Notes from TNT’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Summer Series Coverage – Sunday, June 16, 2013

NASCAR-on-TNTNotes from TNT’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Summer Series Coverage – Sunday, June 16, 2013

Quicken Loans 400 from Michigan International Speedway

TNT will continue its NASCAR Sprint Cup Summer Series coverage on June 23 at 3 p.m. ET

with the Toyota/Save Mart 350 from Sonoma Raceway

TNT’s Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book will precede race coverage at 2 p.m.

****    ****    ****    ****

Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book

Adam Alexander (host), Kyle Petty (analyst), Wally Dallenbach (analyst) and Larry McReynolds (analyst)

TNT pit reporter Chris Neville interviewed No. 48 Jimmie Johnson on being winless in his career at Michigan: “The incentive is always there. We’ve knocked on the door a few times. I think we’ve got a top two or three car.”

Dallenbach on Michigan International Speedway: “This is a race track…where you go where the race car tells you to go.”

McReynolds on Michigan International Speedway: “If you can run high that means you can keep that momentum coming off the corner and carry that speed down those long straightaways.”

Petty on Michigan International Speedway: “You go where the car wants to go.”

No. 55 Mark Martin on driving today at Michigan International Speedway: “It will be tough in the beginning. It’s going to be really challenging the first third or half of the race.”

Dallenbach on what driver is making forward progress each week: “Greg Biffle is definitely on the move.”

****    ****    ****    ****

TNT NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing: Quicken Loans 400

Adam Alexander (host), Wally Dallenbach (analyst), Kyle Petty (analyst), pit reporters Chris Neville, Ralph Sheheen, Marty Snider, Matt Yocum

Dallenbach on No. 5 car Kasey Kahne before he crashed: “Kahne’s car doesn’t start out great but he does get better.”

Petty on No. 5 car Kasey Kahne before he crashed: “That No. 5 car is going to be a factor today.”

McReynolds on whether the teams should change two or four tires: “Four new tires almost slows you down. There is no wear on these tires.”

No. 5 Kasey Kahne was interviewed after crashing out of the race: “I had no indication [the car had a problem]…I knew it was going to be a battle today. I felt really good today.”

Petty on No. 48 Jimmie Johnson today: “What Jimmie is doing out there is impressive. It is amazing to watch the No. 48.”

No. 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. interviewed after a faulty engine forced him out of the race: “That car was flying at the end. I hate to have engine troubles. We’ll get them next week.”

Sheheen on No. 16 Greg Biffle: “Greg Biffle, in the lead, would sure like to bring home Ford’s 1,000th win in NASCAR competition.”

Petty on No. 20 Matt Kenseth dropping from third position to 13th position after a restart during the last 25 laps: “When you lose that track position in the last portion of the race, you just can’t make it up.”

****    ****    ****    ****

TNT NASCAR Summer Series – Post-race Remarks

TNT’s Matt Yocum interviewed the winner of the Quicken Loans 400 – Greg Biffle

 

Biffle: “We knew the No. 48 [Jimmie Johnson] was really fast. I was really worried about the 48 but once this thing got into clean air, it was all over.”

TNT’s Marty Snider interviewed Kevin Harvick

Harvick: “I didn’t really wake up this morning even thinking we would run in the top 10. Everybody did a good job today.”

TNT’s Sheheen interviewed Tony Stewart

Stewart: “We haven’t had much luck. We had some breaks go our way [today to finish fifth].”

TNT’s Chris Neville interviewed Jimmie Johnson

Johnson: “We had a great race car. We struggled with maintaining track position.”

TNT’s Snider interviewed Kyle Busch

Busch: “We made a lot of big swings at it today.”

TNT’s Sheheen interviewed Martin Truex, Jr.

Truex: “The longer we ran, the better we got. Once you get behind it’s harder to make passes.”

TNT’s Neville interviewed Brad Keselowski

Keselowski: “We came up about a half lap short. [We had a] decent run today.”

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TNT’s 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coverage Continues with Quicken Loans 400 on Sunday, June 16, at 1 p.m. ET

NASCAR-on-TNTTNT’s 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coverage Continues with Quicken Loans 400 on

Sunday, June 16, at 1 p.m. ET

Network Goes Behind-the-Scenes with Defending Champion Brad Keselowski

Turner Sports continues its 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Summer Series coverage with the Quicken Loans 400 from Michigan International Speedway on Sunday, June 16, at 1 p.m. ET.  TNT’s NASCAR Summer Series coverage will begin with the pre-race Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book at 12 p.m.

Adam Alexander will call the race and host the pre-race show with analysts Kyle PettyWally Dallenbach and Larry McReynolds. In addition, veteran reporters Ralph SheheenMarty SniderMatt Yocum and Chris Neville will patrol pit road to bring viewers comprehensive coverage and access prior to and during each race.

TNT’s Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book will continue to showcase weekly features highlighting different drivers and their lives on-and-off the racetrack, as well as preview the week’s race. This week’s coverage will follow 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Brad Keselowski. TNT cameras were embedded with Keselowski and his team over the course of the week preceding the Quicken Loans 400 as they travelled and prepared for the upcoming race.

Additionally, during the pre-race coverage, TNT will televise a special feature focusing on Dale Earnhardt, Jr., winner of last year’s Quicken Loans 400 that broke his 143-race winless streak, with TNT reporter Sheheen interviewing him during a visit to his “Whisky River” property.

********

 

TNT’s 2013 NASCAR Summer Series Schedule:

(All Times Eastern)

                              

Sunday, June 16  
Noon ET Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
1 p.m. Quicken Loans 400 (Michigan International Speedway)
 
Sunday, June 23  
2 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
3 p.m. Toyota/SaveMart 350 (Sonoma Raceway – Sonoma, CA)
 
Saturday, June 29  
6:30 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
7:30 p.m. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Racing from Kentucky presented by KFC (Kentucky Speedway)
 
Saturday, July 6  
6:30 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
7:30 p.m. Coke Zero 400 at Daytona powered by Coca-Cola (Daytona International Speedway)
   
Sunday, July 14  
Noon Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
1 p.m. NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing from New Hampshire (New Hampshire Motor Speedway)

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TNT to Provide “All-Access” Pass to 2013 NASCAR Summer Series

NASCAR-on-TNTNetwork’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Schedule to Begin June 9 at Pocono Raceway

The green flag is set to wave on TNT’s 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series action with the network offering all-access coverage throughout the six-week NASCAR Summer Series beginning Sunday, June 9, at Pocono Raceway at 1 p.m. ET.  TNT’s all-access pass will include behind-the-scenes content featuring a select driver and their team (one per week) throughout the NASCAR Summer Series along with special “off the track” segments and more.

TNT will follow a driver and their team over the course of the entire week as they travel and prepare for the upcoming race, with coverage beginning when the driver leaves the previous track and continuing throughout the network’s next NASCAR Summer Series telecast. Featured drivers will include Denny Hamlin (Pocono), Brad Keselowski (Michigan), Juan Pablo Montoya (Sonoma) and Kurt Busch (Kentucky), among others.  The all-access pieces will air weekly during the pre-race Countdown to Green Presented by Kelley Blue Book show.

Additionally, TNT will televise a special feature each week highlighting a select driver away from the track. During the Pocono telecast, TNT will focus the spotlight on Dale Earnhardt, Jr. TNT’s Ralph Sheheen and Earnhardt will talk racing and life outside of NASCAR while visiting with Earnhardt at his “Whisky River” property including his “Car Graveyard.”

Inside Trax will also return for another season and will showcase audio and video from select crew chiefs and teams during each race telecast.

“We’re bringing fans an all-access pass to TNT’s NASCAR Summer Series coverage this year,” said Craig Barry, senior vice president and executive creative director, Turner Sports.  “These deeper layers of access will provide fans with a look under the hood to some of the great personalities and teams in the sport and the level of teamwork and commitment it takes to be successful.”

TNT, in its 31st consecutive year of exclusive NASCAR Summer Series coverage, will feature six consecutive races – Pocono (June 9), Michigan (June 16), Sonoma (June 23), Kentucky (June 29), Daytona (July 6) and New Hampshire (July 14). Each of the six races feature a diverse blend of tracks – ovals with three turns (Pocono); the first road race of the year (Sonoma); a long track (Michigan) and a short track (New Hampshire) – which have led to unpredictable outcomes. Over the last 14 races airing on TNT, dating back to 2010, there have been 14 different winners crossing the finish line.

The network will return its marquee commentator crew with analysts Kyle Petty, Wally Dallenbach and Larry McReynolds joining play-by-play announcer Adam Alexander for each race. Alexander will also host the network’s 60-minute Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book pre-race show with Petty, Dallenbach and McReynolds. In addition, veteran reporters Sheheen, Marty Snider, Matt Yocum and Chris Neville will patrol pit road to bring viewers comprehensive coverage and access prior to and during each race.

Fans engaging via social platforms during TNT’s NASCAR coverage are encouraged to use @NASCAR_TNT.

TNT’s 2013 NASCAR Summer Series Schedule:

(All Times Eastern)

                              

Sunday, June 9      
Noon – 1 p.m. ET Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
1 – 4:30 p.m. Party in the Poconos 400 presented by Walmart

(Pocono Raceway)

 
Sunday, June 16  
Noon – 1 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
1 – 4:30 p.m. Quicken Loans 400 (Michigan International Speedway)
 
Sunday, June 23  
2 – 3 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
3 – 6:30 p.m. Toyota/SaveMart 350 (Sonoma Raceway – Sonoma, CA)
 
Saturday, June 29  
6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
7:30 – 11 p.m. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Racing from Kentucky presented by KFC (Kentucky Speedway)
 
Saturday, July 6  
6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
7:30 – 11 p.m. Coke Zero 400 at Daytona powered by Coca-Cola (Daytona International Speedway)
   
Sunday, July 14  
Noon – 1 p.m. Countdown to Green presented by Kelley Blue Book
1 – 4:30 p.m. NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing from New Hampshire

(New Hampshire Motor Speedway)

About Turner Sports
Turner Sports, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., is an industry leader in the delivery of premium sports content across all multimedia screens. Turner Sports’ television coverage includes the NBA, Major League Baseball, NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, NASCAR and professional golf.  The company also manages some of the most popular sports destinations across broadband and mobile platforms including Bleacher Report and its top-rated Team Stream app, NCAA.com and the critically-acclaimed NCAA March Madness Live suite of products, PGA.com and the Sports Emmy Award-winning PGA Championship LIVE, as well as an accompanying collection of mobile sites and connected device apps.  Turner Sports and the NBA also jointly manage NBA Digital, a robust collection of offerings including NBA TV, NBA.com, NBA LEAGUE PASS, NBA Mobile, the NBA Game Time App, NBADLEAGUE.com and WNBA.com.

Visit the Turner Sports online pressroom for additional press materials; follow Turner Sports on Twitter at @TurnerSportsPR.

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Hammond: NASCAR Hit Wrong Target With Crew Chief Fine/Suspension

foxsports_logoFOX SPORTS NOTES, QUOTES & ANECDOTES

NL East Showcased on FOX’s SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK

at 12:30 PM ET – Braves/Tigers – Phillies/Mets – Reds/Nationals

NASCAR on FOX Runs Under the Lights in Richmond Saturday at 7:00 PM ET

Hammond: NASCAR Hit Wrong Target With Crew Chief Fine/Suspension

 

NL EAST GETS THE MLB ON FOX TREATMENT – Week 4 of the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK treats baseball fans Saturday, April 27 (12:30 PM ET) with three matchups involving the entire NL East. In Detroit, Justin Upton and the Braves look to continue their hot start as they face the power-hitting duo of Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and the rest of the Tigers. Two division rivals square-off in Queens as David Wright and the Mets host Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and the Phillies.  Also, Bryce Harper and the Nationals host Joey Votto and the Reds.

Coverage begins with the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL PREGAME SHOW, a full 30-minute program originating live from MLB Network’s state-of-the-art Studio 3 in Secaucus, NJ. The show is hosted by longtime FOX Sports and MLB Network broadcaster Matt Vasgersian who is joined this week by analysts Harold Reynolds and Mitch Williams.

For instant updates during the week from the entire MLB on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MLBONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/major_league_baseball_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

GAME                                                                                     PLAY-BY-PLAY/ANALYST                                                  COV.   

Atlanta Braves at Detroit Tigers                                     Kenny Albert & Tim McCarver                                                        70%        Comerica Park – Detroit, MI

MARKETS INCLUDE: Albuquerque, Atlanta, Austin, Birmingham, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Fort Myers, Greensboro, Greenville, Houston, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Knoxville, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Memphis, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Nashville, New Orleans, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Phoenix, Portland, Providence, Raleigh, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Tampa, Tulsa

Probable Pitchers: Kris Medlen, RHP (1-2, 2.16 ERA) vs. Rick Porcello, RHP (0-2, 11.08 ERA)

 

Philadelphia Phillies at New York Mets*                       Kevin Burkhardt & Tom Verducci                                                 17%

Citi Field – Flushing, NY

MARKETS INCLUDE:  Buffalo, Hartford, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, West Palm Beach

Probable Pitchers:  Jonathan Pettibone, RHP (0-0, 3.38 ERA) vs. Shaun Marcum, RHP (0-0, -.—ERA)

*On FOX Deportes

 

Cincinnati Reds at Washington Nationals                    Thom Brennaman, Eric Karros                                                      12%

                                                                                                & Ken Rosenthal

Nationals Park – Washington, D.C.                                               

MARKETS INCLUDE:  Baltimore, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Indianapolis, Louisville, Norfolk, Richmond, St. Louis, Washington

Probable Pitchers:  Mike Leake, RHP (1-0, 3.81 ERA) vs. Dan Haren, RHP (1-3, 7.36 ERA)

 

NASCAR ON FOX UNDER THE LIGHTS FROM RICHMOND The NASCAR on FOX Sprint Cup season heads to Richmond International Raceway Saturday, April 27 (7:00 PM ET) for the Toyota Owners 400.  Under the lights for the second time this season, host Chris Myers welcomes viewers inside the friendly confines of the Hollywood Hotel studio to cover recent NASCAR penalties on big name drivers with analysis from Michael Waltrip and Darrell Waltrip.  Additionally, Michael Waltrip delivers what’s quickly becoming a fan-favorite: the grid walk; featuring live interviews of drivers, crewmen and officials moments before the green flag drops.

Race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the exciting action on this short track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and to places rarely seen at Richmond International Raceway.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

HAMMOND DISAGREES WITH PUNISHMENT OF CREW CHIEF RATCLIFF – Another week, another major penalty leveed by NASCAR officials. The No. 20 is the latest team to be penalized for rule violations discovered in the post-race engine inspection following Matt Kenseth’s win Sunday in Kansas.  The team’s penalties include the loss of 50 driver and owner points, loss of bonus points from Sunday’s win as well as denial of applying the Kansas win toward eligibility for a car owner Wild Card position in the Chase.  Additionally, crew chief Jason Ratcliff was fined $200,000, suspended for six points races and placed on probation until December 31st.  Joe Gibbs racing plans to appeal the penalty.

NASCAR on FOX and SPEED analyst Jeff Hammond believes NASCAR came down too hard on crew chief Ratcliff.  “This penalty is warranted to get everyone’s attention, but NASCAR hasn’t hit the right target as far as the responsible party is concerned.  It’s unfair for a team to suffer in an area in which a crew chief has little, if any, responsibility.  The crew chief puts his full faith, confidence and trust in the head engine builder, regardless of the manufacturer.  He believes they are giving him a part that is completely legal before he ever leaves the shop.  I’m saddened to hear Jason is going to be doing the time for someone else’s mistake.”

ARSENAL AND MANCHESTER UNITED BATTLE THIS SUNDAY ON FOX SOCCER – FOX Soccer is home to the Barclays Premier League this weekend with a high-profile matchup between newly crowned Premier League champion Manchester United and Arsenal, live Sunday, April 28 (10:30 AM ET). The Red Devils secured their 20th league trophy following the 3-0 victory over Aston Villa earlier this week with star forward, Robin Van Persie, registering a hat trick in that win. The Dutchman is the running favorite to claim the PFA Player of the Year award again, after winning it with the Arsenal side he captained last season. Tensions are high at the Emirates Stadium for Sunday’s showdown when Van Persie faces his former teammates. The Gunners currently stand in third place and rely on the club’s leading scorer, Theo Walcott, to provide the goals and keep them in the European top four.

JONES TOO MUCH FOR SONNEN AT UFC 159, SAYS UFC TONIGHT ANALYST FLORIAN – This weekend’s UFC 159: JONES VS. SONNEN features the headlining light heavyweight title bout between defending champion Jon Jones and challenger Chael Sonnen. FUEL TV’s UFC TONIGHT analyst Kenny Florian says Jones has too many skills for Sonnen. “The reality is Jon Jones has an amazing arsenal of weapons and he’s going to have that advantage against anyone at 205 pounds,” said Florian. “However, we can’t forget that Sonnen is a tremendous wrestler. We haven’t seen Jones really fight off of his back too much, and Sonnen is a guy who will back you up and pressure you, and that’s exactly what he needs to do against Jones.” FUEL TV kicks off the action around UFC 159 with the UFC WEIGH-IN SHOW on Friday, April 26 (4:00 PM ET). The program is hosted by Karyn Bryant, with former UFC light heavyweight champ Rashad Evans and UFC middleweight Brian Stann adding analysis, while three-time MMA journalist of the year Ariel Helwani interviews fighters on-site. The UFC 159 Prelims air on FX on Saturday, April 27 (8:00 PM ET), while FUEL TV telecasts the UFC 159 POSTFIGHT SHOW immediately following UFC 159 Pay Per View (1:00 AM ET). Jay Glazer hosts the show with analysts Evans and Stann breaking down the biggest and best moments of the evening’s fights. Helwani provides interviews backstage.

FSMG NATIONAL NETWORK KEY EVENTS CALENDAR

All Times Eastern and Subject to Change

* Also Airing on Deportes

 

Week of: 4/24/2013 – 5/1/2013

 

DATE                      NETWORK            TIME                       EVENT DETAILS

4/24/13                  FOX Deportes      8:00 PM                 Copa Libertadores: Round of 16 – Newell’s Old Boys/Vélez Sarsfield

4/24/13                 FOX Soccer           10:00 PM               CONCACAF Champions League: Santos Laguna/Monterrey Final Leg 1

4/25/13                  FOX Soccer Plus   2:30PM                  UEFA Europa League: Semifinal Leg 1 – Fenerbahçe SK/SL Benfica

4/26/13                  FOX Soccer Plus   2:55 PM                 Amlin Challenge Cup: Semifinal – Perpignan/Stade Francais

4/26/13                  FUEL TV                4:00PM                  UFC 159 Weigh-In

4/27/13                  FOX Soccer           9:53AM                   Barclays Premier League: Wigan/Tottenham

4/27/13                  FOX Soccer Plus   9:53AM                   Barclays Premier League: Chelsea/Swansea City

4/27/13                  FOX Soccer Plus   11:55 AM               Heineken Cup: Semifinal 1 – Clermont Auvergne/Munster

4/27/13                  FOX Soccer           12:30 PM               Barclays Premier League: Newcastle/Liverpool

4/27/13                  FOX                        12:30PM                MLB on FOX: ATL at DET/PHL at NYM/CIN at WASH

4/27/13                  FOX                        7:00PM                  NASCAR: Toyota Owners 400 Richmond, VA

4/27/13                  SPEED                  9:30PM                  Supercross Salt Lake City

4/27/13                  FX*                          8:00PM                  UFC 159 Prelims on FX “Jones vs Sonnen” Newark, NJ

4/28/13                  FOX Soccer           8:25 AM                  Barclays Premier League: Reading/Queens Park Rangers

4/28/13                  FOX Soccer           10:30 AM               Barclays Premier League: Arsenal/Manchester Utd.

4/28/13                  FOX Soccer Plus   11:55 AM               Heineken Cup: Semifinal 2 – Saracens/Toulon

4/30/13                  FOX Soccer           2:00PM                  UCL: Semifinal Leg 2 – Real Madrid/Borussia Dortmund

4/30/13                  FOX Deportes      9:30 PM                 Copa Libertadores: Round of 16 – Tijuana/Palmeiras

5/1/13                     FOX Soccer           10:00 PM               CONCACAF Champions League: Final Leg 2 – Monterrey/Santos Laguna

UFC’s Hendricks & NASCAR’s Harvick Size Up Workout Regimes in Special NASCAR on FOX Prerace Feature Saturday Night from Texas

foxsports_logoFOX SPORTS NOTES, QUOTES & ANECDOTES

FOX Sports Day-Night Doubleheader Features MLB Action and NASCAR Saturday

Braves/Nationals, Giants/Cubs, Rays/Red Sox at 12:30 PM ET

NASCAR Sprint Cup Action Gets Bigger in Texas at 7:00 PM ET

The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale Airs Saturday Night on FX; Weigh-In & Prelims on FUEL TV

UFC’s Road to the Octagon Previews Henderson vs. Melendez Sunday at 5:00 PM ET

Chelsea & Manchester City Battle Sunday on FOX Soccer

UFC’s Hendricks & NASCAR’s Harvick Size Each Other Up in Special Prerace Feature During Saturday’s Race at TMS

HARVICK & HENDRICKS GO TOE TO TOE IN SPECIAL PRERACE FEATURE SIZING UP UFC & NASCAR WORKOUT REGIMES UFC top contender Johny Hendricks put NASCAR superstar Kevin Harvick through a rigorous MMA-style workout from his training facility today. The special session airs during FOX Sports’ prerace coverage Saturday, April 13 at 7:00 PM ET leading up to NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing from Texas. The two world class athletes show the similarities and differences between the regimes that keep them at the top of their respective sports. Harvick, an avid MMA fan, proved to be up to the task, getting first-hand instruction on proper footwork and striking style. “His conditioning and strength were impressive,” said Hendricks, who is coming off a decisive victory over Carlos Condit last month at UFC 158. Hendricks will attend the race this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway as an honorary member of Harvick’s crew.

 

MLB ON FOX SEASON ROLLS ON  Week 2 of the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK gets an earlier start time, 12:30 PM ET, Saturday, April 13, with live regional coverage of three major league matchups. NL East rivals meet as Justin Upton and the Braves travel to the nation’s capital to face Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals. In Chicago, the Cubs welcome Buster Posey and the Giants to Wrigley Field. Also, the Red Sox host the Rays in an AL East battle.

Coverage begins with the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL PREGAME SHOW, a full 30-minute program originating live from MLB Network’s state-of-the-art Studio 3 in Secaucus, NJ. The show is hosted by longtime FOX Sports and MLB Network broadcaster Matt Vasgersian who is joined this week by analysts Harold Reynolds and Mitch Williams.

For instant updates during the week from the entire MLB on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MLBONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/major_league_baseball_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

GAME                                                                                    PLAY-BY-PLAY/ANALYST                                                                COV.   

Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals                     Justin Kutcher & Eric Karros                                                         45%

Nationals Park – Washington, D.C.                               Ken Rosenthal

MARKETS INCLUDE:  Atlanta, Austin, Birmingham, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dallas, Dayton, Detroit, Greensboro, Greenville, Houston, Jacksonville, Knoxville, Memphis, Minneapolis, Nashville, New Orleans, Norfolk, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Richmond, San Antonio, Tulsa, Washington

Probable Pitchers:  Tim Hudson, RHP (1-0, 3.27 ERA) vs. Stephen Strasburg, RHP (1-1, 4.38 ERA)

 

San Francisco Giants at Chicago Cubs*                     Thom Brennaman & Tim McCarver                                              32%

Wrigley Field – Chicago, IL

MARKETS INCLUDE:  Albuquerque, Chicago, Denver, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Louisville, Milwaukee, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco, St. Louis

Probable Pitchers:  Madison Bumgarner, LHP (2-0, 1.32 ERA) vs. Edwin Jackson, RHP (0-2, 5.73 ERA)

*On FOX Deportes

 

Tampa Bay Rays at Boston Red Sox                            Kenny Albert, Tom Verducci                                                           22%

                                                                                               

Fenway Park – Boston, MA

MARKETS INCLUDE: Baltimore, Boston, Buffalo, Fort Myers, Hartford, Miami, New York, Orlando, Providence, Seattle, Tampa, West Palm Beach

Probable Pitchers: David Price, LHP (0-1, 8.18 ERA) vs. TBA

 

JOHNSON SEIZES CONTROL IN NASCAR – The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series take the primetime stage on Saturday, April 13 at 7:00 PM ET, with NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing From Texas. Jimmie Johnson comes off a big weekend last week at Martinsville; capturing the pole, the checkered flag and first place in the series standings. Johnson looks to pad his lead this week at Texas Motor Speedway.

Coverage begins with the FOX NASCAR prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, providing up-to-the-minute reports, live interviews with drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action and analysis from Darrell Waltrip and Michael Waltrip. Once the green flag drops, race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and everywhere in between. This week Hall of Fame pitcher and Texas Rangers CEO Nolan Ryan welcomes fans to the first primetime race of the season and the great state of Texas by voicing the open.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

 

ROSENTHAL CALLS HALLADAY’S STRUGGLES “PAINFUL” – In his latest column for FOXSports.com, MLB on FOX reporter Ken Rosenthal writes that he finds Phillies’ right-hander Roy Halladay’s struggles “painful” to watch. Rosenthal quotes a scout who says, “From a stuff standpoint, there’s nothing there,” and writes: “It’s painful to say that bout Halladay, painful to write, painful to think about. No one who cares about the game wants to see a pitcher as accomplished as Halladay struggle the way he has in the first two starts, the way he did last season.”

CRUZ PREDICTS FABER AND TATE VICTORIES AT THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER 17 FINALE – FUEL TV televises three shows around this weekend’s THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER 17 FINALE: FABER VS. JORGENSEN, and UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz joins the announcing team as an analyst. He predicts that bantamweight superstar Urijah Faber will prevail over longtime 135-pound contender Scott Jorgensen in the headlining bout: “Jorgensen creates a lot of problems in durability and with his wrestling ability that will make Faber think. But Faber’s explosiveness, speed and technique are going to win the fight.” In addition, Cruz predicts Miesha Tate will take out Cat Zingano in the second-ever UFC women’s fight: “I have to go with Tate. She’s got the cleaner technique on the grappling end.”

FUEL TV kicks off coverage of THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER 17 FINALE with the live WEIGH-IN Show on Friday, April 12 (6:00 PM ET), hosted by Karyn Bryant, with Cruz and UFC middleweight Michael Bisping adding analysis. FUEL TV televises THE ULTIMATE FIGHTER FINALE PRELIMS live on Saturday, April 13 (7:00 PM ET) with host Jay Glazer and analysts Cruz and Bisping. The main card is telecast live on FX (9:00 PM ET), with Kenny Florian and Jon Anik calling the fights. Coverage wraps later that night with the live POSTFIGHT SHOW (12:00 AM ET), with Glazer, Cruz and Bisping breaking down all the fights and highlights.

 

FOX PREMIERES UFC’S ROAD TO THE OCTAGON SUNDAY NIGHT – FOX Sports gets ready for next weekend’s FOX UFC SATURDAY with UFC’S ROAD TO THE OCTAGON on Sunday, April 14 (5:00 PM ET). UFC’S ROAD TO THE OCTAGON is a one-hour special that goes behind the scenes and inside the lives and training camps of UFC fighters as they prepare for their upcoming bouts. FOX UFC SATURDAY returns on Saturday, April 20 (8:00 PM ET), with a quadruple-header of top fights, highlighted by UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson defending his title against top contender Gilbert Melendez. Also on the card are heavyweights Frank Mir vs. Daniel Cormier, lightweights Nate Diaz vs. Josh Thomson and welterweights Jordan Mein vs. Matt Brown.

PAGES’ THREE UNIQUE TRICKS SET HIM ABOVE THE REST AT RED BULL X-FIGHTERS – The exciting freestyle motocross tour RED BULL X-FIGHTERS heads to Dubai for the second stop of the year, and FUEL TV televises the finals live on Friday, April 12 (1:00 PM ET). Frenchman Tom Pages looks to win his second straight event, says FUEL TV host Andy Bell: “Pages has three tricks that he’s doing in his runs that no one else is, and he’ll be hard to beat because of that. But if Dany Torres, Levi Sherwod or Josh Sheehan can bring one of these tricks, maybe they can pull the upset.”

CHELSEA AND MANCHESTER CITY BATTLE THIS SUNDAY ON FOX SOCCER – The FA Cup returns this weekend to FOX Soccer with a high-profile semifinal matchup between Chelsea and Manchester City, live Sunday, April 14 (11:00 AM ET). This clash at Wembley Stadium features reigning FA Cup champions, the Blues, against reigning Barclays Premier League champions. With the Barclays Premier League title all but handed to Manchester United, both teams are eager for silverware and will be treating the final four meeting as if it’s the championship game. Manchester City has not conceded any goals in the cup competition thus far, and star striker Sergio Aguero looks to take advantage of tired legs as Chelsea will be going into the game following a midweek UEFA Europa League quarterfinal second-leg against Rubin Kazan (live Thursday, April 11 at 11:50 AM ETon FOX Soccer). Rafael Benitez’s side will rely on its experience to move one step closer to the trophy, with four FA Cup titles in the last six seasons.

Carl Edwards Returning to ESPN Broadcast Booth for Three Races

espn-nascarAfter a two-race initiation last year, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Carl Edwards will return to the ESPN broadcast booth as an analyst for the next three races in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.

Edwards will join lap-by-lap announcer Allen Bestwick and analyst Andy Petree in the booth to call the 300-mile race at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday night, April 12, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2. The race will be the first after a two week break in the schedule for the NASCAR Nationwide Series.

Edwards also will call races at Richmond International Raceway on Friday night, April 26 (7 p.m. on ESPNEWS) and at Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday, May 4 (2:30 p.m. on ESPN). In each case, Edwards will compete in the next day’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at the same track.

“I truly appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the ESPN team and their Nationwide Series broadcasts again this season,” said Edwards. “Allen, Andy and the whole ESPN team really helped me get a better feel of what goes on in the booth last season.”

The Columbia, Mo., native made his debut in the ESPN booth last year, calling Nationwide Series races at Darlington Raceway and Kentucky Speedway. Moving to the booth was a progression in broadcasting for Edwards, who had been doing post-race analysis for ESPN SportsCenter during ESPN’s portion of the NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule the previous two seasons.

“I feel I can definitely use my racing experience, combined with what I learned last year, to provide the fans with a better perspective and inside analysis,” Edwards said.

Edwards, who drives for Roush Fenway Racing, stopped competing in NASCAR Nationwide Series races last season after racing fulltime in both the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series the previous seven years. He was the Nationwide Series driving champion in 2007, and earned the 2011 series owner’s championship for Roush Fenway Racing, but decided to concentrate his efforts on the Sprint Cup Series exclusively beginning last season.

“We’re delighted to have Carl back with us,” said Rich Feinberg, ESPN vice president, motorsports, production. “He brings great insight as a current driver to his analysis as well as a warm personality. He fits in well with our team and we welcome the opportunity to work with him.”

Visit www.espnmediazone.com for ESPN’s latest releases, schedules and other news, plus photos, video and audio clips and more.

About NASCAR on ESPN:

ESPN produces comprehensive, multi-platform coverage featuring telecasts of the final 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup races, including the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Additionally, ESPN is the television home of the NASCAR Nationwide Series. ESPN’s NASCAR coverage extends to ESPN.com, SportsCenter, ESPN the Magazine, WatchESPN, ESPN Classic, ESPNEWS, ESPN Deportes, ESPN on Xbox LIVE, ESPN Radio and ESPN International, among other ESPN platforms. ESPN aired 262 NASCAR Cup Races over a 20-year period starting in 1981 and returned to NASCAR coverage in 2007. The network’s award-winning, live flag-to-flag coverage on ESPN has been honored with 19 Sports Emmy Awards, as well as many industry honors. It is widely credited for helping to popularize the sport nationwide.

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NASCAR on FOX Hits Fontana for Auto Club 400 Sunday at 2:30 PM ET

nascarfoxFOX SPORTS NOTES, QUOTES & ANECDOTES

NASCAR on FOX Hits Fontana for Auto Club 400 Sunday at 2:30 PM ET

WhatIfSports Predicts Kansas Will Raise 2013 National Champion Trophy

Rosenthal: U.S. Mindset on WBC Needs to Change

FOX SPORTS GETS NASCAR’S TASTE OF HOLLYWOOD AT FONTANA The stars of NASCAR are out as FOX Sports heads to the West Coast for the Auto Club 400 on Sunday, March 24 (2:30 PM ET) from Fontana, CA. Following a steady start to the season, Kasey Kahne made noise last week with his win at Bristol, moving up seven places to seventh in the standings. Kahne and the rest of the Sprint Cup Series field chase new leader Brad Keselowski as we head to California.

Coverage begins with the FOX NASCAR SUNDAY prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, providing up-to-the-minute reports, live interviews with drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action and analysis from Darrell Waltrip and Michael Waltrip.

Once the green flag drops, race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and everywhere in between.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

HAMMOND: CHAMP KESELOWSKI AMONG THOSE WHO ARE SURPRISING SO FARNASCAR on FOX analyst Jeff Hammond is talking surprises in 2013 and says that despite being the defending Sprint Cup Champion, Brad Keselowski’s early performance has been an unexpected surprise. “I am surprised to see Brad Keselowski this strong, this early and leading our points race. I know Brad’s a very confident individual, but I don’t think even he could have imagined coming off a championship year with all the requirements that are asked of a champion representing our sport, to change manufacturers and already be leading the points. I don’t think it could be any better than it is right now in that No. 2 camp.”

For more from Hammond on the hot starts of Keselowski, Paul Menard and Dale Earnhardt Jr., click here: http://on-msn.com/YYBUoq

DW: DRIVERS STARTING TO CATCH UP TO THE GEN-6 CARS – NASCAR on FOX analyst Darrell Waltrip feels that the Gen-6 car brought the magic back to Bristol: “I knew last Friday during practice and qualifying that we were setting the stage for something special on Sunday when Kyle Busch took a 3,300-pound stock car and blistered a lap of 14.81 seconds in qualifying. This new NASCAR Sprint Cup Generation 6 car is doing everything these guys are asking it to do. The rub is these guys are still learning what to ask it to do. Yes, the potential is there, but like we’ve been saying since the beginning of the season, the teams and drivers need to catch up to the car. There’s no doubt, this thing is going to continue to evolve.”

For more from DW on Bristol and what the race means going forward click here: http://on-msn.com/YYvgi2

McREYNOLDS: THE TRACK GETS PERSONAL – Former teammates Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano have taken their battle to Twitter and the track at Bristol. NASCAR on FOX analyst Larry McReynolds knows that these two will tango once again but hopes the bad blood doesn’t boil over this weekend at the Auto Club 400: “I know race fans are asking if there will be payback in California this weekend. I, for one, sure hope not. With the speeds these cars will be running on Sunday at Auto Club Speedway, no one wants to see any kind of retribution take place. Following this weekend’s race in California we have a week off for Easter and then head right back to the short track at Martinsville Speedway. If there is a vendetta or a payback coming, Martinsville will be the spot.”

For more from McReynolds on the Hamlin-Logano rivalry click here: http://on-msn.com/YYvkOK

WHATIFSPORTS.COM PREDICTS KANSAS TO WIN IT ALL – WhatIfSports.com predicts that the Kansas Jayhawks will become the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Champions when the final game is played on April 8th from the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.  WIS computers simulated the tournament 1,001 times factoring individual statistics, roster trends, injuries and players’ average minutes per game. The system predicts that this year’s Final Four will be Louisville, Gonzaga, Kansas and Indiana with Gonzaga and Kansas meeting in the championship game.  WhatIfSports.com, a site fully integrated into FOXSports.com on MSN, specializes in online sports simulations and fantasy-style games. With their custom sports simulators, users can match teams from any era and not only see a final score, but also view complete play-by-play summaries of each game. Games are simulated using proprietary technology that incorporates statistical data, past performances and ratings into a complex game engine.

ROSENTHAL SAYS U.S. MINDSET ON WBC NEEDS TO CHANGE – MLB on FOX analyst Ken Rosenthal writes that the U.S. took a half-hearted approach to the World Baseball Classic: “It’s the mindset that needs to change, from the major league clubs to the Team USA manager and players. Maybe the urgency can never be what it is for Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic. But Brandon Phillips put it best, saying, ‘You see how everybody’s passion is totally different than our country’s.’ Right now, the U.S. approach is too half-hearted.”

U.S. MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM READIES FOR WORLD CUP QUALIFIERS – The international break is upon us as the U.S. Men’s National Team prepares for its two World Cup qualifiers against Costa Rica, and then against Mexico. FOX Soccer looks to capture the conversation online around these crucial matchups. FOX Soccer News is heading the content with previews, postgame analysis and round table discussions with Grant Wahl contributing to tonight’s show at 10:00 PM ET before his presence in Commerce City, Colorado for the first U.S. game. Additionally, FOXSoccer.com is set to provide complete coverage of the games and stories of the week with more previews as well as editorial content and live match commentary on Twitter (@FOXSoccerTrax). Fans can follow all the action on Facebook (Facebook.com/FOXSoccer) and also on Twitter (@FOXSoccer) with trivia questions and prize giveaways using the hashtag #SoccerMadness.

NASCAR on FOX Heads to Thunder Valley for Sprint Cup Racing From Bristol

nascarfoxNASCAR on FOX hits Thunder Valley for

NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing from Bristol Sunday at 12:30 PM ET

Waltrip: Kenseth Makes All The Right Moves

Glazer Details Gonzalez Scoop

Barclay’s Premiere League Doubleheader Sunday on FOX Soccer

NASCAR ON FOX NAVIGATES ‘THE WORLD’S FASTEST HALF-MILE’It’s still early in the NASCAR Sprint Cup season, and big moves are already being made in the standings. Fresh off his win in Las Vegas last week, Matt Kenseth vaulted 11 places in the series standings all the way to seventh. The pack is still following Jimmie Johnson, who leads by the slimmest of margins over Brad Keselowski, as FOX Sports heads to Tennessee for NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing from Bristol on Sunday, March 17 (12:30 PM ET). Coverage begins with the FOX NASCAR SUNDAY prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, providing up-to-the-minute reports, live interviews with drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action and analysis from Darrell Waltrip and Michael Waltrip.

Once the green flag drops, race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and everywhere in between.  This week, the prerace show debuts a lighter side of last week’s winner Kenseth.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

MCREYNOLDS: BRISTOL STARTS WITH TRACK POSITIONING – NASCAR on FOX analyst Larry McReynolds previews this weekend’s race in Bristol and talks about some of the challenges the short track presents: “The race starts on Friday in qualifying because track position, even in a 500-lap race, is so important. When you qualify up front, obviously on a very tight pit road you get a great pit selection, but it also means your driver doesn’t have to use the equipment up. If you start at the rear of the field or the mid-pack, you almost want to get off-sequence. Maybe you want to pit, hoping the leaders will stay out, and once they pit, you’re going to get that track position.”

WALTRIP: KENSETH REWARDED FOR BEING BOLD – Last weekend in Las Vegas, Matt Kenseth became only the third driver to notch a NASCAR cup series victory on his birthday. NASCAR on FOX analyst Darrell Waltrip notes that the 41-year-old might not have reached that achievement had he not made some bold moves in the offseason: “The decision that Matt made to leave Roush Fenway Racing

at the end of 2012 was a very bold move. When you are at that age and at that point in your racing career, deciding to make a change can be a little dicey and can be a gamble.  He could not have picked a better organization to team up with. Coach Joe Gibbs and his son J.D. Gibbs are two of the greatest people I know, and they run a first-class organization. Matt had an opportunity to go over there and immediately become a team leader. Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch need a mentor like that. Neither has been able to win a championship yet, but I think Matt can be a great example and resource for what it takes to put it all together.”

For more from Waltrip on what Kenseth means to Joe Gibbs Racing and his thoughts on the Denny Hamlin fine, click here: http://on-msn.com/16sC63v

HAMMOND SAYS PATIENCE IS KEY FOR PATRICK – In his latest column for FOXSports.com, NASCAR on FOX analyst Jeff Hammond reminds the racing community that Danica Patrick is a rookie with just one year of stock car racing experience under her belt, and urges fans to have patience: “Give her time. She is a rookie, and like we always say, there will be highs and lows all season long.  This weekend at Bristol will be a good test for her. She raced here last year. There are no nuances to get used to when it comes to aero-balance at Bristol. Back in August of last year when she was here for the night race, she had a pretty good little run going before being wrecked out, so she should feel comfortable when we take to the track this weekend.”

For more from Hammond on Patrick, click here: http://on-msn.com/Z0sIwu

GLAZER DETAILS TONY GONZALEZ SCOOP – FOX Sports analyst Jay Glazer joined FOX Sports Radio’s “The Dan Patrick Show” to talk about Tony Gonzalez’s return to the Atlanta Falcons: “He called the day before, and then he called about 2:00 AM, then 3:00 AM, then 4:00 AM, which is part of the reason I was exhausted yesterday. We kept talking about it, and it was ‘Hold off right now,’ and well, look dude, it’s three in the morning, I’m not putting anything out right now – don’t worry about it. And normally I don’t write anymore; I just kind of tweet out and put out a little hit on FOXSports.com, but this was different. This was Tony Gonzalez, the greatest who’s ever played his position, and I felt it was a lot more than just a tweet or a pop on FOXSports.com, and I wanted to put his quotes out.  I’ll tell you right now that there was absolutely no doubt whatsoever, up until the final play of the NFC Championship Game, that that man was retiring. There was zero doubt. But that night, Michael Strahan and I had gone out to dinner with him after the game, and it was the first time that Mike and I looked at each other and said, ‘You know what? That’s the first time the door’s been open.”

ROSENTHAL SAYS TEAM USA IS A WORLD BASEBALL CLASSIC CONTENDER – In his latest column for FOXSports.com, MLB on FOX analyst Ken Rosenthal says that despite not having some of its biggest stars playing in the event, the United States might still be good enough to win the World Baseball Classic: “If the United States has a weak link, it probably is the starting rotation, but left-hander Gio Gonzalez’s five scoreless innings against Puerto Rico perhaps changes that perspective as well. Gonzalez and R.A. Dickey – the third-and first-place finishers for the National League Cy Young Award last season – are lined up to pitch the semifinal and final in San Francisco, if the US qualifies.”

For more from Rosenthal on the WBC, click here: http://on-msn.com/WIhqTm

BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE DOUBLEHEADER THIS SUNDAY – FOX Soccer and FOX Soccer Plus are home to the Barclays Premier League this weekend as top-four clubs Chelsea and Tottenham look to grab three points from their matches, with only two points separating both teams. The action begins live on FOX Soccer Plus with Tottenham vs. Fulham on Sunday, March 17 (10:53 AM ET)

followed by kick-off on FOX Soccer as Chelsea takes on West Ham at 11:30 AM ET.  Fulham travels to White Hart Lane to face third-place Tottenham after the Spurs’ 12-game unbeaten streak was snapped last week against Liverpool. With a quick turnaround following midweek Europa League action, Tottenham manager Andres Villas-Boas’ is counting on in-form duo Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon to provide the magic. In the second match of the doubleheader on FOX Soccer, West Ham heads to Stamford Bridge as it pushes for a position in the top half of the table. Rafa Benitez’s fourth-place Chelsea side, also playing in European competition, is coming off a thrilling 2-2 FA Cup draw at Old Trafford against Manchester United last weekend. The Hammers caused a 3-1 upset against the Blues when the two squads met back in December at Upton Park and hope to be the first team to do the double over Chelsea this season, despite only picking up 11 points out of 14 matches on the road.

UFC TONIGHT’S FLORIAN CAUTIONS CHAMP ST-PIERRE IN BOUT AGAINST DIAZ AT UFC 158 On Saturday, March 16, the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heads to the Bell Centre in Montreal for the world welterweight championship battle between current champ Georges St-Pierre (GSP) and challenger Nick Diaz. FUEL TV’s UFC TONIGHT analyst Kenny Florian cautions the champ to stick to his game plan against Diaz: “There are two ways you lose to a Diaz brother. If you’re not disciplined and if you try to brawl with them – that is, stand in front of them. If you do that, Diaz will destroy you, and Diaz is my favorite fighter, as far as excitement. However, St-Pierre has the perfect game to beat Diaz.” FUEL TV kicks off the weekend with the live UFC WEIGH-IN on Friday, March 15 (4:00 PM ET), with Jon Anik hosting, while UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and UFC light heavyweight contender Chael Sonnen offer analysis. The live UFC PRELIMS on FX begin Saturday, March 16 (8:00 PM ET) with the UFC 158 POSTFIGHT SHOW on FUEL TV hosted by Anik, with Sonnen and Cruz offering analysis, and Ariel Helwani conducting fighter interviews from Montreal. For UFC 158 predictions by Sonnen and Florian, please check out: http://youtu.be/7_MMB93id6E

NASCAR on FOX Plays to Win in Vegas for Kobalt Tools 400

nascarfoxNASCAR on FOX Plays to Win in Vegas for Kobalt Tools 400

Sunday at 2:30 PM ET

Waltrip on Edwards: It Was Great To See Carl Do His Signature Backflip

NASCAR ON FOX LOOKS TO WIN BIG IN VEGASTwo races into the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, a pattern has already formed; Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Brad Keselowski finished both races in the top five. The top three in the early-season standings lead the series as NASCAR rolls into Sin City for the Kobalt Tools 400 from Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Sunday, March 10 (2:30 PM ET). Coverage begins with the FOX NASCAR SUNDAY prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, providing up-to-the-minute reports, live interviews with drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action and analysis from Darrell Waltrip and Michael Waltrip.

Once the green flag drops, race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and everywhere in between.  This week, Voda interviews 2013 Daytona 500 winner Jimmie Johnson.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

WALTRIP: EDWARDS BACK IN FORM – Following a close battle with Tony Stewart for the 2011 Sprint Cup title, Carl Edwards’ 2012 couldn’t have been more different. Struggling throughout the year, Edwards finished a disappointing 15th and missed The Chase. After his win last weekend at Phoenix, NASCAR on FOX analyst Darrell Waltrip believes a weight has been lifted, and Edwards is poised for a big 2013: “There’s no one in our sport that works any harder or wants to win any worse than Carl Edwards. He puts everything he has into it. When you go from as high up on the mountain as he was in 2011 to the depths of the valley he was in last year, you know the “Frustration Meter” was pegged. All of that was erased Sunday, and it was good to see Carl back in Victory Circle. It was great to see him do his signature post-win backflip again. Heck, I wondered if he remembered how to do it because it had been so long since he has taken a checkered flag in our NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.”

To read more on Edwards and the continued great performance of Jimmie Johnson, click here: http://on-msn.com/13HfVqB

HAMMOND GETS TECHNICAL ON GEN-6 CAR – NASCAR on FOX’s Jeff Hammond writes in his latest column for foxsports.com that passing in the Gen-6 car is difficult and explains the science behind it: “Drivers are saying that when they get their cars up alongside each other, that there is enough air spilling off the car buffering it around. It’s still making it really challenging to pass someone. You have the tendency to lose the front nose specifically because the air is being taken away from it. I think it has shown them it’s a lot harder to pass than they had anticipated.”

For more on the Generation 6 car from Hammond, click here:  http://tinyurl.com/bedhb5x

MANCHESTER UNITED AND CHELSEA BATTLE THIS SUNDAY ON FOX SOCCER – The FA Cup returns this weekend to FOX Soccer with a high-profile quarterfinal matchup between Manchester United and Chelsea, live Sunday, March 10 (12:00 PM ET). This “Clash of the Giants” features current Barclays Premier League leaders, the Red Devils, against reigning FA Cup champions, the Blues. FOX Sports renowned play-by-play announcer Gus Johnson makes the call live from Old Trafford alongside analyst Ian Wright, a veteran in the Premier League and two-time FA Cup winner with Arsenal. Manchester United is coming off a difficult exit in the UEFA Champions League against Real Madrid. After Sir Alex Ferguson fell short in the clash of managers against Jose Mourinho, the Scot faces another tense encounter with embattled Chelsea counterpart Rafa Benitez. Manchester United is relying on top striker Robin Van Persie to continue his scoring ways and help end their eight-year FA Cup title drought, while Chelsea looks to its experience to move one step closer to the semi-finals with four FA Cup titles in the last six seasons.

SHEEHAN’S DOUBLE BACKFLIP THE EDGE AT FIRST RED BULL X-FIGHTERS –  The Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour kicks off the 2013 season live on FUEL TV on Friday, March 8 (11:00 PM ET). The world’s top freestyle motocross (FMX) riders compete at the Plaza de Toros Monumental in Mexico City in the exciting two-hour competition. According to FUEL TV analyst Andy Bell, Australian Josh Sheehan might have an edge over the other competitors. “Sheehan’s double backflip may be the talk of the night, and coupled with a solid run, this could really bring home the win for him,” said Bell. “The smart money may be on 2011 champion Dani Torres, as Mexico City is the set up that is closest to Dani’s home track advantage of Madrid, where he is the king of the Bull Ring.” Bell also names last year’s overall winner Levi Sherwood and Frenchman Thomas Pages as others to watch.

Waltrip: “Danica Lived Up to Hype at Daytona”

nascarfoxFOX SPORTS NOTES, QUOTES & ANECDOTES

NASCAR on FOX Heads to Phoenix for Subway Fresh Fit 500

Sunday at 2:30 PM ET

Waltrip: “Danica Lived Up to Hype at Daytona”

AFTER THRILLING SPEEDWEEKS IN FLORIDA, NASCAR ON FOX HEADS WESTFollowing five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson’s Daytona 500 victory and an impressive showing by rookie Danica Patrick, the 2013 NASCAR on FOX season rolls into the desert for the Subway Fresh Fit 500 from Phoenix International Raceway Sunday, March 3 (2:30 PM ET).  Coverage begins with the FOX NASCAR SUNDAY prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, providing up-to-the-minute reports, live interviews with drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action, and analysis from Darrell Waltrip and Michael Waltrip. This week’s prerace program looks at Patrick’s Daytona 500 performance through footage leading up to the “Great American Race” and her in-car radio communication not previously heard.  Additionally, FOX NASCAR SUNDAY touches on the Clint Bowyer vs. Jeff Gordon melee that took place the last time both drivers were at the Phoenix track.

Once the green flag drops, race announcer Mike Joy is alongside analysts Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.  FOX Sports’ Jeff Hammond serves as the network’s roving analyst, taking fans from the garages to pit road and everywhere in between.

For instant updates during the week from the entire NASCAR on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at @NASCARONFOX, on Instagram at http://instagram.com/foxsports  or on GetGlue at http://getglue.com/tv_shows/nascar_on_fox. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports.

WALTRIP EXPECTS NEW CAR TO FLY IN PHOENIX – Once the green flag drops this Sunday in Phoenix, NASCAR on FOX’s lead race analyst and Hall of Famer Darrell Waltrip believes this one-mile track will showcase NASCAR’s “Generation 6” car in an exciting way.  “This new car is loaded with horsepower and down force, and those are two of a driver’s best friends,” writes Waltrip.  Additionally, the weight of the car has an impact this season in how well the new car handles compared to the old.  “Expect this car to be fast everywhere and expect to see new track records. Remember, they put this new car on a diet, too, as it is 150 pounds lighter. Throw that into the mix and expect to hear the words “bad fast” a lot in these next few weeks.”

Waltrip also weighed in on Danica Patrick’s Daytona 500 performance, saying she “lived up to the hype.” For more plus DW’s full recap of the “Great American Race” click here: http://tinyurl.com/an9doeu

MEXICAN NASCAR SERIES DEBUTS IN U.S. – On Friday, March 1 (9:00PM ET), FOX Deportes presents live coverage of NTS Phoenix, the first race of the 2013 NASCAR Toyota Series. One of three NASCAR-sanctioned international series, along with the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series and the NASCAR Euro Racecar Series, the Mexican NASCAR series begins its 15-race schedule with its first-ever race in the United States. Defending series champion Jorge Goeters headlines the field at Phoenix International Raceway.

SONNEN PREDICTS KO VICTORY BY STANN AT UFC ON FUEL TV 8: SILVA VS. STANN –  UFC® on FUEL TV travels to Saitama Super Arena just outside Tokyo, Japan Saturday, March 2 (9:00 PM ET) for the network’s eighth installment featuring the legendary “The Axe Murderer” Wanderlei Silva (34-12-1, 1NC), against top contender “All American” Brian Stann (12-5, 6-4 UFC), in a light heavyweight headlining bout. Chael Sonnen, FUEL TV’s UFC TONIGHT co-analyst and current UFC light heavyweight contender predicts a Stann victory: “Wanderlei’s heart is big, but his chin is more suspect. Brian Stann, the All-American, KO’s him in the first round.”

The live telecast consists of six exciting bouts including the co-main event – a heavyweight clash between ninth-ranked and seven-foot-tall Stefan “Skyscraper” Struve (29-5, 9-3 UFC), and knockout artist Mark “Super Samoan” Hunt (3-1 UFC, 8-7). An exciting lightweight battle ensues between “The Fireball Kid” Takanori Gomi (34-8, 1NC) taking on Diego “The Dream” Sanchez (25-5). Fourth-ranked middleweight Yushin “Thunder” Okami (29-7) faces eighth-ranked Hector “Lightning” Lombard (32-3-1, 1NC). Japan’s Mizuto Hirota (14-5-1) represents his home country against Rani Yahya (17-7). Siyar Bahadurzada (21-4-1), who is on a seven-fight win streak, faces Dong Hyun Kim (16-2-1, 1 NC) in a welterweight bout. UFC announcers Jon Anik and Kenny Florian call all bouts live from Japan on FUEL TV. Host Jay Glazer, UFC light heavyweight contender Sonnen and UFC middleweight veteran Michael Bisping offer analysis from FUEL TV’s Los Angeles studios. Veteran British MMA Journalist Gareth A. Davies interviews fighters backstage.

UFC® ON FUEL TV 8: SILVA VS. STANN PRELIMS STREAMED LIVE ON FUEL.TV AND FOXSPORTS.COMFUEL TV and FOXSports.com are webcasting the UFC PRELIMS beginning on Saturday, March 2 (7:50 PM ET), the stream can be seen at: http://www.fuel.tv/ufc/events/silva-vs-stann 

FUEL TV BRINGS BACK THE “FAN CAMeo” IN UFC POSTFIGHT SHOW – Immediately following UFC® ON FUEL TV 8: SILVA VS. STANN on Saturday, March 2 (1:00 AM ET), the UFC POSTFIGHT SHOW airs on FUEL TV featuring host Jay Glazer and analysts Sonnen and Bisping, breaking down the biggest and best moments of the evening. In the POSTFIGHT SHOW, FUEL TV brings back its “Fan CAMeo,” a groundbreaking feature on the FUEL TV website and app that allows viewers to record video reactions to the fights from their mobile phone, table or laptop, upload the clip and have it used within minutes on the live show: http://www.fuel.tv/fancameo

NORTH LONDON RIVALS MEET IN BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE SHOWDOWN – Only separated by four points, third-place Tottenham hosts fifth-place Arsenal Sunday, March 3 (10:30 AM ET), live on FOX Soccer. Rob Stone, Warren Barton and Eric Wynalda are joined by soccer enthusiast and CNN pundit Piers Morgan live from Studio 2B in Los Angeles. Finding himself on the hot seat after a series of inconsistent performances for the Gunners, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will rely on an offensive unit anchored by Theo Walcott, Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski.