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Phil Allaway

News Recap for February 10, 2010

By Phil Allaway NASCAR Making Change to Green-White-Checker Procedure During safety meetings for participants of all three major series, NASCAR officials announced on Wednesday a change to the Green-White-Checker policy. Currently, there is one chance at a green flag finish. If there is a yellow for any reason after the green is flown, the race is automatically over. The new policy would allow for multiple attempts if the yellow flag comes out before the white flag does. However, if something ... Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN’s Knockout Punch Gives Reid His Chance

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN’s Knockout Punch Gives Reid His Chance

Hello, readers. I'm back for entry No. 45 in a limitless series in which I look into the TV telecasts for NASCAR. This will not be a long piece, or even a critique, in general. This is more of a reaction piece. As many of you already know, ESPN announced on Wednesday that Dr. Jerry Punch will no longer handle play-by-play duties in the booth for Sprint Cup races. Instead, Marty Reid will take over the role starting at the Brickyard 400 in July. In addition, Reid will be in the broadcast booth for what is described as "many of the network's NASCAR Nationwide Series telecasts." Read More »

Like It Or Not, The Danica Express Is Coming To Save A NASCAR Near You

Like It Or Not, The Danica Express Is Coming To Save A NASCAR Near You

Well, with Tuesday's announcement (not broadcast on television, but streamed online at GoDaddy.com) that Danica Patrick will run a limited schedule in the Nationwide Series in 2010, along with the ARCA Racing Series presented by Re/Max and Menards race at Daytona on February 6, the question of whether Danica will try stock cars or not is finally answered. I'm personally happy that this media blitz is now over. However, now that the word is out, the prognostication will begin. How will Danica adjust to stock cars with extremely limited testing? History is not on Danica's side here. Drivers that have come from the open wheel ranks (IndyCar Series, the former CCWS) to NASCAR have typically struggled early on. Jimmy Vasser only made two Busch starts in 2003, although he did run well at Daytona until getting taken out in Mike McLaughlin's crash. Dario Franchitti's struggles last season in the No. 40 in Sprint Cup were a stark contrast to his past success. Paul Tracy never produced all that much in his few NASCAR starts. Scott Speed has struggled in Sprint Cup, as has Sam Hornish Jr., and even Juan Pablo Montoya has struggled at times since he came to stock cars at the end of 2006. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: Championship Overkill

Talking NASCAR TV: Championship Overkill

Greetings, race fans and welcome to this week's critique, entry No. 43 in a long running series where I look into the quality of the race broadcasts. We've got a lot to talk about, so let's get right into it. On Friday night, the Truck Series held their season finale race, the Ford 200. SPEED televised the race with their typical crew of Rick Allen, Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip in the booth. However, there were a couple of additional guests during the race. Michael's older brother Darrell decided to come on down and join in on the festivities. More on this later. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: The Championship Is A Big Story — But Not THAT Big

Talking NASCAR TV: The Championship Is A Big Story — But Not THAT Big

Hello, race fans and welcome to my critique, entry No. 42 in a long series in which we look into the quality of NASCAR's TV Broadcasts. This week: Phoenix. Of course, before we get into the nitty gritty of the weekend's racing, there are a couple things I want to mention. First of all, two weeks ago, I mentioned that I was going to give a short review of NASCAR Performance last week. I did write the critique, but finished it a little too late for it to be included in last week's critique (I did mention this in the comments section from last week). So, without further ado, here are my thoughts on the episode of NASCAR Performance from Texas, originally aired on November 7. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN, We Know Johnson Wrecked. Thank You…

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN, We Know Johnson Wrecked. Thank You…

Hello, race fans, and welcome to my weekly critique, entry No. 41 in an ongoing series in which I look into the TV broadcasts that we watch on a weekly basis. This week, NASCAR's top three series were all at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. However, there are a couple of things that must be addressed before we start. First of which, as you may know, NASCAR's PR Director, Ramsey Poston, last week gave his two cents about ESPN's coverage at Talladega. In his short comments on the 'NASCAR Says' blog at nascar.com, Poston claimed that the ESPN crew was disappointed with the action at Talladega and let their feelings pour over into the broadcast. Well, we're not going to rehash Talladega here, but this is stuff that I mentioned last week. I can never tell with ESPN whether it is actual despair about the race or just the way the broadcast is planned out. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: Slight Problems Affect Telecasts; Rules Hurt More

Talking NASCAR TV: Slight Problems Affect Telecasts; Rules Hurt More

On Saturday afternoon, the Truck Series raced the Mountain Dew 250 Presented by Fred's at Talladega Superspeedway. The usual crew of Rick Allen, Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip was in the booth for SPEED. Adam Alexander, Krista Voda and Ray Dunlap were reporting from pit road. Since this race was run on Halloween, the NCWTS Setup definitely had a Halloween theme. For the second consecutive year, SPEED's on-air crew dressed up in costumes for pre-race. Last year, the theme was the classic 1939 movie, "The Wizard of Oz." This year, the crew had a Batman theme (the classic 1966 campy TV Series starring Adam West). Dunlap and Alexander were Batman and Robin, respectively, while Voda was Batgirl. The booth commentators were the bad guys. Allen was the Riddler, while Waltrip was the Joker and Parsons was the Penguin. Seemed fitting, I guess. Even non-SPEED employees got in on the act. The Goodyear Blimp pilot was wearing an Elvis mask and one of MRN's commentators was wearing a Pumpkin costume. It's obvious that the SPEED crew had a lot of fun with this and I'm happy for them. A happy on-air crew makes for a better broadcast, in my opinion. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN Should Promote Nationwide-Only Drivers While Showing Us More Backbone

Talking NASCAR TV: ESPN Should Promote Nationwide-Only Drivers While Showing Us More Backbone

Hello and welcome to this week's critique, entry No. 39 in an ongoing series where I look into NASCAR's TV broadcasts. This past weekend saw the Cup Series compete on Sunday in the TUMS Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway, while Kroger Supermarkets sponsored races in the other two divisions: the Truck Series' Kroger 200 in Martinsville and the Nationwide Series' Kroger On Track for the Cure 250 at Memphis Motorsports Park in Millington, TN. Due to the way that the broadcast schedule ended up playing out, I'll have to do my critique in chronological order instead of grouping the races together by which track they were held at. Before we start the actual critique, I want to cover a couple of things. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: Knights of Standards and Practices, Please Report to the SPEED Stage

Talking NASCAR TV: Knights of Standards and Practices, Please Report to the SPEED Stage

Hello, race fans. Last weekend's races at Lowe's Motor Speedway (soon to become Charlotte Motor Speedway once again) were marked by cold weather and somewhat dodgy conditions (both races were somewhat hampered by rain, in addition to the cold weather). This can affect race coverage positively or negatively. Which way did the networks go? Well, before I start with the race coverage critiques, there are a couple of other things to cover. The first of these was the Hall of Fame announcement ceremony, which both ESPN and SPEED covered in varying degrees. ESPN did it with a short cut-in for live coverage of the announcement on ESPNEWS with analysis from Dr. Jerry Punch in Charlotte, who just so happens to be a voter. Punch is informative enough... but the coverage was simply too little. Read More »

Talking NASCAR TV: Rough Weekend For Racing Broadcasters Across The Board

Talking NASCAR TV: Rough Weekend For Racing Broadcasters Across The Board

Hello, race fans. Sunday saw the fourth weekend of the Cup Series' Chase for the Sprint Cup at a new location, as the race at Auto Club Speedway moved from Labor Day weekend to Columbus Day weekend as part of three-way switch between Atlanta, Auto Club (Fontana), and Talladega. This was designed to both improve attendance and the racing because the temperatures were far less oppressive (in recent years, it has been upwards of 105-110 degrees in Fontana, and never below 92 during the day). Did cooler track conditions heat up the action? I think so ... but only by a little. Also this past week, NASCAR announced a new procedure for standardized start times for the Cup Series. Read More »