NOTES AND QUOTES FROM NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES RACE COVERAGE FROM KENTUCKY SPEEDWAY ON NBCSN

Race winner Kyle Busch to Marty Snider in Victory Lane: “That right there is what we’ve got to do.  Score as many points as we possibly can. Score those wins. That’s going to get us to where we need to be.”

Jeff Burton on Kyle Busch’s pass for the lead: “Kyle Busch was not only impressive right there, he was smart.”

Steve Letarte on the new aero package: “The changes that NASCAR has made for this facility in Kentucky have been a perfect fit, and that makes me excited as we look forward to Michigan and Indianapolis.”

SPARTA, Ky. – July 11, 2015 – NBCSN presented its first ever NASCAR Sprint Cup Series  race tonight with live coverage of the Quaker State 400 from Kentucky Speedway. Inside the broadcast booth, race announcer Rick Allen, 21-time Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton and Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte called the action. Patrolling pit road were NBCSN reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Mike Massaro and Dave Burns.

The following are highlights from tonight’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race coverage on NBCSN.

Letarte on the strategy surrounding Brad Keselowski’s decision to pit with 101 laps to go: “[Crew chief] Paul Wolfe’s decision wasn’t only about tires.  He put four tires on because he knew that he’d be back in the pack, but he is studying the fuel windows, anticipating caution flags and strategizing to be in position at the end of this race.”

With 70 laps to go, Burton comments on the new aero package: “So far, this has worked out great.  The re-starts have been good, we’ve seen cars fight back to the front from all the way back.  There has been a lot of passing.  So far, I’m a fan.”

Letarte adds: “The aero changes that NASCAR has made for this facility in Kentucky have been a perfect fit, and that makes me excited as we look forward to Michigan, Indianapolis and other places where they’ve decided to tweak the aerodynamics. It seems like the simulations and ideas that NASCAR have employed are really applying well to the racing.”

Upon a replay of Keselowski’s pit crew struggling through a 17-second pit stop and having  subsequent conversation with their crew chief, Letarte offers: “I’ve had those conversations.  It’s a polite, ‘We’ve got this fixed, right?’”

Burton: “Is that a question or a statement?”

Letarte: “It’s more of a statement, but there’s a question mark.”

With 50 laps to go, Letarte talks fuel strategy: “All of these drivers were informed that, unless there is a caution, this is the run to the finish.  Everyone at this point can make it on fuel.  The intensity is really starting to ratchet up now.  The give-and-take is gone. It’s take, take and take some more.”

Burton on the decision not to pit toward the end of the race when the rest of the field does: “As a driver, you’re looking in the mirror coming down the front straightaway.  And when you see no one behind you, it’s a sickening feeling. You then know that you’re the last guy with old tires and everyone is going to be charging at you.”

With 28 laps to go, Burton comments on Kyle Busch’s impressive run: “Kyle Busch has changed his line, he has moved way up to the top of the race track. When he did that, he went to from being about the fourth fastest car, to the first or second fastest car. He has cut this lead to under a second. He’s gaining on [race leader] Joey Logano right now.”

Burton as Logano and Kyle Busch engaged in a heated duel for the lead: “There are 20 laps to go, but it feels like we’ve only got two laps left.”

Burton on Kyle Busch overtaking Logano for the lead: “Prior to the pass for the lead, Kyle Busch caught Logano on the back straightaway, but he knew his strength and waited until turn one to make his move, when he was in the position that he wanted to be in. Just because you catch a guy, that does not mean it’s the right time to pass him. Kyle Busch was not only impressive right there, he was smart.”

Race winner Kyle Busch with Snider in Victory Lane: “That was awesome.  I cannot say enough about Adam Stevens and this whole M&M’s team, they did a phenomenal job for me in preparing a great race car… That right there is what we’ve got to do.  Score as many points as we possibly can. Score those wins. That’s going to get us to where we need to be.  We led the most laps and we won the race, so that’s all you can score.”

Team owner Joe Gibbs on his triumphant driver Kyle Busch: “I have so much respect for what he has done.  It’s a great sports story.  To be hurt that bad at Daytona, come back in four months and then win a road race, come back here and win again… I am so proud of him and the whole M&M’s team.”

@NASCARonNBC: @NASCARonNBC  The official Twitter account of NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN provides exclusive access to drivers, NBC Sports NASCAR experts and behind-the-scenes content, as well up-to-the-minute news and highlights, including video and articles from NBCSports.com.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.

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NOTES AND QUOTES FROM NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES PRE-RACE COVERAGE FROM KENTUCKY ON NBCSN

Dale Earnhardt Jr.: “I’m looking forward to seeing what this new [aero] package is going to do. It’s going to be a handful, everyone is going to be real loose.” 

Jeff Burton: “I talked to a lot of drivers today, and not a single one knows what’s going to happen when they head into turn one. They are all anxious and indeed nervous.” 

Ray Evernham on Jeff Gordon: “I think this new aero package suits his driving style. The cars slide around a lot here, Jeff likes that.”

Richard Childress reflects on last week’s epic crash: “I’ll never get over losing Dale [Earnhardt]. Never.  But we have to go on.  I know that’s what Dale would have wanted us to do, and that is what Austin wants us to do.” 

SPARTA, Ky. – July 11, 2015 – NBCSN presents its first ever NASCAR Sprint Cup Series  race tonight with live coverage of the Quaker State 400 from Kentucky Speedway. Festivities kicked off with the Countdown to Green, Served by Sonic pre-race show, hosted by Krista Voda, who worked alongside former driver Kyle Petty and championship crew chief Ray Evernham. Also contributing to pre-race coverage were NBCSN reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Mike Massaro and Dave Burns.  Inside the NBCSN broadcast booth, race announcer Rick Allen, 21-time Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton and Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte offered their perspectives prior to the green flag.

The following are highlights from tonight’s NASCAR Sprint Cup pre-race coverage on NBCSN.

Evernham on Jeff Gordon’s chances of reaching victory lane tonight: “I think this new aero package suits his driving style.  The cars slide around a lot here, Jeff likes that.  Most of all, he is a big game player.  The more that everyone talks about him not winning, the more he wants to win.”

Dale Earnhardt Jr. connected with reporter Mike Massaro before climbing into his car and offered the following preview of tonight’s race: “No one has had a lot of track time, but I’m looking forward to the race, looking forward to seeing what this new [aero] package is going to do.  It’s going to be a handful, everyone is going to be real loose and it’s going to be real tough to drive… It’s hard to get a hold of this race track. Getting your car to ride over the bumps and getting a splitter over the bumps is a real pain in the butt.  We worked on it though, every chance we had and I think we improved our car quite a bit there at the end of practice.”

After Earnhardt Jr.’s comments, Kyle Petty added the following back at the pre-race set: “If we look at all of Dale Jr’s 25 wins, ten of them have been on speedways. He is an incredible restrictor plate racer.  But Steve Letarte said it the other day on NASCAR America, Dale has got to start winning on these mile-and-a-half race tracks.  He has got to back up those speedway wins with wins on other race tracks if he is going to contend for the championship.”

In the wake of last week’s horrific crash at Daytona, NBC Sports NASCAR reporter Marty Snider sat down with driver Austin Dillon this week in Charlotte, as well as his grandfather and team owner Richard Childress, and Austin’s father Mike for an in-depth feature. Each gave Snider their perspective on a night that they’ll never forget, and discussed how the experience has affected them heading into tonight’s race in Kentucky.  The following are excerpts from the segment.

Austin Dillon: “I remember coming to the line thinking, ‘Alright, we’re going to finish right here in sixth or seventh and we’ll have a good day.’ I was just holding the wheel straight, then the next thing I knew, I was launched.”

Childress: “I see the 3 number up in the air and going into the fence, and my heart stopped. I was praying the whole time and that’s all that you can do in those situations.”

Austin Dillon: “I was kind of talking to myself through the whole wreck, ‘It’s almost over. It’s almost over.’  And then when I landed, I was sliding, and I was like, ‘Alright, you’ve got it.  You made it. You made it.’  But the [No. 2 car] that came in at the end was probably the roughest… I was noticing that there was oil running out of the car. So that’s the next thing. I think the worst fear for a driver is fire.”

Marty Snider to Childress: “You’ve lived through thousands of these instances.  Was this the toughest one you’ve ever had to deal with?”

Childress: “The toughest, I thought, was and it still is the toughest now that Austin’s okay… I’ll never get over losing Dale [Earnhardt]. Never.  But we have to go on.  I know that’s what Dale would have wanted us to do, and that is what Austin wants us to do.”

Burton on what the drivers must be feeling heading into tonight’s race with so many unknowns surrounding the new aero package: “I talked to a lot of drivers today, and not a single one knows what’s going to happen when they head into turn one. They are all anxious and indeed nervous.”

Letarte adds: “These crew chiefs lie awake at night thinking about what they need to do to their race car.  Today when they drop the green flag, their drivers are going to have to drive side-by-side down into turn one.  I’m sure they are nervous for their drivers and nervous for their race cars.  Did they make the right adjustments and guess correctly?”

@NASCARonNBC: @NASCARonNBC  The official Twitter account of NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN provides exclusive access to drivers, NBC Sports NASCAR experts and behind-the-scenes content, as well up-to-the-minute news and highlights, including video and articles from MotorSportsTalk on NBCSports.com.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.

– NBC SPORTS GROUP –

NOTES AND QUOTES FROM XFINITY SERIES PRE-RACE AND RACE COVERAGE FROM KENTUCKY ON NBCSN

Race winner Brad Keselowski in Victory Lane: “I went into that corner high, just ready for something to happen and opportunity struck.”

Steve Letarte: “What I love about the XFINITY Series is how these up and coming talents challenge the Cup regulars.” 

Austin Dillon on his eventful weekend in Daytona: “So many crazy things happen there. There’s always a story line at Daytona.”

Ty Dillon on watching his brother’s crash: “That was probably the most scared I’ve ever been in my life. I grabbed [my wife] and just held her… I was shaking in bed for a long time.”

SPARTA, Ky. – July 10, 2015 – NBCSN presents two NASCAR races in primetime this weekend from Kentucky Speedway. Friday night’s NASCAR XFINITY Series Racing from Kentucky, Presented by K&N, began with the Countdown to Green pre-race show hosted by Krista Voda, who worked alongside former driver Kyle Petty and championship crew chief Ray Evernham.  When the engines fired and the green flag came out, coverage shifted to the booth where 21-time Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton and Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte joined race announcer Rick Allen to call the action.

The following are highlights from tonight’s XFINITY pre-race and race coverage on NBCSN.

Countdown to Green host Krista Voda introduced a preview of an in-depth segment that will air during tomorrow’s Sprint Cup pre-race show surrounding last week’s XFINITY race winner Austin Dillon, who heroically walked away from a terrifying last-lap crash on Monday morning: “By now you’ve likely seen the video from Daytona.  We’re talking about the Sprint Cup race, and we’re not going to sugar coat it, Austin Dillon is lucky to be alive.  He won the XFINITY Series race last week, he is not in the race here tonight, but he was on track during the Sprint Cup Series practice sessions today.  What a tale of two different nights for Austin Dillon last week in Daytona.”

Dillon:  “Those were emotional highs and lows. You have to be able to drive the peaks and valleys I guess… That was probably the best face that I’ve ever seen on my grandfather (Richard Childress) with his smile on Saturday night, and then on Sunday, walking into the infield care center and seeing him teary eyed and worried… So many crazy things happen there.  There’s always a story line at Daytona.”

After the preview, Ray Evernham offered his reaction: “I actually heard Austin say that getting back in the car today made him feel good… I think it’s actually going to be harder on his family to watch him race tomorrow than it will be on him.”

Petty added: “We’ve talked to Richard Childress and we’ve heard the emotion in his voice.  Something like that… when you turn off the lights at 10:30 or 11 o’clock at night, you see those images over and over again. You see your grandson… you see your son.  That’s a very tough thing to live with, believe me. I can empathize with Richard, and with Austin, having gone through that in my own life.”

Austin’s younger brother, Ty Dillon, behind the wheel of the No. 3 car Friday night in the XFINITY race at Kentucky, caught up with reporter Rutledge Wood to discuss the experience of watching his brother’s epic crash at Daytona: “I was home… and woke my wife up to watch the last couple of laps of the race. I saw the crash. Then I saw his car sitting there. That was probably the most scared I’ve ever been in my life. I grabbed [my wife] and just held her.  Once I saw the guys go out there and give the thumbs up… I still hadn’t gotten over it.  I was still in shock.  I was shaking in bed for a long time, until I heard his voice and was able to talk to him later that night.  It was just really emotional.  You never want to see anything like that, especially if it’s your brother.”

Driver Brian Scott connected with reporter Mike Massaro to discuss last week’s disappointing encounter with the wall at Daytona that cost him a chance to earn his first XFINITY Series victory.  Scott: “I’m looking forward to getting that last race off my mind. It has made me sick all week. Obviously, a terrible outcome because of a mistake that I made. We had such a dominant car, I wish like anything that I could go back there and re-do it.”

Burton on racing at Kentucky Speedway: “This is probably the roughest track that the XFINITY Series runs on… the front straightaway is exceptionally rough. Turn three is the hardest part in my opinion because you get in the corner, but there’s no banking. It takes forever for the banking to start.  So the entrance to that corner is very important. If you overdrive the entry, you’re going to be too loose and you’ll never get to the middle like you need to.”

Letarte adds: “We have a great field of young, up and coming XFINITY drivers, but we’ve also got four Sprint Cup stars in the mix tonight (Dale Earnhardt Jr., Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch and Paul Menard).  These four Cup drivers have 128 XFINITY wins combined between the four of them. I think with the limited practice time and the tough race track, it’s going to be a tall task for one of the XFINITY regulars to try and compete with these four greats… But that’s what I love about the XFINITY Series, these up and coming talents challenge the Cup regulars at every track we go to.”

With less than 40 laps to go, Burton remarks on Chris Buescher’s decision to pit due to a worsening vibration: “That is such a hard decision for a driver.  It happens so many times when you’re behind the wheel of a race car.  You feel a big vibration and bring the car into the pits, but then the pit crew says that there’s nothing wrong.  You feel terrible because you pitted for no reason, but you just know that there is something wrong.”

Burton on Brad Keselowski’s pass of Erik Jones with 7 laps to go: “You see them driving into turn three, [Jones’] No. 20 takes the bottom.  That was the wrong choice, as [David Starr] also chose the bottom, which slows him down. Here comes the No. 22 of Keselowski who makes a big move, takes it three-wide and clears the 20 for the lead.”

Race winner Brad Keselowski met with reporter Dave Burns in Victory Lane: “That was a hell of a finish, wasn’t it Dave? I’m really happy and proud of my guys here… I just caught a little break, to be honest. One of the lapped cars (David Starr) blocked in Erik.  He had done a heck of a job and sometimes things don’t go your way. I went into that corner high, just ready for something to happen and opportunity struck.”

Runner-up Erik Jones with reporter Marty Snider: “Well, I wish I would have known that the lapped car was going to the bottom, and then we would have gone to the top… It was a bummer that it didn’t work out, but it was nice to be running up front with Kyle and Brad.”

@NASCARonNBC: @NASCARonNBC  The official Twitter account of NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN provides exclusive access to drivers, NBC Sports NASCAR experts and behind-the-scenes content, as well up-to-the-minute news and highlights, including video and articles from MotorSportsTalk on NBCSports.com.

For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.

– NBC SPORTS GROUP –

NOTES & QUOTES FROM NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES COKE ZERO 400 POWERED BY COCA-COLA RACE COVERAGE ON NBC

Race Winner Dale Earnhardt Jr. reacting to last-lap crash that hurled Austin Dillon’s car into the front stretch catch fence: “I’m more thankful that everyone’s okay than I am to be here in Victory Lane.”

Burton on the risks at Daytona “You look at the odds— there’s a good chance that you’re going to be in a wreck, so you have to know that when you put your helmet on.”

Jeff Gordon on his final race at Daytona: “I love Daytona, this place has been amazing for me. I can’t believe that this is my final race here, but after going through that [last lap crash], I’m glad I only have one more restrictor plate race left.”

Coke Zero 400 to Replay Monday at 2:30 P.M. ET on NBCSN

 

DAYTONA, Fla. – July 6, 2015 – NBC Sports Group continued its opening weekend of NASCAR with live coverage of the Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola on NBC. The start of the race was delayed for more than three hours due to rain.

Race announcer Rick Allen, 21-time NASCAR Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton and Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte called the race. Krista Voda worked alongside Kyle Petty and Hall of Fame driver Dale Jarrett for pre-race coverage during the rain delay, which featured 23 driver interviews.

Following are notes and quotes from tonight’s race coverage:

RAIN DELAY PRE-RACE

Kurt Busch on relationship with his brother Kyle: “I don’t know what it’s like to be out of the car for an injury, but then to go through rehab and have that mental approach to work your way through all that, and to get back in the car as soon as he did, and to be competitive at a hard breaking track with his left foot, it meant so much to me to watch him win that race.”

Q: Marty Snider to Jimmie Johnson: “You’re at 74 wins, the next win is 75, one away from Dale Earnhardt. Have you allowed yourself to process that, that you could tie Dale Earnhardt for wins?”

A: Jimmie Johnson: “The thing I’ve tried to convey is that I have a great deal of respect for Dale and what he’s done for our sport. And if I’m able to get to that point, it would be a massive moment in my career – a huge milestone. I hope that I can do that. You never know how things can play out, but it would be a big day if it happens.”

Austin Dillon, on his celebration slide through the grass after winning Saturday’s Subway Firecracker 250: “Last night we had some water on the grass, so it had a pretty good slide. I was a yard dart the first time I did it when I slid into the paint. I learned not to slide on the paint. Slide on the regular grass, and you’ll be alright.”

Burton on pre-race nerves at Daytona: “I’m not afraid to say it, I was more nervous at Daytona and Talladega than anywhere else that I went.  I wasn’t that nervous when I went to other racetracks, but I was when I got strapped in here.  You look at the odds— there’s a good chance that you’re going to be in a wreck, so you have to know that when you put your helmet on.”

RACE COVERAGE

Burton on Austin Dillon’s blocking tactic early in the race: “That’s what you have to do in plate racing.  If you’re not willing to block, you’re not going to keep this lead and you will not win this race tonight.”

Letarte remarks on the new bumper camera view after Kyle Larson’s move past Edwards: “That perspective got me. I might have closed my eyes. I knew it was coming and it still scared me as close as he got to that car in front of him.”

Letarte on Kyle Busch’s damaged car after a hard brush against the wall: “Listen, it takes a lot of time to build these race cars.  They are built in very fine-tuned areas, they are built on fixtures and measured to a thousandth of an inch.  When you bounce one off the wall, things bend… and in a three-minute caution lap, you can only repair so much.”

Letarte on the importance of track position at Daytona:  “Those guys up front are not only continually battling for track position, but also learning.  Every block they throw, every time something doesn’t work, every time they get passed, that’s one more chip for the memory bank.  At the end of this race, all of those lessons could add up to being in the right place at the right time.”

Burton on Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s frequent use of his rearview mirror: “The willingness and the ability to assess what is going on all around you is what makes a good race car driver and a good restrictor plate driver.  It’s not what’s outside the front windshield, that’s just a portion of it. It’s what’s going on behind you and beside you.  Am I three-wide?  Am I two-wide?  All of those things go into the decisions that dictate the moves that you make.”

Letarte on the even playing field at restrictor plate tracks: “You know what I love about Daytona, you look up here and you have Hendrick cars, you have Stewart Haas cars and Landon Cassill, 6th.. It’s what we have been talking about all night. A smaller team competing with all the big heavily funded teams in the restricted plate tracks.”

With 30 laps to go, Letarte on the importance of saving fuel: “You see Earnhardt Jr. working his switches really hard in order to save gas. The best time to save gas is under yellow. You see his left hand is on the ignition switch. You hear the engine fire up. He has got to get it to run a little bit, then he’ll shut it off. The car is silent, burning no fuel.”

Letarte on Earnhardt Jr.’s win strategy: “They can’t allow Earnhardt Jr. to command the top of the race track and get this group single file. He did it in Talladega. They have seen this play before. They have to continue to force the second line or the laps are going to be gone. If you are from 5th on back you won’t have a chance.”

Jeff Burton describing Austin Dillon’s last-lap crash that hurled his car into the front stretch catch fence after Dale Earnhardt Jr. crossed the finish line:  “An unbelievable impact for Austin Dillon.  When he gets into that catch fence, the car comes to a complete stop. I’ve never seen a car stop that quickly.”

Q: In Victory Lane, Marty Snider interviews the race winner, Dale Earnhardt Jr.: I know your fist reaction wasn’t ‘Hey, we won.’ You were worried about Austin Dillon and everyone else.”

A: Dale Earnhardt Jr.: “Yeah, that scared the hell out of me, I’ll be honest with you. I saw the whole thing happen, looking in the mirror… that was terrifying to watch. You know that a wreck like that has got such a high potential for someone to get injured. You saw the car get high and get into the fence, and you’re just worried about everyone else in the grandstands… it was touch and go there for several moments.  I’m more thankful that everyone’s okay than I am to be here in Victory Lane.”

Jeff Gordon on his final race at Daytona: “I love Daytona, this place has been amazing for me. I can’t believe that this is my final race here, but after going through that [last lap crash], I’m glad I only have one more restrictor plate race left.”

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

NOTES & QUOTES FROM XFINITY SERIES RACE COVERAGE ON NBCSN

Jeff Burton on Brian Scott’s late race crash: “It is a game of inches, you have got to try and slow that momentum down. It is the move he needed to make. It was just that the timing of it was wrong.”

Race winner Austin Dillon: “I’m just happy for my grandfather (Richard Childress). He told me one day when we were standing here in victory lane with Dale Earnhardt that I would have the opportunity one day to make it. It means so much to be here.”

DAYTONA, Fla. – July 4, 2015 – NBC Sports Group hit the ignition switch on its 10-year partnership with NASCAR earlier today with live coverage of the Subway Firecracker 250 XFINITY Series race on NBCSN.

Following are notes and quotes from tonight’s race coverage:

Analyst Jeff Burton during a replay of the hood blowing up and over the wind shield of Scott Lagasse Jr.’s No. 15 Car: “Hey, let me tell you something. That makes a big noise. You’re running along, going 190 miles an hour, then that hood blows up. That is quite an event.”

With 17 laps to go, Jeff Burton interviews race leader Brian Scott during a caution:

Burton: “I wanted to let you know you have done a great job with your track position. What are you going to do to keep it?”

Scott: “Hey Jeff and NBC. Welcome back. Our No. 2 Chevrolet has been really fast. The guys have done a great job. The No. 2 car has been out front, it has been a rocket ship. I hope the rest of the field is taking notice. Like they say in the south, I think this race is fixing to get exciting.”

Burton: “It is going to get exciting. Which line do you think you are going to take on the restart?”

Scott: “It has been hard to get the top groove to work, so I think I’m going to take the bottom, and hope we get a good push from the No. 1 car… hopefully it will be the right choice and we will get out front.

Analyst Steve Letarte moments before a multi-car crash with 10 laps to go: “We have talked about this all week long, and that is how narrow Daytona is. This is a perfect example, they are three wide and there is just nowhere to go. If you don’t have track position it is going to be very hard to find it.”

Jeff Burton sets the stage prior to the restart with six laps to go: “You see all these teams repairing their cars, but they don’t necessarily have to repair these as if there are 100 laps to go, they just have to get going.”

Steve Letarte discussing Brian Scott’s late race crash: “It’s easy to stand up here and tell Brian Scott that he was way too late to move over and make that block, be he has led this whole race, he has to try it. It was a little ill timed, but a half a second earlier and that is the perfect move. That is what this sport has come down to at these speed races.”

Jeff Burton adds: “It is a game of inches, you have got to try and slow that momentum down. It is the move he needed to make. It was just that the timing of it was wrong.”

Pit road reporter Marty Snider interviews Austin Dillon in victory lane:

Snider: “Have you ever celebrated more for a win that that one?”

Dillon: “No man, this is Daytona. There are so many family memories here. I got to go to a lot of victory lanes with RCR and a lot of crazy events happened here. I’m just happy for my grandfather. He told me one day when we were standing here in victory lane with Dale Earnhardt that I would have the opportunity one day to make it. It means so much to be here.”

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

 

NOTES & QUOTES FROM XFINITY SERIES PRE-RACE COVERAGE ON NBCSN

“I used to think that racing here was just a crap shoot. Then you start to realize that it’s the same guys that finish up front all the time.” – Joey Logano on restrictor plate racing at Daytona International Speedway

“It is always going to be a dangerous sport, and if you are going to choose to be a NASCAR driver, you have to choose to accept that.” — Brendan Gaughan on Daytona’s safety

“I was sitting in the pit watching the entire thing happen, and wasn’t able to run over and check on him and see if he was okay. It’s a scary feeling.” – Krissie Newman, wife of Ryan Newman, on watching her husband crash at Daytona

DAYTONA, Fla. – July 4, 2015 – NBC Sports Group hit the ignition switch on its 10-year partnership with NASCAR earlier today with live coverage of the Subway Firecracker 250 XFINITY Series race on NBCSN.

Following are notes and quotes from tonight’s pre-race coverage:

Kyle Busch joined the XFINITY pre-race set to discuss his recent return to racing after being injured in a crash at Daytona in February: “No matter how hard you work and how much time you have for the fans in this business, obviously they are what drives our sport, and what we appreciate the most, along with my many partners and sponsors. Those people have not only supported me through the years, but especially this year. Through all the tragedy that I had here in Daytona earlier this year, it’s definitely meant a lot to have the relationships with those people behind me.

NBCSN’s XFINITY pre-race show presented a feature on the intense emotions that the wives, fiancés and girlfriends of NASCAR drivers experience while watching races each week.

Lorra Bowyer, wife of Clint Bowyer: “I’ll never forget, it was at Dover, and [Clint] was going for the lead. And all of a sudden, he wrecked and was flipping right towards the pit box. And so to see your husband in the air, flipping towards you… it was probably the most scared I’ve ever been at a race track.”

Krissie Newman, wife of Ryan Newman: “The flip in Daytona, I think was probably one of the hardest wrecks to watch, just because I was sitting in the pit watching the entire thing happen, and wasn’t able to run over and check on him and see if he was okay. It’s a scary feeling.”

Amy Reimann, fiancé of Dale Earnhardt, Jr.: “I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I had watched one NASCAR race. I had been to the 500, the February before I had started to date [Dale]. It has been quite a learning experience, to say the very least. And I’m still learning.”

Back at the pre-race set, Kyle Petty reacts: “That was a piece on wives and girlfriends. How about Dale’s Mom? How about my grandmother, my mom? Watching your husband, and your son and your grandson? Those are the ones that I always used to think about and say, ‘What am I putting these people through?’”

Joey Logano on racing at Daytona: “I used to think that racing here was just a crap shoot. Then you start to realize that it’s the same guys that finish up front all the time. So you say, ‘it’s not a crapshoot anymore.’ There’s a lot of strategy and a lot of discipline on how to be a good speedway racer.”

Brian Scott, on the rain delay: “Right now I’m just looking forward to this rain getting out of here. I want to put on a good show for the fans, everyone that is sticking around here on the 4th of July. Kick this deal off for NBC the right way.”

Elliott Sadler on racing on the 4th of July: “Happy July 4th to everybody and thanks to all the men and women who have protected our country on this birthday that gives us a reason to be here tonight.”

Daniel Suarez on pole position: “I’m really proud of everyone in Joe Gibbs racing. They have built an amazing car…they showed we have the speed, now I have to do my part and keep it in the front.”

Brendan Gaughan on Daytona’s safety: “It is always going to be a dangerous sport, and if we are going to choose to be NASCAR drivers, we have to choose to accept that…you can’t wrap us in bubble wrap.”

 

–NBC SPORTS GROUP–

Jeff Gordon Joins FOX NASCAR Coverage in 2016

NASCAR_on_FOXFOX SPORTS ADDS FOUR-TIME NASCAR CHAMPION GORDON

AS NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES RACE ANALYST IN 2016

One of Sport’s All-Time Greats Joins Darrell Waltrip and Mike Joy in the Booth for

All FOX NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES Races

Jeff Gordon, the four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion credited with helping take the sport mainstream, joins FOX NASCAR fulltime in 2016 as race analyst for its 16th year of NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES coverage, teaming with three-time champion Darrell Waltrip to offer seven championships’ worth of expertise.

Gordon, currently competing in his 23rd and final fulltime Sprint Cup Series season, served as race analyst for FOX Sports’ coverage of three NASCAR XFINITY SERIES races this year (for video of Gordon calling the Talladega NASCAR XFINITY SERIES race, click http://foxs.pt/1INsvsY). He has agreed to a multi-year contract that begins this season with in-race reporting from the No. 24 Chevrolet during select Cup Series races, and segues to an analyst role that commences with Daytona Speedweeks in February 2016.

“NASCAR has provided me so many incredible memories, experiences and opportunities throughout my 23 years as a driver, and I can’t wait to start a new chapter in racing with this new relationship with FOX and to be in the booth with Mike (Joy) and Darrell,” said Gordon. “I feel so lucky to be a part of a sport that I’m very passionate about, and now I get the opportunity to share that passion to millions of race fans from a whole new perspective.”

Gordon will call all NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES races, practice and qualifying sessions for FOX Sports alongside play-by-play announcer Mike Joy and NASCAR Hall of Famer and analyst Darrell Waltrip. Chris Myers hosts the network’s coverage alongside analysts Larry McReynolds and Michael Waltrip.

“Jeff is not only a champion but an icon of a racing generation,” said Eric Shanks, FOX Sports President, COO & Executive Producer.  “We are thrilled he has chosen to become a part of the FOX Sports family and pair his experience with Darrell. Each is credited with helping elevate NASCAR to the popularity it attained in his respective era, and alongside Mike Joy, this duo will treat fans to unmatched insights each and every week.”

Gordon’s move to the FOX booth furthers a career in which his affability and crossover appeal have provided him numerous high-profile television and movie opportunities that include:  becoming the only auto racing driver ever to host Saturday Night Live; co-hosting Live! With Regis and Kelly more than 10 times; appearances as himself on The Simpsons, Spin City and The Drew Carey Show; movie appearances in Taxi, Herbie:  Fully Loaded and Looney Tunes: Back in Action; TV appearances on Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and Sesame Street; and participation on television’s Celebrity Poker Showdown and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire: Sports Edition, among others. Gordon also voiced the character “Jeff Gorvette” in the animated film Cars 2.

The California native, one of the most versatile drivers of his era, has driven for Hendrick Motorsports since November 1992, winning four NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES championships (1995, 1997, 1998 and 2001), 92 races and 80 pole positions.  With his first Cup Series championship in 1995, Gordon became the youngest champion (24) in NASCAR’s modern era in only his third full season. He sits third behind only NASCAR Hall of Fame drivers Richard Petty (200) and David Pearson (105) in all-time victories, is a three-time DAYTONA 500 champion and record five-time BRICKYARD 400 winner.  He holds the record for most consecutive seasons with a pole (23), among numerous other accolades.  Furthermore, Gordon is NASCAR’s winningest road-course driver with nine wins, and is the all-time leader with 12 restrictor-plate track victories.

Off the track, Gordon, named one of “NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers” in 1998, established the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation, which supports pediatric cancer research, treatment and patient support programs. He traveled to Rwanda with the Foundation in 2011, and also visited the Democratic Republic of Congo in conjunction with the Clinton Global Initiative.  Gordon was honored with the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) Myers Brothers Award in 2012, recognizing those who have made outstanding contributions to the sport of stock racing.  That same year, he received the Heisman Humanitarian Award, established to recognize those in sports who give significantly to communities and improve the lives of others.

FOX Sports, which began its FOX NASCAR coverage in 2001, currently is in the first of a 10-year media rights agreement with NASCAR.  In 2013, FOX Sports extended its agreement with NASCAR, ensuring the FOX family of networks’ broadcast of the first 16 NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES races each season beginning in 2015, as well as the first 14 NASCAR XFINITY SERIES races of the season and all NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES events, through 2024.

Budweiser & FOX Sports Highlight Top Athletes’ Untold Stories in UNCOMPROMISING

fox-sports-1-logoNASCAR Champion Kevin Harvick first to be featured in premiere episode on

May 14 on FOX Sports 1

Los Angeles – Following last year’s groundbreaking documentary series RISE AS ONE showcasing six of the most unique soccer stories from around the globe, Budweiser and FOX Sports have partnered again this year for an exciting new, four-episode documentary series titled UNCOMPROMISING, premiering on FOX Sports 1 on Thursday, May 14 (9:00 PM ET).

Highlighting the untold stories of athletes who are living their dreams by staying true to themselves, UNCOMPROMISING puts the spotlight on four top athletes who’s paths were unconventional, but led them to the pinnacle of their sports. NASCAR Champion Kevin Harvick, UFC Champion Ronda Rousey, 2012 NBA Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving and U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper Tim Howard each take center stage in one of the four 30-minute episodes. View the trailer here: http://youtu.be/ikD0XwmghGE

“We joined FOX Sports to identify and celebrate athletes who have not compromised to get where they are,” said Brian Perkins, vice president, Budweiser. “The four athletes Budweiser selected are unconventional and uncompromising. These are character traits we value and associate with Budweiser as well.”

“We’re excited to bring these athlete’s stories to light in unique ways,” says Melissa Forman, SVP of Development, FOX Sports. “We’ve brought in a group of exceptional production partners to enhance these four shows and are eager to roll them out over the next several months. Fans will get insights and revelations about these athletes that they’ve never gotten before.”

Below are brief descriptions of the four episodes:

Kevin Harvick: In February 2001, on the final lap of the Daytona 500, racing legend Dale Earnhardt Sr. crashed and later died. No one could replace Earnhardt, but brash young racer Kevin Harvick was asked to try. It didn’t take long for him to honor Earnhardt, as Harvick won his first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race just three weeks later. Harvick built a successful career on and off the race track, venturing into team ownership and athlete management, but it ultimately was the birth of his son, Keelan, that proved to be a turning point, as he and wife, DeLana, moved to simplify their lives, selling the race team and making the move to Stewart-Haas Racing. With the addition of crew chief Rodney Childers, Harvick won his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship in 2014.

Kyrie Irving: A basketball prodigy with a unique path, Kyrie Irving was born in Australia and lost his mother when he was four. He experienced a devastating knee injury his freshman year, and only played 11 games at Duke before being selected with the first draft pick and ultimately became the NBA Rookie of the Year. The episode wraps with life in the NBA, LeBron James’ return to Cleveland, and what’s next for the young player. Premieres on FOX Sports 1 on Tuesday, May 26 (8:30 PM ET)*.

Ronda Rousey: After finishing her Olympic judo career, Ronda Rousey refused to work 9 to 5 and instead broke down gender barriers to become the female face of the UFC, becoming the first and only woman bantamweight world champion with a still undefeated record. Premieres on FOX Sports 1 on Monday, July 20 (10:30 PM ET)*.

Tim Howard: Tim Howard is one of the best American goalkeepers of all time and currently plays for English Premier League club Everton. He has represented the U.S. Men’s National Team at three World Cups and holds the record for most saves in a World Cup match with 15. But he had to overcome huge obstacles to reach the pinnacle of the sport. Tim developed symptoms of Tourette’s syndrome when he was 10, and not long after that was told he suffered from obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Neither of these derailed his career though, as he displayed resilience and didn’t let his illness take away from the quality of his life and success on the field. Premieres on FOX Sports 1 on Monday, August 31 (10:30 PM ET)*.

The FOX SPORTS ORIGINALS department teamed with several award winning production companies including Five Films (Kevin Harvick), Mandalay Productions (Kyrie Irvine), Turn Left Productions (Ronda Rousey) and Electric City (Tim Howard) to produce and direct the UNCOMPROMISING series.

*Tentative, subject to change. Check local listings.

FOX Sports 1 Home to 30th Anniversary NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE

NASCAR_on_FOXFOX SPORTS 1 HOME TO 30TH ANNIVERSARY

NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE; COCA-COLA 600 ON FOX

10 DAYS OF THUNDER Loaded with Racing, Special Programs, Social Interaction

Highly Anticipated 100,000 CAMERAS: TALLADEGA Premieres May 14

FOX Sports 1 opens its annual 10 DAYS OF THUNDER Presented by Polaris programming block with a full calendar of racing from 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway and a selection of special original programs, including the anxiously awaited 100,000 CAMERAS: TALLADEGA.

Highlighting the opening weekend on track, NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE action gets started under the lights with the NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR SHOWDOWN on Friday, May 15 (7:00 PM ET), the last-chance qualifier for Saturday’s high-powered All-Star race, with winners of each segment advancing to the All-Star Race.

NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE QUALIFYING airs live on FOX Sports 1 on Saturday, May 16 (7:00 PM ET), followed by the one-of-a-kind, surprise-filled driver and crew introductions at 8:30 PM ET and green-flag racing at 9:00 PM ET.

The popular FOX NASCAR broadcast team, headlined by inaugural NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE winner Darrell Waltrip (1985), includes two-time All-Star race-winning crew chief Larry McReynolds and host Mike Joy in the booth, Chris Myers and Michael Waltrip in the Hollywood Hotel and Jamie Little, Chris Neville and Matt Yocum reporting from the pits.

10 DAYS OF THUNDER opens Thursday, May 14 on FOX Sports 1 with NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES PRACTICE live at 3:00 PM ET and FINAL PRACTICE beginning at 7:00 PM ET.

An evening of special programming follows, with UNCOMPROMISING: KEVIN HARVICK premiering at 9:00 PM ET, leading in to the highly anticipated NASCAR Productions crowd-sourcing special, 100,000 CAMERAS: TALLADEGA, at 9:30 PM ET and a replay of the popular NASCAR MASTERS OF THE CLOCK: THE LEGEND OF MARTINSVILLE at 10:00 PM ET. For more information on 100,000 CAMERAS: TALLADEGA – http://foxs.pt/1GA2TJT.

NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES racing takes center stage on Friday, May 15 on FOX Sports 1, with NCWTS SETUP live from Charlotte at 8:00 PM ET, followed by green-flag racing at 8:30 PM ET. Adam Alexander handles play-by-play with analysis from Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip. Hermie Sadler and Vince Welch report from the pits,

On Sunday, May 17, FOX Sports 1 delivers live coverage of the NASCAR XFINITY SERIES race from Iowa Speedway, beginning with NASCAR RACEDAY – XFINITY at 1:30 PM ET and racing at 2:00 PM ET. The team of Alexander, Parsons and Michael Waltrip handles the race call, with Sadler and Welch in the pits.

Week two programming heats up Thursday, May 21, with NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES and NASCAR XFINITY SERIES cars on track, along with the premiere of ONE HOT NIGHT: THE 1992 NASCAR ALL-STAR RACE at 8:30 PM ET on FOX Sports 1.

The Memorial Day weekend airing of the 56th running of the COCA-COLA 600 on FOX on Sunday, May 24 (5:30 PM ET) puts the exclamation point on 10 DAYS OF THUNDER, with Darrell Waltrip, McReynolds and Joy again calling the race. Myers and Michael Waltrip work from the Hollywood Hotel and Little, Neville and Yocum report from the pits.

First run in 1960, the Coca-Cola 600 is the longest race on the NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES circuit. Six-time champion Jimmie Johnson is the defending race winner.

NASCAR RACE HUB offers special weekend editions during 10 DAYS OF THUNDER, with hosts Danielle Trotta and Alexander, analysts McReynolds, Jeff Hammond and Wally Dallenbach, as well as reporters Alan Cavanna, Andrew Doud and Kaitlyn Vincie.

FOX NASCAR received an Emmy Award last week, its 18th in 14 years, for Outstanding Live Sports Series as the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences presented its 36th Annual Sports Emmy Awards in New York.

FOX Sports’ award-winning digital, video and social teams are set to engage throughout the 10 DAYS OF THUNDER. All available resources are trained on Charlotte Motor Speedway, where teams are set up to create and share content, and engage with race fans. Follow @NASCARonFOX on Twitter (467,500+ Followers) and like “NASCAR on FOX” on Facebook (1.4M+ Likes) for breaking news updates and exclusive behind-the-scenes access from the garage.

NASCAR @TheBuzzer delivers micro-news and entertainment to Facebook walls and Twitter feeds. NASCAR @TheBuzzer content has produced more than 15 million video views via social networking platforms so far in 2015 and will be a presence throughout the NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE with FOX Sports’ Daryl Motte, Alexander, Hammond and AJ Allmendinger. Visit Facebook.com/TheBuzzer.

FOX Sports GO, the critically acclaimed app that provides live streaming video of FOX Sports content at home or on the go, now is available in 70 million households and offers live streaming of all 10 DAYS OF THUNDER programming. Customers of participating video providers may access the live stream of the race through the FOX Sports GO app for iOS, Android, Fire Tablets and Fire Phones, Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, select Windows devices, and on desktops through FOXSportsGO.com.  Fans can download the mobile app for free from the iTunes App Store, Google Play, Amazon App Store and Windows Store.

 

10 DAYS OF THUNDER NASCAR PROGRAMMING LINEUP

(All times ET and subject to change)

 

Thursday, May 14

NCWTS Practice (3:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Race Hub (6:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NCWTS Final Practice (7:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

Uncompromising: Kevin Harvick (9:00 PM, Premiere on FOX Sports 1)

100,000 Cameras: Talladega (9:30 PM, Premiere on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Masters of the Clock: The Legend of Martinsville, (10:00 PM Encore on FOX Sports 1)

 

Friday, May 15

NASCAR Final Practice: Showdown (12:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Final Practice: All-Star (1:45 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Race Hub Weekend Edition: All-Star (3:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Qualifying: Showdown (4:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NCWTS Qualifying (5:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Sprint All-Star Showdown (7:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NCWTS Setup (8:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NCWTS Race from Charlotte (8:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Saturday, May 16

NASCAR Sprint Cup Qualifying: All-Star (7:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR RaceDay (8:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

30th Anniversary NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race (9:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Sunday, May 17

NASCAR RaceDay: XFINITY (1:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR XFINITY Series Race from Iowa (2:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Monday, May 18

NASCAR Race Hub (6:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Tuesday, May 19

NASCAR Race Hub (6:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Wednesday, May 20

NASCAR Race Hub (6:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Thursday, May 21

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Practice (2:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR XFINITY Series Practice (4:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Race Hub (5:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR XFINITY Series Final Practice (5:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Qualifying (7:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

One Hot Night: The 1992 NASCAR All-Star Race (8:30 PM, Premiere on FOX Sports 1)

 

Friday, May 22

NASCAR Race Hub (6:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

 

Saturday, May 23

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Practice (10:00 AM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR XFINITY Series Qualifying (11:00 AM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Race Hub Weekend Edition (12:30 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Final Practice (1:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports 1)

NASCAR XFINITY Series from Charlotte (2:00 PM, LIVE on FOX)

 

Sunday, May 24

NASCAR RaceDay (4:00 PM, LIVE on FOX Sports1)

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 (5:30 PM, LIVE on FOX)

 

 

About FOX Sports

FOX Sports is the umbrella entity representing 21st Century FOX’s wide array of multi-platform US-based sports assets.  Built with brands capable of reaching more than 100 million viewers in a single weekend, FOX Sports includes ownership and interests in linear television networks, digital and mobile programming, broadband platforms, multiple web sites, joint-venture businesses and several licensing partnerships.  FOX Sports includes the sports television arm of the FOX Broadcasting Company; FOX Sports 1; FOX Sports 2; Fox’s 22 regional sports networks, their affiliated regional web sites and FSN national programming; FOX Soccer Plus and FOX Soccer 2Go; FOX Deportes and FOX College Sports.  In addition, FOX Sports also encompasses FOX Sports Digital, which includes FOXSports.com, FOX Sports GO, Whatifsports.com and Yardbarker.com.  Also included in the Group are FOX’s interests in joint-venture businesses Big Ten Network and BTN 2Go, as well as licensing agreements that establish the FOX Sports Radio Network.

 

–FOX SPORTS–

Steve Byrnes, 1959-2015

fox-sports-logo

 

It is with tremendous difficulty and deep personal sadness that FOX Sports acknowledges the passing of longtime FOX NASCAR broadcaster, Steve Byrnes, after a lengthy battle with cancer.

A symbol of strength, compassion and dignity, Steve, 56, was a source of inspiration to everyone, sharing his fight in a very courageous and public way. Honored just days ago at Bristol Motor Speedway with the FOOD CITY 500 IN SUPPORT OF STEVE BYRNES AND STAND UP TO CANCER, race fans, race teams, NASCAR and track officials, co-workers, friends and family came together to surround him with a remarkable display of love and respect.

A shining example of husband, father, friend and consummate professional, Steve Byrnes will forever be remembered as one of the good guys — his time with us cherished and appreciated.

“From the very beginning of NASCAR on FOX, Steve Byrnes was one of the linchpins of the broadcast team. His passion for the sport — his passion for everyone involved with the sport — shone through week in and week out. But even more than that, Steve was defined by his journalistic integrity and kindness; his ability to communicate everything from complex technical issues to the highly emotive human dramas in this sport, where injury and or death are constantly just one mistake away. The consummate television professional, he established himself as a star on SPEED Channel, where viewers simply loved his knowledge, his sense of humor and his easygoing nature, becoming the Mr. Rogers of NASCAR — a warm voice everyone trusted. Even more impressive, and fully on display last weekend in Bristol, Steve was loved and respected by the entire NASCAR community, from the drivers to the team owners to the front office executives. I am devastated by his passing — he was not only a trusted and gifted colleague, but a mate — my heart goes out to Karen and Bryson.”

  • David Hill, Senior Executive Vice President, 21st Century FOX

“We lost a beloved member of the FOX Sports family today, and we extend our prayers and deepest sympathies to the Byrnes family.  It was an honor over the past year to learn just how much Steve was loved and respected throughout the NASCAR community, which was evident this weekend in Bristol.  Not even day-long heavy rains could dampen the outpouring of emotion on display.  Steve served as a friend and mentor to so, so many, that the shadow he cast will have an impact on our industry for many years to come.  The only thing that stands out more to me than Steve as a teacher is Steve as a man, and the bravery and dignity with which he carried himself throughout his terrible illness.  We’ll miss Steve very, very much.”

  • Eric Shanks, President & COO, Executive Producer, FOX Sports

– FOX SPORTS –