Sunday, July 4, 2010

Your Turn: Sprint Cup Series From Daytona On TNT


After a 90 minute rain delay, the Coke Zero 400 got underway from the Daytona International Speedway.

Lindsay Czarniak hosted the pre-race show with Kyle Petty and Larry McReynolds. The feature was on the late Dale Earnhardt Sr. and McReynolds played a key role with his comments. Tony Stewart was interviewed on the set.

When the rain came, the network stayed in Daytona and did not use any filler programming. Czarniak anchored the coverage and the pit reporters worked very hard with multiple interviews. Outstanding cooperation from the drivers in terms of making themselves available for TNT and the online RaceBuddy.

Once the race began under caution, the tone from Adam Alexander, Kyle Petty and Wally Dallenbach Jr. in the TV booth was fun and excited. As the new commercial format began to play out, Alexander slowly returned to his pit reporter personality.

The Wide Open coverage makes Alexander direct a lot of traffic and read a lot of scripted copy in addition to calling the race. In this case, it took any excitement out of the play-by-play role. He was busy with a lot of details and it affected the telecast.

Petty and Dallenbach found themselves interrupted a lot for commercial breaks. In this case, they had to continue to watch the race on the screen as the Wide Open commercials played in a video box. This resulted in a rather disjointed commentary stream from the analysts.

Petty continued to interact with fans through Twitter during the entire race. He also continues to be the star of this show. His opinions and honest comments again served the coverage well. Dallenbach was supportive, but this type of racing is not his area of expertise.

TNT's pit reporters had quite a race. Ralph Sheheen confronted Kyle Busch and got a solid answer on his incident with Juan Montoya. Marty Snider and Matt Yocum both did solid work in the rain delay and then the race. Unfortunately, Phil Parsons continues to be a fish out of water in the pit reporter role.

RaceBuddy offered another view of this race with pit reporting from Jim Noble. He did a fantastic job alone of covering this event live for more than six hours. Noble has been wonderful on RaceBuddy and it is clear the drivers enjoy speaking with him.

The race was marred by a huge late race caution and red flag that affected most of the field. It ended in bizarre fashion with far fewer cars remaining in the event. The dark side of restrictor plate racing returned with less than 20 laps left in the race.

The TNT technical team made very good pictures and sound. There were no weather problems once the race was underway. Coverage ended well over an hour later than originally scheduled.

This is your opportunity to post a race wrap-up comment about the TNT coverage of the Sprint Cup Series race from Daytona. To add your opinion, just click on the comments button below. This is a family-friendly website, please keep that in mind when posting.

49 comments:

Anonymous said...

Count me a supporter of the "wide open coverage." Nice placement of the ads to still show action. Ralph Sheheen gets kudos for the Shrub interview; the rest of the broadcast, esp. Czarniak and Alexander, were totally forgettable.

Anonymous said...

Didn't mind the commercial format tonite- watched Twitter and learned what I wasn't hearing from commentators...which was alot.

DaveA- Rowdy Nation

OSBORNK said...

I was very pleased with the wide open coverage. The way they worked the cameras to avoid the race action with the commercials was excellent. The pxp was a little lacking but it wasn't that important as we saw what we needed to see on the screen. If we could only see races this way every race.... I had Racebuddy on but mostly ignored it because it wasn't needed.

Adam Wood said...

I liked the wide open coverage-didn't miss any green flag racing for the second year in a row. On the other hand, my mother was annoyed by the "babble" during the extended caution flags usually interrupted by a commercial or two that is somewhat interesting. It always seems there are a ton of commercials at Chicagoland after the near-commercial free race.

Solid coverage tonight. I did see something on Twitter about AJ and the King getting into an argument that I saw nothing on TNT about. But all major stories covered. Earnhardt Jr. moved up 4th on the last lap and it wasn't mentioned until after the checkered flag-this wasn't the case with FOX.

A+ race, certainly will miss these guys at the Brickyard, and I don't even watch RaceBuddy.

bozo said...

Wide open coverage, split screen, whatever you want to do, but they have to go that route. i believe the sponsors actually get more for their dollars..i actually held up going to the restroom until a yellow vice missing any of the action during commercials!!

Play by play tonight stunk, pit reporting stunk, a lot of stories missed that twitter had..they need someone to monitor twitter up in the directors booth so they know whats going on and get the stories.

1st time writing on the follow-up piece, that's how important the wide open coverage was to me!

mk17ford said...

This race had the makings of the BIGGEST ONE from the start all the way to the final lap. I was actually worried to death that it would not end well at all. So glad I was wrong and so glad it's finally over.

red said...

just this:
ralph shaheen showed what a true professional can and will do when interviewing an angry driver. he stayed with the interview, re-phrased, re-directed the frustration and in the end, elicited an intelligent response.

shaheen has set a very high bar for his colleagues on pit road and the fans have benefitted. great job by a wonderful reporter in every good sense of that word!

Ann_Ominous said...

Where the heck on nascar.com is the post race show? If you are going to tell people to go there as you are leaving the air, then there ought to be a big button to click on the home page! Search function didn't find it!!

Would of been nice to see some of the unexpected drivers who got top 10 finishes interviews. What? I'm suppose to go to the live post race show on nascar.com to see that? Well where the bleep on nascar.com is it??!!!

Iceman King Parsons said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
red said...

wow! kurt busch just slammed tnt in response to shaheen's first, very fair question about what happened between him and the 99.

but i guess it's ok because he was smiling when he said it . . .

brad said...

Ralph Shaheen has been great tonight. stayed stiff with both Busch brothers. That is how great pit reporter does it.

Darcie said...

After I adjusted my screen to remove the bottom graphics, it was just fine. The Larry Mac and Lindsey were just a bit of overkill, dashing to them when there was a yellow. Shaheen is a gem and it's too bad he can't move over to ESPN. Pit lane coverage was weak in many instances. What bothers me is a lack of keeping us informed about racers other than the pick of the litter guys. Would love to hear the why's and wherefores of all the drivers. But all in all, it was pretty good coverage.

Anonymous said...

Phil Parsons interviewed Steve Park on Racebuddy. Just thank fans for buying tires to let Tommy Baldwin run the whole race . . . awkward.

brett said...

Ralph Sheheen is a hard working....kudos to him he did great tonight.

I was a bit puzzled as to why TNT on the LAST LAP decided to show the spinning #33 car for at least 15 seconds as the field raced to the checkered. They were on that single car spin WAY too long, especially for the last lap.

I really like Lindsay Czarniak......She was GREAT on pit road but I don't really think she fits the host role. When she was a pit reporter she showed NASCAR knowledge, but unfortunatly she is a completely different animal in the host position.....she makes herself look like she is new to NASCAR.

Wide Open Coverage is still great for Daytona!

Ann_Ominous said...

Well I went and looked again and found where to click. Pitiful post race show. One interview with Steve Parks was all the extra I saw. Race coverage was great, but this post race gets a F!!

Daly Planet Editor said...

Ann, the post-race show appears on the RaceBuddy application.

NASCAR.com and TNT have done a horrible job getting fans from the TV to the computer. Horrible.

It has been a constant complaint and one they have never addressed.

Lakitu Bros said...
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Karena said...

i loved the coverage on this race! i started off watching it from tnt racebuddy and then switched to the actual broadcast on tv. they were on their game tonight. i kinda wish they would do the rest of the races this season. kyle is great in the booth! racebuddy & the post race show online was AWESOME! it was my first time using it. i am totally a lover of tnt & racebuddy now. awesome race too!

Sophia said...

If you make me go to a website for a post race show, I am NOT going to do it. The reason I LOVED TNT tonight is the Wide Open coverage. Great job!

I am not up to multi tasking during the races these days but did check Twitter maybe 10 minutes worth during the race for some comments. TV leaves out a LOT.

But on the other hand, give me great CAMERA WORK, and I.AM.HAPPY.

I did not use RBuddy either. Ever notice we get that fabulous RB at the time of year it's not really needed? :) How about every race!!

I enjoyed just laying down and watching tonight's race for the first time since.....well, the last time TNT took over :)

Will not be watching the in car cam mania once BSPN takes over. I must confess when there were several in car cams on the first 2 or 3 laps tonight, I got nervous. But they were used sparingly for the most part and the race had a good flow!!!!!!!!!


Love Shaheen & the honked off Shrub. That looked like Kyle's fault to me, thought he was clear. Nope.

I missed the pre race but the glamour blond chick is NOT a good replacement for the guy from last year. Sorry, call me a female chauvinist pig, but I am tired of the Barbie look of talking heads, when a man could do the job better.

This year's TNT booth/pit folks could use some work.

Love Wally & Kyle and was good to hear Kyle's voice be clearer. Was getting worried about him for awhile.

Thanks TNT

draven31 said...

Loved the coverage right up until the "big one". Replay showed more of the infield wall than the cars wrecking. All the cars with cameras and still did not get but a couple of good views. Did not show the handful of cars that went back out, like Tony. I had no idea he had returned to the track until they showed him coming down pit road on the last caution. Didn't know Kurt and Carl had wrecked until somebody mentioned it on twitter. Nobody mentioned the A.J vs King incident.


Ralph should be at every race like Matt and Marty Snyder. He does a great job...

David said...

I like the wide open format. It really gives you good information while allowing the booth to stay focused on the action. You can see what is going on while the advertisers get their "bang for buck" and everyone wins. TNT especially balanced the HD and SD elements to make the screen pretty easy to follow and even offer triple split pits.

Lindsay has really shined in her role hosting from the infield. She works well with Larry Mac and doesn't intrude with useless banter. She also works well with Kyle Petty in the pre-race. Of all the pre-race I have seen this year TNT is by far the chosen one to watch.

Adam Alexander, I like this guy but he struggles to be an energetic play by play guy. This sound familiar? Solid pit reporter, I think that is the extent of his role in the sport.

Phil Parsons...oy!

Thank you Ralph Shaheen for being a shining star tonight. You by far MADE this broadcast great getting answers out of Kyle Busch and Jamie McMurray and going the extra mile with both. Really a great how-to in that department.

Great camera angles most of the time, so can't complain there. Truck did it's job, booth could have been better with a stronger personality leading the charge.

I know Adam had alot of work to do tonight but I cant imagine an Alan Bestwick struggling to balance all of those elements while still providing captivating play by play. He by far had a less thrilling finish (though more emotional) to call last night, yet aced it perfectly. PxP for TNT is down this year but RB and wide open more than make up for it!

Noble, your rocking it on RaceBuddy! Keep it up!!!!

Anonymous said...

Re: commercials..I ALWAYS DVR the races and start watching about 30 minutes in so I can FF thru the commercials. I DVR'd tonight, as usual, but only FF'd when they went to a real commercial break. Was pleasantly surprised that I wasn't totally annoyed by the ads as long as I could continue to watch the race. I actually paid a small amount of attn. to some of the ads too...Tony working at BK for a day??? Ha!

Ann_Ominous said...

JD, I did go to racebudy the first time I went to the website. Saw nothing to click but for the race. When I went back the second time, where I saw the post race show and clicked I got it in 4 screens all at once. After the Parks interview I tried clicking one of the other boxes and got it just once. Of course, I had to watch a commercial first. Maybe I missed something then. It still sucked. I didn't see the interviews I wanted to see, other than Parks.

51 yr. fan said...

Compliments to TNT for their
presentation. I had Race Buddy
on but pretty much ignored it.
I agree with others that the
commercials were paid more attention. I normally go to the driver channels on DirectTV.

James said...

Great job reporting in pits by Ralph Sheheen, now that was "old school". The rest of those vanilla folks should take note, that was how to do an interview, stay on the topic till you get the real answer! You will never see DW,MW,LM,or PP ever think of actually doing the job of fact finding, its not about fluff, its about the real action on the track!
Loved the wide open coverage, a little to much graphics at times but so much more of what I want to see and hear.
Why no mention of the tiff between the KING and Dinger? Ford could use the coverage.

TexasRaceLady said...

I did not post during the live blog last night because I was too busy watching the race! Actually WATCHING..... I don't use RaceBuddy because of the bandwidth required. :-(

Ralph Shaheen was the star reporter last night. 2 thumbs up.

Kyle and Wally were great in the booth. Adam started off OK, but with so much to do, his PxP suffered.

Doing a post-race online cuts out those of us who don't have the bandwidth or download speed. I had no idea there were fireworks between Carl and Kurt.

The Wide Open coverage was a smash. I actually paid attention to the ads because they were so inventive. And placing them so as not to cover the action was a plus.

I can't believe TNT has only one more race. :-(

ESPN, the bar has been set --- you'd better swing for the fences.

Veri word --- proxapol ROTFL
Sounds like some kind of medication

Zieke said...

Kudos to TNT for using their rain-delay plan B. It seemed to work well for them, and while Lindsay may still be a bit uncomfortable in her role, she has made progress and is trying hard to improve. Kudos to her also. PxP and color guys are head and shoulders above Fox and goof-ball Waltrip. Enough said...

James said...

The booth seemed a bit lost at times during the wrecks towards the end. One thing Fox always does right after a big wreck is list who was involved and who wasn't - TNT never said who made it through. They just kept showing car cams from the middle of the pack. They also didn't give Gordon much respect after he made it through the big one. I was wondering for a few minutes if he made it before anyone said anything.

What was up with post race interviews? I can't believe they went from runner up to fourth and didn't show Gordon's interview until the end of the show. I don't care who finished third, they should show Second and third before they interview anyone else. restarted.

I did like the wide open coverage.

There were also a few times when they didn't know the driver of a certain car. It sounded amateurish.

TNT is an improvement over Fox, but they're still a bit rough around the edges. They'll probably start clicking around the time ESPN takes over.

Anonymous said...

Kyle Busch is growing up - two months ago he would have walked off in a huff if Shaheen had confronted him as he did last night. Though his answers were pretty snarky he stood there and dealt with it. Progress! Sometimes we forget just how young these guys are - signed old f#@t

GinaV24 said...

I liked the wide open format - it makes it easier to follow the race since I didn't lose the continuity of picture, but it also takes good PXP to complete the picture. they don't have to talk all the time, but call the action on the track for heavens sakes. There were times when I felt like I was in the middle of an infomercial since most of Adam's comments seemed directed to "going to commercial". I like Kyle and Wally and Lindsay and Larry did a fine job in the infield studio.

Ralph Shaheen gets my vote as reporter of the race. He did an absolutely great job of asking real questions and hanging with it even through the dripping sarcasm of Kyle Busch to get what was a really good answer from Kyle. Had it been any other reporter, they wouldn't have gotten past it.

The camera work was mostly good, I know one time though I was wondering why we had an in car shot in the large box with the actual race going on in the smaller -- really?

TNT is still top of the heap with their race coverage this season. They have left Fox in the dust and ESPN is going to really need to step up their game to impress me when they take over.

Good job!

Vicky D said...

I thought the broadcast was pretty good, but the pit reporting was kind of lacking. Especially after the wrecks, not all the drivers were interviewed, the booth just mentioned Driver A was checked out and left the in field care center. I wanted to hear from all of them.

bevo said...

Nice camera work and as others have written I actually saw the ads instead of pausing then fast-forwarding through them on Tivo.

Ralph was the star of the night, maybe the whole season, with his interviews. The rest of the information from the other pit reporters was lacking.

The booth however still hasn't developed any kind of chemistry other than that between Wally and Kyle. I like Adam but he's just not a play-by-play guy. He's best in the pits and that would take care of the weakest link in the presentation - Phil Parsons.

One thing though is really sticking in my craw - Adam and Larry need to learn how to pronounce Keselowski. I'm not necessarily a fan of his but it's disrespectful for a professional broadcaster to constantly get his name wrong.

West Coast Diane said...

My husband and I were having problems watching on TNT. Many shots seemed zoomed in and was difficult on our eyes. Also, seemed to switch cameras back to leaders when only half way through the field.

Switched to HotPass. Enjoyed that much more. Can still follow whole race with TNT, while watching/listening to my driver. Also, since cars are close in this type of race, and my driver wasn't up front till end, got greats view out his windshield.

Not normal RP race. Not alot of bump drafting. Didn't seem to need partners to pit...more horsepower?. Cars were close and "racing". A good thing, but not RP racing. Conflicted. Love the intensity, strategy aspect of RP. Hate the "big ones".

Adam. Hmmm. Like him on pit road. Not working for me in booth. Especially, and no fault of his, having to be the ad set up guy for wide open. Totally takes away from the flow of the race. Someone mentioned getting JP vibes....no way....I don't feel like taking a nap with AA, just isn't a PxP guy for TV. Think he did radio, so not an unfamiliar role. Just seems like a real art trying to blend radio PxP and TV PxP.

Really enjoy listening to TJ spot for JR. Nice voice and good cadence. See why JR has him. JR (like him or not) & Lance on the scanner.....priceless...LOL! Too bad the booth isn't fed more nuggets from scanners. At one point, JR lost a lot of ground backing off on a 3 wide that included Reutimann. Later he said he would never do a 3 wide with him again, Reut doesn't know how to 3 wide!

Is it just me, or does the booth seem to have problems breaking down the crashes? Sometimes It takes them a couple of tries to figure out what happened, when I saw it unfold real time (if camera was on it) or first replay. Sometimes they never reach a oonclusion. Analysis issue or camera angle issue?

My husband kept leaving and coming back saying "it's only lap x". When you use FF thru ads race goes much faster. Watching with wide open it takes a lot longer to watch a race...LOL!

Appreciated the number of after race interviews given how late it was.

One advantage of being on west coast, delay doesn't interfere with bedtime. So, I enjoyed the rain delay interviews. Really like Lindsay. Wish she were on FOX or ESPN. Lots of enthusiasm, which seems to be genuine. Enjoy Kyle and Ralph, too.

bryan said...

The most enjoyable race coverage of the season so far. Kudos to TNT and Racebuddy. I mean I actually watched and enjoyed the whole race tonight.

Jojaye said...

I got a chance to go to a friends upstairs to watch the race on a 50+ inch huge HDTV so I didn't multi task last night.

I loved every last minute of the wide screen format. I had no idea Tony had come back out till the last caution ( someone could have mentioned it!)

Ralph Shaheen (hope I spelled it right) was awesome & should replace 1 of the pit road chicks on ESPN. He really can ask a question & not hem & haw thru the answer ( Busch moment) Both he & Jim Noble get interviews with the drivers, and seems the drivers don't mind answering. Its a nice change.

Actually I enjoyed Lindsay (I am not even gonna try spelling & old computer won't let me open to many tabs to go check it)
tonight -the pre race was good & she was solid all evening.

All in all A- thanks TNT!

Now I'm gonna read everyone else ; )

Jojaye said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jojaye said...

Don't know how I got it to post twice - new talent I guess! So I deleted it

Anonymous said...
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Lisa Hogan said...

My main interest is seeing the race and TNT does a great job with camera work. TNT is my favorite network for the Cup series.

The booth seemed a bit disjointed last night. I enjoy this booth although Adam just isn't a PXP type.

Ralph did a great job covering the pits last night.

As far as the name Keselowski, a lot of TV folks get that one wrong. Steve and Wendy are two that I've noticed. There are others, just don't remember at the moment.

As always, thanks JD for allowing this comfort zone!

GinaV24 said...

Before I forget -- Happy Independence Day, everyone. May you all be safe and cherish the freedom we have here in the US

MRM4 said...

I was at one of my local tracks last night, so I recorded the race and watched it earlier today.

The overall coverage was good, the race was good enough to where I didn't fast-forward very much because of no action. However, I was disappointed about the lack of updates and information throughout the night.

One example was Tony Stewart coming through the field and then fading back after a key adjustment. There was no follow-up whether that was by design or he had a handling problem with the car. There were other similar situations.

Lisa Hogan said...

Well said, Gina.
Wishing everyone a happy and safe holiday.

Anonymous said...

I am very impressed with how TNT handles rain delays. It's nice when there are no rain delay fillers.

I just wish Racebuddy would stay forever. I know it couldn't be worked out with FOX, but have they tried ESPN?

The post race shows should just be on the TV, because they just skim the information, something that can be done very quickly on TV. Perhaps if they went into things in more detail and they added more insight into it, it would be worth going to NASCAR.com for. The TV should have about 15 min of postrace at least, and then NASCAR.com should have 15 min of postrace. However, it was late anyway for them, so they did a fanstastic job with the circumstance.

If they can make a good post race show doing the things that I mentioned, then they should do it every week, even for FOX/ESPN races, since they do have all online rights.

Anonymous said...
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Tracy D said...

Liked Wally D. Think he's a good fit with Kyle Petty.

Generally a good show. Must admit, the long red flags had me switching over to Independence Day. But the broadcasters couldn't control the wild wrecks.

rich said...

The duo of Larry Mac and Lindsey C. worked very well I thought. She asked good questions and I always enjoy Larry's answers.
Rest of race coverage was great with the single exception of coverage of the "Big One". I missed a good recap of who was in the wreck and who got back out.
Didn't use RaceBuddy much and that says alot.

Donna in FL said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE WideOpen coverage, can't praise it enough, wish it could be for the whole season!!! Hurry up The NASCAR Channel(R)... same for RaceBuddy. Just a stellar package to present the sport to fans.

As for the race itself, thought TNT did a good job as any updating conditions, we switched between media for the latest, pictures in view at all times. During the race itself we had a look at the 3D channels just to see how that's being done. Must say they were using the best HD cameras, could get a more crystal clear picture on all the channels!

The only real disappointment was the race itself, we don't watch NASCAR for demolition derby. Kudos with reporters for sticking with angry drivers!! Didn't like repave news, but after that mess, absolutely necessary. The surface is no longer properly raceable at high speed.

earl06 said...

I guess I'm in the minority, but I don't like the wide open coverage. Adam Alexander did more promos than PxP and the amount and frequency of the commercials was intrusive. For a while KP and Wally weren't even talking because there was no time between ads.

I don't need to see "everything" live. Honestly, you can't really see anything until the replays anyway, be it a wreck or a pass or whatever.

Given a choice between Wide-open or Limited commercial interruption, I'll take LCI.

And for the hundredth time, Nascar.com sucks. I've tried to watch the post-race show several times now. In the rare times I've found it, RaceBuddy didn't work. Again, something simple that thousands of websites can do and have done for years, and Nascar.com can't find it with either hand. ??????

Just put it on the front page with a big banner and forget RaceBuddy with the moronic chat taking up half the screen. Kind of like how somebody who knew how to design a website might do it....

Jonathan said...

great job tnt sorry everyone couldnt be here for the race was at a friends house, man HD Dvr is the way to go first time I actually got to watch some of the race, stop it, go party some more, then go watch right from where I left off!! so awsome TNT sucks you cant cover the rest of the races this year!!! Ah well, its off to Joilet IL on Friday for the Nationwide race! WOO cant wait