning with a car ready for the scrap yard and every car would be bent and bruised. Look a them today, many didn't have a scratch.

Anonymous said...

I know the Fox broadcast was hardly tip top, but the horror of the ESPN morning show left a sour taste in my mouth all day. Ed Hinton was a guy I had respect for, but his ridiculous "lead story" of Dale Jr.'s issues being his lack of interest in working out is ridiculous. Spencer and Kenny Wallace were right in making fun of it during the Raceday program. I know you have been fond of the changes on ESPN JD, but that was ridiculous. Speed/Fox have a smooth, laid back approach to the news and drivers, ESPN has this desperate confrontational approach. It must aggravate the NASCAR people to no end to have the ESPN people in their ridiculous suits asking equally ridiculous questions.

Smarten up ESPN. Get with the program, NASCAR is fun, laid back and relaxed. This is the way we NASCAR fans like it.

Anonymous said...

I agree, great artical! Also... I would like to point out that the three stooges spend over 50% of the race bantering back and forth talking to each other and us about everything except what is happening on the track. They deliver gibberish when they are suppose to be covering a race. Any more there coverage resembles watching an 80 football drive with commentary of who's mother is in the stands and how long a player has been in the pros plus inside scope on the face that two players were all americans. "...Oh look, they just scored a touchdown." ...This is no longer race commentary it is now: The Three Stooges Fireside Chat Hour. Garbage is what it is. We have opted to make Race Day our new Home Movie Day. If I want to see Digger I'll go out in the back yard and watch him dig holes in the ground just like NASCAR has none.

Anonymous said...

While FOX's coverage of the Martinsville hot dogs was well documented I found it interesting that there was no mention of the minnow pond.

majorshouse said...

I thought that it was a much better race than Bristol was and I love that track because fo the short track mentality which is what I grew up on the 1060's and 1970's. I would love to see more of these tracks on the cirucuit and thought that Fox did a pretty good of covering the race and it was great not having to put with Digger like we have had to endure so much.

Anonymous said...

John Kernin should replace Chris Meyers!

50 Yr fan said...

Still too much "in-car". Wide
shots show racing.

Anonymous said...

I thought Fox did a better job than usual. DW knows about brakes. The Kenseth problems were covered nicely. I love those hot dogs. And they are still $2.00 I hear.

Terry said...

No Digger cartoon before the race, and no annoying pop up animations during the race! Very nice departure from the last few weeks.
Every time Chris Meyers does that 'I kid because I care' I want to slap him. No, Chris, you don't care. You just say that so you can continue saying ugly things.
I still wish FOX would show the entire field crossing the finish line, instead of just the top 10 or 12.
Overall, however, I thought the race was pretty good. Hopefully Digger and Co. won't make the trip to Texas.

Anonymous said...

They did however excel on one topic - hot dogs. Did you know that Martinsville has a signature hot dog? And it's only $2. And it's been $2 for like forever? And did you know they're delicious? And did you know everyone eats as many as they can while they're at Martinsville? And did you know that they eat them during commercial breaks? And did you know that when an announcer stumbles over a word it was because he was eating a hot dog? And by the way did you know that Martinsville is known for their hot dogs?

No you don't say...too bad they didn't tell us any of that during the race or pre-race *giggle*

Anonymous said...

If you are upset about the over exposure of the hotdog, then you must have never had one, they are worth all of the TV time and then some.

Also there was no organized spreading out of people by the track, it is just a case of people spreading out on their own for a better seat/more room/etc.

stricklinfan82 said...

My thoughts on this broadcast are much the same as last week. I very much appreciate Fox making some major philosophy changes to benefit the viewers. I am overjoyed that the pre-race cartoon segment, the overbearing in-race cartoon influence, the 4-box for yellow flag pit stops, and the flagman finish line shot (or sometimes no shot at all) have been replaced by more pre-race NASCAR talk, racing coverage without screaming cartoon characters, the standard 3-box with overall pit road view, and the great wide camera shot at the finish line.

I would imagine it was a hard decision for the head honchos at Fox to make the call to pull back the reins on their overbearing cartoon creation, and an equally hard decision for the director and producer to abandon their less-than-effective attempts at "innovative" approaches to pit stop and finish line camera work but I greatly appreciate each and every one of those individuals listening to the race fans and making these very positive changes for us during the season and not waiting until the off-season to admit their mistakes.

Finally, I do agree that I could have done without the constant hot dog talk and hearing drivers' comments about Fox's beloved hot dogs (ironically all negative) during green flag racing. Hot dog talk can be a fun topic during practice and pre-race shows but in my opinion that topic should be put aside once the green flag falls.

chase said...

Thanks for the column John. I think the coverage was a tad better but once again, they still don't get why 'going thru the field' is important, etc. FOX, if it REALLY IS PAYING ATTENTION, would be smart to pull Chris Myers from any future racecasts, keep the bothersome Digger deep in the background, and actually COVER THE RACE ITSELF! I bet Mike Joy is embarrasssed with Digger - and didn't you love the ticker telling us how much it costs to download Digger's theme song? How crass.

The Loose Wheel said...

Im really disappointed JD. They go out and cure the issues of referring to Digger every 5 minutes, but then proceed to drop the ball and focus on the top 5 all race. If you weren't a Hendrick driver or Denny Hamlin its hard to tell if you even existed. Reutimann and Waltrip got a little bit of tv time as did Allmendinger but what about the other 35 cars in the race? What about a full field rundown? They had more than adequate time to perform, at the very least, two rundowns. Towards the end of the race Brian Vickers just vanished from the top 10 with NO mention whatsoever. Robby Gordon falls out of the race with engine trouble again with NO mention. There were no driver interviews during the race, minimal pit road interviews, honestly I actually don't remember one at all. There were a ton of holes in what was mostly a solid broadcast. Its a shame because these are GAPING holes too.

Great minimal use of the track camera, using few in cars (still want to see a suspension camera again...) Good coverage of certain moments during the race but still gigantic mistakes by a veteran group.

Hopefully Texas goes better. Was still entertained as a fan but I have to thank MRN and SIRIUS driver feeds for keeping me informed yet again.

Anonymous said...

West Coast Diane said:

The changes FOX has made are appreciated; less Digger, racing shots through out the field (could do more), wide shot at finish (need drop down ticker).

Still need the through the field up dates. They really don't even discuss all the top 10. Know Reutiman is favorite of DW, but he was in the top ten most all day. Also, Vickers was running top 10/15most of day, then ended up 33rd! What happened. Aslo, more wide shots of racing where you can see for yourself what is happening and not really on the booth.

I don't mind some of the chit chat stuff, some of which is funny or just good stories...just keep it to a minimum.

There are annoying things about FOX, but I am already dreading the switch to ESPN...FOX, even with their shortcomings is far superior to ESPN.

Hot dogs...well, yes they talk about them a lot. But we are seriously trying to figure out a trip (it would be 3000 miles mind you) so we could try them...LOL!! We live for finding local cuisine when traveling!

Anonymous said...

I know this sight is decicated to TV coverage, but I was at the race so I could not watch it on TV. There were some empty seats,yes, but the seats were far more than 1/2 full. I felt this need to be pointed out by someone who was actually at the track. The racing was great through out the field. This is my favorite track and I live 15 minutes from Bristol.

Anonymous said...

Non t.v. note, but was mentioned in the beginning of the article: Hendrick is nobody's friend. He hired Dale Jr. for his merchandising, and stuck Mark Martin in the R & D car. He is no ones' friend. Never has been. As for the t.v. coverage, I still wish that ALL networks would show a COMPLETE pit stop. It's always the right side tire changes, and then right before they finish the left side, they cut to another cars' pit stop.(Incomplete, of course) It's as if MTV suddenly got involved in the broadcasts. You know, for the short attention span crowd. Digger still must die a horrible death. I can't believe Fox paid for an actual souvenier trailer, and even more baffling, people were actually buying that crap! I can't wait until the race that I go to, because I won't pull no punches when I approach that trailer. No worries, people, just a little Freedom of Speech. LOL.
I'm just glad that we didn't have to listen to the plane crash story for the millionth time. And how many Racebreaks do we need? Unfortunately, it's the same thing in the other sports. Football: four downs and a punt, and then, 'Here's what you missed so far." Baseball: three innings and a recap of what you missed. Does every network exec think they are the only ones that went to school and got an education? We are not stupid. Quit dumbing us down to your level.

Anonymous said...

I have eaten Hotdogs, those nasty things aren't hotdogs, I have no idea what is in them, but they are NASTY
They probably are to keep the price at $2.00 because they only pay 2 cents each for them

Ziggy said...

Looking at the digger cam photo, notice that a screw is missing & laying off to the side. Is there a message here ??

Ziggy said...

Check that .... 3 screws are just laying around !!!

Anonymous said...

Tough race to watch for me, Larry's and DW's screeching voices, like fingernails in a chalkboard, and that stupid digger still appearing way too much. I see no light at the end of the tunnel for the FOX people, looking forward to TNT.

The Track Girl said...

Three screws!
Where's our caution!?
Just kidding. A better broadcast with less Digger. Looking forward to leaving Fox behind.

Newracefan said...

Was OK coverage, REALLY REALLY NEED Rundowns at least 2 x during the race and preferrably more. I get the Hendrick deal and all 4 cars did finish in the top 10 but please even this 48 fan was tired of all the HMS talk. I have other drivers I follow and they were also doing fairly well and I needed the leader board to keep track of how they were doing because they only talked HMS and Denny. I do appreciate the limited Digger but I'm really afraid it was because there was no infield grass for Digger to play in at Bristol and Martinsville and he'll be back at Texas :( Top ten over the line at the checkers is better than we were getting so I'm happy with babysteps at this point. Still think there are too many speed/car camera shots and not enought widers shots but I've been complaining about that for forever and it's is somewhat better that last year (or I've gotten use to it and I'm numb). Won't even discussion the Hotel or should I call it the comedy show.

Kenn Fong said...


I was glad to see they abandoned the set and just used a cocktail table on pit road for "Victory Lane." I might be alone in this, but I don't need to see the crowd waving every time the director calls a wide shot.

It makes a lot more sense to be right there in the center of the action. I don't know where they put the set, but this location seems to be more sensible.

West Coast Kenny
Alameda, California

red said...

well, i'm still pondering the pre-race/during the race issue myself. to me, it's as if fox hasn't decided what purpose their pre-race show serves and so lots of "stuff" that belongs there bleeds in to the race broadcast itself.
for example: we all knew brakes would be a topic for discussion at m'ville. i assume (as i did not watch) that it was somewhat covered in pre-race, yes? and then, we get an incomplete explanation during green flag racing from hammond as well as ongoing discussion by waltrip about the size of the brake package on the gibbs cars (and yes, there IS some sort of size/envy joke embedded in there, i'm certain!)
another example: the m'ville hotdogs. that is clearly pre-race fluff and yet it was harped upon ad nauseum during the race. ditto the logano package piece and, for that matter, any other pre-packaged piece featuring a driver talking about anything when said driver is actually RACING!
fox needs to decide what each part of their broadcast is intended to do and stick with it. is pre-race for entertainment and light pieces? then keep them all there. is it for hard, technical knowledge? then commit to that and i'll watch. but make a decision and stick with it. i tune in for a race, not all the other crap.

as for the overall broadcast: not so terrific for me. yes, less digger but no thru the field and i still don't know what happened to vickers at the end. fox is also continuing to over-focus on top 5-7 cars, regardless of who they are, and ignoring the midpack racing even when young mr busch was mired back there. where were the pit reports about who was taking what on the pit stops and what happened? and i second one point from anon@12:42am: a pit stop is often comprised of BOTH sides of the car and yet we only get to see one.
big miss for me is another technical one: discussion was started, then dropped, on the black smoke from the toyota tailpipes. i know for a fact that the 88 car complained about the smoke, how it was burning his eyes and how he didn't recall it being this bad last year. so, fox crew (hammond, waltrip and larry mac in particular) how about following up on that one, huh?
i wanted to enjoy the race but all the silliness intruded. sad. in my opinion, ratings are down not b/c fans aren't interested nor b/c the internet is drawing eyes away from the tv screen. ratings are down b/c the quality of the race broadcast has dropped. it's just that simple to me.

The Loose Wheel said...

Red, glad we agree.

The toyota smoke is less a Toyota issue and more a JGR/Kyle Busch issue. Honestly, the FOX guys really don't know exactly what they are doing which is why the answers for it are broken. What I gathered between SPEED and FOX is that the Gibbs guys are tweeking their carbs to allow it in a roundabout way to help slow the car in sync with the new brake package they are running. However, the lack of willingness from the Gibbs camp to talk about it probably means it is still something experimental and something they are trying to keep to themselves.

Gonna be interesting to see what they've got come the road courses and maybe Loudon.

red said...

thanks, david, for the additional insight. i'd been reading "unburned fuel" but that all by itself just doesn't make sense to me. i had been taught that unburned fuel is seen igniting from the side pipes, now located on the right side of the car (and isn't that just gotta be nasty for the tire changers on that right rear? those pipes have to be uber-hot to be near.) but this was coming out of the tailpipe of the JGR cars, which spoke of something different to me. dinking with the carb itself seems more likely. sure gotta admire those engine builders at JGR: they are "creative." wonder if nascar will issue a bulletin this week? and maybe i'll shoot an email over to stock car science and see if she can get more info.

and i have to say: i did see it on all JGR cars, not just the 18. it was more pronounced on his, especially under hard braking.

finally, vickers' car sprung an oil leak on the last pit stop which required 4 laps to fix. sure wish i'd learned that from the race broadcast . . .

The Loose Wheel said...

Ah red thanks for that info on Brian.

As for the exhaust heat, when I was living in Mooresville I knew a bunch of people that were working on getting up through crews and I never heard anyone complain about the exhaust heat. If anything the brake dust is worse. Considering the car idles at 3,000 RPM its an interesting though.

What Larry Mac said, is that his best guess is that the JGR guys have found a way to get the carb to sorta mock up a jake brake type similarity which helps the car slow which is where the smoke comes from. I think they actually did hit on it during the telecast, but no one had alot of in depth info because no one really knows what they are doing.

Part of it though was something that KILLED denny all day and that was the fact he felt the engine had a stumble coming off the corners which was why he could do so well through the first 2/3rds of the corner but couldnt get off so well. He felt he was lacking power for whatever reason. Dont know if that changed before the end of the race I only remember him talking about it early on and never got any further follow up.

Anonymous said...


Did you ALSO know, after all that hot dog pushing, THEY RAN OUT OF BUNS? My 8 and 11-year old sons had to go to the bathroom with about 150 laps to go, I figured while we're missing the action already, might as well hit the concession stand and get my boys their first famous Martinsville Speedway hot dogs! We go through the line only to have a guy from the Ferrum University football team tells us they're out of BUNS! I go to another stand - same story. I guess they ran out of pen and paper, too - otherwise they could have put up a SIGN and keep me from wasting my time away from watching the RACE that I CAME for. But how could they run out? No truck race on Saturday, so shouldn't they have had even MORE buns on-hand?

Tom said...

For all the improvements, (less digger, more wide shots) It has become clear that less is more when covering a race. We often pine for the days of Jenkins, Ned, and Benny, which was a time where the race was front and center. I used to get excited when the broadcast started 15 minutes before the green flag, rather than the pace lap! All the cutesy nonsense like hotdogs and fried bologna needs to be passing mentions, at best. Chris Myers is one of the best in the business, let him show it! Stop the stooge act! Again what we are seeing is what that character Hill sees as important! He is the one who needs to go! Racing can be fun without the charades! I can't tell you how much I enjoyed the F1 sunday morning, listening to informed, excited announcers HALF A WORLD AWAY from the action! Thats how a race should be treated!

Inverness, FL

GinaV24 said...

I was at the race, so I can't speak to the TV coverage, but there were empty seats, but there were quite a few people there which made me happy cuz I love this little track. It's fun to watch the racing and although I do miss the old car which I think made for better racing, there was a lot of action and I enjoyed it. I listened to MRN to keep up because the scoreboard tells the position of each car, but not whether they are a lap down or not. I gave up using the TV feed on my scanner since they don't tell me enough information. We got lucky, it was a sunny day and although my favorite didn't win -- it was a good race to watch -- I hate mile and a half cookie cutter tracks, give me a short track any day.