Tuesday, December 29, 2009

ESPN Makes NASCAR Changes For 2010


Here is the information released last week from ESPN about the 2010 TV line-up:

Marty Reid, whose 28-year career with ESPN has touched all forms of motorsports the network has covered, will expand his role and join analysts Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree in the booth as lap-by-lap announcer for ESPN’s full season of NASCAR coverage in 2010. Reid will call the action for all 17 of ESPN’s NASCAR Sprint Cup races as well as many of the network’s NASCAR Nationwide Series telecasts. He was lap-by-lap announcer for ESPN’s IndyCar Series coverage and selected NASCAR Nationwide Series races in 2009.

Returning to a role he helped define for ESPN for more than 20 years, Dr. Jerry Punch will join ESPN’s team of pit reporters for 2010, working both Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series races. Punch was lap-by-lap announcer for ESPN’s Sprint Cup coverage the past three years.

“This group gives us the most versatile and comprehensive team in motorsports, and strengthens us in the booth,” said Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, studio and event production.

“We play to the strengths of our announcers, and Marty’s strength is calling the tactical aspects of the race while deferring to the analysts.

“And from the early days of our NASCAR coverage, Jerry helped evolve the significant role that reporting from the pits plays,” Williamson said. “He will bolster our already-strong stable of pit reporters.”

All other members of the NASCAR on ESPN race coverage team will return in 2010, including analysts Rusty Wallace, Brad Daugherty, Tim Brewer and Ray Evernham, NASCAR Countdown host Allen Bestwick and pit reporters Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro, Shannon Spake and Vince Welch. Specific assignments and schedules will be announced later.

In addition to his expanded role with NASCAR, Reid will continue as the lap-by-lap announcer for ESPN’s five-race IndyCar Series schedule, including the Indianapolis 500.

ESPN’s 2010 NASCAR season begins with live, flag-to-flag coverage of the NASCAR Nationwide Series opener at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 13. The first NASCAR Sprint Cup race on ESPN’s schedule is at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday, July 25.


Not really a surprise, as the chemistry of Punch in the booth just did not click. On pit road, he can again use his reporter skills to update stories and uncover interesting tidbits from his relationships with those in the sport.

The one name not mentioned is Randy LaJoie. He had a knack for working quite well with Reid on the Nationwide Series races and offered a good perspective and lots more fun than Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree.

We are taking your comments on these changes right now and updating the story as things continue to progress. Just click the comments button below. Thanks!

88 comments:

trophyguy™ said...

All I can say is

FINALLY!!!!

SonicAD said...

Well thank goodness for that. Not quite my choice, I'd still rather have Allen Bestwick doing it, but as a play-by-play announcer, Marty is just a whole lot better than Jerry. I don't quite think that Marty's one of the best, but at least he's entertaining!

Geeze said...

While I would have perferrd to have Bestwick in the booth, this is a good move. Looking forward to watching.

saltsburgtrojanfan said...

Finally ESPN comes to it's senses

saltsburgtrojanfan said...
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Sophia said...

These changes are fine but will ANYBODY address the key issue of dreck camera direction? but I digress.

Glad to see Dr. JP going to the pits where his strengths will be utilized and he will stop being hammered here. Great guy.

The booth...is ok but I'm prejudiced to FOX & TNT.

For me the actual tv/camera coverage will be the TRUE TEST.

Thanks 4 the info. :)

Damon said...
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Richard in N.C. said...

Good change, but I would have preferred JP and AB swapping chairs, and I would hope EESPN will make more use of Doc than just pit road now that he's freed from being in the booth. I would like to see him do some of the post-Monday NASCAR NOW's, especially after the Hall of Fame is operational. Wonder who will give Marty a break?

Could this free Doc up to do Showtime? Inquiring minds want to know.

Damon said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Vicky D said...

Yeah, I'd like to know if RL will be back with Marty for some (most?) of the NW races. Marty calling the cup races will be a big improvement for ESPN but I question how DJ & AP will be able to keep up with all the cup & NW ESPN races, this is where RL would fit right in on a Saturday afternoon. Or maybe he'll only be doing the standalone ones and Nascar Now on Mondays. I'm anxious to hear RL news.

Richard in N.C. said...

I'm sure this will be a minority opinion, but I would really like to see Randy L. and Tim Brewer in the booth for some N-wide races. I think Brewere improved a lot last season and I look forward to each week's Brewer Tour.

TexasRaceLady said...

I'm not going to dance in the streets, but I will do a little wiggle in the living room. LOL

While AB would be my prime choice, I'll take Marty Reid.

Jerry was just not a good fit for the PxP man. He has such a good feel for pit reporting, he'll make those reports come alive. (and maybe teach the bobbsey twins a thing along the way.)

Donna in FL said...

ESPN definitely needed to make a change. Punch going to a role he's great at is good. Very much liked Reid's NNS PxP.
HOWEVER, ESPN needs to leave the Cup PxP guys alone!! If they ask Marty to "tone it down" like they asked Jerry, and to call races according to "script" rather than what is actually happening on the track, then nothing will change!

hotaru-raganbaby_6 said...

Happy, although not as much as I would be if Allen B had gotten the job.

Who knows, might kill some of the Chaseism (and allow me to watch their races with the sound ON for a change!)

Darren said...

Moving Dr. punch to pit road will pay off big time. As bad as he was at PxP, he excells in the pits.

I would have preferred Alan Bestwick on the PxP as well.

I wish since ESPN/ABC were making changes, they'd swung for the fence...

Brewer-out completely.

Brad D.- Very effective when he reins in his 'rah-rah' NASCAR cheerleader routine. I'd settle him down some.

Rusty Wallace- out completely.

Ray Evernham- GREATLY expand his role. Diamond in the rough.

Jamie and Shannon- Fine tune their reporting/question skill, or both must go. The days of "how do you feel about that?" should be over. If that's the depth of what they bring to the table, good riddance.

DJ, Andy, and whoever else I forgot stays as is....

Just my .02

Mary said...

Eventually they got the message.....

Nathan Brice said...

I thought that this would happen. Jerry is much better suited to be a pit reporter. Marty is a good play-by-play guy. Allen might be the guy who subs when needed. Mike and Dave might have smaller roles as pit reporters. Nicole needs to be the full-time host of NASCAR Now. Mike was just not suited for that role. I stopped watching when he was hosting. Nicole is a better fit for so many reasons.

PammH said...

Like WCG, not dancin' in the streets, but did do a fistpump or two...;) Should have been AB, but at least JP is out of the booth, so I can give them a chance next yr! Good Christmas present, imo..

Bill_R said...

I'm glad that JP is out of the booth and back on pit road where he belongs. I still would have preferred Bestwick, but Reid will do well. The only thing that disappointed me about this announcement was that by bringing everybody back and adding Reid is that there is an extra talking head now having to compete for airtime. I had posted earlier and I still believe the broadcast would improve by streamlining the on air staff down to 3 in the booth and 3 or 4 on pit road and no one else. But this change is a good first step to improving the broadcast next year.

Tom said...

Wow! Both expected and unexpected at the same time. Knew it had to happen, but should of 2 years ago. I, for one, am glad Marty is getting the call. Sure we all like AB, but there is something there that apparently none of us are aware of, because he seems to be permanantly banned from the booth. Marty brings a somewhat independent feel to his booth, not afraid to call out what is really happening on track. He is enthusiastic and professional, and the enthusiasm will be welcomed back in my house. I also hope they bring RL back for at least some NW races, I think he has the makings of a great color guy, and with a little practice, could turn out to be something even greater.

Tom
Inverness, FL

Daly Planet Editor said...

Heading to Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody at 4:40PM for a chat.

West Coast Diane said...

Well shut my mouth! An early Christmas present.

I am happy for JP. Just never seemed comfortable in the pxp role. And maybe he can help the other pit reporters improve their skills.

I hope people are willing to give Marty a chance while he comes up to speed in a full time role.

I agree with Sophia. If they don't fix the camera work, actually the director problems, then although an improvement from the booth, will still be same old issues.

Anthony said...

I am happy with the changes, but I was kinda expecting a little more.

Who will sub for Reid?
How will the 5 or 6 pit reporters be assigned?
Where's Randy LaJoie fit into the mix?

I was also quite curious about if/how Bill Weber could play into this ... I guess this post answers that question, for now.

David said...

-does my little happy dance-

WHOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ritchie said...

I may have missed the info in the press statement, but who will Punch be replacing on pit road?

Or are they just adding an additional pit reporter?

Sally said...

I hope that JP can show the bobble head blonds on pit road how the job is when done right! Thank goodness he's back where he can show his strength. I still wonder who AB pissed off, but the main problems are still with the director and the 'script'.

Anonymous said...

Reid will have his work cut out for him as the "sport" is so boring at this point that the commentating is the least of the concern.

Nina said...

This is great news !!

It was a smart decision.
I loved Marty Reid in the booth during the Nationwide race from Homestead.

In my opinion, they should have gotten rid of Tim Brewer in the "Tech Garage".
Randy Lajoie would have been perfect in that position considering his company builds the drivers' seats.

Jonathan said...

all i have to say is THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU lol I think my tv would have ended up outside of my window if I had to go another 17races w JP calling em! YES YES YES XMAS comes early

Chris from NY said...

Sorry to ruin your fun, but they haven't promised us better camera work and/or directing yet. Once we have that, then we will probably watch ESPN reach NASCAR coverage nirvana.

Anonymous said...

YES!
punch is gone from the booth. I may start watching espn races again.
HOWEVER, I am still waiting for some good news on the Director role and camera choice and "story line".
espn, it's a good and necessary start.

Makiki
Honolulu

Anonymous said...

Big applause to ESPN. What a change. I am soo excited. Glad to have Jerry back on pit road where he excels. Now I can look forward to ESPN coverage. That's what am talking about.

Travis said...

I think ESPN made the right move with taking Punch away. He just didn't seem to make the broadcast "magical."

Sophia said...

Chris from NY and WC Diane

Guess we are the few that believe without better camera DIRECTION and telling us what's happening at home, the booth voices are totally moot.

The booth could be fantabulous but if they are showing us nothing we'll still have the same gripes.

I want to SEE THE RACE ala TNT great work. Sigh.

oh and two cents, I would prefer AB in the booth but again, to many of us the booth AIN'T the critical problems. It's secondary to camera work.

Bruce Ciskie said...

For those wondering about whether we'll get better camera work, give Marty a half season of calling Nationwide, and they'll be rolling for the Cup races.

He isn't quite as good as Mike Joy is at spotting the action and calling it, but Marty will do that, and ESPN's director will have to follow him or make everyone look really, really dumb.

No one's camera work is perfect IMO, but a strong-minded, thorough play-by-play guy can make up for it by helping the director do a very tough job.

Laurie said...

HALLELUJAH!!!!!!!!!!! It's a great start and hopefully they have listened to the comments about the camera shots, re-setting the field, etc. and will be making changes about these things as well.....only 59D 18H 48M 01S as of this post til DAYTONA!!!

Anonymous said...

@ Bruce Ciskie

Good point. Let's hope Reid gets the support he needs to anchor the coverage.

Makiki
Honolulu

Anonymous said...

How sad that it took them three full seasons to figure out that Punch wasn't best suited for the lead "lap-by-lap" role.

That said, Marty Reid is only marginally better. Overall, I'm not complaining, but I'm not doing jumping jacks, either.

Gymmie said...

YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYA!

*Snoopy Dance*

I also wish Allen was back in the booth but do like Marty :).

Look forward to seeing how the changes flow :).

I hope that Dr. Jerry schools the girls too!

Hope Randy is able to sub at least :(. Now to take care of Captain Obvious!

This was the best news evah!

spacie_stacie said...

I have to say this cause it is truly how I feel, I had nothing wrong with the booth team. It was the reporters in the pits who I did not appreciate. So I think getting rid of Dr. Jerry Punch in the booth is a bad move especially cause they are bringing in someone who will not have the knowledge and soothing ways in which Punch does. Yes I know I have badmouthed ESPN and the way the cover the races, that was one thing that should have stayed in tact. It will not be the same seeing him as a pit reporter. Bad move, ESPN, sorry, but it is.

Stephen said...

THANK YOU ESPN!!! Marty in the booth and Punch on pit road-the way it should of been to start with! Will be a lot more enjoybale to listen to next year-now if we can just get the camera to show the racing and not Danica, Jimmie, and Kyle 24/7.

Dot said...

Until I read all the comments, YOOOOHOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Richard in N.C. said...

I agree. The really critical changes need to be in the truck. Since JP has such a history at EESPN, I am hopeful that moving him means that the Evil Empire has really decided to try to fix their NASCAR coverage.

I still believe JP was put in a position he was not really trained for. All the really good TV PXP announcers started out at MRN - Ken Squier, Mike Joy, Eli Gold, and Allen B. - but I believe JP's TV career has always been at EESPN, where now Entertainment comes first.

Anonymous said...

So why do we need five pit reporters?

Anonymous said...

Excuse me I lost count. Why do we need six pit reporters?

glenc1 said...

wow...take a few days off from blog reading and all heck breaks loose! Yeah! I love AB, but he is good at hosting too, so as long as they get JP out of there, I'm fine with Marty. Hopefully this means if they've listened to the fans about this, they've listened to all the other things we've asked them for. And hopefully JP can become a 'pit coordinator' who can show those people how it *should* be done.

Dot said...

I have a feeling that Marty will keep the camera operators on their toes. He's just the guy to stir the pot. Wasn't he the first one to call out the S&Ps?

Looking forward to reading other personnel changes at BSPN. I won't mention any names, cough Rusty cough, cough Brad D cough.

Nathan Brice said...

Jerry is a nice enough guy to accept a demotion. I think he might have known that he was in over his head. He is one of the best pit reporters in NASCAR history. He perhaps should have never left that job. It was probably due to the fact that ESPN could not find anyone else to do the play-by-play when they got NASCAR back. Mike Tirico perhaps could have been the guy had he not gone to Monday Night Football. I am glad that did not happen. Marty Reid is more than capable. I hope that he can incorporate Allen, Brad, and Rusty to a greater extent. I am really looking forward to seeing who will be on the air every week.

Nathan Brice said...

There will probably only be four reporters every week. Dave and Mike will probably have lesser roles.

Buschseries61 said...

Well, I am happy ESPN finally listened after 3 years of struggle. Hopefully some things behind the camera will also change before Daytona.

I have a feeling the Daytona pit reporters will be Jerry Punch, Dave Burns, Jamie Little & Vince Welch. Mike only filled in when needed and Shannon Spake will probrably take a few months off to enjoy being a mother. Just my speculation.

Daly Planet Editor said...

If anyone sees Stricklinfan, let him know the change is here.

Adam said...

Well, it is a start. Now get a better camera director, get rid of the pre-show(I hate those things), and what not.

Anonymous said...

2 words-THANK GOD!

Now if Turner will give Shaheen the play by play, things will be pretty good!

Tom said...

Spacie_stacie,
You're kidding, right? Soothing? NASCAR is anything BUT a soothing sport. Your play-by-play guy needs to bring passion and excitement into the broadcast, and Punch failed on every level in that regard.
And what part of 28 years of experience do you not understand in regards to Marty Reid? He was not only great to listen to, but he called what he saw on the track, no matter where the truck had the camera positioned.
You should be required to watch a race on ESPN Classic that featured Jerry Punch reporting from pit road. It's where he belongs, and it's about time ESPN made the move.

Glenn said...

Some good news from ESPN.
Hopefully with Marty's calling and directing traffic he should be able to "steer" the cameras where he wants them.
I'm looking forward to him working the team in the right direction.
I'll give them a chance.

JD, great to hear you on Sirius today.
It did feel like there may have been a little "tension" in the air though.
I wish you could become a weekly regular again. We can read your thoughts here, but it was better to hear the dialog between you and Moody to get your emotion on the issues.

Anonymous said...

To everyone wishing AB went into he booth instead of Marty. Let me mention Monday Night Football.

Chris Berman is as critical, if not more critical, to the ESPN football universe than Mike Tirico.

The same may well prove true here.

Steve L. said...

If I'm dreaming, don't wake me!

Wow, I just can't believe someone finally listened to us. Like others, I'd still like to see Allen in the booth for some of these races, but we'll take what we can get and that's JP out of the booth! Now I have a reason to watch again. Fix the camera work and we'll be happier.

Thank you Santa!

Jack from PA said...

At long last! I'm so glad Doc got reassigned to a job that he excels at so much. And I think it'll be great to see what Marty does next year. He sure made lots of Nationwide races a lot more exciting than they seemed.

Tgro Media said...

Finally the worst pxp announcer of all-time in any sport ever is out of the broadcast booth. It's great to see ESPN make this change. But I have to say I'm not wild about DJ still in the booth. He needs to listen to his dad doing color commentary back in the day and take some lessons on how cool his dad was instead of all the excited know-it-all stuttering he does. Maybe with Reid in the booth, he'll settle down some because he no longer has to over-compensate for the god awful pxp of Jerry Punch. The trio ESPN has had sounded so dis-functional all year that I really don't think it was just Punch. But no doubt, Punch was by far the one most major piece that just had to go!!! If he didn't go, I honestly think many more people would have stayed away from ESPN's coverage in 2010 compared to 2009. I think most everyone is over this coverage and just could not stomach one more year of it if the booth stayed the same. The ill regard for ESPN's booth had reached critical mass. If ESPN could only make one move to make things better, they just did it today. Jerry Punch had to go. And god bless him, he's put where he might actually sound worthwhile. For doing that, I give ESPN kudos for finally seeing the light. There is nowhere to go from here but up. Finally there is just a bit of optimism that ESPN may actually get a little better in 2010 than they've ever been since their return to Nascar. For the 1st time, they may actually improve a little instead of just being completely hopeless.

Jonathan said...

man i can remember watching some of the Nationwide series races MR was calling and they were soo much more exciting and easier to follow. Id go into sunday thinking wow saturdays race was awsome and exciting and then sunday would come and the racing would be great but the way JP called it, it was like zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. this is a much much needed move. I do recall when AB was on NBC as the pxp guy and he was alright he just sounded to scripted to me (I started watching in 04 when nextel took over). Marty is much welcomed in my book

Bill said...

I think most everyone here has it spot on with the rather it was Bestwick sentiment. However I think Mr. Reid will do a great job!

I'm very happy to see Dr. Punch back in the roll he wrote the book on. I just hope that ESPN makes use of his tremendous ability and give him a freer hand then they have the other reporters last year.

I miss the days of actually getting concise info from the pits along with pictures to go with it.
Remember the days when Punch would show us something wrong with a tire 30-40 seconds after it came off a car? Not 40-50 laps latter someone in the booth just says something about it.


Good luck Marty!!

wickedj said...

Hopefully this will open the door for AB to call some Nationwide races later in the season as ESPN picks up The Chase but speaking of the PR didnt mention whos doing the Nationwide races..any idea JD or is the fact its midnight here in Ohio hindering my reading skills lol

Anonymous said...

I think they dropped the ball big time.

What in the hell do companies have against Allan Bestwick? He is by far the best play by play guy available in that company. Go with him!!!

Who did he piss off?

RobFromToronto said...

Thank "choose your diety(i'm old school figure it out) that espn has FINALLY done something good...JP is THE pit guy of the ages..his time in the booth was a mess..back to the pits jerry..your the master there..while Reid isnt my first choice..he is compelling and a positive..my personal boycott of espn telecasts the last couple races of 09' WORKED!!..heh..i'll take credit as my ego makes me delusional :P i hated boycotting the races..lol..i'm addicted to racing :D at least if the racing is boring(which it was for about 70% of the season) at least the announcer wont be the extra dose of sominex to push me over the sleepy top :D

majorshouse said...

I am excited that they chose Marty. I think it is a strong choice and enjoyed the nationwide telecasts and the director will definitely have to follow him and that should make the coverage only better, and only time will tell there.
I think that Jerry Punch will be an asset on the pit road because that is definitely where his strengths lie especially after watching some of the old races on ESPN Classic.

MRM4 said...

This is good news. Like many, I would have preferred Bestwick be the PxP guy. But I like Reid as well and this is an upgrade.

It will be interesting to hear Dr. Punch on his weekly segment on Monday here in Knoxville to see if this is mentioned. If not, I'll call into the show myself and ask him about it.

Vicky D said...

MRM4 - I'd like to hear that answer also. Let us know what he says if he does bring it up.

Anonymous said...

Like most here, I believe Dr. Punch's talents were being wasted on play x play. He seems to have the confidence of the race teams... Honestly, have you seen the expressions on the faces of drivers and crew chiefs, or the exasperation in their voices when answering questions by Spake (often) and Little (not so much).

GinaV24 said...

Wow, thank goodness - at least this is one small step forward. I'm sorry it's not Allen, but I liked Marty well enough on the N'wide stuff. Now, if ESPN can manage to not try and write a script for the races but just call what happens during each individual event AND get the camera work better, they might have a watchable broadcast.

Anonymous said...

Sorry guys and gals, but this change only is not going to help. DP was not the problem, even though he made the problem worse. If Marty has to operate under the same set of rules, us fans are back to square one.

Louisville Mike

Ziggy said...

Pinching self......
Just to make sure this isn't some kind of dream.

Delenn said...

Honestly, you don't read TDP for a SINGLE DAY and this happens!

1. Does anyone else get the impression Bestwick is perfectly happy where he is? Maybe he don't want to do PxP.

2. Marty is one massive upgrade. I doubt if it is a coincidence that Nationwide telecasts were better than the cup ones. He called Start and Parks, so I am sure he will call the race. It will also let DJ and AP be the analyst roles they should be. No complaints at Marty from me.

3. @ Sally. Lol at the "Bobble head blondes". Perfect description.

4. Glad Jerry is in the pit lane. I hope if anyone gets used less on pit lane, it is the "bobble head blondes". Dave, Mike, and Vince are perfectly reasonable pit reporters. Show 'em how it's done Doc.

5. Now, let's talk about the truck. Decent directors, decent producers, understanding the race? Any news on that little lot.

In summary, a great start. Just the truck to do now.

Komoman said...

Long overdue and while it will lessen the wince factor of the broadcasts until such time as ESPN decided that covering the race at hand is more important than focusing on their pre-determined story their broadcasts will always be DVR'd and FF'd through entire section so I can avoid their scripting.

You got part of the fans message ESPN, lets hope you get the rest. COVER. THE. RACE.

Photojosh said...

Really quite surprising.

Like the others, I would have perhaps gone in the AB/JP switch direction. But I'm not bummed about Reid either. I think he will really improve the broadcasts from the booth standpoint.

Now, if we could just get some changes in overall camera/storyline direction....

But hey, this was more than I was expecting for a ESPN/NASCAR xmas present.

Vicky D said...

Now with the announcement of Marty doing the PXP, maybe ESPN will get a new photograph of Reid so I won't be complaining about that one of him in the red shirt!

RAEckart said...

ESPN may move to the top next year. And Marty Reid gets the Indy 500, the Brickyard 400 and the Chase! Heavy is the head that wears the crown. But he's a proven commodity.

Trident said...

Soft boot to Punch, Reid to lead.
Yawn...

BFD.

No word on the REAL underlying problem - camera direction.

It's the Camera Selection FIRST, EeekSPN. The folks behind the cameras are your stars. The direction is pitiful.

SELECT them appropriately.

Word veri: cravia...
I cravia a director who actually understands the unique views auto racing requires, and a booth that can present it with the >knowledgable< fan's best interest foremost.

JS said...

I, like many others, would have preferred Allen Bestwick upstairs calling the races. Why ESPN hasn't picked up on the fans calling for that, I don't know. Marty should be OK though, as he's been decent with Nationwide & IRL races.

It'll be fun to hear Jerry on pit road again, just like "the good ol' days" of ESPN (and NASCAR for that matter).

Jim said...

Thanks to ESPN for responding to the criticisms (and the falling ratings). I hope we won't now start bashing Dale or Andy. They deserve to be judged long-term with a competent play-by-play announcer in the booth.
I really respect and enjoy the Daly Planet. It's a new aspect of NASCAR for this fan 50-year fan.

JohnP said...

@Anon 11:03

Sorry folks, he's totally correct. If ESPN does not fix their broadcasting management issues, no change in the booth will make a difference.

I really like that ESPN finally "got a clue" concerning Nascar fans and removed Punch from the booth. I'm a great fan of his from the 90's. He will be a great pit road reporter. IF ESPN lets him.

I just hope Reid is not "set up for failure".

But if the overall show, camera angles, fake "storylines" do not improve it's a wasted effort. It's time to get back to showing
THE RACE. And there are more than five or so cars on the track.

Anyone heard enough of "Jimmy Johnson, Jimmy, Jimmy, Johnson, Jimmy Johnson, Jimmy Jimmy Jimmy." My gosh, I HAVE NIGHTMARES... Lol..

I know, real late to the post. On vacation in a really wet Florida. Feet in the water, a$$ in the sand, and a beer in my hand.. Or so a country song goes..

Labbie said...

Personally, I think Marty is almost as boring as Jerry. But at least he doesn't just quote car numbers and drivers names.

What a waste of Bestwick's talent to have him as the broadast host. He should be the PxP announcer.

Zieke said...

Good for Jerry Punch. Bet he will make pit road look really well with his expertise. Since Marty will be the PxP guy, maybe ESPN will listen to him concerning the direction of camera work. They need to realize that the announcers can be made to look good or bad depending on race direction.

Jimbacca said...

Surprising read.
Whenever Jerry was allowed to be like a pit reporter in the booth he excelled. Unfortunately PxP is a different animal and he wasn't suited for it. If he's back in the pits he's going to make the amateur pit reporters look like they are in preschool.
Camera direction was a joke BUT.. If you have someone calling out the action and the cameras are missing it then it will showcase that serious shortcoming.
Like stated above, maybe AB didn't want the gig. Marty is great and will definitely keep the camera direction on their toes. But first we get to make it through Fox that have race breaks from commercials and the best coverage by TNT. To put it simply. Jerry is the TNT of pit reporters and will kick ass on his previous / new role.

Anonymous said...

Marty Reid as PXP announcer is great. I don't understand why others say that he is boring and know nothing about nascar.I'm assuming that those people didn't watch the nationwide races he did. Is even more better now that Dr. Jerry Punch is returning back to Pit road. Now if we can get the cameras to show more than 1 to 5 cars during a race and also show the racing outside the top 10, then the fans and ESPN will be back in business. I hope that Marty Reid will also look outside the window and call the action at the back that the camera misses and bring their attention to it.

KoHoSo said...

I was out in Palm Springs this week and missed the news until now. While I am still puzzled at why AB is left in the infield studio, I welcome this change.

Jojaye said...

Well I go on vacation for 2 weeks & come back to great news!- Thank HEAVENS!!
Finally espn will have a real pit reporter in Dr. Jerry Punch!!!!! Bout time, I hope Doc hasn't lost his touch for great pit reporting!
And hopefully ( I know he won't) ask about feelings!

Thanks espn for finally listening to us older non casual fans.

Smiff_99 said...

Anonymous at 6:16.......marginally better?

Go watch a Truck race from 99-00.....Marty Reid was, to put it simply, awesome. He injected excitement into even the least exciting races.

I think he'll turn out much like Ralph Sheheen.....if he's alllowed to do what he did back then, and more recently on the NW races, Reid will be a pleasant surprise.

And....can't freakin' wait to see JP in a firesuit again....shoot, he's the reason why pit reporters wear firesuits in the first place.

Regardless of the camera direction, a PxP guy who's thorough and enthusiastic like Reid is is gonna make the races on ESPN a lot better.

But yeah, if there were some shake-ups in the truck, it would be even better.

Anonymous said...

Jerry Punch was awesome as a play by play guy in 1999-2000 too. Go watch the end of the 2000 Winston 500 (Earnhardt's last win) and see how much different he was then. You know the difference? He was with one of the best of all time in Benny Parsons, while now hes with deadbeats.