“Ultimately, sports fans hook into stories and people, and there’s no better group of athletes than these NASCAR drivers.” – Sam Flood
“Now we have a year of practice under our belt, a year of experience under our belt and something to build on.” – Steve Letarte
3 Days Until Live NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing Returns with the Coke Zero 400 at Sat., 7 p.m. ET on NBC.
STAMFORD, Conn. – June 29, 2016 – NBC Sports Group’s lead NASCAR broadcast team of race announcer Rick Allen and analysts Jeff Burton and Steve Letarte, pre- and post-race analysts Kyle Petty and Dale Jarrett, and Executive Producer Sam Flood conducted a media conference call this afternoon to preview the 2016 launch of NASCAR on NBC. The conversation ranged from on-air team dynamics, to tonight’s #NASCARThrowback race on NBCSN. It was also announced on the call that Tony Stewart will join NASCAR on NBC’s pre-race show live Saturday, July 2nd 7 p.m. ET to discuss his triumphant victory last Sunday at Sonoma Raceway. Several notable quotes from today’s conversation can be found below. A full transcript is available here.
Flood on keeping NASCAR fresh and relevant: “Ultimately, sports fans hook into stories and people, and there’s no better group of athletes than these NASCAR drivers. You think about the beauty of it, every week the best go against the best. You wait for that special matchup in another sport where your two elite teams play each other. Well, every single Cup race has the elite guys face-to-face. So you don’t have to wait for that special matchup. It’s one of those unique sports that every weekend, every race, they’re head-to-head.”
Allen on competition throughout the first 20 races: “The story lines that we’ve got in front of us with eight different winners over the last eight races, Tony Stewart getting a win, it really sets it up nicely for us to take over and really take it from here all the way to Homestead, Miami, and see who the champion will be this year.”
Jarrett on Stewart’s recent victory: “We’re very excited. I feel quite certain that our race will end well before 2:41a.m. ET, we all hope so. And as they said, there are so many story lines. Our story lines just increased a thousand percent by Tony Stewart winning the race. Who is going to be that next one to step up? We’ve got a lot of young talent, and it’s going to be very interesting to watch their progression, and as we get closer to the cutoff for the Chase, who is going to still be trying to get that win, and who is close enough in points that they’re going to be driving in maybe a way that we haven’t seen in that situation and scenario.”
Letarte on year two of NASCAR on NBC: “There are some great producers at NBC that are not short of their constructive criticism, which I really enjoyed, because it allowed Jeff and myself and Rick to truly try to be better. So I think that’s what’s different. Now we have a year of practice under our belt, a year of experience under our belt and something to build on.”
In 2016, NBC Sports Group presents 20 Sprint Cup, 19 XFINITY and 37 touring series races in addition to coverage of NASCAR’s Awards Ceremonies and the annual NASCAR Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
NASCARTalk on NBCSports.com brings racing fans up-to-the-minute news, video and information on NASCAR drivers, teams and industry news. For all the latest NASCAR content socially, fans can follow @NASCARonNBC and @NASCARTalkNBC on twitter and like the NASCAR on NBC Facebook page.
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 —