Monday, February 28, 2011

TV Police: Sprint Cup Series From Phoenix On FOX

Here are the TV facts and just the facts about the coverage from PIR:

Chris Myers anchored the pre-race show from a new set on the end of pit road. There were no guest on the set and after Darrell Waltrip left for the TV booth, Myers and Jeff Hammond moved into the Hollywood Hotel for the remainder of the race. This duo appeared several times during the race as accidents and a red flag paused the action.

Mike Joy called the race from the TV booth with Waltrip and Larry McReynolds alongside. These three appeared on-camera from the roof of the PIR tower prior to the race and then moved inside for the remainder of the telecast.

Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda, Dick Berggren and Matt Yocum were the pit road reporters. Several accidents in the event resulted in garage interviews. Pit stops involving damaged cars that had returned to the track kept this group busy for the entire event.

FOX experienced no weather delays and the telecast featured significant sponsorship from Subway. That appeared in the form of large logos before select race graphics. After the big accident, the field settled down into a rhythm that limited the passing.

A late restart allowed for some racing to develop and the Kyle Busch vs. Jeff Gordon story to emerge. Mike Joy called the run to the finish without interruption. The director chose to show only the winning car cross the finish line on TV and then follow the celebration. No other cars were shown finishing the race.

FOX interviewed the top five drivers in the post-race show, reviewed the entire field finishing order and then the season points. The telecast left the air at 6:50PM ET, running 20 minutes past the scheduled off time.

We are providing this post with only facts and without opinion so you will be able to post your comments about the FOX coverage without being influenced. We would like your opinion of the total telecast. We are looking for the good, the bad and what you would suggest could be changed as the season moves on.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by, we do this for every Sprint Cup Series race once the live telecast is over. As always, this is a family-friendly website so please keep that in mind when posting.


terri said...

Heavy sigh.

Once again - show the winner and not the rest of the field.

Talk about great racing but not showing it on the screen.

DW "knew" Jeff had a great car all day. Does he ever listen to himself?

Nothing changes. Nothing ever will.

OSBORNK said...

Horrible coverage. No flow to the race. Finish was a one car affair with no finishing order. The radio would have bee more informative and given a better picture.

Erik said...

Fox just doesn't get it. I invested a Sunday afternoon for that broadcast?

terri said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mike (Detroit) said...

Only caught the last 100 laps, I could tell there was some really good racing going on cause the camera would accidently point at it once in a while, GinaV24 scared the hell out of her cats, it was not one of Fox's / NA$cars better days thats for sure. You guys make it a roit, Tanks JD.

brad said...

Just my opinion but today was the worst broadcast that Fox has ever put on. The booth was confused and disjointed. The pit calls were not smooth like these pit reporters typically do. The camera work was all over the place from in cars to tight shots. And after several hours of this abysmal telecast we didn't even get to see 2nd on back cross the finish line. It appears that the Fox crew is regressing rather than improving. It is early in the year but this is heading to be a long year for race fans.

PammH said...

Fox EPIC FAIL-that is all.

Lou said...

I watched some of raceday and all of fox prerace for the first time since i can remember from last summer. The fox prerace was better in that chris lost the gig that was so sad last year, and that is a plus for him. Not sure if i will watch prerace shows in the future. they just seem to be a waste of time IMO. But it was better than the prerace shows from last year.

watching interview w/the 24 now. radio chatter from the 24, we beat KB. you can not make this stuff up. I did not watch all of the race. Did other things around the house with the noise of the booth as backround noise.

Anonymous said...

I saw one car finish. I was robbed, Fox, and I want my four hours back. I sat through the entire buffoonery filled telecast and did not get to see the finish of the race! WTF! Fox, you are an %#&!

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

Never saw our fav cross the finish line. And what's up with Fox only showing the top 12 in points - no other driver is worthy to show farther down the list? What happened with Jeff Gordon in the grass I never heard it if he got stuck but we sure saw lots of commercials after the finish. Does DW ever take a breath? He gabbed all the race plus not a really good broadcast. During the recap Chris Myers blaming MK for that wreck with Vickers was uncalled for too.

AncientRacer said...

Given the geography it is nearly impossible to have bad pictures of PIR. This is a fact and it is indisputable. So, the pictures were good today.

I liked all the racing this weekend. There were small -- and I am serious -- small bitches I have on the coverage, but Overall I thought it good.

Of course I am biased. KyBu won 2. And Jeff Gordon got his due.

Oh, by the way, as Ozzie might say "What is a Bayne?"

The answer is: Last Week.

The cream rose to the top this week. As it should.

Report filed by Officer Acient for Sgt. FriDaly

PS: Alice Cooper was a no-show at PIR this year. Alice is so last century, though.

fbu1 said...

Disgraceful finish for the broadcast. I do not understand why NASCAR can't impose some minimum standards. Pathetic.

erb224 said...

Terri - We wouldn't want to miss the last 10 minutes of Judge Joe Brown.

saltsburgtrojanfan said...

Well from reading TDP about now looks like i missed nothing.

JD you got more patience with Fox than i do.

I get sick and tired of people promising better coverage but does not deliver.

These broadcasts have gotten worse as the weeks and years gone by.

If i was head of Fox sports and saw the abysmal coverage, I would be calling an emergency staff meeting to chew out producers and directors.

And i would fire DW ON THE SPOT.

Fox fix this lame broadcasts or can it. The product you are producing is not fit to watch.

Anonymous said...

only one car finished the race, according to your coverage.
Gordon never pulled into Victory Lane or exited his race car, according to your coverage.
Oh, and the rest of the coverage stunk also. (too many instances to list.)

I frequently purchase your sandwiches.....until today.
I appreciate your sponsorship, BUT, today's commercial placements were way over the top and interfered with race coverage.

Your excessive advertising may possibly have gained you customers, but, you lost me permantly.

I really miss the days of actually watching a NASCAR race...just not interested in watching a pathetic ego babble and an endless infomercial.


Anonymous said...

I've been a die hard fan since 1998. I've been reading this blog since Mr. Daly first started it. espn, fox, and nascar have done nothing but kill my passion for the sport for the last five or six years. Between yesterdays telecast on espn and todays on fox i plan on missing my first weekend of racing next week. If the withdraws aren't too bad then I am gone for good.

i am officially giving up all hope because there is no way the booth will ever inform us who used what strategy on pit stops or who the lucky dog is when they think single car (qual-cam) shots are better than showing multiple cars. they think we would rather see wife, gf, or crew of winner rather than see any other cars cross the finish line. They would rather cut to commercial (ironically, a spot telling us to watch nascar) then show the winner celebrating.

Between these points and about a hundred other ones that cause me to scream at the tv I have totally lost the passion for the sport. And thats not including all the asnine things nascar itself does.

guess the only time i will see jr and landon and the guys is on iRacing.

Anonymous said...

Err...there was a race? Either track, either of the top two series thus far? Truck/Speed Channel coverage has been decent.

No wonder other fans I've known usually get drunk, fall asleep, and catch the recap.

Looked to me like it was one big advertisement with a few top-dollar teams/sponsors calling the shots.

I'll reiterate for the nine billionth time: as a reasonably intelligent individual square in the demographic this form of so-called entertainment is supposed to capture:

Forget about keeping me around with this insulting treatment. If I want storylines, I'll watch pro wrestling.

If I want seizures from 5-7 second snapshots of the same 5 cars, I will stay up for three days and have someone use a strobe light on me.

And if I want to know the progress of a driver, I can just as easily skip this ongoing moneygrab fiasco, read a race result, skip the equally bad recap shows, check out Twitter...

Y'all can be replaced. Nascar drivers around my age don't watch anymore, either.

Just some disgusted food for thought. Good thing this is a family-oriented site.

Kim said...

Dear Mike Joy,

Please do not yell out "and there goes Kasey Kahne" in the middle of a large wreck when he is nowhere near the action. I nearly called 911 for an imminent heart attack.

Thank goodness I have TrackPass and could see the #4 chugging along its digital raceway without incident.

Kasey drives the REDBULL #4 TOYOTA. Not the 09, not the 9 and not the silver RedBull 83. I love the guy and I managed to figure this out last season.

Oh, and Kasey was not the only driver you screwed up today, either.

Come on, Mike, you're the only sane one in the booth, please don't fail me now! : D

Sophia said...

Agree with PammH.

Epic Fail.

Even sadder. Things never change & FOX/ESPN/NASCAR do not care.

Tired of griping. Does NOTHING

Anonymous said...

JD, are people complaining again that you bias our opinions? The conspiracy theorists need to give it a rest. I enjoy reading your reviews and hope you do comment at some point.

NASCAR on FOX @ Phoenix was a complete letdown compared to the Daytona 500. For a first time viewer, it would appear as if this group is new at this 'NASCAR' thing.

The first 155 laps had no flow. FOX had a prepared list of storylines, sponsor promos and commercials. When one of the headline drivers crashed, FOX was lost. When half the field wrecked, FOX was lost. Once the cars spread out, FOX was lost. FOX was covering the race through instant replay at several points throughout the race. It might as well have been tape-delayed coverage, not much would have changed.

Joy had a tough day; constantly calling the wrong driver names and saying many incorrect facts. Waltrip & McReynolds were off today.

Camerawork was abysmal. Viewers were lucky to see more than 2 cars in the shot at the same time. There was exciting racing on the track, but the tight shots and poor angles did not translate that excitement to the viewers at home. There were many incidents on track that had to be shown on replay since the shots were so tight.

The commercials and in-race ads were excessive. FOX had to rush to break seconds after the big wreck and missed pit stops after the red flag.

By lap 160, I had enough and turned off the race for the rest of the afternoon. This type of coverage will not rejuvenate the sport. I'm not very excited about Las Vegas now & may take off until Bristol. Congrats to the Planteers that survived this broadcast.

AncientRacer said...

@ saltsburgtrojanfan

And to think I took your name in vain today and you did not rise to strike at it.

Though I did know you were around someplace. :)

Unknown said...

stomp all over me for saying this.. it's only the internet folks... but what is the big deal about not showing all of the drivers not crossing the line? say for example your favorite driver finished 5 laps down and already had cemented his place in the results. why waste your time wanting to see him finish when he basically finished halfway thru the race?

Slick said...

At least Ancient Racer, and I, enjoyed the race. :)

I have found, over the years, that I tend to watch the race, and if any announcers get too crazy, I subconsciously tune them out (I've also done the same with some Women I've known, and no doubt they've done the same with me). I'm over forty (close to fifty), and I'm just thrilled we can get get to watch all of the races in Southun' Ontario. Wasn't always the case, till the early Nineties.

And I said this last week in the closing laps of Daytona, but perhaps it needs to be said again:

"The best thing about quittin' Whiskey and Whisky on Sundays [only], is that you get to have an extra seventeen beers, and hardly feel a thing."

Cheers !

larry said...

I just got home from a mall. I watched for an hour or so, then left because I was so dissatisfied with the TV "coverage". After reading the blog of the race and this blog, I'm glad I didn't waste my time watching TV.

Unknown said...

and being a recently graduated marketing major.. subway's example of sponsoring this race is called Integrated Marketing. get used to it, it will be everywhere. in this way, they can really get the exposure of their brand on every part of the broadcast for the $$$ money they put out. just my 2 cents

Roland said...

I dont know why but i just couldnt get into it today. I usually listen to MRN during commercial but today I just listened to MRN the whole race so it was a pretty good. Video and graphics were great today. Is it the SD feed that the graphics are bad on? HD is just fine. Yall may think this coverage was awful but its still 10x better than the awful crap espn feeds us every week.

slander q. libel said...

(walks up and climbs onto soapbox)

Once again, [censored] Fox's so-called NASCAR [censored] coverage stunk up the [censored] show. It's bad enough that [censored] BZF is doing what he can to torpedo NASCAR's long-term viability as a sport, but it doubles the insult when inundated with [censored] Fox's blatant [censored]-kissing of the Toyota drivers and teams (especially one [censored] Busch), constant [censored] commercial interruptions (and being forced to watch that furry little [censored] dance around afterward), not to mention their [censored] non-stop stream-of-unconscious blabbering.

TNT can't get here soon enough.

(climbs down from soapbox)

Anonymous said...

Vegas is only 5 hours up the road, why the rush to get off air? I understand you may be 20 minutes over but at that point what's another 10 minutes?

Good to see Yocum do Victory Lane. Is FOX rotating people or is Krista done with VL?

At least Myers told people Speed would have more post race.

Sirius Channel 128 has great post race too. If you think FOX has too many commercials you should listen to MRN, commercial breaks every 8 minutes.

slander q. libel said...


No, Integrated Marketing is what they do with the TV series Chuck. In that case, the product placement was obviously there, and the show has a sort of nudge-nudge-wink-wink attitude to it. Kind of makes it fun, in a way.

What we just witnessed was what could be better-called "blatant and obnoxious amateurish hucksterism."

saltsburgtrojanfan said...

Everybody Don't hold Back.

Let Fox know how you guys feel. Better yet let ESPN know how you feel. Better yet still, let NASCAR know how you feel.

JD's blog is the best way to do with JD having a career history in TV.

If TV wants to have exciting racing than NASCAR should give TV an ultimatum: Provide the fans Better TV coverage or all races except the Daytona 500 will be tape delayed ( no live broadcasts allowed)

That will get the TV sports execs attention and scare them good.

Zetona said...

Clearly, those of us who thought the coverage was so much as decent are in the minority.

Being a #24 fan means I'm probably feeling better about the race as a whole than most people are, but I thought the coverage was pretty good. DW was actually really observant today and made some insightful comments and he and Larry Mac didn't try to call the race over Mike Joy. We saw plenty of racing back in the field, and the pictures were excellent.

I'm not as crazy about seeing every car cross the line as are some people here, so that wasn't an issue for me. (And I saw my guy cross the line.) I was bothered by how disjointed the broadcast was early on; it kept jumping from car to car far too quickly and was difficult to follow. This wasn't helped by some of the ads, such as that UPS graphic some 20 laps in that took up the whole screen. I was also surprised that they went to commercial after showing just one replay of the Big One. On the whole, though, I can't say it was a bad telecast; and it wasn't a bad race by Phoenix standards.

slander q. libel said...


Better yet, let the sponsors know how you feel.

A couple of years ago, I was part of that letter-and-email-writing campaign directed towards Subway, Skittles and other companies that kept NBC from cancelling Chuck. It worked, in spades.

We aren't NASCAR's customers. We aren't the broadcasters' customers. The advertisers are.

The only way that any real change will take place is if enough people raise enough objections with the advertisers that they put pressure on NASCAR and the networks.

Palmetto said...

Would someone explain to DW that the camera is mounted on top of the car, that it doesn't have (or need) tear offs, and that Jimmie Johnson probably doesn't care if it has any tape to block the sun?

Thank you.

Matt said...

I had high hopes after last week's showing by FOX, but this week, they fell right back into their old traps. The follies are well documented and really not worth going into at this point.

What I was most concerned with today is that when I had to step away from the race to cook dinner, I turned on my local Fox Sports Radio affiliate where I heard national broadcasters Tom Looney and Ben Mallard mocking the call of the Daytona 500 and making jokes over their "live look-in" of today's race. It seemed very telling in a way. I thought there would have been some level of editorial unity between the TV and radio brands, but I was clearly wrong. That kind of garbage is bad for Fox TV but worse for the sport.

Beyond the truck race, the entire weekend of top tier series coverage was pretty bad. One would think that NASCAR could step in and call a truce between the networks asking them to promote the sport rather than continue this nonsense. I totally agree as stated before that the Subway spots were completely obnoxious and unnecessary.

Palmetto said...

Oh, and does anyone think a driver other than Jr. will appear in the 'Pizza Hut Popular Driver' segments this season? Next season?Heck, he'd probably be the focus if Pizza Hut sponsored this segment in an IRL race. I've nothing against Jr., but c'mon; who are we kidding? Does the Guard reimburse the Hut for this?

Anonymous said...

JD, I have been a big fan of yours since I found your site. But I am done with nascar tv coverage. I have had enough and I give up. Best wishes to you and the planeteers. Hope you all perservere and changes are made. Dang, I have been a nascar fan for over 40 years - I'm old. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

I think it was an excellent broadcast.

I predict a lot of people will complain that we did not see the Top 10 cross the finish line, or even know who they were for awhile. To that I have two things to say:

1) These are often the same people who complain that NASCAR doesn't put enough emphasis on the win.

2) Jeff Gordon winning after this huge drought and with a new crew chief is a BIG story. If the director has his hands tied and we must see the top cars finish (they were all strung out, so we're talking another long minute seconds of airtime) then we miss the drama and human excitement going on down in pit road.

Would I like to know if Harvick finished ahead of or behind Newman? Yes - but I can find that out if I'm willing to wait another couple of minutes. I don't want to miss the real part of our sport that I love - the drama of competition.

Anonymous said...

I had a big problem when NASCAR changed the points system and then started insulting fans by saying it was so much more simple to understand.

But now I'm getting *really* insulted by having TV announcers try and tell me that this new points system is harder to catch up from a bad finish.

The points were reduced by proportionate percentages that make the difference only in the mind. You still basically need to make up the same number of spots to catch up. When the announcers try and inject false drama into the race by telling me this new points system is much harder to overcome, they are assuming that I can't tell the difference between the new one and the old one - which is basically NONE.

Anonymous said...

The most painful part of the whole broadcast: Michael Waltrip with the Chicago White Sox.

You just know Rutledge was watching on a monitor and thinking, "Hey, wait a minute, I thought *I* was the official clown of NASCAR."

Anonymous said...

Here is another thing I don't get about FOX - how is it that fans "vote" for the fastest pit crew? I mean, what if they vote for one that is always slow (ie. 88 team, 29 team). Since when do you "vote" for who's fastest?

Anonymous said...

Dismal ... what the heck was DW saying during the pre-race? That song reference. But what made me turn the channel was during a pit stop sequence the leader was coming in, Jimmy Johnson, but all Fox could show was Kasey Kahne exiting pit lane. What the ? When they finally figured out they should show Johnson's pitstop, it was basically over. Grrrr ....

starrcade76 said...

I had no issues with today's Fox coverage. There are always going to be blemishes and mistakes, but if one watched the entire broadcast they should have had a grasp of what went on and why. I thought they did a good job of showing all the incidents in a timely fashion.

RWar24 said...

Mike Joy was definitely off his game a bit.. Saying Kahne spinning when it was Harvick, then right after that saying Biffle spinning when it was Vickers. Stuff like that happens every now and then. When they had the stretch of green flag laps, they missed a great opportunity to go through the field and show who's running where. You know this doesn't have to be done by the pit reporters.. The booth could do this as well. Today would've been perfect for that because as it worked out, you have the last caution, then the 20 lap run to the finish. It would've been like a running summary to how the race was.

Anonymous said...

I refuse to keep posting the same things over and over. sum it up in 1 word - FailFox.

Auto Journalist said...

Attendance is down, ratings are down, teams are consolidating like crazy just to stay in the sport, sponsors are abandoning ship... And Fox is doing the same sophomoric "welcome to NASCAR" broadcast they did 10 years ago.

Jaws, Larry Mac, and Mike Joy have huge amounts of experience, talent that nobody else can touch, and they're still trying to explain the sport to beginners, on lap 250?

The producers need to cut them loose. Alienate a few channel-surfing newbies for the sake of elevating the broadcast. The fair-weather fans have already left - and no matter what the networks or NASCAR want to believe, they're just not coming back. They came, they saw, they went back to watching stick-and-ball games.

The strategy, going forward (as they say in corporate America) will need to focus on NASCAR's core -- the fans who were there before the TV contract. The ones who watched Daytona last week and actually remembered David Pearson's success in that car, way back when. Many of those core fans have left, but they don't want to stay gone.

Like me, many long-time fans of the sport just want to see the silly circus of restrictor plates and ugly cars that bear no resemblance to street machines, done away with.

And, while we're at it, if nobody else in the France family can take it upon themselves to provide a real and tangible connection to NASCAR's haritage, its history and wild past, then maybe it's time for some new leadership.

KoHoSo said...

I had intended to watch the race and participate in the live blogging here. However, after a week of the flu, I got so tired that I caught some badly needed sleep and watched the race later off of my DVR.

As sick as I have felt over the past week, I don't think the flu bothered me near as much as what I saw today from Phoenix. There seems to be something about this track that brings out the worst in Fox. Maybe it's the long trip. Maybe many of the announcers don't like this oddball track. Maybe the booth an accommodations are uncomfortable.

Whatever it is that makes Fox do so badly at Phoenix, it is already filling me with dread for the remainder of their portion of the Cup schedule. Yes, there were some all too brief runs where the camera angles were wide, "second tier" drivers were covered, and the analysis was crisp. However, the overwhelming bulk of this very tired-sounding broadcast made me feel like I was not watching the second race of the year but the second-to-last.

At this point, I am seriously considering making a move similar to the Wood Brothers in that, when it comes to NASCAR on TV, I just might only run a partial schedule. With my local MRN/PRN affiliate being an FM station with great sound, I just don't know why I want to sit on my couch, be frustrated with almost constant tight camera shots, and then be forced to surround myself with X number of new media tools to keep informed on a race when MRN and PRN do a fine job of that (not to mention that CBS, TNN, and ESPN v1.0 did the job very well with older technology, fewer cameras, and much lower budgets).

Anonymous said...

Agree Kim! I don't know what happened with Mike today but had some headscratching moments :(.

I wouldn't say that Trevor is last week, considering what happened to him could and HAS happened to just about EVERY driver. It would be one thing if he ran the race without issue and finished 30th.

Michael B, said...

I thought the coverage was ok today. There were a couple gripes:

- Thankfully, FINALLY, Darrell Waltrip KEPT HIS MOUTH SHUT on the final lap.
- Not seeing anyone cross the finish line, besides the 24. (you can go back and show us all the celebration clips while we wait for the car to get to victory lane)

I definitely like the new pre-race. MUCH better "feel" to it, and much better flow. Although, the new "DW rant" segment makes me wanna puke. He spends the entire broadcast doing this, no?

Overall, the broadcast wasn't perfect, but it wasn't as bad as some make it out to be.............this week.

Anonymous said...

It appeared that there were two races Sunday. The first half was just crazy with big wrecks and many different pit strategiesa which totally confused the Production crew. The last half was your usual 'parade' that better fit Fox's script. Throughout,the announcers (ALL of them) were very dis jointed.And yes, I groaned when I saw the "Base Ball Player Waltrip" hamming it up in the pre race. Of course Kenny Wallace lived down to his insulting reputation too. Never saw an interview with Carl Edwards on the broadcast or on VL. Rather than rush to Judge Joe Brown, I wish they interviewed more drivers, but then what do they know that the booth doesn't. Lately, I've found Mike Joy to be irritating. Just call the frikin race. I don't want to know what diner someone ate at in 1962.

Andy D said...

As I said on the live blog, this was my first opportunity to watch the race with MRN doing the audio. the difference was overwhelming.

I ran both during the final ten laps. While DW and Larry jawed for three laps about how great it was that Gordon would score a win, MRN was still covering the battles behind him. Fox announcers simply spend too much time listening to temselves talk. We're fans, we already know Jeff hasn't won in a while. And you've told us about twenty more times in the last part of the race.

MRN doesn't have the benefit of the ticker, so they give you frequent field rundowns. They call the race instead of chatting about the driver's feelings. They cover A LOT of drivers in one lap, telling me who's ahead by how many car lengths. They GET EXCITED when someone makes a pass they've been working on for ten laps (even if it's for 8th place).

I disagree when the statement above that MRN has more commercials. I felt thatthere were fewer. When TV and radio ran simultaneous commercials, radio was gone half as long.

Overall, MRN spends very little time doing color commentary and lots of time describing the action. FOX is like watching a boxing match where they spend every round telling you about the fighter's training regimen and home life instead of telling you who threw which punch.

I having the video but I will not listen to FOX audio again. I don't get TNT or ESPN, so MRN/PRN as me for the whole year.

MRM4 said...

My issues with Sunday's broadcast were the following:

1. When Jeff Gordon was nudged into the wall by Carl Edwards, nothing was ever said about how much damage there was to the car. The announcers left it hanging like he'd be a non-factor, but there he was a short time later back up front.

2. Mike Joy accidentally calling Kasey Kahne as the spinner when it was Brian Vickers.

3. No mention of a red flag until 5 minutes or so after it had been out.

4. The announcers totally missing the boat as to why Tony Stewart only took 2 tires on the last pit stop. That put him way out front before the final caution came out. When the field was bunched up, they acted like he should have taken 4 tires and acted as though the pit stop took place under caution.

5. No mention of Gordon killing his car after the burnout, only showed a brief glimpse of the car being pushed by a rollback.

GinaV24 said...

I watched the entire race, pretty quickly I had to mute the TV and turn MRN on so I could actually find out what was going on.

I was very frustrated with what I considered the overuse of the in car and single car shots and the whole Subway and UPS full screen ads made me furious, especially as it was during green flag racing.

I understand that the ads pay for being able to broadcast the race, but the overkill on this is stupid.

Plus, Fox seems to have adopted ESPN's tactic of showing us the race in replay mode and I hate it.

At the end of the race, I did turn the sound back on and I thought Mike Joy did a nice job with the end of the race and DW kept his mouth shut until Mike invited his input. That is fine and worked for me. I also thought most of DW's comments in the wrap up made sense.

I was happy since my guy won that I got to see him cross the start/finish line but I still don't get why it's so hard to show the field going across the line - that's the culmination of why the fans tuned in for 4 or so hrs.

It was a very up and down broadcast in my opinion. When they pulled back and showed the track, it was great. They had one very artsy shot of the sky and clouds during the race that made NO sense at all. Cars on the track, Mr. Director, cars on the track!

Someone made the comment that someone should sponsor the blimp shot and we'd get more pictures -- thought Goodyear usually did that - I'd like it if they did more.

GB5450 said...

Long-time reader; first-time poster. I stopped watching DW Fox broadcast three years ago and I have been listening to MRN on Sirius 128. Since, overall well-being has been better, my financial status has been more solid, my eye sight has improved, my agression has been lowered and my marraige has been never better. DW Fox will bring you down. Avoid DW Fox and live longer.

Anonymous said...

Mike Joy needs glasses... that is all

Anonymous said...

Mr. Daly
We assume that each Post that is Removed by the Administrator is perhaps a Compliment of Coverage and that is not aloud on this site.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 10:20AM,

First of all, it's "allowed."

This blog has been reviewing the good and bad of NASCAR TV for five seasons.

The "TV Police" post asks fans for their personal wrap-up of the coverage of the Sprint Cup Series race from that weekend.

The deleted posts above were for a poster who did not offer anything on the topic we are discussing.

This bizarre suggestion that somehow posts are removed if they do not criticize TV coverage is laughable.

There are thousands of posts on this blog since 2007 advocating all kinds of NASCAR TV shows, personalities and new media projects.

After the tough times of last year, FOX returned the same line-up and somehow expected different results. The fan posts on this blog show the reality of the situation.

Imagine watching a race for three hours and seeing only one car race to the finish line.

If the director of the Kentucky Derby showed only one horse finish, there would be a revolt.

The arrogance of the TV partners toward the fans watching at home is amazing.


Barry in Tennessee said...

@MRM4, good catch on the Tony Stewart pit stop.

I was wondering if I was the only one that understood why they only took 2 tires. They came out of that pit cycle with a 4.75 second lead and 25 laps remaining. No way was anyone going to run them down.

In fact, after about 10 laps Tony's lap times were the same as Gordon's on 4 new tires. It is only the first few laps after a restart where there is a big difference.

The funny part is Fox didnt' even realize Tony had just taken 2 until the yellow came out.

Instead they were saying Gordon lost the lead to Kyle during the pit stops and that Kyle was now leading (when in fact the 14 was way out front).

Somehow during the caution (which they were quick to point out would be a blessing to Dale Jr.) they spun the story around and talked about what a terrible call Grubb had made. (To Mike Joy's credit, he pointed out Ryan Newman won the race like that last year, to which Larry Mac quickly interjected that was a night race.)

After the restart, Larry, Jeff and DW took glee in pointing out how right they were each time Tony got passed.

Had the yellow flag not come out, McReynolds and Hammond would have been praising the brilliant call by Darian Grubb that snookered the rest of the field.

Zieke said...

Well, once again the Fox broadcast was subpar. Mike did a little better than last wk., but with Waltrip there he is beating on a brick wall. Too bad for him, as he could be pretty good. Unless a wreck is very obvious, the announcers have NO CLUE as to who caused it. That is very annoying, because we are often seeing something alot different than they are describing. There doesn't seem to be any continuity in the race broadcasts.

Anonymous said...

Good race and I'm happy for Jeff Gordon. I thought that the broadcast was good.I agree that the broadcast can be better but honestly It seems like some people here would not be happy no matter what and would still complain.

Julia said...

DW kept his mouth shut at the end, cause he was too sad, upset & mad that Jeff won. He knew he could not sound as down and depressed as he was so he kept quiet. He HATES Jeff Gordon with such a passion that he can't show anything but his hatered for the man on air. When Jeff won, he could do nothing to show his hatred, so he kept quiet. When Jeff hit the wall early, you could hear the joy and happiness in his voice cause he thought Jeff was done for the day. When it was proven it had no effect on the car, he was so down cause he knew Jeff had a great car. If DW could for one week tone down on his obvious hatred of Jeff, the broadcast would be 1000 times better.

The Mad Man said...

I'd say the race was a catastrophic failure from start to finsh. Bad angles on the cameras, commentators not knowing what they're talking about, trying to blame people for wrecks they had nothing to do with, mistatement of facts, misidentification of cars, and on and on. Not to mention the great job of hiding the grandstands so that a true picture of attendance could've drawn by the home audience. I'd have to give the race an F-.

Daly Planet Editor said...

FYI: Having a nice little run today of folks pushing the censor agenda. So far the Indy 500, single car shown winning and Kentucky Derby are the hot topics.

The idea of this post is to get your personal views on the NASCAR on FOX telecast from PIR.

Any other topics can be directed to me at as always. We use reader suggestions for post topics during the week on a regular basis.



Marylee in Richmond said...

I only saw the last 20 laps, but was amazed at the LONG commercial break between the checkered flag and Victory Lane. Trying to get them all in, I guess, but because they gave their screen credits and all the ads, I thought they were breaking away even before Victory Lane. and then, no Jeff climbing from the car!
And what was up with ending at 6:50? Who did they think was going to watch the last 10 minutes of something else rather than a full finish run-down, more interviews, etc???????

Anonymous said...

Mad Man, the grandstands were sold out (50,000). Doesn't count the 'hill people' or the infield. Doesn't always mean people are sitting in their seats (sometimes corporations buy them up), but in this case I would think it was probably 'visibly' full...can't fault Fox on that one.

Julia--Obvious hatred? I have heard the same thing said about Rusty's 'obvious' bias against him, and I still haven't heard anything that made it obvious to me (and I like Jeff). DW is the one who affectionately dubbed him 'Big Daddy', was he not? DW may lean toward certain drivers (we all know his love for Toyota & for Junior). I may not be a fan of DW as an analyst, but I'm not seeing any 'hatred'.

Scott V said...

If this post is to address the NASCAR on FOX coverage then my question should be posted.

Why is it not OK for one car to be Shown at the End of the NASCAR on FOX race at PHOENIX, but it is ok to show it at the INDY 500?

glenc1 said...

You know, I've come to realize that I hardly 'watch' the races anymore. They're on my TV, but I am not 'watching' all the time. And I used to. Yet I can listen on the radio and it has all my attention.

There seemed to be a lot of things they did not know, did not tell us, or got wrong, this race. That is just poor broadcasting. Perhaps because the story they wanted to tell (whatever it was) didn't happen. Heck, they didn't even "Jimmie Johnson" us to death, although I knew they'd be pushing the 'Busch' agenda on us. But it seemed disjointed & lackluster in the booth. We certainly need more than 'a grasp' of what's happening in the race. The on screen action didn't all go with their comments, and several times they were speculating about cause when they (and we) hadn't seen what really happened. I know it takes some time to get used to new paint schemes, etc, but they are supposed to be professionals and able to identify the proper cars.

Anon 9:04...that was bugging me too. NASCAR said when they changed the points that the outcomes would not be much different, so why are they suddenly playing that up--perhaps because there were two big wrecks two weeks in a row involving Chase-potential drivers? Too much drama. Perhaps it means they actually have to talk about some of the *other* teams.

Finally--I have to say, why in the world is Fox timing the races so poorly? I thought the idea of having informercials or syndicated shows after races were deliberately put there so you'd have 'fillers' in case it goes long. Instead, they are cutting away to this nonsense with time left up to the next half hour instead of running a few more interviews. It's like they just can't wait to beat the traffic.

and I know this isn't about Raceday, but I think once again I'm going to have to give it up, or put the mute on. If Kenny Wallace tells me one more time that he has to explain something to us (presumably ignorant) fans, I'm going to shoot the TV. I make it a point to educate myself about things, and so do plenty of other fans. It's about as bad as explaining 'tight' and 'loose' over and over. If there are newbies out there, they will *figure it out* if they're really interested.

Anonymous said...

ScottV...where was it said that it was okay to do that at the Indy 500?

Daly Planet Editor said...


I appreciate the fact that you might be a new fan.

First of all, it is not "OK" for only the winner of the Indy 500 to be shown crossing the line.

The ESPN production staff decides what to show on ABC and because they own the rights to the race, they can craft the telecast as they please.

One thing is similar between Indy and the PIR telecast. That is the complete disconnect between the TV director and the fan base.

At PIR, FOX asked fans to watch a multi-hour telecast. Those fans were not all rooting for Jeff Gordon. Each had their own driver and team favorite.

Despite the "drama" of Jeff winning a race after a long dry spell, all of the other cars on the lead lap racing to the finish line deserve to be seen on national TV.

This is a situation that we first encountered with the NFL Football director who also directs the FOX telecasts. He did not care about the fans, he cared about capturing what he felt was the "drama" of the moment.

It all came to a head at Bristol several years ago when Junior, Juan and other fan favorites were racing on the final lap in a big pack for second on back.

FOX actually showed only the winner at a track where laps are twenty seconds long and the network had to go back and replay the finish of the entire rest of the field for the fans.

Since that time, FOX has opened the camera wide, shown all the cars finishing with a graphic as they cross the line.

Phoenix was the first time in a long time where if you were a fan of any driver on the lead lap battling for position you literally watched for hours only to be denied seeing your driver finish the race.

Racing on TV is subjective. Unlike stick and ball sports where someone shoots a basket, catches a ball or scores a goal it takes a thorough knowledge of NASCAR to understand where the stories are and find them.

That was on display in Daytona when racing icon Leonard Wood was not interviewed in Victory Lane by FOX, but Trevor Bayne's mom was.

Our conversations here are focused on what hardcore NASCAR fans want from TV now that the telecast is surrounded by Twitter, endless live online chats, instant stats on, a radio broadcast and live leaderboards.

Fans know what is going on at the track, they simply want to see it reflected in the TV coverage.

I hope that addressed your issue today.


larry said...

Interesting conversation yesterday during the race:

Wife: Is that practice or qualifying?

Me: It's the race.

Wife: How can one car be racing?

FWIW...she is NOT a race fan.

Anonymous said...

I thought in general the coverage from FOX was really good.

My main critique is not enough "points as they run" updates. Especially after many top teams had bad finishes at Daytona, I thought it was essential to see how a good run at Phoenix impacts the points as we are all getting used to the new system.

I think they should have had graphics with the top 12 every 50 laps or so - possibly even as drop-downs from the ticker.

I also really loved the full-screen shot of Kyle Busch's pit box after the Gordon pass. That type of raw emotion is something you only get in NASCAR and I thank FOX for showing it to us, the fans.

It is also necessary to give FOX credit for interviewing the top 5 drivers and giving us full victory lane coverage when they were already out of their window.

saltsburgtrojanfan said...

The decision to not show all the cars finish last night, i did not watch BTW, is that either A) The producers and directors are stupid, B) They are arrogant or C) They just don't care or get it. We all spent 3+ hours of the race and want to see all the cars finish using your wide shot. Laps are like 30 or so seconds long at Phoenix. Only showing the winner yesterday was inexcusable.

I dont want to see the crews dancing like children or spouses celebrating. We see all of this in victory lane.

As for the announcing crew, Mike Joy is the only bright spot of the telecasts, Larry Mac is OK but he has a shotgun mouth. Don't get me started on DW, that is another story.

Ok Fox, You have already lost a viewer. and you are going to lose viewers one by one.

You are continuing to skate on thin ice, and getting thinner by the minute. The Boogity Boogity Boogity is getting older by the minute as well.

Do you fox guys even watch your broadcasts. they are abysmal as crud. No chemistry or continuity whatsoever.

JD do the Fox execs read the abysmal ratings. I'm sure they must. They should be embarrased by the bad ratings.

A POed ex-fan in Penna

PS JD I like your nickname for me.

OSBORNK said...

I think a lot of the problems with the broadcast would be solved if the powers at both NASCAR and Fox were put in a room with only the TV broadcast to watch for one race. Ask them if they would do it every week. Ask them what happened on the track. When they have suffered through one race, I think they would make positive changes.

Anonymous said...

Didn't Jeff climb from the car while it was stopped in the grass? I thought that's what I saw. They showed the tow truck pushing the car to VL (presumably with someone else behind the wheel), therefore they could not show him getting out of it there. And I suspect that was also why the long break, took the tow truck a while to get it there. Not the first time we've seen that happen. Just speculating though, since FOX didn't really explain it.

Mïk said...

Where was the race??
The worst ever at Phoenix...

Faux neglected to show it to us. While announcers were telling us of cars hitting the walls early on, we were seeing bumper cams and roof-tops. While the race logged miles, we saw Kyle going around WITH NO OTHER CAR IN SIGHT...for 5-8 laps at a time, between commercials and promos. Junior came out of the pits for a loose wheel and a speeding penalty; neither was discussed nor shown; one lap down and just in front of the leader, but never did we see him on the screen as they focused on Gordon running
around, exclusively.

There was a race, we just never saw it. Faux Sports ignored it in favor of showing us favored sponsors and TV slight-of-hand tricks.

And NASCAR can't figger out why the viewership is slipping... Maybe it has something to do with a lack of racing on TV.

Anonymous said...

Very disappointing FOX did not continue the postrace until the top of the hour. JD now that we are halfway through the TV contract, is there any chance you could do any early preview of the next round of negotiations?

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

I used my DVR on Sunday to record the race from Phoenix and I used my time on Sunday afternoon to get some things done around the house. I watched the race on DVR around 6pm and I thought the coverage of the race from the booth was awful. I feel bad for those who had to sit through the race without being able to fast forward through the commercials too. Almendinger finished 9th and no sight of him anywhere at the end of the race, crossing the finish line or a quick word about his good run. The points only showed us 1st - 12th. The booth does not call the race anymore. Barney Hall calls a race. These Fox monkeys are lost at sea with no direction home. Between horrible camera work and a singular focus on 1 driver for long periods of time in addition to neglecting half the field crossing the finish line its really hard to figure out what was the worst part of it all so I will say the whole telecast. 100% of the telecast was awful.
If anyone remembers how bad ESPN did last August in Bristol (I am laughing right now thinking of the cluster that broadcast was) just think how insulting Fox's broadcast from Bristol could be in a few weeks. Fox might just out do ESPN at Bristol. I am looking forward to a total assault on the viewer at Bristol from Fox.
My feeling is that the Fox people think we are stupid and they will continue to assault the viewer with this type of coverage. They just don't understand how we can't see what a great job they are doing. Nothing will change. I'd put my money on it. This is what we get so get used to it! Put Kenny Wallace in the booth - it can't get any worse!

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

Im surprised no one is complaining about the biggest issue - the amount of replays. The worst came when FOX was showing a replay of one of Jimmie Johnson's pit stops, and while they did that, there was a gosh darn lead change! That is inexcusable. I don't want to see replays, I want to see live action.

Other than that, I am content. I think it is kind of silly seeing people walk away from the sport just because they don't like the coverage.

Anonymous said...

Maybe off topic but -
I thought it was interesting when Carl Edwards was interviewed and he said "This car was supposed to win the race!" Because his car was sponsored by Subway? They kinda hushed him but... I thought that was odd.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Anon 4:54PM,

Once things settle down with NBC and Comcast, we should see who wants the product in 2014.

Comcast just changed the NBC golf telecasts over to "The Golf Chanel on NBC" with Golf Channel logos and everything else.

What we saw with ESPN was that ABC Sports and all the high-priced talent was basically cut loose and ESPN (non-union) took over all the sports TV production.

It should be interesting to see how Comcast (Philly) handles approaching major sports properties for the first time.

Comcast has the money from the same type of dual revenue stream (ads and cable subs) that ESPN has and the fight is going to be for what big properties are left in the marketplace.

Now you understand why ESPN went on the recent buying spree and spent billions.

I think it is fair to say that in 2014 we will certainly not see the same three players on the Cup side. It's not working for anyone, including them.


Anonymous said...

It seems to me like all of the posters here hate Fox's coverage. And then they hate TNT's coverage. And then they hate ESPN's coverage. Maybe the coverage of all three are terrible, but maybe this is the sort of coverage everyone has to accept. It doesn't seem like all the complaints are doing any good, does it? They don't seem to be influencing any change.

These TV people are trying to get casual fans to watch, the kind of people that don't sit around and read about NASCAR all week, and blog about it as it happens. Maybe TDP could try to find some "casual" fans or "new" fans of the sport and see what they think? It's clear the hardcore fans don't like it, but my guess is Fox/TNT/ESPN figure the hardcore fans will watch no matter what. It's the "new" fan and the "casual" fan they're trying to get, and I wonder if the "new" or "casual" fans that tune in like the coverage?

I hated Digger, but you know what? My 6-year-old nephew loved him. He started watching NASCAR because of him, and he even stuck around after Fox started using him left. Digger got Fox at least one new viewer, which I'm thinking was the goal of him all along.

Anonymous said...

@ Veals
This is a Blog for FANS .... A discussion of how FOX botched it again
They need people that know racing, not recycled stick and ball people on an off season

Daly Planet Editor said...

Been quite a while since we had a "casual fan" mention.

Anonymous said...

"Jaws, Larry Mac, and Mike Joy have huge amounts of experience, talent that nobody else can touch, and they're still trying to explain the sport to beginners, on lap 250?"

That reminds me...who is it with the cutaway car? ESPN? My 5 year old son was watching one (of many) races with me and he said "Dad, are they *ever* going to finish that car?

Jack Shaftoe said...

It was really okay, if you didn't really pay attention.

sbaker17 said...

NAPA 'Know How'
How about NAPA 'NO WAY'
Makes me cringe every time it's aired

Jonathan said...

I was there live so I cant comment! Racing was awsome live! Its nice to hear the DW shut up and let Mike Joy call the finish

Anonymous said...

Anon at 6:04 wrote
"These TV people are trying to get casual fans to watch, the kind of people that don't sit around and read about NASCAR all week, and blog about it as it happens."
Well, if "these tv people" as you call them are trying to attract casual fans, the hard facts are that they are FAILING MISERABLY. Two weks ago, Sports Business Journal published resulted of NASCAR research that shows an acroos the board drop in viewership, with steep drops in interest from "casual " fans.
You can't grow the audence for the NFL by trying to be "hip". You do it by putting on great product. same holds true to NASCAR.


rich said...

Where to start, wow. It is obvious that adding video concerns to covering a race compounds and complicates that coverage. Listening to the MRN broadcast Sunday was night and day different to Fox. I am not saying that it was all better but definitely different.
Fox in the past has not had the problems that are evident now. That problem is that the booth is so busy listening to their ear noise from the truck and trying to satisfy that noise that they can't call the race.
It has almost become overwhelming. They are doing a horrible job of covering all incidents. Either they are 30 laps late or they just never get to the update. Whats up? Just call the race. Just call the action and all of the action. They did in the past, why can't they now.
The broadcast becomes so disjointed that you flat don't know what is going on.
Heavy sigh---maybe it will get better.

Mike (Detroit) said...

Well ratings are up so everything must be great with the current TV coverage of NASCAR Sprint Cup.

I lifted this from Jayski's site.

NASCAR on Fox earned a 5.3/11 in the metered markets Sunday for the Subway Fresh FIt 500 from Phoenix, easily the highest rating of the weekend for any sports event. 2011 continues to take shape as a comeback year for NASCAR, as the 5.3/11 is +6% better than the 5.0/10 that Fox charted for racing from Fontana on the same weekend a year ago. It's also +56% better than the 3.4/7 that the Phoenix race delivered last year when it aired on a Saturday night in April. Through two weeks, NASCAR on Fox is averaging a 6.8/15 in the overnights, a hefty +13% gain over last year's Olympic-impacted 6.0/12. NASCAR also currently holds a narrow advantage over the 2009 season as well (+1% vs. 6.7/13).

Daly Planet Editor said...

We owe an apology to Scott Veals...the real one.

We deleted a couple of comments where someone used his name.

Needless to say, he is not too happy about it.

Probably going to move to another format and require sign-up to avoid this in the future.

Sorry for the hassle Scott, hope you find out who used your name and why.


It's all in the writing!


storkjrc said...

Once again, I must include a voice of reason among the disenchanted. There are always going to be flaws! No broadcast is going to be perfect. I am a RACE fan, if the race is on I am going to watch. You cannot make everyone happy! If you show racing back in the pack, people complain they don't see the leaders enough, or vice versa. Do i really need to see David Gililand cross the line for a 6 lap down 23rd place finish. Get real!
As for the KY Derby comment. It has no bearing, there are only 20 horses max, and its a 2 minute race. Even then they don't always show the 19th and 20th horses cross. Especially if the are 20-30 lengths off the pace. They generally show the winners and the bulk of the field, then follow the winner as he slows up. I have seen every Derby for the last 30 years.
I realize that JD has background in television, and that this site gives you a place to vent. Whats the point! If your suggestions had any merit or value I am sure they would have been considered by now. If you don't like the broadcast, go watch GOLF!!

Daly Planet Editor said...


Your opinion is just that, your opinion. We welcome your thoughts and those of the other readers.

We have no group here, no mindset and I do not interact with the readers outside of the comments section.

Instead of praising NASCAR TV for another well done telecast, we again find ourselves scratching our heads about how things got into such a mess.

Over the years, many folks have shown up here, yelled "If you don't like it leave" and then moved on.

If you are a true fan, you care about the sport and what can be changed in order to get better pictures, better commentary and more information to those at home.

Since 2007, the changes in NASCAR TV have been many. Personnel, production, studio shows and even the format of some programs have changed because of viewer feedback.

NASCAR established the Fan Council several years ago and often asks about the radio and TV coverage of the sport.

We appreciate your comments, but your opinion is equal to all of those expressed here, including mine. Just fans talking about NASCAR TV.

Thanks for stopping by.


KoHoSo said...


I honestly respect your opinion. However, I think I can speak for almost all of the regulars that comment here that we are not asking for a perfect broadcast. Whether a TV-insider like Mr. Daly or just a fan on the couch, I think we all realize that the improvisational nature of sports means that there will be flubs, missed action, and commercials that come at unfortunate moments.

I think this all boils down to the fact that many of us remember when race telecasts were more informative and did not insult the intelligence of either long-time or new fans. There was a better balance between following the leaders and showing more exciting action back in the pack and a recognition that, at least once in every telecast, that every driver should be acknowledged. We were also not forced to question the agenda of the announcers or their bosses with their many conflicts of interest.

That being said, I understand the sentiment and tone of your comment. Right now, the sharks here are hungry and are swarming upon anything that looks like food. I am as guilty of that as anybody else right now although I believe this feeling is justified...and that is regardless of supposedly rising ratings when they are still nowhere near what they used to be. I would also add that the focus of this blog being on the TV side of things obscures the fact that the anger of many here (myself included) also covers on-track issues.

No, I won't be turning to golf but I certainly will be watching more college basketball and hockey plus hoping that all of my local short tracks have survived the winter and will be open for another season. I'm actually glad you can stand these broadcasts because maybe it shows some hope that not all is lost for the long-term survival of NASCAR as an important part of the TV sports landscape. However, for myself, I am being completely honest that what we get today from Fox and ESPN has been making me angry from well before I discovered Mr. Daly's blog and it truly distracts from my enjoyment of racing.

storkjrc said...


Thanks for replying. I didn't mean to insinuate that my opinion matters any more than any one else's. Of course it doesn't. I have been a fan of Nascar since 1986. Watching almost every since then. I have seen the changes and the addition of technology from the "olden days"
I am also a blogger, who together with a group of other Nascar bloggers, get together via the web each week. I came across this blog just looking for other Nascar bloggers.
I commend you, and the IDEA of coming up with ideas to make the sport or broadcast better. I just don't see much of that coming from the comment section. Its always the same people with the same problems. Most, I repeat, Most are not interested in anything but running down the broadcast, broadcasters, producers etc.ect.
I read for a long time without commenting, lurking so to speak. I can no longer bite my tongue, I am coming to challenge your readers to offer up viable solutions, instead of knee jerk complaints when an announcer mispeaks, or any of the myriad of petty things that dominate the comment section.
Thanks for your time. I look forward to the next blog, hopefully I can make some of the live ones as well.