2014 is a big year for ABC. That’s because this year marks the 50th anniversary of the network broadcasting what has become the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”
ABC started airing highlights of the annual race in 1965 on its then black-and-white Wide World Of Sports telecast. It has now become one of the longest running partnerships between a television network and sporting event. To put things into perspective, CBS has carried weekend coverage of the PGA’s Masters Tournament since 1965 as well. And ABC has carried the Little League World Series since 1963.
Allen Bestwick will make his debut anchoring the broadcast this year. He will join a very short list of individuals to ever call the race in its now ninety-eight year history. Only nine others have ever called the race in its rich history. Bestwick said of being tapped to helm this year’s broadcast that hearing the broadcast of the Indy 500 was his inspiration for getting into broadcasting when he was younger and that he is rather excited to be helming it this year. “One of the things that sparked my fascination with broadcasting was that appointment viewing of the broadcast of the Indianapolis 500 with Jim McKay behind the microphone,” he said. “It’s one of those things that attracted me and inspired me to get into the business and to think that I’m going to have the opportunity to sit in that chair – THAT chair – is mind-blowing.” Bestwick will be joined for this year’s broadcast by analysts Eddie Cheever and Scott Goodyear, both of whom competed in the Indy 500. SportsCenter anchor Lindsay Czarniak will host the broadcast from IMS’ iconic Pagoda. Rick DeBruhl, Jamie Little, Vince Welch, and Dr. Jerry Punch will all be in the pits.
This year’s festivities are expected to begin with pre-race coverage at 11am ET. The green flag is expected to wave at 12:12pm ET. Viewers can get a whole different angle on the race through ESPN’s in-car cameras. The view from those cameras will stream on ESPN3 through WatchESPN and the official Verizon Indycar Series website, http://www.indycar.com. More information on coverage of this year’s race is available online at http://espn.go.com/racing and http://www.indycar.com. 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 https://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 NASCAR Nationwide Series is back under the lights again this weekend.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series will hit the track Friday night at Richmond International for the Toyotacare 250. JR Motorsports driver Chase Elliot currently leads teammate Regan Smith by thirteen points. He will look to extend that lead when he and the rest of the field take the green flag at 7:14pm ET on ESPNNEWS. NASCAR Countdown opens the night’s broadcast at 6:30pm ET on ESPNNEWS. ESPN2 will carry live qualifying for Friday night’s race at 3:30pm ET.
Nicole Briscoe will anchor Saturday evening’s broadcast of NASCAR Countdown. Allen Bestwick will have lap-by-lap coverage of the race. He will be joined by analysts Rusty Wallace and Andy Petree for all of the action.
Regan Smith and Trevor Bayne spent the first five weeks of the NASCAR Nationwide Series battling for the series’ points lead. But the points picture is quite different after both drivers had a tough time Friday night. Regan Smith’s seventh place finish dropped him to second place , two points back from new points leader Chase Elliot. Bayne finished Friday’s race in twenty-third, dropping him to fifth overall in the points standings. Now, both drivers look to move back up the ladder this weekend when the Nationwide Series heads to Darlington Speedway this weekend.
The NASCAR Nationwide will take on “The Lady in Black” Friday night in the VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200. The race will be broadcast live on ESPN2 beginning with Nascar Countdown at 7:30pm ET. Nicole Briscoe will anchor the broadcast. She will be joined by NASCAR veterans and ESPN analysts Rusty Wallace and Ricky Craven for the pre-race broadcast. Allen Bestwick will call all of the flag-to-flag action from the booth. He will be joined by NASCAR legend and ESPN analyst Rusty Wallace and former NASCAR crew chief Andy Petree.
Pre-race ceremonies for Friday’s race are expected to begin at 8pm ET, with thegreen flag expected to drop at 8:16pm ET. More information on Friday’s broadcast and more on ESPN’s NASCAR coverage is available online at http://espn.go.com/racing/nascar. 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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.
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 NASCAR Nationwide Series heads to “Thunder Valley” this weekend.
Points leader Regan Smith looks to extend his lead over Trevor Bayne when the Nationwide Series makes its way to Bristol Motor Speedway for the Drive to Stop Diabetes 300 Presented by Lilly Diabetes. Coverage on ESPN2 begins with live qualifying at 10am ET. NASCAR Countdown follows at 1:30pm ET with the green flag expected to drop at 2:13pm ET.
Allen Bestwick will anchor Saturday’s broadcast of the 300-lap event. He will be joined in the booth by former Winston Cup champion and ESPN analyst Dale Jarrett and former NASCAR crew chief Andy Petree.
NASCAR Nationwide Series points leader Regan Smith looks to expand his lead over second place driver Trevor Bayne this weekend as the Nationwide series continues its western swing.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series heads from Phoenix to Las Vegas this weekend for the Boyd Gaming 300. The green flag is expected to drop at 4:31pm ET. Allen Bestwick will anchor the broadcast. He will be joined in the booth by former Winston Cup champion and ESPN analyst Dale Jarrett and former crew chief Andy Petree. Saturday’s broadcast will be preceded by NASCAR Countdown at 4pm ET.