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09/30/08
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Motorsports This Week on ESPN and ABC
The Chase is On: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Live from Talladega on ABC

NASCAR races at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway feature close competition, multiple-car drafting packs and the added tension of the “big one,” the multi-car crashes that often occur on the 2.66-mile track. NASCAR’s version of the playoffs continues this week with the fourth race in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup as the series visits Talladega. ESPN on ABC’s high-definition telecast of Sunday’s AMP Energy 500 begins at 1 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. ABC will have live coverage of all 10 races that make up the Chase.

Dr. Jerry Punch will be lead announcer, joined in the booth for analysis by 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Dale Jarrett and two-time champion crew chief Andy Petree. Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake will be pit reporters with two-time champion crew chief Tim Brewer in the ESPN Tech Center.

The pre-race NASCAR Countdown show from the ESPN pit studio will be hosted by Allen Bestwick, with 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Rusty Wallace and analyst Brad Daugherty. The studio team will interact with the booth during the telecast of the race.

The race will re-air Monday, Oct. 6, at 2:30 a.m. on ESPN2, and at noon on ESPN Classic.

Craven, Evernham, Said on NASCAR Now Monday Roundtable Discussion

The Monday, Oct. 6, edition of NASCAR Now, ESPN2’s daily NASCAR news and information show, at 5 p.m. ET will feature host Allen Bestwick leading a roundtable discussion of the latest NASCAR news and races. Panel members will include former NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Ricky Craven and ESPN analysts Ray Evernham and Boris Said.

Episodes of NASCAR Now air Tuesday through Friday of this week at 5 p.m. The one-hour weekend edition of NASCAR Now airs Sunday, Oct. 5, at 10 a.m. with a preview of that day’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway. The weekend wrap-up edition airs Sunday night at 10 p.m. Craven will be in the studio for both Sunday shows. 

NASCAR Now is hosted by Ryan Burr, Nicole Manske and Bestwick and originates from ESPN’s high definition studios in Bristol, Conn. Contributors include NASCAR Insiders Marty Smith and Angelique Chengelis, analysts Ray Evernham, Tim Brewer, Brad Daugherty, Boris Said and Tim Cowlishaw, ESPN.com reporters Ed Hinton, Terry Blount and David Newton and D.J. Copp, a member of the Petty Enterprises NASCAR team.

NASCAR Now viewers also benefit from frequent contributions by the NASCAR on ESPN team including Rusty Wallace, Dale Jarrett, Dr. Jerry Punch, Andy Petree, Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake.

ESPN Classic Showing One of NASCAR’s Greatest Races – 1994 Winston Select 500

The 1994 Winston Select 500 at Talladega Superspeedway featured multiple lead changes and a rousing win by Dale Earnhardt. NASCAR fans can watch highlights from the event on Thursday, Oct. 2, at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN Classic.

Earnhardt held off Ernie Irvan to win on the 2.66-mile Alabama track, with Michael Waltrip, Jimmy Spencer and Ken Schrader completing the top five.

John and Ashley Force Featured on Tuesday’s E:60

The next edition of ESPN’s prime-time newsmagazine E:60 on Tuesday, Sept. 30, at 7 p.m. ET, will include a look at NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series stars John and Ashley Force.

John Force is the Richard Petty of Funny Car -- winning an unprecedented 14 championships. His daughter Ashley is a rising star on the circuit. She not only blazes down the track at over 300 mph, she was voted AOL Sports’ “Hottest Athlete for 2007.”  Ashley's two younger sisters, Brittany and Courtney, are following in her footsteps racing in the NHRA development series. E:60 correspondent Michael Smith explores how this first family of drag racing has been shaken to the core by tragedy, and why John Force is re-evaluating his legacy and the wildly popular Ashley is uncertain about her future as a driver.

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