Friday, March 30, 2012

Friday: SPEED TV Comments

SPEED is the only game in town on Friday from the Martinsville Speedway. Since there is no Nationwide Series race, there is no ESPN event presence. FOX and SPEED get the spotlight.

John Roberts hosts the first NASCAR Live program to kick off the day at noon. Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds are calling the Cup practice sessions. Matt Yocum and Dick Berggren are the reporters. Rick Allen, Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip will handle the trucks. Hermie Sadler and Ray Dunlap are the reporters.

The "new look" Trackside will give it another go at 5PM with host Krista Voda. Kyle Petty and Rutledge Wood are the panelists and Marianela Pereyra is the reporter. Regan Smith and Ty Dillon are the guests.

This show gets crazier every week as it veers away from hardcore NASCAR info and heads into the entertainment world. For those asking, the puppet on the show dressed in Dale Jr. fan attire is called Hammerdropper88. Seriously, it has its own Twitter account (@Hammerdropper88) and those on the show and in SPEED PR world send it tweets. Well, it all certainly is interesting to watch.

The nightcap is Danielle Trotta hosting NASCAR Performance and Adam Alexander hosting SpeedCenter. Trotta's show is recorded during the week at the SPEED studios while Alexander is live with all the motorsports news.

We are just going to open the blog for TV comments all day long. It's been a tough couple of weeks in the NASCAR TV world. Maybe Martinsville will be the ticket to turning things around with the fans. Happy to have your comments.


kbaskins said...

I've given up on SPEED's NASCAR coverage. I used to be glued to the channel from Friday to Sunday, and I watched all the weekday shows too. Now, if I happen to think about it, I'll watch practice and qualifying, and that's about it. "Trackside" has been ruined, "Raceday" always sucked, and now even "NASCAR Performance" is awful. I can't believe the downhill slide of shows I used to watch regularly (except (Raceday).

What I don't understand is how the same company can produce the stellar F1 on SPEED. Steve Matchett, David Hobbs and Bob Varsha are outstanding every single week. They're informative, fun and dignified. No sophomoric hijinx, no reporters hired because they're eyecandy, and no loudmouth, boorish "experts". And all the while, they're sitting in a studio in Charlotte commenting on F1's world feed. Amazing.

I can't believe that SPEED has such a split personality when it comes to covering racing. Are NACAR and F1 fans so dissimilar that they need to be treated in such a divergent manner?


Sophia said...


I share your sentiments but did enjoy RaceDay in the earlier yrs.

Still stunned they ruined Trackside and even N Performance!@#$%&^?

It's pitiful. I rarely remember to have speed on at all's so sad to have the juvenile junk & dumb females added for eye insulting :(

MortonGroveDon said...

I agree wholeheartedly with what you said Karen. F1 Debrief is all you could ask for in a race inko show. Last reace recap and a solid look to the next race, no puppets, no fawning former racers, no eye candy asking questions that make Larry King look like Edward R Murrow.Seems like the whole basis of Speed's overall programming has been lowered to a lower denominator. Endless ride pimping shows, ludicrous restoration contests, and if I see another 427 Camaro or Hemi Cuda go across an auction block Ill puke. This is the same channel that literally left the end of the Truck race to give us the premier of yet another fixit competition. Even Wind Tunnel is now really an hour commercial it seems for an online aftershow. It used to be a good channel....those were the days...

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Speed's excellent sports car coverage on Grand-Am (I know, not as good a series as ALMS-and let's not about their broadcast schedule!). Diffy, Till, Schroeder, and Fish (with occasional help from Varsha & Hobbs) have to balance two races taking place at the same time. And they have a great time doing it!

And, in June, the COMPLETE 24 Hours of Le Mans (partially on-line only).

I'm dreading the prospect of the split personality that kbaskins mentioned to become whole and go all NASCAR.

Anonymous said...

I appreciate the tv show breakdown listed here. Following are a list of the shows I used to watch religiously, but watch no more---Nascar Now,N-performance, Race Day, Victory Lane,Trackside and Wind Tunnel. I RECORD Hub while I watch the evening news and can blow through that in a few minutes. Practice and qualifying will be on but be on Mute until I see something interesting. On Sundays, I start watching when they do opening ceremonies. When the race starts, I watch and hit the Mute as soon as the booth starts insulting me. Last week, it took 4 minutes. A true indication of how bad the races have been is that I haven't watched the Wednesday repeat of the race on Speed in a long time. What a mess.

MortonGroveDon said...

I forgot the ALMS series as well, my mistake as they have a knack for a quality telecast too.....How long wil it be until these shows get treated like the Nascar slop they throw at us too?

MortonGroveDon said...

Oops Grand isnt ready yet....

Joj said...

kbaskins - you said it perfectly & in a family friendly manner.

AncientRacer said...

@kbhaskins and @Sophia

I put on Speed coverage of practice and stuff because I like having racecars on my TVs (beats the scraunch out of news or The Weather Channel) and I like the sound of them running in circles.

I cannot actually say I pay any attention to the Booth Monkeys during those sessions and the new Trackside absolutely suks. Reminds me too much of Mikey's talent show from a few yrs ago.

But Krista Voda is still very a pretty girl IMO. :)

glenc1 said...

I always have practice on when I am home for it, though I realized I don't actually 'watch' so much as I listen when I'm doing other things. I am fine with Mike & Larry talking practice and the reporters interviewing people. I could do without either Waltrip. Darrell tends to go off to way back land WAY too often....and I've realized recently that I don't trust what he says anymore; he's lost too much credibility. Too many times he gets contradicted later; so now I just don't even believe what he says most of the time. Larry seems to keep up with what's going on in the garage. His worst thing (other than grammar) is repeating his favorite stories, but I can live with that because I know most of the time what he says is useful.

So poor Regan & Ty get made fools of tonight, lucky them, I won't be watching. Please free Krista & Kyle from this nonsense.

I still watch Performance. There was nothing 'wrong' with it before, but adding Danielle hasn't really hurt it that much; all she does is introduce the conversations and go to break; it's not like she's pretending to know things. I miss Bootie's wry humor a lot though.

I would rather watch the Weather channel than Raceday. I only turn over to see interviews, unless it's another topic being beat to death (ie, the 48 appeal.)

GinaV24 said...

"it's all interesting to watch". Nope, not to this NASCAR fan. Sending tweets to a puppet - wow, that's right on par with the NASCAR making money selling Ricky Bobby souvenirs in my opinion.

fortunately I am going to the paperclip, where I will avoid the entire RACEDAY staging area like the plague.

If I was going to a race, I used to make sure I recorded all the speed channel shows to watch later. Now, I have lots of room on the DVR - there's nothing I need to see - not live and not recorded.

Roland said...

DW made an epic FAIL during practice during a discussion about the sponsorship on the 17 this weekend. 17 is sponsored by a foundation for wounded veterans and DW got the name of the veteran on the car mixed up with the incredibly stupid "I hate Steven Singer" radio ads. Lets just say it was kinda embarrasing for DW.

Charlie Spencer said...

We all know I don't get Twitter, but I do get this much: entering '@hammerdropper88' takes up over 16 of the available 140 characters, over 10%.

I'll bet a dollar that all 'he' does is retweet Rutledge.

Charlie Spencer said...

kbaskins, one reason the F1 coverage might be better is that team doesn't have to fill six hours of assorted pre-race shows every week, times 36 races.

PS - "qingue critions" would be an excellent band name.

corbeilgal said...

Sure am glad all of my errors arent out in the open air for everyone to bash. What a perfect bunch we fans have become. The more access we get the more we piss and moan. Helpful critique I can accept and I am sure Speed welcomes it. Personal attacks and the same old same old its not the way it used to be I bet they ignore. I remember when we were lucky if we saw 5 minutes on Wild World of Sports. So I enjoy the good and ignore the bad.

Daly Planet Editor said...


That's the point. Things have totally changed. WWoS was the 1970's.

NASCAR needs more than SPEED and FOX are delivering. A lot more.

Make sure and catch the crap they have Krista Voda doing on Trackside at 5PM.


Anonymous said...

Pretty relevant article on Frontstretch, JD:

Cup practice had me wondering if they could possibly zoom in any more...poor guys on track can't hardly get decent coverage during a simple practice session.

Booth just isn't worth bothering to complain about, any more than dead horses need beating, least for me.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I'll take that back - shut up, booth! Cars on track, no ticker, one car shots, and everyone camped out in the garage....I hope Nascar gives these broadcast companies a spanking come renegotiation time.

I expected better from Speed. Used to be better, in the Truck series, but mission creep is even starting to affect that.

It's silly of me to say it, conspiracy-nut-wise, but I wonder what kind of money or favors are changing hands to get the same feature parade of maybe 10 drivers in all three series with very rare exceptions.

Must be pretty good to risk alienating people who are fans of the other 33+ people on track.

Anonymous said...

I tried to listen to the Cup practice, but after a few minutes of blathering from the booth, I just turned the TV off. Too nice of a Spring day not to do something enjoyable.

Anonymous said...

Lot of trouble to just post a comment.

Hard to see top drivers coming on trackside anymore to such childish games.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:26...keeps the more sophisticated spam-bots at bay...few jerks have cheerfully figured out how to autopost entries. Without captcha, TDP would literally end up flooded, and comments would be unusable.

Don't see how you think they won't - you think their teams/sponsors are going to take no for an answer?

Anonymous said...

Don't think many sponsors want to see their driver being wrapped in toilet paper. More for small kids and they don't buy products.

Anonymous said...

@5:44 the bully phenomenon. Any attention you can get, particularly for an hour or whatever, is good attention.

Lots of psychological studies have been done on it, branding, brand presence, etc. Clearly getting people on TV works.

And, I suspect we're the niche audience broadcasters and teams hate to love...we're probably in their "core sales metrics" or whatever fancy terms they use now courtesy of a half-baked analyst.

I think it's stupid, they'll never get my dime, nor will the Nascar-snagged sponsors that could be building rapport and business with drivers...

But I highly doubt we're the bulk of who they're targeting with this silly garbage.

Anonymous said...

The age group that would enjoy this silly garbage would seem to me to be the age group without the money to buy their products.

They certainly are not interested in my money.

Charlie Spencer said...

Anon at 7:59, you're close. The nonsense is aimed at that age group that doesn't exercise much discretion regarding how they spend the money they have, and hasn't yet developed many financial obligations. They may not have much money yet, but they can throw a much larger percentage of it away and are easily persuaded to do so.

Anonymous said...

I was thinking of a much younger age that would enjoy this nonsense. The ones that are not old enough yet to have any money, like 6 to 10 years old. I mean really being wrapped in toilet paper or the other silly games!

larry said...

I watched trackside for at least 4 minutes before I turned that trash off and changed to something useful.

If I could read the security words, I'd type them into the proper place. I'll copy what I've responded and wait for a couple of words I can read.

ThinkingBrian said...

I'm not really entertained with SPEED's NASCAR coverage anymore.

1. Trackside is done, SPEED needs to retire it and if they really need to, create an all new series with new people or a combination of new and existing people.

2. I'm tired of 3 hours pre-shows including 2 hours of Raceday and "stick with the Biff" sayings, Now I just tune in to watch the race without a pre-show, much better.

3. I do watch practice if I'm home. That's worth watching.

4. NASCAR Qualifying is boring okay, that's it.

5. I don't really care about NASCAR Performance, sorry.

6. RaceHub during the week is ok depending upon the day of the week. But I do like watching Jimmy Spencer's take 2 times a week at 5 minutes each. They could go 10 minutes each. And Danielle Trotta does a good job for the most part.

7. Everything, I most likely don't watch it.

Mike B said...

I've said it once, and I've said it a thousand times...the 3 guys who are broadcasting the actual RACE should never be in the booth together for any event other than the race.

1st practice should have a specific crew. Happy hour should have a specific crew. Qualifying should have a specific crew.

Mix and match. Give the viewer something different to listen to.

And for the love of all that is holy, Waltrip's should ONLY be experienced in SMALL DOSES.