Saturday, June 30, 2012

Saturday Night In Sparta On TNT

Kentucky Speedway was a traffic mess last season and that grabbed the headlines after the Sprint Cup Series race. This week, the track has already played host to both the Camping World Trucks and the Nationwide Series without the mention of any traffic or parking issues. Both of those races showed a bumpy track with multiple grooves that made it a challenge for crew chiefs to make the right changes during the race.

TNT returns after a Sonoma outing that saw the commercials become a focal point for criticism. Click here for a link to Cheryl's website called CawsnJaws where she documented the commercial elements of the race. The bottom line is that in a total of 3 hours of racing coverage there were 56 minutes of commercials. On a road course like Sonoma and with few cautions, the result was rough to watch.

This Saturday night, long green flag runs may produce the same result. Luckily the NASCAR website offers the online RaceBuddy to keep the live video going during commercial breaks. There is no actual feed of the race itself, only some in-car cameras and two isolated cameras usually showing the backstretch and pit road.

This season the radio coverage of the Sprint Cup Series races has also been made available online for free. Doug Rice and the PRN gang will be calling the action and the streaming is available at the website. This has been a great asset for fans and there is little doubt next season will see even more digital friendly features.

TNT's pre-race Countdown to Green show at 6:30PM this week will have a feature on Denny Hamlin's sponsor-related trip to Alaska. Kasey Kahne will be the guest on the infield set. The "NASCAR Generations" feature will return with Jimmie Johnson, Bill Elliott and Ned Jarrett. The topics this week are driver superstitions and fears.

Adam Alexander does double-duty this season for TNT. He hosts the pre-race show with Kyle Petty and Larry McReynolds and then calls the race with Petty and Wally Dallenbach Jr.  McReynolds stays in the infield while Marty Snider, Ralph Sheheen, Chris Neville and Matt Yocum handle the pit reporting duties.

For those asking about TV ratings for the TNT races, click here for Jayski's season-long ratings chart. The TNT races to date have averaged a 3.3 Household Rating. That puts the viewing numbers up about 6%. No doubt Dale Earnhardt Jr. in contention at Michigan did not hurt that total.

Saturday's NASCAR TV starts with NASCAR Now on ESPN2 at 12PM Eastern. This is the one hour Sprint Cup Series preview show. SPEED gets into the act at 4PM with a thirty-minute edition of SpeedCenter. That is followed by the two-hour RaceDay program featuring Darrell Waltrip, Jeff Hammond and Kenny Wallace. John Roberts hosts that show with Wendy Venturini, Matt Clark and Rutledge Wood as field reporters.

In terms of post-race, TNT moves the extended post race show to the RaceBuddy online window. That can be accessed through right off the front page. SPEED has been doing a solid job with the Victory Lane show and that is scheduled for 11PM ET, but will be held until the Sprint Cup Series race is over should it run long. The move to air this show late night after the live Saturday races is appreciated.

There will be a post on this page for your comments after the race. We use the #TDP1 hashtag on Twitter during the race to chat about TV and media topics. Please join us. is free, easy to use and there are tons of NASCAR personalities and media folks on the service. We welcome your comments during the TV day on any of the NASCAR TV shows or media topics. Thanks for stopping by.


Todd Crane said...

JD Do you think Fox sees TNT with a rating groth, while DW & Co. saw the ratings drop? I'd say that DW & MW on Fox was a TOTAL overload! Go TNT!

Anonymous said...

I'd like to see TNT address last night's race in their coverage tonight and how Dillon failed post race inspection but still keeps the win. He would've lost it at any local track.
But I'm sure the bs "feel good" slant on the story will be how they present it.

Dot said...

I'm not holding out any hope that tonight's race will be any better than the NW race. Cars getting too spread out, etc. Nine seconds back to 2nd at the end? Oh Boy! I hope someone is filming the fans driving in to the track, that may be more exciting, I'm thinking road rage. Or, fewer fans going after last years' fiasco. We shall see.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Todd, pretty much a wash. Junior was the small bump.

Anon, NASCAR related that a post-race penalty would be announced on Tuesday. Andy Petree said the team did nothing intentional and it did not provide a performance advantage.

Dot, the Cup field is much more robust than the trucks or NNS. It should be interesting strategy racing and lots of fun on the restarts.


Cody said...

NASCAR never takes away wins. No matter who or where

Sophia said...

I watched the first few laps of the race last night & then the end of the race. Wow, what was up with all the Childress milking Dale Sr emotion?

I mean really....that was too much. I never saw ANYBODY else shown on the track once Austin D won. Hasn't he driven the 3 car before.

Just when you think the JJ or danica mania is too much NASCAR pulls a stunt like this. I thought this was a championship series wrap up.

Mind boggling. Glad I didn't invest in the race. (Enjoyed the Reds on radio (WIN!!)

If it isn't one NASCAR Agenda it's nother.

And the 3 car failed post race inspection!? *sigh*

A neighbor was at the race but the big talk locally were the storms. Many are still without power in this hot sweltering weather & Duke Energy (HORRIBLE & going to grow to biggest power com in country soon) and NO Estimated time of power back on.

My local tweeps are furious. One executive is lucky enough to have a whole house generator, but most are not. Unless you have transistor radio, many will not hear the race, let alone see it.

We are lucky & have power but huge trees down all over the place. Thus the mess. The thing is, one snowflake can show up and many in the tri state area lose Duke's power. Not right.

Thus it's hard for folks to get excited about the SPARTA race, being yakked about constantly on local news, though I've not had on local stuff today.

between the heat & many people with no power/No AC and no food, gonna be a long, sweltering weekend for those in homes, condos, apartments on upper floors :(

But on another note, I was happy to see local AM 1530 carrie the Nationwide race! guess because it was local race.

So for those without power, get a transistor to listen to PRN. Gotta be better than tv anyway. and hope you find a bag of ice. 90 asa I type this & muggy.

Oh, yea, TNT tonight.
Well guess what TNT, we've lost faith in you too.

glenc1 said...

I checked the google traffic map & everything is far, so good. I'm sure local TV is probably out there watching...

Bet that lady with the cornfield made out like a bandit...

Jimmie48 said...

In the Nationwide race, the winner crossed the finish line more than 9 seconds ahead of second place. That tells you all you need to know about this track and the quality of "racing" we're likely to see.

I have no interest watching a parade. I want to see racing. We might see a ton of commercials on TNT tonight, but I will wager that they'll be more exciting than the on-track "action".

GinaV24 said...

hopefully the Cup race will be better. The nationwide race (I didn't watch the trucks on Thurs) was pretty much a parade. ESPN did the usual broadcast and of course Carl baby was in the booth, too. Love AB and Andy, can completely do without Carl even though I have to say he is very articulate. Just not happy with an active driver as a regular, just as I am not happy with Mikey in the booth for Fox.

Sophia, sorry to hear that the power is out so many places. In this heat, it must be terrible. There were heavy storms that came through part of my area last night, but we got thru with the power still on thank goodness. More storms predicted tonight, so who knows whether I'll have TV or internet. Other than missing being able to use trackpass and twitter, not having TV doesn't really matter that much for the races these days.

I'll probably turn it on but mute it since if I'm not getting any PXP, listening to Adam setup Kyle and Wally's discussions is a waste of time. I'll use my computer to follow along.

Racebuddy will be in car and fixed camera? What a waste!

Buschseries61 said...

I thought the truck race was pretty entertaining Thursday. Buescher pretty much dominated, but we saw lots of racing and sideways trucks for most of the race thanks to SPEED.

The Nationwide race was pretty much a snoozefest on RaceBuddy last night. I'm glad I had the option to use RaceBuddy than sitting through ESPN ignoring half the field. Sadler, Dillon, Stenhouse, and Patrick will be the 4 ESPN obsessions for the rest of the season. At least they're not Cuppers.

The Cup race could be brutal if one car dominates. I expect 7 cars parking (19 Bliss, 23 Riggs, 26 Wise, 30 Stremme, 33 Leicht, 87 Nemechek, 98 McDowell). That leaves 36 on the track with most concerned about adding points before the series heads to Daytona where points are a wild gamble. TNT will have to deal with most of the action taking place on restarts and most of the passing on pit road. It's critical that whatever action happens on the track is covered in a wide perspective, not inside, above, or under another car. It will be interesting to see if the pace of the race cooperates with the commercial load.

Sophia said...


The frustration w Duke Energy is, last time we had a mess from H Ike winds in 2008, Duke blamed slowness on so many workers in NOLA/MS helping Katrina what's their excuse now.

Hot day and I am BUMMED to read Racebuddy is in car cam junk!?!?

TNT, we hardly knew ye.

Will tape race, & see tweeted highlights maybe. Too hot to be outside so who knows. May watch Beverly Hills 90210 on DVD instead. Season One. MEOW.

PS I heard lots of tickets available for todays' cup race & they went at cheap prices? True?

Oh duke update? Claims power won't be restored for up to a week!!! and this is NOT as bad as Hurricane Ike. OUTRAGE in brutal heat..we are all using the same grid so this is scary :-(

Anonymous said...

In the power company's defense, they have to bring power back in a certain order...fixing individual streets is the last thing since it will do no good if the main power isn't working--it's just time consuming; cutting trees, removing debris, rebuilding wiring, checking safety....and sometimes they have to sit around & wait for some other place to be done before they can do their piece. Think of it this way, if no one is using electric, they're not making money, right, so it's in their best interest to work as fast as they can. No, I don't work for the power company but we've had some long outages & that's just what happens.

Very hard for people in this heat though, particularly the elderly. Hope everyone stays safe.

Charlie Spencer said...

I'm with BS61. The truck race was entertaining, partly because of how Speed covered it. When Buescher had a multi-second lead, they cut away to competitive racing elsewhere in the field.

Anonymous said...

Big power companies, like many other corporations, increase profits by getting rid of as many linemen as possible. They figure they can get help from other utilities when needed, thus you get to go DAYS in the heat w/o power.
And by the way Jack Roush, Toyota IS NOT the dark side! Go JGR and GO Matt K!

Zetona said...

Where does it say Dillon failed post-race inspection? I can't find it on,, or Jayski.

Buschseries61 said...

@ Zetona - If you go on Jayski's site in the Nationwide section, look right under "Dillon wins at Kentucky Speedway". The next paragraph is titled "Dillon's car fails post-race inspection."

I looked at, and you're right, it's nowhere to be found on the front page. Thank God NASCAR is taking over the digital rights.

Anonymous said...

Zetona makes a legitimate point. I just looked at Jayski and found nothing. I found it on TDP home page on the right hand side. Late last season in the NNS series, Eury Jr got fined for not having the frame rail weights restrained on Danica's car. Best kept secret in the world. No one wanted to report it. Only 8 cars on lead lap last night for NNS race. Another priceless moment from the pit reporters was Jamie Little reporting that Kurt Busch was running around the track with "no oil pressure" ??? The male pit reporters are just as bad. They have no idea how cars work. This may sound like nit-picking, but it goes to the credibility of professionals at the top of a Sport. I could give a bunch of examples pit reporters, talking heads and journalists(?) saying dumb things.

Sophia said...

Don't know Zetona, it was all over twitter last night soon after the race. can't recall links.


Your 'excuse' doesn't fly for Duke who pleaded mea culpa for the shortage of men/S L O W lack of response during hurrican Ike winds in 2008. THANKFULLY the weather cooled for days. We were without for 4 days. Some, a MONTH.

In this heat, people can die especially in taller buildings & such high humidity. It's called suffocation.

Also since we have NO CHOICE but to use Duke Energy ( and they will buy another company making them THE BIGGEST POWER Co) it's called a Monopoly. And all they care about is the $$.

Also if not for A/C I would be dead from this heat if I'd been unlucky enough to be born in later 1800s or early 1900s.

So I think my lucky stars and am grateful for air conditioning. Many have health problems that need ac, from kids to elderly & some in between.

The horrid phoney PR/Customer service for Duke Energy since they took over CG&E is dreadful.

Many folks will be lucky to listen to the race on AM dial (In cincinnati area 1530 but it's not a strong signal, but I hope others carry the race)

Not everybody has a smart phone (raises hand, "I don't") so Twitter, FB & online listening= useless if I was without power.

I hope the PRN guys and crews/drivers stay safe in this heat. It's gonna be a hot night for sure!

But Not sure I'll waste my time on TNT.

Then again, Reds game over & might try TNT or reruns of Y&Restless on SOAPNET :-)

Just not in the mood to be aggravated or listen to "Nascar's latest agenda" after the vomit inducing fawning over the "3" winning last night & RC trying to emote feelings of late Dale Sr.

Enough with that already *ready to dodge tomato throwing*

will read twitter & check here for updates.

Thanks JD for the informative info here & the folks I've met.

Stay cool, everybody.

Anonymous said...

Zetona, try ESPN.

Anonymous said...

WOW - MANY MANY empty seats !

Rainy2228 said...

Dillon's car fails post-race inspection: NASCAR officials announced that Austin Dillon's #3 Richard Childress Racing car which won the NASCAR Nationwide Series Feed The Children 300 at Kentucky Speedway failed postrace inspection because the car's heights were too low in the rear. A penalty will be issued [on Tuesday].(Kentucky Speedway)(6-29-2012)

Rainy2228 said...

I didnt have trouble finding #3 being post race bad...

Buschseries61 said...

Actual race coverage is fine so far, but 2 commerical breaks in 20 laps? I can see why so many people were annoyed last weekend.

Stick with the Biff said...

Sophia...I didn't see the RC thing and couldn't find a video that showed much...but I read some of his comments today (I don't root for any of his drivers, particularly). I think Austin has had a pretty easy ride with grandpa footing the bill, and TV has fawned on him a bit, but I just can't picture RC 'milking' anything--unless there was way more to it than what I can find. Dale was his best friend, Austin is his grandson. I've no doubt it meant a great deal to him to see that number back in VL. I didn't even *like* Dale, but it took me a couple of years to get used to that car being gone...I would think I saw it once in a while and then I'd remember.... It is a big deal. I think it's a bit presumptuous to think there was anything either phony or exaggerated about his reaction. He's earned more respect. JMHO, though I respect yours. I'm just finding it hard to believe it was *that* bad.

Anonymous said...

Some things never change. Kasey Kahne comes in for an unscheduled stop and takes 4 tires. It's either a loose wheel or a tire going down. What is it? We don't know. The 3 stooges said nothing. Stewart finally goes back on the track many laps down. What was the problem? We don't know. The booth says nothing. But describing Logano's air conditioner hose falling off was a big, long-winded deal from KP and Wally. These people will never learn. Now KP's giving us a long disertation on spring rubbers. Lord help us. Oh, 15 laps later we hear Kahne had a loose right front wheel.

Buschseries61 said...

I LOVE RACEBUDDY! I've seen so much TV has not shown. The TNT coverage hasn't been bad, but it hasn't been enough to tell most of the stories alone tonight.

TNT is really falling off after this pit stop. We've been green for a while, the field is mixed with lead lap cars and lap down cars. Now is the time to go through the field to sort through the mess and get some perspective where the lead lap cars are. Instead, Adam Alexander is reading the news like Speed Center with Matt Kenseth driving by himself on the screen...And then off to commercial.

Again, thank goodness for RaceBuddy. I've had my eyes on the backstretch cam and battle cam #2 for over 90 laps.

Buschseries61 said...

TNT learned how to put Larry McReynolds on split screen! Yay!

Sally said...

I'm spending more time watching the Olympic Trials on NBC than this farce ofa race. All the in car, bumper cam shots are making me dizzy.

Buschseries61 said...

I'm tuning out lap 139, RaceBuddy keeps freezing on me and it's getting too difficult to keep up with the race.