Saturday, October 17, 2009

Your Turn: Sprint Cup Series From Lowe's Motor Speedway on ABC

Saturday night under the lights ABC carried the Sprint Cup Series race from the Lowe's Motor Speedway.

Alen Bestwick anchored the pre-race show that featured Rusty Wallace and Brad Daugherty. Tim Brewer was in the Tech Center. This show has four pit reporters. Shannon Spake, Jamie Little, Vince Welch and Dave Burns handled the interviews.

Jerry Punch handled the play-by-play coverage with Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree alongside as the analysts. Marcos Ambrose was the in-race reporter.

This race featured long green flag runs, green flag pitstops and a cluster of caution flags in the final 40 laps. ESPN's NASCAR team made good pictures and the sound was solid.

There was one caution for rain, but no red flag period. This race was a fast-paced affair with cautious drivers trying to stay in the Chase. Several big names faded early and were lapped. One pit crew member was injured on pit road and transferred to the hospital.

We would like your comments on this ABC telecast produced by the ESPN TV team that has been working together since February on the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series telecasts.

To add your opinion about the TV coverage, just click on the comments button below. We appreciate your comments which are read by many other fans, NASCAR media members and TV folks. Thanks for taking the time to give us your comments.


The Track Girl said...

ALL I want, anymore, is to see the whole field come across the damn start/finish line.


TexasRaceLady said...

I'm to the point of thinking that banging my head against the wall for the duration of a race would be more enjoyable and not nearly so painful as watching these travesties of broadcasts.

The constant switching of camera makes me nauseous. Not setting the field after pits stops. Covering no one but Chasers.

Absolute disaster and mayhem presented as "coverage."

Renee said...

I can't wait for Fox & DW to come back. That's all. Fun messing on Twitter during the race with you all though.

Debbie227 said...

I give up! I quit! I am waving the white flag! I am never watching another ESPN/ABC telecast for the rest of the year. I am that frustrated with the JJ show and the monotone Jerry Punch I am listening to MRN/PRN. Need I repeat myself week after week with the crappy camera work, the in car camera angle naseau, the no field run downs, etc?

One of your tweets said that the media types read the comments. While that is awesome, I would hope they took them to heart to make changes. I am convinced they don't care and WON'T make changes. If they did care, Bestwick would be in the booth by now and the producer/director would be on the unemployment lines.
Someone tweet me when Bestwick is in the booth, until then I will be a loyal radio listener!

Bill Jordan said...

Seriously what is the point of watching anymore?

Disjointed, no drivers other then people in the chase.

Straight out lies but pit reporters and Doc.

Crewmen get injured no report of it even happening let alone a update on condition.

If it is not talked about in the pre race script meeting then it doesn't happen on the track.

When AP and other ESPN reporters are making fun of you on twitter during the race, that might be a sign.

Smokey_14 said...

This I just posted from the last blog:

This is what I said on Twitter after last week when Jimmie Johnson won and took the points lead at Fontana:
"Now the Chase for the Sprint Cup is gonna get boring."
And from what I've been seeing through the Live Leaderboard and PRN, the Chase is indeed getting boring again and for the fourth year in a row. And it's gonna get worse next week since they're heading to Martinsville. Tonight is proving, once again, why we hate the Chase for the Sprint Cup and want it gone. After tonight, I'm calling it in for the year. Unless there is a big turnaround at either Martinsville or Talladega, I'm through with the 2009 season and will wait until the 2010 Daytona 500. I refuse to sit through all this obsession towards Jimmie Johnson and how he will dominate every single week! Forget this stupid Chase! I'M DONE!!!!!!!!!!!

Trinity929 said...

I dont know what to say about that. The past few weeks, I have watched the races in fast forward because I was not home. This week I sat here and watched 95% of it and outside of a few second of good racing, I was frustrated. I was frustrated with the nonsense from the reporters, the lack of coverage of the field, the lack knowing who was where and having to wait on the slow azz ticker at the top of the screen and I was pissed with the dumb ESPN ticker at the bottom of the screen. I have to admit that my initial reason for following this sport was because when I watched my first race on TV i learned a hell-of-a-lot about racing. Now I learn a lot about NOTHING. I learn about commercials, and Jimmie Johnson, and pit members with lights on their helmets. I think I really miss TNT, and hearing more from Allen Bestwick and I even miss Wally D....there has gotta be a better way.

Wasn't there a time when Nascar was winning awards for its race coverage? Well, there have to be some changes coming...or they will continue to lose ratings...and I will simply get my updates from twitter and watch the race with no sound and listen to it online as best i can.

Seriously...I looked down for a second and the post race was

Anonymous said...

I really don't know what to say anymore. ESPN has been doing this since 2007. They cover the Nationwide series all season and have had the Cup series the past 2.5 months. Yet there is no improvement.

The Good:
- Andy Petree: Out of a slump and was the only light in the booth
- Allen Bestwick: Grabs my attention and tells me more than Jerry Punch does. We need a switch, now.

The Bad:
- Camera work: Tight shots, in-car abuse, and triple video boxes. Just when we were watching a good battle, they would switch cameras. There was no flow. They managed to ruin every single triple split on pit road. Wide shots of a group of cars racing were rarely found. ESPN ruined the ending by following Jimmie Johnson, 2 clumps of cars individually and off the Jimmie Johnson again. Sorry to everyone else ignored.
- Pit Reporters: Went from such a high last night to such a low tonight. Dumb questions, silly mistakes, & lack of reporting.
- Jerry Punch: Repeated his cliches and stats in his monotone voice as usual. We got no recaps. I got more information (& faster) from this blog than the booth.
- Usual issues: Same Tim Brewer segment repeated again, same helmet cam under green flag racing (twice). The most embarassing part to watch was ESPN replaying Jimmie Johnson's victory lane celebration from last weekend during green flag racing.

I really don't think ESPN cares anymore. Just crown JJ the champ and lets go back to Daytona and FOX!

Overall Racing: * / ***** (Awful)

Tripp said...

As fun as it was to blog with y'all I think it's the last time this season. I'm going back to TiVo each race and do my own version of "NASCAR In A Hurry".

This whole broadcast was silly. Dr. Punch was low and slow as usual. DJ seemed lost at times and only Andy P was anything close to on top of it. I think Tim Brewer is the berries but to waste him on the nth rerun of the dropped valve animation is criminal. Is he making that much money that he can't quit? I hope so, actually.

The truck couldn't stop playing with the toys. Two full screen, green flag pit stops for a non-chase driver that most wouldn't trade a pair of manky socks for so they could show off their helmet cam. Concurrently, they ignored their in-race reporter, Ambrose, after the start even though he was on the lead lap for most of the race. Don't they know that there's a sizable group out here that like "Koala Meat"?

Aside from restarts, there didn't appear to be much racing on track. But viewers will never know because the director refused to show it. Perhaps everyone should take in next weekend's race in a bubble bath listening to a radio stream.

This was rubbish. Nothing more. Between the poor coverage and the prospect for another win by the 48, it's probably all done for this viewer for this year.

ESPN, you stink.

Anonymous said...

I have on ESPN News and I think they just stated that they were going to cover the Post Race Media event before they went to commercial break

Chris said...

Is it me or does the coverage get worst every week, they cover the race like a plastic bag in a windy day, and they wonder why the rating are declining!! I wonder they are watching the same race on TV as most of us do.

Anonymous said...

ESPN News back after commercial and I think they misspoke ( imagine that ?) and they are not going to cover live the Post Race Media interviews. They have Football media Q & A now. Doesn't seem like they are in a hurry to get to Charlotte

Daly Planet Editor said...

Update: There was only one highlight package played and a re-air of Dave Burns with JJ in Victory Lane.

The ESPNEWS anchor thought Dave Burns was Mike Massaro.

Now midnight ET and still nothing about NASCAR.

How much longer can the remaining fans endure this incredibly bad treatment?

Unknown said...

So, I started out watching on tv, had my chatroom up, twitter up, race view up. Slowly I stopped focusing on what was on tv. I was having too much fun talking with friends and reading other comments. Then a friend stopped by. He was here for 1.5 hours. I went back to follow the race, and paying attention to the broadcast didn't even cross my mind. I knew I would get more information from other people. With the free Trackpass this weekend, my friends were listening to different drivers and we were sharing what each one was saying and how their cars were. Of course we weren't listening to the 48, 24, or 5, so we got a ton more information that what would have been given on the broadcast.

As for cutting out before interviewing. My local tv station promo'd their news by saying after the race. Not at 11 or 11:30, but AFTER the race. That to me means the news would would start after the complete broadcast, including interviews of the top 5.

Good thing JP had time to get in the promo for Desperate Housewives and we got to to see JJ drive around the track from the in-car camera and his burnout. Time well spent.

Daly Planet Editor said...

I will say this, lots of fans of popular drivers who never made the coverage tonight for a wide variety of reasons emailed me and said they were done for the season.

That may be the saddest comment of all.

Nina said...

Ok, I know that it was cold in Charlotte but ....

The ESPN / ABC coverage was even colder.

Just like most of the guys on the track ... we can't wait for the year to be over.

Anonymous said...

I mean what is it going to take for ESPN to change the way they cover the races. This disastrous kind of coverage happens from race to race and obviously they(ESPN/ABC) must be thinking that they are doing a great job. Many have voiced that Jerry Punch struggles as a PXP announcer and it has become so obvious.Change is needed badly but I don't know if that change is ever going to come.

Haus14 said...

Instead of rehashing what has happened in the ESPN races over the last 2 years, let's preview ESPN's coverage of next weeks race at Martinsville. The pre-race story lines will be can anyone catch Jimmie Johnson and how bad will brake wear be. We will see at least 2 green flag pit stops with the helmet cam from the 98 pit crew during green flag racing while the 98 car is already 2 laps down. Tim Brewer will come on and explain how a valve breaks due to wear and tear on the engine from the short track. He will also have to come back and show how the brakes heat up the tire beads due to heavy breaking at the short track. ESPN will cover the first 10 laps and then promptly take a commercial break regardless of what is going in the green flag racing. They will come back for 3 laps, plug a sponsor and then take another break only to miss the first caution for the 12 car getting into the wall. Of course when they do come back for a caution they will show a triple box for the pit stops only to take them down 8.3 seconds into the stop to begin covering individual cars. They will then go immediately back to commercial break and come back just in time to take the green flag, but will not reset the field. How sad that ESPN's pathetic coverage is so predictable and is consistently bad every single week.

J_Fellenbaum said...

I don't know why I keep wasting my time to comment on these pathetic telecasts of Nascar coverage.

I will say this, I watched the entrie race, every lap today, gave ESPN one final chance at a track where the action is always good.

But I officially give up. I am done. The rest of the races have green flags in the middle of Sunday Football and Playoff Baseball. I am quiting as a racing fan first, for the first time in my life, and I am going to be a Football and Baseball fan first. I am not going to tune in at all for the coverage. I'm just freakin done.

Unless there is a major shift in the coverage, I'm done it. See you guys in Daytona for Fox coverage....hope Digger has died by then.

Just some of the crap from tonight:
-#55 Jackman injured by the #83 (a Chase driver). So even if you don't care about the injury, the possible damage to a chase drivers car you'd think would pipe up ESPN's interest...

#98's Crew Cam during LIVE green flag racing...ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
This is the kinda feature, that is unnecessary but nice to give those pit guys a bit of the spotlight..use it going out to a commercial instead of that crappy oldies music.

-Using Triple Splits for Caution Flag stops, only to switch to a close up cam on the #48 team finishing his pit stop..OMG..please. Just stay on the wide pit road shot once guys start finishing their stops..ugh

-Using FULL screen during Green Flag stops...UGH. Really? Green flag stops span 5-15 laps. That is a large chunk of the race to basically go blind in. Keep the current race leader in one box, and the stops in another. It lets us fans keep perspective...

- Failure to update some lesser visabilty guys having good run...Truex, Brad K, etc. Had top 15 runs all night, but didn't hear much on them.

-No #9 interview at the end of the night..even though he finished top 3...AND he's in the chase

- Terrible final 2 lap call. "There's two to go"..5 seconds later, "JJ on the lap to go." WHAT? Stop looking at your ticker and watch the dang race!

-Not a very good job of showing the entire field finishing....

Other notes:

How many times did they show speeds at the line tonight? Once? When the action slows down, especially during a long green flag run, use this for a couple laps and let the field scream by, it gives perspective and shows who's running fast....

Jerry Punch...Oh my...Please. Just make it stop. A new PxP man is needed so bad. Jerry is such a good man, but this is not his job. Hopefully he will find it in his soul to retire and not punish us, his fans.

I could go on and on, but look..MLB playoffs in Extra Innings...even if it is the Yankees, I think I'd rather watch it.

Newracefan said...

Watching media center on they are waiting for JJ. ESPN had football when Kahne and Kenseth were talking.

As far as the race goes I very much want JJ to win his forth but I also love racing. All a can say is that what ESPN shows is not racing it's a show, and not a very good one. I know there is racing there cause I can hear it on the radio and see it with my little Pit Command circles and read it on Twitter. Fox had many faults but damn this is just awful. I am actually starting to miss Digger.

red said...

an open letter to espn:
i'm wondering just how much disdain you have for nascar and the fans of the sport? are you now so angry that you bought the sport with this expensive and long contract that you're just throwing substandard broadcasts at us each week? or do you truly not have the expertise and understanding of nascar to deviate from the script that's been discussed in the days leading up to the race?

there have been pages of solid, specific feedback offered to you via this and other sites. there have been emails and letters from fans, comments on nascar fan council surveys and plummeting ratings.

and yet, in the face of all that, you still determinedly and stubbornly stick to your same formula and essentially tell us, the fans, that we're wrong, that we're ignorant of what goes into a great race broadcast and that, because you are the 'professionals,' we should just sit down, stop talking, be quiet and be grateful we're even getting to see anything on the screen.

it doesn't work that way any more, espn folks. we now have options, choices, alternatives. we can keep up with our sport in news ways, listening to new (and old!) voices, watching new images. we can twitter and blog and online chat and watch other sources. we can tune out your sponsors and dvr the race so we can speed thru the bulk of the broadcast w/o even listening to the on-air talent.

and we're doing exactly that: we're making informed choices, turning to sources who respect us and our sport. and that means we're tuning you out and may opt to not tune back in to your portion of the season next year.

you are no longer "the only game on town" for nascar fans. we are responding to your substandard work by turning off the tv, cancelling or not beginning subscriptions to the magazine, not rewarding your website with hits. some of us have already tuned you out; more will do so as the rest of the season plays out. you are perilously close to a tipping point with us, espn.

so, good luck w/the balance of the season. you've already eff'ed it up so badly for many fans that they have simply disappeared and won't be back until february. others will hang on b/c we're race fans and we love our sport and can't turn our backs on it for even a week. but make no mistake: if you offer nothing new next year, if you refuse to accept fan feedback as having value and knowledge, we WILL punish you across every part of your empire.

tipping point, espn, tipping point. what will you choose to do?

Haus14 said...

and to think that our biggest complaint about FOX was the dreaded Digger cam. those were the days...

Dot said...

@ Tripp, we'll miss you. Ditto to your comments. And yes, I love Marcos.

Thanks BSPN for poisoning Marcos and then making it worse by ignoring him. There were enough caution laps to talk to him. He had a better run than some of the Chasers.

It looks as if JJ is on the way to #4. All JJ all the time for the next five races. Oh boy for us.

Unknown said...

ESPNNews Post race coverage begins at 12:07 am

peggyann said...

Don't know what to say other than knowing what is going on in a race requires radio, The Daly Planet blog and Twitter. The TV is on but muted, and I glance up at it once in awhile. A bonus is when the picture matches what the radio is talking about. Can't say I like it, but it is kind of challenging switching between the various web sites. Makes the time go faster.

I have been a huge Allen Bestwick fan forever. I don't know if we will ever have him for P x P again. I'll continue to badmouth ESPN (it isn't hard) till we do. And how about a whole new production team to go with him.

Beating A Dead Horse said...

I have played the Sailing Game tonight and will not be able to comment until tomorrow about tonight's broadcast coverage.

However, there must be many people in the business that may not be in their mid-fifties but still suitable and capable in the booth. These individuals must be considered in a search for the resolution of the issue that plague NASCAR on ESPN.

On the other hand, ESPN may consider the bugs in their race coverage to be features and are conferencing 24/7 on means to monetize these features to their end users via innovative language in their EULA's. I should stop now, huh?

Sophia said...

What I don't get, now granted, I paid little attention to the tv, looked at computer, twitter, here, email, listened to PRN and surfed the net for news...

Why is EVERYBODY so angry tonight? ESP U has been like this for years?

Thus I was mad months ago, but now I know THIS IS TYPICAL.

You just can't get comfortable and expect the Race on TV to entertain you. :(

My brother from Seattle was here this week. Been a fan 20 years. He now DVR's the race and watches it all in 45 minutes!

How many others here do that?

Richard in N.C. said...

I still think a whole lot of the blame must go to the suits in Bristol and the tech's in the truck if the whole basis for the broadcast is what the tech folks in the truck think should be flung up on the screen, and that is what the guys in the booth are supposed to call - but I am a fan of JP, and pained by the position he's put in.

I've been a fan long enough that I am fascinated by what JJ and Chad are on the verge of doing - something none of the recent HOF inductees were able to do. I think I am watching history being made, which I find exciting, but apparently EESPN cannot get that across. And then there are drivers way back there somewhere fighting to get into the top 25 or 35 for next year. There's important stuff going on - except apparently in the all-knowing halls of the World Wide Leper in sports. Sad.

For all those that say NASCAR doesn't care what the fans think, that is supposition - EESPN shows daily they don't care.

Dot said...

@ red, take a bow. Brava.

kbaskins said...

an open letter to red:

Best. Letter. Ever.

You seriously rock! I agree wholeheartedly with everything you said.


red said...

@dot: thanks but i'll pass on the bow and take a drink instead, if it's all the same.

tonight was just so demoralizing but now i'm just plain angry and looking for revenge!

red said...

@kbaskins: many thanks. i'm not a fan of threats but tonight just exhausted my tolerance. espn WILL feel the consequences of their choices, if not this season, then next.

the choice is theirs.

Lou said...

unfortunatly, the first 11 remarks seem to resemble some of the same fustrations i had this summer.

I actually watched most of the race on abc(some on hotpass).I love Saturday night racing under the lights

A couple of things caught my attention. Sailing in the prerace from JP, full screen pit stops during green flag racing and a major disconnect IMO between the truck and the booth. best that i may remember for a good connect was when the 16 spun and saved his car and there was a pit reporter in the pit to cover the action. that is something i expect and will not settle for less. the worst was when the 88 lost a transmission and the truck caught that, played radio communication as such and it seemed like forever til the booth even mentioned it. is anybody talking to anybody?

the other which i find on a more regular basis since espn/abc took over coverage is how i know so much more about live racing as it is happening from other sources and not espn/abc. But that can be another column and can of worms for anther day

I consider myself a loyal fan of the sport. it is just that junk like this is not good for the health of the sport. wish i had answers. but i do not. I really wish for better coverage next year, this year is another lost cause, even though i still watch some of the races.

i remember this summer when i said i was done. took a break, came back and nothing changed. yes red, i should have just slept, but i love robby gordon and was glad he finished the race for 30th. that is more than a few others in this race. but if you watched the race you would never know

Smokey_14 said...

I am just so lucky not to have turned my TV to BSPN's toilet coverage. As a matter of fact, my TV was, and still is, tuned to Game 2 of the ALCS on FOX! Their Jimmie Johnson obsession/Chase-ism/terrible camera shots/annoying Full Throttle/lousy pit reporters/idiotic Tim Brewer/annoying Jerry Punch/lack of post-race is, well, I don't know how to say it! Brian France, YOU WANNA KNOW WHY TV RATINGS ARE DOWN?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IT'S BECAUSE ESPN/ABC'S COVERAGE ABSOLUTELY SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU WANT TO GET RATINGS BACK UP NEXT YEAR?! THEN LET FOX AND TNT SPLIT THE SEASON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Erik said...

Everytime I would start to far a feel for where a race was, ABC/ESPN would cut to commercials. Then when they came back, instead of updating me, I got more talk of Bank of America, a new series on ABC, or some other plug. Very tiring....

Jonathan said...

I dont know about you guys but the race to me got a little better at the end but still no excitment compared to mrn. But I will say this, when I press the active button on my direct tv controller It shows the top 5 most watch programs on direct tv, and most of the race i checked frequently and 80% of the time Nascar racing was the most watched program in the sports category, but thats nothing it was number one in regional and national programs. so that means nascar was the most watched program on all of tv w direct tv. so dont know why the ratings say were down... any thoughts

Anonymous said...

There are so many problems with the ESPN broadcast, it isn't even funny. Most of the problems I don't expect a solution to, as they relate to issues that are completely over the heads of the non-race fans running the show over there.

But what I don't understand is Jerry Punch. I simply don't understand how ESPN can have him on the air and not be thoroughly embarrassed. He is a travesty in the play-by-play role. An abomination. The race broadcasts under Punch are just soooooo boring.

I would do anything to get ABC/ESPN executives with decision making power and be able to give them an audio presentation: Two clips of the race, one with Jerry Punch and one with the MRN crew calling the action. I honestly believe that if NASCAR on television could be presented in an MRN style, they'd have one of the hottest things on Sunday television. Instead it is worse than golf. Seriously, watching the PGA champsionship, is more exciting than 200mph racing? How can ESPN tolerate this?

Sophia said...


I was posting when you posted. Great letter but I fear ESPN is so huge, they really do not care if some of us stop watching. Kind of like when P&G ticks off people and some refuse to buy their stuff. Well P&G makes so many products, that not buying a few items, they do not care.

I feel ESPN is the same.

I know JD's explained NASCAR sold the rights and ESPN can do what they want but HOW can this rubbish be allowed to air? Does NASCAR not see the connection to bad ratings?

Marty in the booth last night could NOT save the train wreck of bad camera work.

How is the best damn coverage only 6 races a year via TNT? I savored every moment of it, too!

I will never understand how this is allowed.

I tried explaining to my sister and 89 yr old mother (who like to watch golf) to tape up 3/4 of their screens and try ENJOYING golf with so little of the game being shown.

Because we are not being shown NASCAR RACES as they should be shown! Nor have we been for 3 years.

Anonymous said...

I listened to PRN but had several feeds up and I checked in every so often to see what BSPN had up.

Nothing I saw made me want to turn off the radio and turn them on. Sadly I missed the times with Allen :(

When I flipped over saw crew cams, full screen nonsense and the Jimmie Johnson show :(

Anonymous said...

They didn't even talk about the crew member who was taken to the HOSPITAL! Plus at the end of the race they interview 35th place Montoya and Jimmie (1st), Matt (2nd), Jeff 4th but no 3rd place Kahne when he ran up front most of the night and gained THREE spots in the chase.

Cooter said...

The girl reporter repeatedly asked veteran crew chiefs "do you think you made the right adjustments?"
Somehow, through gritted teeth, all were able to politely give some sort of acceptable answer. I would have said, "Do you think you've asked a stupid question."
I won't give up watching NASCAR no matter what, but watch nothing else on ESPN. Not ever.

Ritchie said...

To the Daly Planet Posters,
I generally have a lot of respect for you guys. You put a lot of time and effort into watching a race and commenting on it during an entire event. I can't multitask well enough to do that, so kudo's to all of you.

That being said, there is a thread of discourse that keeps flowing week after week that I find troubling. What Jimmie Johnson is on the verge of doing is historic on a MUCHO GRANDE scale. Not just in a NASCAR paradigm, but on a global sports paradigm. (Just for the record, I'm not a JJ fan.)

Think about it, how many teams in all of sports have accomplished something like this? Steelers, UCLA Basketball, Schumacher? Hell, I can't even think of anyone else. Everyone needs to calm down and realize that we may be about to watch history unfold.

This doesn't mean I except ESPN's mediocre coverage; I'm don't. However, I become very discouraged when someone posts that they aren't going to watch because JJ wins another race and ESPN is talking about JJ. My God, they should be talking about JJ more than everyone else. He may be on the verge of history and any true NASCAR fan should be grateful for a chance to be alive as it is happenning. By ya'lls standard, NBC shouldn't have talked about Phelps in the Olympics because there was an equally important ping-pong match happening. Come-on people, we may never see this happen again.

I know it is frustrating that your driver is doing well and nobody at ESPN cares, but if you can't watch a race, tweeter, post, blackberry, and whatever else ya'll are doing and appreciate what is unfolding in front of you, you probably should stop watching because your not a true fan anyway.

red said...

@sophia; so here's a plan for addressing this: hit espn where it matters most to them: their sponsors.

next season, if nothing has changed, i will contact each and every sponsor of the broadcasts and complain. i will tell them i will not purchase/use their product as long as espn doesn't change the broadcast.

i will also make an effort to get to one or two more tracks next year. i'll continue to do dover twice (see ya' there, nrf and lou!) but i'm thinking of adding richmond and i've already started saving the $$ to make that happen. i will support the tracks and the merchants there.

i will also contact local mrn, prn stations, make note of their sponsors, purchase their product when i can and write them to thank them for supporting our sport.

i'll continue to hammer espn in the nascar fan council each and every survey.

and, as much as i like marty smith, i will stay off the espn site, not adding a single click to the counts. turning off espn tv won't have an impact b/c i'm not a nielsen viewer and i hardly watch espn anymore anyway.

yes, these are small actions from a single fan but i will do what i can do. i'm under no pretense that my actions alone will make any difference at all to the conglomerate that is espn. but if a coupla hundred more fans did some or all of this, it might create a small blip. and a small blip is the start of a tipping point.

@anon@1:33am: did espn ever correct the misinformation about what happened? although i wasn't tuned in when it happened, apparently the info put out there by espn was that the 83 hit the jackman for the 55. from twitter a bit later on in the race, we were told that the jackman collided with one of his fellow crewman. apparently, the 83 wasn't actually involved.

if i can learn that information as a fan watching the race and multi-tasking, why can't the "professionals" at espn?

Ritchie said...

My previous post was a preamble to this ESPN coverage Post...

I think most agree that Doc was sleepwalking as usual, but what I was surprised by was Dale Jarret's long periods of quiet. Was he sick and having to step out of the booth, or did Doc put him to sleep too? There were times that minutes would lapse and he wouldn't talk. He definitely wasn't on his game.

Definitely didn't do a good job of passing along information to the viewers. There was one time that a caution came out because someone had gotten into the wall and I think they didn't tell us that for one or two caution lapse. I became totally confused during that period.

I think it would have been a good idea during to final lap to have done a split screen to show the Gordon/Lagono battle while showing JJ crossing the line. I get that it is important to show the leader crossing the line, thus officially ending the race, however its not important enough to use all 42" of my screen to show it.

ESPN really screwed up the Montoya problems. If you spend that much time talking about his rear, quarter-panel why does ESPN then show JPM's incar camera of him hitting the car in front of him? Big screw up.

Not ESPN's fault, but this race would be great at 400 laps. I imagine the cold, wet, fans in Concord, NC would agree as well. That looked like a swine flu breeding ground.

Vicky D said...

I wasn't able to comment last night. The only reason my NON-CHASE favorite guy was shown during the broadcast was that he led a lot of the race but otherwise we wouldn't have seen him. There is just too much emphasis on the chasers and not enough on the others. Even in the Houston Chronicle this morning one small column about the race last night. And they only posted the top 10 in points. ESPN needs a change in the booth, but I don't think we'll see it this year.

Zieke said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Donna DeBoer said...

Because my neighbor's house was burning last night I missed the race trying to keep mine from catching fire, so I missed the usual radio/internet/TV pic combo that I usually do. I DVR'd and tried to watch the straight TV coverage this morning. I was thru it in about 55 min.

Like Dale Jr. I don't know what to do and I'm frustrated beyond belief. Done with ESPN-only coverage, I'll never watch just them again and I'm seriously thinking about not feeding the TV ratings at all anymore even with DVR, just going radio/internet from now on.

As for not liking Johnson's record consecutive title run, I don't have to like it, I didn't like Yarborough's run either.

Anonymous said...

Ritchie: There are still 5 races left in the season. Anything can happen at the last 5 races and Jimmie Johnson might not win the championship. It is way to early for ESPN to put so much focus on him on his battle for 4 in a row. If there were 3 races left, I would understand. The Jimmie Johnson single car shots, Jimmie Johnson radio transmissions, Chad K camera shots watching his every move on the pit box, and replay of the JJ celebration last weekend during Green Flag RACING is extremely tiring. The obsession with points as of now and ignorance of non-chasers does not help my fustration. All I ask of ESPN at Martinsville is to cover the race first, championship second.

peggyann said...

A Post Script to the coverage: I watched a few minutes of NASCAR Now last night. I usually respect Mark and Ricky, but they were speculating on how JJ could have blown by Jeff in the final laps. JEFF ONLY TOOK TWO TIRES! He said that in his post-race interview. And I read it on Twitter. But I doubt that it was reported on TV, which I had muted. Don't think PRN ever said it.

It is really bad when things that basic just aren't covered.

Anonymous said...

Peggyann - I know Andy said it once. But nobody at ESPN listens to each other talk.

TexasRaceLady said...

@Ritchie 8:21AM

Ritchie, I've been watching my chosen sport since 1979. And, believe me, I appreciate what Johnson and Knaus are doing.

What I do NOT like is the ESPN obession with cramming it down my throat to the point that, according to TV, there is no other driver on the track.

My beef is with the coverage, or lack thereof, of the RACING. Show me what is happening with other drivers. Show me/tell me what is happening during pit stops. Example, WTH happened to the jackman on the 55?

Anonymous said...

I actually thought someone besides #48 would win. I was switching between South Carolina and Alabama game and the race. Once it was clear 48 had it in hand, I did not go back. Yea, yea, yea he is a talented driver and works harder than anyone else in the garage. Who cares? Those empty seats in Charlotte did not care nor do all those people who don't watch anymore care. I've been to 2 or 3 races in past few years and 48 won them all-in usual boring dominating fashion. I won't be going back for more. No way.

During the time that it seemed-hoping against hope-someone would catch 48, I was wondering-what are precise lap times of first and second and is second gaining? Seems to be I recall Benny Parsons, Ned Jarrett and Bob talking about those numbers regularly on ESPN.

And what about the finish order? Can't we see that as the cars cross the line?

I think NASCAR's problem is, separate from the problems the economy caused, no one is going to go see or watch a race that odds are the 48 is going to run away with. I've been a fan since I was a child in Charlotte in the 60s. NASCAR has managed to drive me away from something I loved more than any other sport for most of my life.

Oh, and now it seems they want me back. Consistent start times. Doesn't matter now. They've broken me of that routine.

One last thing. Two France's in the HOF? Couldn't have waited a year and put Pearson in? Does anyone think real fans are going to go to the HOF to see the second France honored? No is the answer.

darbar said...

OK guys. We all know that the ESPN/ABC coverage is bad. We all agree that Jerry Punch is out of his element. We all know that the camera work and direction of the races is pathetic. But, isn't there one other common denominator? God Awful Racing !! Nascar and TV can only see the Jimmie show. They can't see beyond their precious Chase the "historical" aspect of Johnson winning a fourth Cup.

But I say, if the racing were more competitive, if the races weren't predictable with knowing that only a Hendrick car is going to win, if ONLY every single car had a chance to win, don't you all think TV coverage would be forced to reflect that?

I left the sport and went over to the NFL and NHL once the Chase started. And now, that it appears that only two drivers have a chance to win the Cup, with FIVE races remaining, I think I'm going to be followed to that place of waiting until next season. But then again, we all know that the things we dislike from this season will only happen again next season. It will continue to be boring races, terrible coverage and a 95% chance of another Hendrick winning season. That spells boring for me.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard any more on the injury to the #55 Jackman? How serious was he injured or not? What is his current situation?

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 12:12PM,

Jayski and Scene Daily both have updated info. Imagine, a crew member injured, the medical team called to the pit and then he is transferred to the hospital and not a word of it on TV.

Makes you wonder if the pit reporter was on top of it and the producer turned them down or if the ESPN reporter assigned to that pit missed it.

The thing that I got the most email about was Jerry Punch repeatedly saying the coverage would switch to ESPNEWS once the ABC telecast was over.

Then, there was nothing except one highlight package and a repeat of the Dave Burns interview from the telecast.

ESPNEWS then cut into Chad and Jimmie in progress in the media center. It was not what we were led to believe.

Nothing aired until 12:50AM when Mike Massaro and Ricky Craven came on with NASCAR Now.

Almost five hours of watching ABC and almost no post race. Whew.


Dot said...

@ TRL, I agree with your response to Ritchie. The excessive coverage of JJ is what gets me too. I have no hate for the 48, btw.

What changes to the Chase are in store to prevent JJ from winning a 5th next year? You know this is killing BF.

@ dar, I too agree with you. The racing does leave a lot to be desired. What happened to two cars duking it out at the finish line? We're just not seeing it anymore. I believe that's NASCAR's fault. The car really needs to be tweaked.

I have a question for BSPN. Why do I have to read on Jayski who got penalized during the race?

One more thing. I think my theory on the S&Ps came true last night. Hamlin finished 42nd instead of 36th or so. Funny that the S&Ps teams will travel to S&P but, in their own backyard don't show up.

West Coast Diane said...

We watched on HotPass. PRN is no MRN, so made the night somewhat painful.

I said "we". My husband rarely watches much of the race. However, I enticed him by watching JG on HP (my guy is no longer on HP...still at the end of his rope..sigh).

So, during the race he starts yelling at the TV because the ESPN picture is a single car or in car cam while PRN folks are yelling about some exciting racing...LOL!

He did this numerous times. I finally yelled...what the h**l did you think the Planeteers have been going bats**t over since ESPN took over. Do you get it now??? He does!

With that said. Thanks to this post, I...1)had a good laugh, very witty folks here 2)got a tip for online crosswords.

That's about it. I even had trouble with HotPass, because PRN and whoever HP used during commercial breaks was horrible. Shouldn't complain as ESPN sounded as bad if not worse than ever.

Now that is looks like it is all Jimmy, all the time...don't know. Since my main driver is JR, the masochist in me will probably watch, but use HP and follow the ticker to see if I should switch to ESPN. Not hopeful, so probably won't be an issue :-(

For many who say we are a small group of people who just like to complain. Take note. Each week I see more and more "new" identities posting here.

Regarding comments about something going on with DJ. Did they make a decision to keep JP next year? Is there a change coming and DJ is not going to be the PxP guy, assuming he wanted it? Just saying.

Whatever...I "hope" that "change" is coming...somehow I doubt it.

dshaf said...

The bigger question that all of you are avoiding is, "When will ESPN begin using their race telecasts as a blueprint for covering football?"

Just imagine:

1) An animated simulation of an athlete's ACL when it ruptures. This feature would be used at least once in *every* game. For YEARS. Even during injury stoppages for a player that was hit in the head.

2) Hat-mounted cameras on the waterboys. I want to see those cups and bottles get filled, preferably when an offense is in the red zone.

3) Designated players that receive more coverage than everyone else. What's that? An 85 yard touchdown pass? Let's show 7 different replays of the running back picking up a blitzing linebacker - none of catch.

4) Extra point and two-point conversion attempts will take place during commercial breaks and will only be shown on replay.

I can't wait.

Dot said...

Re: JP telling us that post race coverage would be on BSPNNews. Maybe he's gearing up for a career change to politics.

Anonymous said...

Dot - There was only 1 S&P last night because 3 of them failed to make the race (#36, 37, 66) thanks to some legit part time teams (#02, #08, #13, and #21) They were there, they just got a taste of their own medicine.

W_Rabb said...

I saved myself from the pain at watched the Knoxville Late Model Nationals

Dot said...

@B61, I kind of embellished my comment. I get what you're saying.

It just seems like there are 6 or 7 S&Ps in Ps 37-43.

Sophia said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Ritchie--Please don't dictate if I or anyone else on here is a true fan because we don't give a d@mn about Jimmie. If he wins 4 in a row or 7 in a row he's going to do it whether we're happy about it or not. I *don't* have to be happy and on the edge of my seat to see if he pulls off "history" in order to be a true fan.

Donna--Oh no! I hope everyone got out safely and hope the other homes are OK! :(

Beating A Dead Horse said...

At 1:28PM Sophia said:

"i would never buy anything with ESPN's name on it."

That is correct. No Miller Lite for me as long as that logo is on the carton.

Ritchie said...

Texas Race Lady and others...

I never said that ESPN shouldn't cover something as serious as a crewman being injured. I agree completely that such coverage is pathetic. I also posted a list of problems that I had with the coverage.

My point about JJ coverage is more of a macro view of the chase. I understand that JJ isn't a popular driver. Junior, Stewart, and Gordon represent a far larger portion of the audience than Johnson. That being said, if you read some of the posts, there are people who say they won't watch because they are tired of seeing him win. That is certainly their option, but it's not ESPN's option. I will use the same example as I used earlier. NBC couldn't give badmitton the same amount of coverage as they gave Michael Phelps because what Phelps did was historic. That didn't make badmitton fans happy, but that's life. It would have been irresponsible to not cover Phelps every move at that point in history. Unless you believe NASCAR is less important than swimming, a NASCAR fan should see JJ's possible fourth championship as important as Phelp's 8 gold medals. If you don't believe this to be important, then you have made the Sportscenter crew's day.

Now, I will say this. NBC used other channels to allow coverage of sports like badmitton for anyone who was sick of Phelps. ESPN could do something like that. I don't know how, but they could. I believe Mr. Daly has argued this point, but that is a lot different than not watching a sport all together because someone is about to do something historic.

Beating A Dead Horse said...

I cannot review the audio portion of the race as I listened to PRN on Hotpass. When ABC was in national commercial breaks, Hotpass used the Sprint Screen video feed, a feature for the Sprint handheld device at the track. That Sprint feed was far superior than what ESPN shoveled out their wormhole.

I suppose the quiet demeanor from Punch and Jarrett was due to the brass at ESPN telling them to tone down all that enthusiasm, they were killing the ratings:-)

ESPN Motorsports broadcasting as it exists now is a dichotomy in every sense, i.e. ESPN broadcasting and motorsports are two mutually exclusive subsets. One can belong to one or the other, but not both. Someone in the chain of command has caused this situation to become and this person must be discovered and rooted out for resolution to occur.
Until that happens, we can count on the status quo until the end of the television contract. Dang.

My only recourse-to maintain my sanity-is to identify basic errors of racing illiteracy and mock and belittle them publicly and privately until time passes and NASCAR can repair this classic blunder.

Tracy D said...

I'll tune in for the last laps at Homestead. Otherwise, I'm done. ESPN and ABC have managed to kill the Chase for me. And I LOVE the Chase format. JJ's historic run for a fourth championship in a row is truly stunning. Yet the TV coverage is so horrid, so depressing, so . . . . I'll stop there.
Nascar has lost this viewer as long as it's ESPN/ABC coverage. I feel cheated out of something I love.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Richard in NC and Red. Unfortunatly the coverage is so bad I fell asleep after Jr changed his transmission and was just riding around. When he and TJ don't talk on the radio I get lost and then board and so I fell asleep. I awoke to see JJ doing donuts and turned the TV off. I think someone already said this, but it feels like EVERYONE is done with this season, and we all want it to end. JJ and Chad for their singular accompllishment, others so they can get in new cars, and us so we can go back to real coverage even if it means digger is still alive.

The problem is part TV coverage, part the COT and the racing and partly the pall that seems to have settled over all of us. No one person, change or entity can fix all that is broken in one stroke. Lets just hope that the off season provides some changes on all these levels, so that it will be with joy and not mixed emotions that we head to Daytona in February.

Delenn said...

Just finished watching the BBC Formula One coverage here in the UK. All I can say is, Fox, ESPN, TNT: That's how you do it!
Decent world feed, entire BBC Post-race (25 minutes on the main channel, another 50 on the red button - interactive TV) from the Brawn garage. No dumb questions. Drivers, team managers all happy to talk to the BBC (and to thank them for the excellent level of coverage). A talented on screen team. and a choice of commentary for the race, in case you do not like the main choice. They managed to get all the emotion, all the chaos, all the celebrations in an hour of seat of you pants live TV, and no script too.

If any of you get a chance to see the BBC post-race coverage anywhere, please do, then contrast with the garbage ESPN and co serve up.

Today, I am pleased to be an F1 viewer, and very sad at being a Nascar one.

Anonymous said...


I DID NOT watch your race telecast last night

I found results today online

None of the major Sunday Papers (NYTIMES, Boston Globe or WashPost) had any in depth stories on the race.

Great job you guys are doing! Really great

Wait til the nielsens come out tomorrow

should be really "exceptional"


MRM4 said...

Terrible coverage. Switching Punch and Bestwick would be a major improvement. But there would still be issues as far as following the action, changing shots while good action going on, and other issues with the director. Since Johnson has the title pretty much in the bag, I'll be watching more football than the race.

Sally said...

Ritchie, I'm happy for you that your driver is doing well. If Jimmy Johnson had won even one full, 36 race season championship, I might be as enthralled as you are. However, having watched Nascar for more years than I care to admit, I find the truncated version of a title less thatn matter who was doing it. Yes, even if it was Junior. There are still 43 cars on the track. For television to virtually ignore them, no matter how well they are running, is short-sighted at best. As a race fan, I have more interest in the race itself, not who wins the title at the end of the year.

Jonathan said...

Did Nascar have this problem of lossing fans when Petty ran away with 80% of the races back in the day? I know it does suck that Hendrick cars always win and something needs to be done to these cars, but comeon people saying your not going to watch just because someone is dominating is stupid. Nascar is a anything can happen at anytime sport so if you dont watch your not a true fan of racing. I love racing no matter what and will watch till the end! Will have to say though Nascar was the top rated show on all of direct tv when I check my active button on my remote. shows you the top 5 shows people are watching.... so thats good! and imagine if the coverage was better.

Ritchie said...


Read my posts. I stated clearly that I am not a Jimmie Johnson fan.
The fact is that he wins championships based on the rules as they are written. He wasn't even racing when the old rules were in place.

As I said earlier, ESPN has to cover something that big. I really don't see how you cover all 43 cars for the entire race. If you take the position that at some point in the race they should update the status of all drivers, I could go with that, but the fact remains that as long as JJ is in the hunt for a fourth championship he will overshadow all other stories.

Sam said...

Flat out ESPN sucks, they don't care and my four year old son and myself could provide better coverage with our handheld Sony camcorder.

darbar said...

Sam, you and you son are HIRED. You could do much better.

I don't think Nascar had the following or the TV coverage when King Richard was running away with his races. TV and the media in general have changed things, and not for the better in a lot of ways. Things are sensationalized and magnified now, ad nauseum. To be honest I don't think 75% of the country had any idea of what Nascar was or what Petty was doing. Now, Nascar is national, and probably because of our national short attention span, we don't like it when one team wins everything year in and year out.

saltsburgtrojanfan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Richard in N.C. said...

The terribly missed Bob Margolis had an article on Yahoo late last year where he had gone into the stands to talk to fans (unique action for the media) and found that a substantial majority did enjoy the races and had few complaints. I continue to believe more of the problem is in Bristol and the truck than on the track - but granted the COT needs work. Since it has such a lock on sports TV, I am convinced that the suits in Bristol are not that concerned about quality and feel that fans will watch regardless since EESPN is just about the only game in town, and that view at the Evil Empire transcends everything they fling on the screen. It seems to me that every major sport has 1 good program on EESPN for real fans (e.g., NASCAR Now) and everything else is just mediocre or worse. For instance, I found EESPN's NFL pre-game show so incredibly poor that I have not watched since week 2 or 3 of 2008 - both FOX and CBS blew away EESPN on the couple of Sunday's in 2008 that I made a point of watching part of each. EESPN is sinking under the weight of arrogance and welfare. Imagine the millions of people with cable that have the privilege of paying for EESPN whether they watch it or not. In my opinion EESPN is on the downside of its existance just like CNN was a years ago.

Daly Planet Editor said...

There is a new post up for comments on a related topic.