Monday, June 25, 2012

Day Two: Sprint Cup Series From Sonoma On TNT

The TNT rig pulled into Sonoma and set-up the Infield Studio. The weather was perfect, the buzz from last week was strong and the field was stout.

This post is for your comments on the NASCAR TV coverage from TNT in Sonoma.

Adam Alexander hosted the pre-race show with Kyle Petty and Larry McReynolds. Kyle Busch was the special guest. Another "NASCAR Generations" feature aired along with a Dale Earnhardt Jr. interview.

Wally Dallenbach Jr. was then joined in the TV booth by Alexander and Petty for the call of the race. McReynolds remained in the pre-race area providing comments and technical updates. Pit reporters were Matt Yocum, Ralph Sheheen, Marty Snider and Chris Neville.

The feedback on social media about this telecast was overwhelming. It would help if you could take a moment to express your feelings as a fan watching this on TV. This is our most widely read post and your comments have an impact. It is a critical time in NASCAR in terms of making changes to future TV contracts. Adding your voice will serve to express the feelings of the fan base.

Thank you as always for stopping by. Comments may be moderated prior to posting.


lacboi said...

How TNT went from such a high with their first race to such a unmitigated disaster is amazing this was one of the worst produced broadcast I've ever seen.

Buschseries61 said...

I had some family over, so I didn't get a chance to check into the race until I went on RaceBuddy laps 70-80. The field looked pretty strung out and the only amusing thing to watch was all the cars winding uphill through the first few turns.

I never tuned into the TNT broadcast, but based off the TDP1 page, it looked like I was better off not watching. I saw a lot of complaints were about commercial overload and the 'conversation' booth format that characterized FOX. NASCAR and its partners have to get their act together, there are more fulfilling things to do in life than watching a dying sport through a brake rotor camera.

OSBORNK said...

I didn't think anyone could mess a race broadcast worse than Fox. Was I wrong! Without Twitter, I don't know how anyone would have any way of knowing what was going on in the race if they were trying to follow it on TV. A full screen replay on the last lap? Missing the white flag? It was easily the worst coverage of the year. I don't like a general interest conversation when I want to hear race coverage.

Wisconsin Steve said...

A full-screen replay during the GWC? Are you kidding me? Speaking of that, apparently TNT lost its ability to do split-screens, because I haven't seen one since the Summer Series started. I like the TNT team and usually love their coverage, but everything after the prerace show today was horrible, verging on disgusting.

AncientRacer said...


This is AncientRacer's Race Wrap of the Sprint Cup Series From Sonoma On TNT!

I'll be right back after a break with my analysis...


CRZ said...

It must be so hard for TNT when racing gets in the way of airing ads.

AveryNH said...

The breaking point for me was when the ten car crashed and they took three commercial breaks before showing that awful replay. Then promptly going to another break. That's when I switched off the tube and went to streaming prn on my iPod. 1000% better. really hope Kentucky isn't like this

Joj said...

We lost cable due to weather for many laps (3-6?) when we lost cable we had a shot of feet & bumper cam from JPM 42 car - came back on with drive shaft rear tire cam of another car. Only watched last laps between the real show of replays and commercials, because 14 Tony Stewart was in the hunt for a win.

Whoever was (ahem) directing this should be ashamed. I know from Twitter there was racing, passing and all- not even gonna bother to watch the replay as I had planned.

What is wrong with TNT this year?
Usually they are the best of the 3...

Dot said...

Worst race broadcast ever. The race didn't help either without cautions. Why is it nascar will throw cautions for no apparent reason, yet cars spin and no caution? I think tnt got a memo to show us crappy coverage so BSPN will shine. So glad I watch races on twitter. Without that, I would have no idea what's going on.

w17scott said...

Mr Editor -
TNT continues to morph into FOX ...inconsistent production effort ...lacking in wide/aerial shots ...too many bumper views ...sadly consistent in missing wrecks/spins ...worse yet, failing to offer analysis/explanation of incidents ...too often booth lapsed into 'happy talk' instead of racing topics ...note to TNT execs: have production team and air talent study Indy Car (Lingner Group) and F1 broadcasts to see how a race is covered in a professional manner viewing was limited instances when radio (PRN) called racing action that caught my attention ...better things to do than watch a disjointed telecast ...KuBusch is respected as driving talent as acknowledged by Tony Stewart KuBusch today for his pre-race comments and post-race demeanor

William said...

Before everyone starts pining away for the good old days of Fox broadcasting the race I want to point out a few good things about todays broadcast.

They didnt show the leader standing on a stage with his name and music playing as he posed before going to each commercial.

They didnt come back from a commercial and give us 2 minutes of in race commercials or a "break" to let guys in a room talk about what has already happened.

They did show more than the top 3.

The replay on the final lap was necessary, how did Jr. get all wrecked? They had to show that and it is not cause he is junior. What did you miss when they showed it?

They did make some mistakes, they should have realized the building was in the way when they panned the camera down the front stretch. Adam Alexander was WAY off his game today. Kyle Petty was very good and I almost feel sorry for Larry McReynolds today, there was something very wrong with him today, not sure what but he seemed way out of it.

Overall for a very boring race track and a very boring race season, I think TNT did the best they could, with what they had, even with the mistakes.


Anonymous said...

Had a scheduled power outage here today and had only twitter till 5pm eastern. Power came back on in time for what felt like 5 min. of commercials. Sure didn't miss much I guess.

Richard said...

On the final restart the first few seconds where a nice pan shot of the side of a building without a car in sight, pretty much sums up TNT coverage.
Maybe 6 races a year is not enough to bother getting things together but saying that ESPN will be up soon and they are just as bad.

Anonymous said...

Many of the posters here are complaining big time, but in my opinion it was much better than the best FOX broadcast.

I thought the booth did a really good job. Wally is a student of the road tracks and he showed that well. Kyle knew what his job was and did it well. Adam was a wee bit off his game, but much better than FOX. Didn’t get enough Larry.

Having been a road racer for many years, I got a lot out of their comments and the camera work.

Much much better than FOX!


Sophia said...

Can't figure out. TNT's first NASCAR race of season, a much deserved breath of fresh air & a feeling of "being at the track from my recliner/couch/bed"

Now, stinks worse than a sewage plant. What happened? Seriously?

Nothing left to say. I cried "Uncle" to NASCAR long ago but Thought TNT director would be good. Obviously Mike Wells is GONE..working at Indycar?

So there is.No.Hope.For.NASCAR.

To make things worse, my local race affiliate on radio had horrible echo at times. Don't know if it was PRN issue or my radio but couldn't take it after 5 minutes. Only on certain microphones.

Thank goodness for NBC SPorts coverage on Indycar. Hope more folks will tune in.

Trust me, Indycar needs our love and deserves it!!!

NASCAR is delighting in some sick way at the disheartened comments on this blog.

That must be it :-(

Sally said...

Great race coverage for a nice afternoon nap. I know there had to be cars racing each other somewhere on the track....didn't there? Commercial placement made the few passes for the lead almost exclusively replays ala Fox. It didn't help that cars were strung out all over the course, but isn't it the job of the booth and network to FIND the action and relay it to the fans? A very disappointing race with even more disappointing 'coverage'.

Michael Stoffel said...

Kyle Petty and Wally Dallenbach are a pair of blithering fools. They yap on and on with their inane stories, ignoring on track action. A pass for the lead? A wreck? They'll get to it after the commercial break. Shameful, ignorant coverage of an amazingly entertaining race.
When's the last time an unsponsored car actually had a shot at a win?

AllisonJ said...

I thought the race coverage was comparatively good, with TNT staying with the action groups throughout the race. I personally don't mind the unusual camera angles ... they don't saturate the broadcast with them and they add some variety. There seemed to be a few track areas that lacked good camera coverage - such as when Jr got taken out near the end. The commercial load was unreal ... but that's why we only watch via the DVR ... something that is not necessary when we watch F1. What was the stunning in its idiocy was the TWITTER SATURATION. Do we really need to have a driver's radio comment tweeted and then displayed on the TV? Why not have Larry or Kyle just say what the driver said? Do I really care what Jimbo Jackson of Blaine, MS tweeted about Montoya? Complete and utter idiocy, but that's what you get when you have non-racers producing racing.

Anonymous said...

In what was an unmitigiated disaster from flag to flag two moments stand out.
A) Bowyer passes Gordon for the lead. We are watching a full screen of Larry Mac explaining when a tach goes dead it reads O RPM. Larry adds that JPM must shift by the "Seat of his britches." Petty Alexander and Dallenbach seem as stunned as we are that there has been a change for the lead.

B) OK, it's the last restart of the race. Is the volatile KuBu going to dive bomb Bowyer to take the lead? Will they wreck each other and hand the win to Stewart or Johnson? Tough to say. We're looking at the backside of the grandstands as the race goes green.

Putrid coverage. Simply without an iota of redeeming value. A new low not in race broadcasting but in anything that has been billed as a TV broadcast short of last weeks Justin Beiber concert on NBC

Anonymous said...

Nascar road races provide some of the best races for Nascar as evidenced by the Road America race yesterday and today at Sonoma. As with all the Networks, today's race punished the TV viewers. First, an incredible amount of commercials and the same frikkin commercials we've seen 100 times. Larry Mac was crisp regarding fuel stops/issues,etc. AA,KP and Wally were a mess for different reasons. AA really doesn't understand Nascar racing, KP understands it but can't describe/explain what he sees without droning on and on. And Wally just gives you nice round words. The G-W-C coverage had to be the worst ever. Somehow, they were able to get a long building/grandstand to obscure the restart. Then, when media darling Junior got turned running at the back, we went to full screen replays of his 'incident'. JGR has had numerous engine issues which have gotten a lot of press. So Hamlin goes to the garage well before the end of the race. I don't recall anyone commenting in general what his issue was. The Networks do this all the time. Something happens or someone drops out and its like a black hole. No one walks over to the garage or asks someone, "what happened?" Very amateurish. I was happy for Bowyer and for Kurt Busch. Great performances by both drivers. I was shocked that Ambrose and Gordon didn't do better. I don't expect anything to get better as we progress(?) through the season.

Trina... said...

During the middle of the race, I tweeted my opinion. None of the networks have a clue how to broadcast a NASCAR race. TNT can be good one week and bad the next. Fox tends to ramble and needs better leadership to control DW. ESPN has the potential, but treats NASCAR has a second tired sport.

tvtrucker said...

All the talk about how bad the TNT race broadcast was and how it was not too different from a Fox broadcast! Then why not spill the beans and let em know that it's pretty much the same crew on TNT and Fox. Same camera people, many of the same other folks in the trucks and most important, Barry Landis of Fox, in the TNT chair!
Maybe that's the reason the shows are so much alike?

Rocketman_39 said...

Still waiting for TNT to show how the 39 spun in turn 11.

Multiple cars spun and/or went off course and TNT missed nearly all of it.

Harvick ran out of gas much like the 24 did but it wasn't mentioned until the GWC.

terri said...

I'm reading some Tweets that MANY drivers, among them Denny Hamlin, were very angry at Joey Lagano and his driving today. First I'd heard of it, and if it was that obvious to a lot of drivers, why didn't TNT have any idea? And if they did, why didn't they bring it up? Oh....maybe they didn't have time between commercial breaks.

Billy said...

i bailed out on lap 11. Gadget-cam overuse. Every camera shot has to be Emmy Award winning. It gets in the way of televising a race. Every production has to be Emmy Award winning. It is not working, guys. Whatever agenda you guys at TNT have, it don't work. If I can't deduce what is happening out on the track from watching your broadcast, you are not doing your jobs. Lazy, lazy lazy. College World Series! They're not screwing that up yet!

FlyerJon01 said...

This race was literally unwatchable. Ultimately, I lay the blame at the feet of the Director - whose job is to choose the shots that tell the story of the race - and Adam Alexander - whose job is supposed to be to call the ACTION ON THE TRACK and replay the excitement of racing to the viewers at home.

Wanna know how to cover a road course race? Watch this clip of the finish of the 1993 Sonoma (i.e. Sears Point) race on ESPN.

Note Bob Jenkins' excitement and the camera lingering on the shot of Turn #1 so that viewers see the entire field snake through. THAT is how you cover a road course race, TNT.

papaserge said...

I'll agree completely with the anon comment that said this was better than the best Fox effort. That being said, that's obviously not saying much these days.

Adam Alexander is just not a play-by-play guy, plain and simple. Not once I have heard him simply call the action on the track -- he's always providing a backstory or trying to get Kyle and Wally into a discussion. He's great on "SPEED Center" and he was solid as a pit reporter. He's just a bad fit here.

Kyle Petty is solid but needs to hold back on the rambling tangents occasionally. Wally has lost all interest, however. You can tell he doesn't really enjoy the sport -- he's barely on "Countdown to Green" as it is. He's there for the paycheck.

The camera work was godawful. I can't believe what they missed today.

Here's hoping they don't pull the "enhanced audio/Adam Alexander is terrible, sorry" card for Kentucky.

KoHoSo said...

I am both sorry and not sorry I missed the race live and did not get to participate in the #TDP1 feed on Twitter. I'm sorry mostly because I had to watch it alone and did not have anybody to commiserate with. I'm not sorry mostly because I'm guessing that most Planeteers using Twitter probably would have blocked me by the end because I would have been out of control with angry disappointment.

What I am most sorry for is that my prediction about TNT starting OK and then going stright into the toilet has become painfully true. Believe me folks, I take no pleasure in being correct on that.

Grade: D- -- still better than Fox but just barely. I would explain why but I believe everybody above has pretty much covered it.

Paul said...

TNT should've taken a play from ESPN's playbook and used the split-screen in crucial situations. I applaud ESPN for using the split-screen in the closing laps; one showing race leader Nelson Piquet, Jr., the other showing a five-way battle for 4th place.

On a road course, where action is spread out over a longer, wider distance than oval tracks, I would've expected more use of the split-screen. Instead, we get a full-screen replay of Junior as he got turned in front of the field from about 20th place. ON THE LAST LAP! I expected TNT to have greater restraint when it came to showing Junior, or at least better than the Junior-loving Fox crew and the money-loving ESPN crew. So that highly disappointed me.

I didn't find out about this until hours after the race, but apparently Carl Edwards, Ryan Newman, and Bobby Labonte all spun out and none of their spins were shown on tv. Guess there wasn't much work going on in that picture JD posted up at the top.

More now than ever, I'm convinced TNT needs a better PxP man. Adam Alexander is a nice guy and conducted a very well done interview with Junior that was shown in the pre-race show, but he's worthless in calling a race. I don't want to hear the announce booth having conversations during the race, I just want to listen to a professional race broadcast for once this season. But I suppose that's too much to ask for in this day and age.

Maybe the 3-man announce team is too much for NASCAR to handle these days. The best announce teams I've heard all season were Mike Joy and Phil Parsons doing a K&N East race, and Rick Allen and Phil Parsons when they do the ARCA races. It's just sad that both teams cover races for small series on a network who's future is up in the air.

James said...

I am astounded at the miserable coverage of this event. How can a professional sport be televised so poorly. I guess the BJ auction had the "good team", broadcasting it!
NASCAR had momentum working after last weeks "show", it was followed up with the usual hype, called the "toughest race of the year", It was tough alright! Tough on the viewer, they had a chance to make a major statement, ticket sales and merchandise where on the rise. Then TNT decided to "mail in" their production team and the fan is left with another "lost event". If the fans had issues with Marty Reed and called for his removal, AA, is looking up at him for help. The only way it could be worse, is if DW and MW called the race!
JD, with the TV contacts up for renewal this was a bad time for this excuse of a telecast! The sponsors should ask for a rebate!

Anonymous said...

I was very into this race, it was exciting, what I could see of it. Maybe TNT just did not have the camera's where they were supposed to be on the track for proper replays. I just want to know who bumped Truex and sent him into a spin to drop 10 spots in the finish, it happened on the last lap, kinda looked like the 9 or a orange car,happy for Bowyer.

Colorado said...

I'll still take anything but FOX. The coverage wasn't very good, but at least we weren't treated with a third grader in the booth. Whenever the booth guys talked, it STILL was about racing, and not about "me me me me me". Too many commercials, yes. Poor camera work, yes. But remember: DW is the WORST on-air "talent" there ever was. So I would liken TNT at this point to a phrase I heard awhile back: "Same Hell, different Devil"

AncientRacer said...

...and we are back.

The Twitterverse yesterday was alight with nearly everyone (we would call them "stakeholders" in another setting) from Jane and Joe Fan to the Mighty Mavens of the Media shocked! shocked! at the number of commercials during the TNT broadcast. All thought it was excessive.

IMHO we were right: It WAS excessive; there is now no question about that. The authority on such matters CawsnJaws reports this morning:

Broadcast Total Minutes:180
Minutes Showing Race:124
Minutes Showing Commercials:56

Broadcast Total Minutes: 182
Minutes Showing Race: 167
Minutes Showing Commercials:15

You may work out the percentages for yourself. I could do it but as I am on an IPhone I would have to switch screens to the calculator and every time I have tried that in the past disaster has ensued.

and, JD, if @tvtrucker (maybe a cool concept for a new History Channel show) is correct (is s/he?) then those who did not like the pictures have an answer. As for me I thought the pictures OK. It was the number and frequency of the commercials that irked me.

...and now we will take a quick break...


Michael said...

My conclusion: Fox is negligent while Turner is incompetent.

Most of Fox's blunders are conscious decisions of poor taste, not poor execution: Boogity Boogity Boogity, Digger, Race Breaks, commercial bumpers, Crank it Up, focusing on winner celebration instead of the cars finishing, ZOOMING IN, etc.

Most of Turner's blunders are poor execution reeking of incompetence and sloppiness: missing lead changes, being very late to covering crashes, full screen replays at terrible times (e.g. at Sonoma as the field was coming to the white flag during a G-W-C finish), technical glitches, bad tape editing (e.g. Dale Jr. & Ralph at Pocono), errors on graphics, completely missing happenings (e.g. Harvick running out at Sonoma), etc.

Anonymous said...

In addition to my post at 8:31 pm, I'd like to ask the following. What is the process with the pit reporters and production truck such that so much information is never reported. I've read on other race sources that Hamlin had suspension problems,Kyle had more mechanical problems,Labonte and Newman spun,etc. These are in addition to Harvick running out of gas which wasn't reported until the very end of the race. Newman spun. I can't recall that being reported but I could be wrong. Aren't people monitoring the team radios? Are these incidents followed up on? If they are, why don't they get covered on-air? With all the Networks, you get at least three people in the booth that think we want to hear them think out loud. They need to shut up, report on what's happening on the track, in the pits and in the garage. On Sunday, the pit reporters were useless. Something in the process across all the Networks is seriously broken. For what it's worth....

Anonymous said...

Still better than Fox just for lack of Waltrips.

Once again they did NOT cover the race. Even if you don't show us someone spinning, or someone running out of gas, or someone hitting another car enough to cause damage, WHY THE HELL CAN'T YOU MENTION IT!!!????

NASCAR is the greatest thing to happen to the DVR since it was invented.

Why can't you all just cover the race and tell us everything that is happening around the track, even if it's just a verbal update.

Jeez, a child with common sense could do a better job than any of the networks do. Once again, just tell us what's happening with all the cars on the track even if you force us to watch the front 3 cars riding nose to tail in parade formation. I don't need to see everything but I do need to know everything.

Anonymous said...

Part of the problem is that the Sonoma race is either really boring or its a demolition derby which is why Sonoma should be replaced by Road America.

@JackRLewis said...

Tweeted a little during the race using the #TDP1...

I thought this was TNT's worst broadcast since Sonoma 2007, which was another disaster. Today was just as worse, if not more so. Thank God for Twitter as I was informed of spins on track by Bobby Labonte and Kevin Harvick, I believe. TNT mentioned none of this which is inexcusable.

Most of my issue with them has to do with camera angles and the overall production. The full-screen replay during a GWC is just ridiculous at any track, but ESPECIALLY a road course--which lately has been billed as having short track-like racing. Too much usage of the gadget cams during lead changes, etc. I like the cameras but just wish they were shown during appropriate times.

I think after this season TNT needs to re-tool its broadcast booth. I like Adam Alexander, but he is just flat out not a play-by-play man. He's a great pit reporter and I like him on SPEED Center, but he just doesn't get it done in the booth. In addition, Wally just doesn't fit anymore. He hasn't driven a stock car in over 10 years and now is seen (I think?) more during NBC Sports' IndyCar broadcasts. Kyle Petty is by far the best and should be kept in the booth, but the other two need to be given different positions.

Just my two cents.

GinaV24 said...

From bad to worse - the telecast was terrible. Some of the aerial shots were nice, but I'd be looking at a good shot of the field and all of a sudden, I'd be looking at the ground level shot, plus I'd like the PXP man to be doing that, not just talking to the other guys in the booth about nothing in particular. Sorry, that is NOT why I tune in - I could sit in a bar and listen to people talking about NASCAR - I tune in to get race coverage.

I'm back to using trackpass, twitter and racebuddy to try and follow the race that I'm supposed to be able to watch on TV.

A total waste of my time!

OrangeTom said...

Agree totally with Joj, what the heck has happened to TNT? They used to have the best coverage of the three networks with the NASCAR contract. But this year the announcers and the director seem totally disengaged from providing in focus reports on what is going on throughout the race to more than two or three drivers. It's like they got one camera in a tree randomly scanning the action while three guys in another tree talk about what they're seeing from their perch. Not good.

Anonymous said...

From 25th place finisher Scott Speed on back to last, from the in-race coverage, I didn’t even know some of these guys were in the race. Many of them, and their sponsors, got no air time at all. It’s no wonder that a lot of teams that typically run at or near the back can’t get sponsors. Would you spend a million advertising dollars on sponsoring that will never get seen? Look at the following list and tell me how many times any of these drivers were even mentioned, let alone showed up on screen.
David Gilliland, David Ragan, Boris Said, Landon Cassill, Regan Smith, J.J. Yeley, Travis Kvapil, Dave Blaney, Robby Gordon, David Mayhew, Stephen Leicht , Chris Cook, and even Joe Nemechek!!!

Bruce Simmons said...

Everyone does realize that TV is really advertisement programming interrupted with whatever they inject (bait) between the 4-minute ad-bursts, right?

The bait gets you to tune into the sales pitches.

And as I always say, if it didn't work, we wouldn't have to suffer it... but then again, if there were no advertisers paying the bills, then what would we have?

I was there covering the race as a photo-journalist and listened to it on SiriusXM... It "sounded" great!

Didn't realize TNT jumped the shark on this one!

scarletandmaize said...

If it wasn't for the TNT graphics, I would have sworn yesterday's race was on Fox. Broadcast was garbage, barely watchable.

E-Ticket said...

Really thought the race was beyond boring the TV truck was beyond lost.

The one point that shows TNT cares only about commercials is when they went for a lap at least looking at Jamie McMurray's suspension cam with the Mcdonalds Logos plastered everywhere. They had just come back from commercial when they went to the shot, Kyle and Wally explained about the geomoetry and repeatedly reminded me how great a shot it was. They showed half a lap of the leader then went to commercial again.

Just no fun to watch, to much information not passed along..

Maverick24 said...

For the third week in a row, I was using MRN and Racebuddy out of necessity. Those of us in Canada who don't like soccer and who don't have more comprehensive cable packages are absolutely getting shafted for NASCAR on TV. In any event, I appear to have dodged a bullet.

Those numbers AncientRacer brought over are so astounding I can't believe they're even real. From 15 minutes in 2011 to 56 minutes in 2012? Seriously!?

This is why I never shared the enthusiasm for TNT and never will. I still remember when they covered the races with NBC when this sport had Nextel in the title, and the commercial load was asinine then too. Not to mention they had Bill Weber, the guy who could have made Craven-Busch at Darlington seem boring.

For me Mike Joy is enough of a reason to wish FOX covered the entire season, regardless of their other shortcomings.

TheNASCARJunkie said...

Alright we all know road races are hard for TV producers but yesterday TNT gave a new meaning to incompetent. Other posters have shared the various mistakes, follies and miscues during the painful TNT telecast so I don't need to go there. I will say this much; I feel asleep from about lap 20 to 35 due to the lack of racing excitement and the boring TV coverage.

procarry23 said...


On a side note, the F1 race from Spain was positively AMAZING! Loved every lap!

Anonymous said...

I'm tuning in to races later and later nowadays. When I did tune in I was happy they were about to start a "through the field" recap. But I was unengaged with it that I totally missed how my driver was doing. 20 minutes later I got around to logging on to Trackpass. With less than 10 laps left I finally started paying attention instead of screwing around on a Facebook game. I saw some exciting passing going on and then just that fast the director changed to showing Clint Bowyer all alone. I made a comment about Busch probably about to wreck the 15. Then I went back to my game. Thought I saw Dale Jr. spinning on Trackpass and it took TNT a long time to mention it and find it in their replays. It's really just a matter of time before I give up entirely. Sorry NASCAR.

fbu1 said...

I watched the end of the race at a sports bar after the Euro soccer game ended. I actually had to beg to get one of the bar's TVs to show the race. I promised an exciting road course race. ( Nobody else cared about NASCAR. That was disturbing for me re: NASCAR's future.)

When the bartender put the race on, the first shot was a multiple bumper cam presentation. Adam Alexander was ever so proud! I felt foolish after my promise.

Vicky D said...

I was mostly "watching" on twitter but something I noticed was the awkwardness between AA & KP did anyone else catch that? Road courses for me are lost causes and this one sure was!

Anonymous said...

Seems like it's time to bring back CBS into this coverage mess. How much worse of a job can they do? Without Twitter, I'd had no clue what was going on. Someone please hire the PRN & MRN announcing crews as well. they are the only broadcast crews who know what they are doing.

Anonymous said...

TNT dropped the ball on this one. I realize that it has to be hard for them to cover everything in a road course. They should be able to check camera angles & any obstructions before the race. Obviously they didn't care to do that since we saw a building instead of the final restart.
The foot cameras, suspension cams, shift watch and pit box focusing needs to stop. I don't care to have the tachometer being at zero explained to me. I think viewers are smart enough to figure that out.
Too many commercials for the amount of racing we got. Nice of them to throw a little racing in. Jo mentions of spins, reasoning for cars leaving the track. The announcers have a little spat while we watched cars was amusing at best. Here's to hoping someone from TNT reads all of the comments here & takes them to heart.

Anonymous said...

This race to watch on television was a disaster. I got on the radio,, facebook and twitter trying to follow the race. The PRN and MRN announcers know how to describe a race. Does anybody out there care?

Anonymous said...

The TNT broadcast was by far the worst broadcast I have ever seen in my 15 years as a fan. Whoever directed it obviously had no experience directing a live sporting event..

I learned so much from Twitter that was never mentioned on TV, i.e., Harvick running out of gas which Kyle Petty about 15 minutes later (I presume after he checked his Twitter) said, how did we miss that - well Mr. Petty you missed a lot more than that.

Since I live in a very rural area without high-speed internet, I am unable to get RaceBuddy to run, perhaps that would have helped, but Twitter kept me up to date with what was really going on and not what the TV was saying or showing.

I probably will not be watching any more TNT broadcasts live, will DVR them and playback later to skip through ALL the commercials, will probably take an hour to watch the whole thing that way.

Sorry TNT but you really did a horrible job and I was so looking forward to your broadcasts.

Wandisville said...

First of all I want to thank all the journalists who posted the running order of the cars on Twitter because APPARENTLY TNT didn't feel we needed to know most of the time because they couldn't keep the leader board scrolling. Of all the things ANY racing broad cast should have going at all times, THAT IS #1. I want that board scrolling. I want the race out of the pits up for more than 20 seconds.

TNT has WAY TOO MANY commercials. If you can't afford to broadcast a race then give it up. At least do the split screen. I dread every time it's TNT's turn to do the races. This year has been the worst.

I think we the fans should be allowed to vote on who broad casts the race. If it hadn't been for Twitter and MRN radio I wouldn't know what was going on. Where was the replay on Menard's or Newman's spins that happen during commercial breaks?

I almost turned Race Buddy on and I don't like Race Buddy but I bet I'd have had better coverage there.

subsailor_739 said...

I didn't watch one lap due to the fact I got rid of cable last September. Sounds like I didn't miss anything. I listened to most of the race on PRN on the radio. The announcers on PRN do a great job of adding excitement to the broadcast. I could tell it was getting close at the end in the tone of their voices.
I wantched the final laps on this morning. Low and behold they take the GWC and what do I see?? The back of the grandstands! Seriously!? That summed up the tv broadcast for me.

Anonymous said...

I mostly agree with William (Bill) at 6:52pm and totally agree with Anonymous at 7:42pm. It must be really hard to cover any race and road races must be extra hard. I do not like all the in car or bumper cams, but other than that, I felt that they did okay. I am glad we get coverage and I do prefer TNT over Fox anyday, mainly because they don't have Waltrips.

Thank you.

David Tucker said...

Well guys it was another poor broadcast for what appears to be a lost year as far as Nascar goes. The TV broadcasters and most importantly Nascar have all turned a blind eye to us the fans and it is a shame.
All Brian France(AKA Nascar's Tony George) cares about is the money and the only way we the fans can affect his mind if we affect his pocket books which I bet would signal change.
SO what I am proposing is a total Nascar block out of one of their biggest cash cows,the Brickyard 400. With them adding Grand Am and Nationwide they have sunk a lot into this venture.
With it occurring in a little over a month we would defiantly have the time to organize a grassroots movement on Twitter and other social media.
I also believe if we could set up a website describing in a professional and orderly manner of the state of the current TV problems as well as list ways they can fix them I believe we the fans can have an impact not only on how TV is broadcast now but also the way it will be broadcast past 2014 and beyond.
In closing WE can make a difference. We just need to stand up,make others aware and hope enough people join so we can really inflict change.

David T.

Anonymous said...

Just a few comments.... Why does Kyle Petty feel the need to say everything twice? And how many times did we hear 'lead change happened while we were at commercial break.'. Several times the announcers were talking about a totally different topic than what was being shown on screen. Glad I have directv and at least get the hotpass channels.

Bobby O said...

Why does everyone think it is hard to cover a road course race?

Other racing series do very well covering their races!

GinaV24 said...

subsailor - based on the current broadcasts, I'm thinking more and more about saving my $ by cancelling my cable. If I am using the internet to follow the race because there are NO pictures or decent content, why should I pay the cable companies?

Jayhawk said...

"One of the things we haven't talked about... I mean we have talked about it, don't get me wrong." was Tony Stewart going from 24th to 2nd. They did mention it a few times, but showed none of it until the last few laps. They then even admit they have neglected it with a blase comment.

Larry Mac was indeed off. His rant about the 56 car needing to pit before a caution happened at the second round of green flag pit stops was absurd. A scenario which he posed as disasterous, where the cars on the three-stop plan did not pit during caution and the 56 did, would actually be the best possible world for him. The 56 would have the advantage of pitting during caution and would not have to pit again, while everyone else would need one more stop. Talk about getting it wrong!

I think the rest of the announcing crew saw the flaw in Larry Mac's reasoning, as they were silent duting his little rant, and kept trying to change the subject. And Larry Mac is supposed to be the strategy expert.

West Coast Kenny said...

@Anonymous 7:50 AM: If it's the incident I think you're referring to, Truex got punted by his teammate, Joey Logano.

Jeff Gluck wrote about this on SBNation. He included an angry tweet that Ryan Truex posted.

(Logano also punted his teammates Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch.)

I'm not a 60s burn-out who is against, [in Tommy Chong (of Cheech & Chong) voice] like, big business, like, corporations, and, like, commercials.

I understand commercials are necessary if I get to see the race without having to pay for it. But when the race interferes with the nonstop cavalcade of commercials, I can find something else to do with my time.

It's sad that "muh driver," Junior, might actually win the Sprint Cup this season but I no longer care enough to be thrilled. I'm happy for him, but I will probably learn about it from Jayski, #TDP1 on Twitter, @Jeff_Gluck and @MattWeaverSBN on SBNation, and maybe PRN or MRN. I certainly know I put a much higher value on them than any of NASCAR's TV partners.

WCK aka @KennFong1 (but don't follow me if you're not interested in snooker or things other than NASCAR.)

John in Chico said...

Years ago when Bob Jenkins and Larry Nuber announced the ESPN NASCAR races the primary difference between then and now I think is passion. Motor racing is a passionate endeavor either from the TV people (it’s their job to convey the excitement of the event), the pits, the stands or the couch, people are very involved, knowledgeable and passionate about this sport.
That feeling used to be in the control room years ago too. The people involved in the telecast knew what to show and what to look for, there is very little knowledge and I suspect now, little passion for motor racing in the control booth.
Until people that know and care about the sport are put in control we are doomed, if NASCAR keeps a hands-of approach to television it isn’t going to get any better. Big Bill France kicked them out 50 years ago because they couldn’t or wouldn’t do it right. What will happen next is of course unknown and predicting the future is absurd but if things don’t change racing on television will shrink to insignificance. The last week or so has seen numerous writings concerning the television coverage and sponsorship and the lack there of.
Yesterday here we had 2 PC’s with Race Buddy (one on a small HDTV), Twitter and PRN going along with TNT on the big set with the sound lowered. It didn’t used to be necessary to have all that going but the #39 spun and was never shown, we go it off of Twitter. The 29 and 24 both ran out of fuel but TNT was either in a commercial or a full screen replay of something they missed. Especially when Kurt was under the #15 spoiler with just a few laps to go, heard it on the radio. Used to sit down and see it and not have to look through a bumper cam to see what’s going on.
Something needs to change or NASCAR on TV will become a niche sport and regulated to the fringes behind curling or something. Wait it already is on ESPN. Where’s NASCAR Now, the day after the race?
We’ll still be watching but won’t have many friends to talk about racing with, they will leave.
Something has to change. Doesn’t it?

OSBORNK said...

Since the bobble head booth monkeys don't talk about what is being shown by the cameras, why dont they just eliminate them and use the radio feed instead? We would at least know what was going on whether the trolls in the truck showed us the action or not. It's a sad state of affairs when we can "see" the race better on the radio than we can on TV.

Anonymous said...

Of the three, I would still give the edge to TNT, but yesterday knocked them down a few notches.

FOX Sports is cartoon-like and its more about the pre-production than covering the race as it happens. ESPN really isn't interested in actually covering NASCAR, especially towards the end of the season when we need to get 6+ hours of SportsCenter/NFL recaps on.

We'll see how things go this weekend, but the bombardment of commercials and missing so many important parts of the race (spin-outs, running out of fuel, etc.) was unbelievable.


Anonymous said...

It's a rare occasion for me to watch an entire Cup race from green to checkered, but I always make a point of it when the series rolls into the road courses. Road course racing puts an emphasis on every part of a race team and everything has to work. For this reason, I am shocked at how poorly the racing was covered in the TNT broadcast. I will not harp on the excessive commercials, as that has been covered numerous times.

Its baffling to me that the commentators did such a terrible job of covering and explaining the intricacies of road racing. Wally Dallenbach, with a history as a road racer (heck, his father was the race director for CART for numerous years), and Kyle Petty, who even skipped his broadcast duties to race Sonoma a few years back, should be providing insight. Instead they, along with Adam Alexander who I don't think is the best option as the lead, covered almost none of the race.

They were not helped by the truck or camera crews. There were two spins in turn 11 early in the race, neither of which were shown live or in replay. Not even a mention was made of Bobby Labonte spinning. The one major incident of the race occurred during commercial and the broadcast had only one replay of it. That replay, ultimately, was inconclusive as to what caused the incident. Also, as the field came to the line for the final (GWC) restart, we were given a beautiful aerial view of the back of the grandstands.

I know this is getting long-winded, but there is so much to gripe about. The coverage of drivers outside the top spots was non-existant. I'd be willing to wager that a majority of fans didn't even realize that Boris Said or Robby Gordon were in the race. For that matter, I don't think Dale Earnhardt, Jr. saw more than a few seconds of air time prior to his incident at the end of the race. I don't understand how a broadcaster that should be riding the high of the sport's most popular driver winning the previous week can completely ignore that driver in the next race. You're going to have additional people tuning in solely because Junior won, you'd think you'd make a point to appease those fans and at least mention him from time to time.

While I've written far too much, I can summarize this broadcast in two words: Commercialized and Amateur.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I can only echo what has been said here already. This was one of the worst broadcasts ever- even by TNT standards.

Missed spins, black holes of information, etc. I know road courses are tough to cover but incidents happen at turn 11 all the time - should be ready. And, missing the last restart was inexcusable - Ky-ally (one person in thought) mentioned KuBusch had a good restart - too bad I missed it.

Also, no mention of how his car got messed up - how does everyone miss the leaders and the second car hitting the tires. Did the broadcast team know the tires were bolted down this year? "Losing the back end" was all we heard - not quite the same as he broke the panhard bar and is still keeping the freaking car in the top 3 on a Road Course. At least Tony gave Kurt props.


Tim S. said...

Ditto Jayhawk. I saw Stewart ahead of Vickers near the end on-camera at least half a lap before the booth bothered to tell us. And given that Vickers was racing for his job, I'll bet Stewart had to work for that pass. We'll never know.

Anonymous said...

TNT on Sunday was the WORST broadcast of a NASCAR race EVER! I hope NASCAR pulls the contract from TNT! FOXSports has it's faults for sure, but, Sunday was a JOKE! I like Wally and Kyle, but AA gets on my last nerve! Too many commercials and not any where near enough racing.

The Mad Man said...

I've got to give TNT props for one thing. It's taken them 3 races to match all the "gimmick shots" used in just one race covered by Faux.

Covering a road race is difficult but they seemed to do a half-way decent job of it. I think there may have been some technical difficulties at one point when the booth went to a pit reporter and there was nothing but the sound of race engines, which I didn't mind.

You can tell that they're still using the weekly script sent from Daytona Beach by the cars they "highlighted". The same exact ones that Faux used their myopic vision coverage on.

Anonymous said...

John in Chico said...
"Years ago when Bob Jenkins and Larry Nuber announced the ESPN NASCAR races the primary difference...."

That's just it, Bob Jenkins and Larry Nuber. These guys we have today are not them, not even close.

Anonymous said...

I agree. Race broadcasts by Bob Jenkins are timeless. Short,sweet,direct and to the point. He didn't verbally psychoanalize how a driver felt that just got roughed up. As for the booth knowing the turn 11 tires were bolted down??? You've got to be kidding. They would never be that aware. Heck, someone reported a car was having battery/alternator issues (Montoya????). The pit reporter reporter stated that the voltmeter was showing zero volts. I don't know how to break it to that technical expert, but if there were really zero volts, the car wouldn't be running. Now maybe that's what the driver reported, but an astute pit reporter would have caught how illogical the comment was. I could tell you a couple of other glaring mistakes the media has made,but I'll spare you. Anyone involved with Sunday's broadcast should hang their head in shame.

Anonymous said...

West Coast Diane said:

Husband usually will start watching a race with me, then disappear.

However, since he races at Sears Point twice a year he enjoys watching the NASCAR drivers navigate the track.

He was yelling the whole time and finally said he now knows why I do the same every week.

He was specifically aggravated with the babble in the booth that had nothing to do with what was on screen. Also missed/late information (Harvick, Newman, etc). And the "tons" of never ending commercials.

Joseph said...

I was at the race and haven't replayed the coverage yet. I guess I don't need to..apparently TNT missed the whole thing.

Unknown said...

The coverage of the two races (Road America and Sonoma) could stand further apart. I love road racing, so I know I'm in a bit of a minority, but man.. the coverage at Road America was amazing. I was exited from start to finish. The Sonoma coverage? I used twitter to stay informed. It was terrible.

Anonymous said...

TNT has too many commercials!!!!!!!!!! I want to see the race. Not advertisements all day. We need more then two or three laps between commercials!!!!!