Busch Series to ESPN

The ABC/ESPN group, which lost broadcast rights to its competitors after the inaugural NASCAR television contracts were announced in 1999, wants to get back into the racing game.

From 1979 through 1999, individual racetracks negotiated their own deals with the TV industry. NASCAR racing was scattered across the dial, with every major network, with the exception of Fox, televising races.

NASCAR gathered up all those individual TV rights and went to the negotiating table armed with a racing package. When all was said and done, Fox/FX secured the first half of the Nextel Cup season while NBC/Turner got dibs on the second half of the schedule.

Glover says there have been discussions about separating the Nextel Cup and Busch Series in the next TV package. The two series have been attached at the hip in all other previous contract negotiations. ESPN is seriously interested in the Busch Series.

"It is one of the things that's being talked about and looked at," Glover said. "That is one of the things we are discussing — maybe not all the Busch Series races being on a single network.

"But let's put that into context — we talk about a lot of things during the negotiating process. It is our hope and belief, and we still think we will end up with packages very similar to what we have now." Daytona Beach Journal

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