Sunday, June 17, 2012
Sprint Cup Series From Michigan On TNT (Updated)
It's raining at the Michigan International Speedway. Driver introductions are on hold and the day looks like it may be a long one. The stories of the day include tires, engines and Kurt Busch.
TNT faces an interesting challenge as the network goes on the air at noon ET. They did not replace Lindsay Czarniak as the infield host, instead opting to make Adam Alexander handle the pre-race and then call the race itself. Keep an eye on how the network handles the rain and if they move a veteran like Ralph Sheheen from pit road to the infield set.
While the Lizard Lick Towing skit was a disaster, the rest of the TNT pre-race show is solid. Kyle Petty and Larry McReynolds are a good panel for NASCAR topics and each week a different driver joins the show. This week, it's Brad Keselowski.
NASCAR brought in hard left side tires after blisters developed from the heat and high speeds after practice. Now with the rain, the rubber that caused the original problem is gone. It should be interesting to see TNT follow the tire story today.
Two Hendrick teams changed engines before the race, including Jimmie Johnson. Several other teams were talking about potential engine issues. MIS has a long acceleration period and is one of the hardest tracks on engines due to the high speeds. If a problem develops, it often develops for all the teams running the same brand of engine. This could be a big story.
Kurt Busch and ESPN's Marty Smith got into it after the Nationwide Series race in the Infield Media Center. Smith made it clear to Busch he does not take any guff from drivers like the very patient Bob Pockrass did last week. On the AM edition of NASCAR Now Smith provided a rundown of the moment and was not a happy camper about it.
"He can help a race team, he just can't help himself," said Darrell Waltrip of Busch on the morning RaceDay show. Keep an eye on how TNT treats this topic and follows Busch during the day in monitoring his radio traffic and his temper.
We will be live tweeting as usual using the #TDP1 hashtag. Twitter is easy to use, simple to operate and you control the content from start to finish. Drivers, officials and NASCAR personalities interact with us during the day. I would urge you to start an account for free and come on over.
There will be a "Race Wrap" post here right after the TV telecast is over for your comments. In the meantime, please feel free to leave TV and media comments during the race on this post. Thanks as always for stopping by The Daly Planet.