Friday, August 28, 2009
Live Blogging The Camping World Trucks From Chicagoland (8:30PM ET SPEED)
Krista Voda starts the show as the Camping World Truck Series gets to run under the lights at Chicagoland Speedway.
In this version of The Setup, Voda will look back at the Bristol race and also dig up two old truck races from Chicagoland. Her featured interview is with driver Terry Cook and reporter Ray Dunlap goes wakeboarding with driver TJ Bell.
Once the action gets underway, it will be Rick Allen on the play-by-play. Allen began the day with CWTS qualifying and then called the ARCA/REMAX race. He winds up the evening with the trucks.
Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip are the analysts for SPEED. Parsons supplies the knowledge, Waltrip supplies the enthusiasm. Fans are divided on Waltrip's presence in the booth, but there is no doubt the overall energy level is higher with Waltrip on the TV team.
Ray Dunlap and Adam Alexander are handling the big pit road. This should be quite a night for them with lots of potential stories to update on and off pit road. There may be quite a bit of "starting and parking," so look for Allen to make a choice whether or not to deal with this issue.
The biggest shame of the truck series is that after the pre-race, Voda is not added to the pit road team. This would give SPEED a third pit road presence and the direct effect of that would be an increased flow of information to the viewers.
Right now, the CWTS is struggling to generate any excitement except for the top few trucks. The old days of groups of trucks fanning out and racing are mostly gone. The haves and the have-nots are easy to see on the track as the top teams usually start to lap trucks early in the race.
While Chicagoland is a nice facility, NASCAR is going to be rethinking why the CWTS is here. This series was born on the bullrings and may well serve the sport better on shorter and more directly competitive tracks. Should the Kyle Busch and Ron Hornaday's of the world pull away and make the show a two truck TV event, things may well change down the road.
SPEED's presentation of this series has no cutaway truck, no infield pit center and only two pit reporters. The focus is on the racing and the emphasis is on the teams. Hopefully, there will be enough competitive trucks tonight to keep everyone entertained.
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