The schedule is jam packed this weekend for The Worldwide Leader in Sports and its family of networks. The biggest of this weekend’s events across the ESPN family of networks is the annual running of NASCAR’s Brickyard 400. ESPN takes over coverage of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series from TNT this weekend and carries it straight through to the series’ season-ending race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. This weekend’s coverage of the Brickyard 400 events begins Saturday morning at 9am with the broadcast of Sprint Cup Series practice on ESPN2 and WatchESPN. This is the only coverage that will be carried on ESPN2. All other coverage throughout the weekend will be carried on ESPN and WatchESPN.
Qualifying for the Brickyard 400 will be broadcast at 2pm ET followed by ESPN’s weekly broadcast of NASCAR Countdown at 4pm ET and the NASCAR Nationwide Series’ Lilly Diabetes 250 at 4:30pm ET. The green flag for that race is expected to drop at 4:49 pm ET.
Sunday’s coverage of the Brickyard 400 begins with NASCAR Countdown at high noon. The green flag for the Brickyard 400 is expected to fly at 1:19pm ET weather permitting. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will serve as in-race reporter for the Brickyard 400. He will discuss all of the latest in-race happenings with ESPN analyst Dale Jarrett during the race’s pace and caution laps.
The Verizon Indycar Series raced on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road course for the first time last week. Now, America’s premiere open-wheel racing series will be back on the track this weekend qualifying for the Indianapolis 500.
This weekend’s qualifying, which will be broadcast live on ESPN3 and ABC, will determine the 33-car field for this year’s race. Saturday’s broadcast is the traditional bump day. It will be broadcast live online via ESPN3 from 11am ET – 3pm ET and on ABC from 4pm ET to 6pm ET.
Sunday’s second qualifying session on Sunday, May 18th, will split that initial field into two groups. The first group, those from Saturday’s top nine, will take part in the “Fast Nine Shootout.” The “Fast Nine Shootout” will determine the final starting position for the top nine drivers for the Indy 500. The top nine fastest drivers in the “Fast Nine Shootout” will run in order from slowest to fastest in order to determine the first three rows. Drivers in positions 10 – 33 will requalify for position beginning at 10:15am ET.
ESPN3 will broadcast Sunday’s second qualifying sessions live from 10am – noon ET. ABC will run the double qualifying session from 1pm ET to 3pm ET.
Almost a month after its last event, the drivers of the NHRA take to the track again this weekend.
The NHRA takes to the track this weekend in Atlanta for the Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals. Current divisional points leaders Antron Brown (Top Fuel), Robert Hight (Funny Car), Erica Enders-Steven (Pro-Stock), and Andrew Hines (Pro-Stock Motorcycle) all look to extend their leads for this weekend’s event. ESPN 2 and ESPN3 will carry coverage of this weekend’s event.
Live qualifying and final eliminations will be carried live online via ESPN3. Qualifying will air online via ESPN3 live Friday May 16th at 6:30pm with Final Eliminations live Sunday May 18th at 11am live on ESPN3. Qualifying will run through tape delay on ESPN Saturday, May 17th at 6pm ET. Final Eliminations can be seen on ESPN 2 Sunday May 18th at 9pm ET.
Dave Rieff and Mike Dunn will be in the booth for all of this weekend’s action. More information on ESPN2 and ESPN3’s coverage of the Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals is available online at http://espn.go.com/racing. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.
The Verizon IndyCar Series will take to the track for a first-ever race this weekend.
The Indianapolis Speedway will play host to the Verizon IndyCar Series this weekend for the first ever running of the Grand Prix of Indy. Last week’s winner and current series points leader Ryan Hunter-Reay looks to expand his points lead when the series takes to the Indianapolis Speedway’s road course. The race kicks off the series’ biggest month. The series’ biggest race, the annual running of the Indy 500, will take place May 25th.
The Mello Yellow Drag Racing Series heads to the Lone Star State this weekend.
The Mello Yellow NHRA Drag Racing Series heads from the famed four-wide lanes of Z-Max Dragway to the Royal Purple Raceway in Houston, Texas this weekend for the annual O’Reilly Auto Parts Spring National presented by Super Start Batteries. ESPN3 will carry qualifying live Friday, April 15th at 7:30pm and Final Eliminations Sunday, April 27th at Noon. ESPN2 will rebroadcast qualifying Saturday, April 26th at 6pm and Final Eliminations Sunday, April 27th at 7pm.
Doug Kalitta (Top Fuel), Robert Hight (Funny Car), Erica Enders-Stevens (Pro-Stock), and Andrew Hines all look to extend their leads in their respective division. Dave Rieff will have the call from the booth for this weekend’s races. He will be joined by Make Dunn for more insight on each matchup.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series heads back out west this weekend for week five of the series’ schedule.
JR Motorsports driver Regan Smith will look to make a dent in his current single-point lead over Roush Racing driver Trevor Bayne this Saturday when the NNS takes to the track for the Treatmycot.com 300 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Saturday’s telecast begins at 4:30pm ET on ESPN with ESPN’s NASCAR Countdown pre-race show. The green flag is expected to drop at 5:17pm ET.
Allen Bestwick will call the race. He will be joined in the booth by former NASCAR crew chief Andy Petree. Rusty Wallace will sit in for former Winston Cup Champion and fellow ESPN analyst Dale Jarrett this week. Nicole Briscoe will host NASCAR Countdown. She will be joined by ESPN analysts Ricky Craven and Brad Daugherty.
The NHRA Mello Yellow Drag Racing Series kicks off its 2014 season this weekend on ESPN.
ESPN’s broadcast of the 54th annual Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pamona, California kicks off the fourteenth season that the Worldwide Leader in sports has broadcast drag racing’s top series. ESPN3 will carry live qualifying Friday, February 7th at 6:30pm ET. Live eliminations will be carried on ESPN3 beginning Sunday, February 9th at 2pm ET. Qualifying will be broadcast Saturday, February 8th at 11pm ET on ESPN2. Final eliminations will be broadcast Sunday, February 9th at 8pm ET on ESPN. Dave Rieff will anchor the weekend’s events. He will be joined by analyst Mike Dunn.