Speed expands NASCAR coverage

NASCAR on SPEED opens its season tonight, as NASCAR Race Hub returns at 6 p.m. ET with hosts Steve Byrnes and Danielle Trotta, along with analyst Larry McReynolds and race team veteran Matt Clark. The Hub, which enjoyed a 27-percent, year-to-year ratings increase last year, updates race fans on the happenings from Day One of the annual CMS NASCAR Media Tour, and welcomes Danica Patrick into the updated Charlotte studio as the year’s first guest.

Several other NASCAR on SPEED programs take fresh approaches in 2012, with the network’s longest-running NASCAR program, Trackside, frequently splitting into two 30-minute editions, one on Friday evenings and the second on Saturday. Krista Voda hosts with Kyle Petty, Rutledge Wood and Marianela Pereyra all returning to the show.

NASCAR RaceDay, which saw huge audience increases during last season’s 10-race NASCAR Chase for the Championship, returns with John Roberts as host, Petty, Kenny Wallace and McReynolds providing analysis and Wendy Venturini, Wood and Clark reporting from the garage.

Trotta adds to her responsibilities for 2012, taking on a host role for the popular tech show NASCAR Performance, working with McReynolds, Jeff Hammond and Chad Knaus from SPEED’s Charlotte-based studio.

Wind Tunnel with Dave Despain, rolling into its 10th season on SPEED, gets a prime time television look, and the popular post-race show, NASCAR Victory Lane, also takes a new slant, immediately following NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races with a second airing in prime time.

SPEED Center, covering all things motor sports, premieres Jan. 29 at 7 p.m., with a look at the 50th running of the Rolex24 at Daytona and the live presentation of the Mario Andretti Trophy to the 2011 SPEED Performer of the Year.

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