Motorsports This Week on ESPN and ABC
The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup only has four races to go and this weekend the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races on NASCAR’s longest track, Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, for 500 miles on Sunday, Nov. 1. ESPN’s live, flag-to-flag coverage of the AMP Energy 500 airs on ABC beginning with NASCAR Countdown at noon ET. The race’s green flag is at 1:19 p.m.
Dr. Jerry Punch will be lap-by-lap announcer for ESPN’s coverage, with analysis by 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Dale Jarrett and two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Andy Petree. Reporting from the pits will be Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Shannon Spake and Vince Welch, with two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion crew chief Tim Brewer in the ESPN Craftsman Tech Garage.
Allen Bestwick will host the pre-race NASCAR Countdown program with analysis by 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Rusty Wallace, Brad Daugherty, co-owner of a winning team in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, and three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion crew chief Ray Evernham in the ESPN pit studio.
Evernham, LaJoie, Craven on NASCAR Now Roundtable
NASCAR on ESPN analysts Ray Evernham, Randy LaJoie and Ricky Craven will be panelists on NASCAR Now’s weekly roundtable discussion program on Monday, Nov. 2, at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN2. Allen Bestwick will host the edition of ESPN2’s daily NASCAR news and information program.
Mike Massaro hosts half-hour episodes of NASCAR Now airing Tuesday through Thursday of this week at 5 p.m., and Saturday at 1 a.m. (late Friday night). Massaro will be joined by LaJoie for the one-hour weekend edition that airs Sunday, Nov. 1, at 10 a.m. with a preview of that day’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway. The weekend wrap-up edition airs at 10 p.m. Sunday. Nicole Manske and Marty Smith will report from the speedway for both programs.
NASCAR Now is hosted by Massaro, Bestwick and Manske 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, Ricky Craven and Randy LaJoie, and ESPN.com reporters Ed Hinton, Terry Blount and David Newton. The NASCAR on ESPN team event coverage team of Rusty Wallace, Dale Jarrett, Dr. Jerry Punch, Andy Petree, Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Spake and Vince Welch also make frequent contributions to NASCAR Now.
Countdown to 1 Continues in NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing
The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series continues its Countdown to 1 playoffs as the series visits The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this weekend. ESPN2 will air qualifying and eliminations action from the NHRA Las Vegas Nationals, with qualifying airing Saturday, Oct. 31, at 11 p.m. ET. Eliminations action airs Sunday, Nov. 1, at 7 p.m., with a re-air Monday, Nov. 2, at 11 a.m. on ESPN Classic.
As the next-to-last event that will decide the season’s NHRA Full Throttle world championships, plenty is at stake in Las Vegas. Every run will be important because a slip at this point could be worse than snake eyes at the other Strip’s craps tables. The venue is the same as in the spring, but the weather may be different, making for high drama at an event where previous world champions have been crowned.
Paul Page anchors ESPN2’s coverage with analysis by 22-time NHRA winner Mike Dunn. Gary Gerould, Dave Rieff and John Kernan report from the pits. Rieff and Dunn host NHRA RaceDay on Sunday at 11 a.m. to set the stage for that day’s eliminations action.
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