NBC to pick up TNT’s NASCAR races? ESPN to cut back?

NASCAR has signed one contract for 2015-2022, for the first 13 Cup races, with Fox Sports, which includes the new Fox Sports 1 that replaces Speed in August. Fox considered it a priority to get NASCAR as one of its anchor sports for its all-sports Fox Sports 1 network, so it already signed a deal for 2015-2022 (at a 36% rate increase).

While the sport might have lost some of its buzz, Fox Sports recognized the loyalty of NASCAR fans to watch its programming. It will eventually put some Cup races on that cable network to boost its profile.

The big question now turns to who will televise the remaining 23 races of the season. Right now, TNT has six and ESPN/ABC has 17. NBC is expected to make a run at NASCAR. It could replace TNT for those six races but there's also speculation it could take 12 or 13 races and ESPN/ABC gets the final 10 or 11 events.

With Turner relinquishing NASCAR.com to NASCAR, it makes little sense for it to have the six races. It's not enough time to really get in a good flow. The TNT telecasts aren't bad at all, but it's just too short of a bridge from Fox to ESPN for any continuity or for the announcers to get into a groove. If NBC lands races, that would put more Cup events on network television (while NBC puts IndyCar and F1 on NBC Sports Network that no one watches), which is important considering the addition of cable races to the Fox portion of the schedule. Sporting News

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