NBC Sports will use retired NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt Jr. in its inaugural broadcast of the Indianapolis 500 next month. The second-year analyst will be part of a team that features 14 commentators and host Mike Tirico and analyst Danica Patrick. Earnhardt will be a roving reporter for his first Indianapolis 500 on May 26, contributing to pre-race, in-race and post-race coverage alongside Rutledge Wood. Earnhardt Jr., who will also be featured from Indianapolis Motor Speedway during race week, was used extensively by the network in his first year after retirement with reporting trips to last year’s Winter Olympics in South Korea and the Super Bowl. NBC Sports motorsports host Krista Voda will also join Earnhardt at Indianapolis. The broadcast booth will be NBC Sports’ full-time IndyCar crew of play-by-play announcer Leigh Diffey and analysts Paul Tracy and Townsend Bell. The 14 total commentators will be the most ever for NBC Sports’ coverage of IndyCar as the … [Read more...] about Earnhardt joins NBC Sports coverage of Indianapolis 500
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Published 5:38 pm PDT, Wednesday, April 3, 2019 Mike McCarthy The former Green Bay head coach says he was stunned at the timing of his firing in December and believes his dismissal was handled poorly. McCarthy told ESPN in a story posted Wednesday that he knew he might be in trouble if the Packers missed the playoffs. He was fired with four games left after the Packers lost at home to Arizona, dropping the team to 4-7-1. McCarthy said he was summoned to a meeting with Packers President Mark Murphy after the loss and fired in a discussion he said was impersonal and “hard to swallow.” McCarthy said he tried to be gentle in releasing players, but didn’t get the same treatment. “There was no emotion to it. That was hard.” Dale Earnhardt Jr. FILE - In this Nov. 4, 2018, file photo, Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy speaks to the media following an NFL football game against the New England Patriots,in Foxborough, Mass. … [Read more...] about Mike McCarthy: Packers’ firing ‘couldn’t have been handled any worse’
Danica Patrick will join NBC Sports' inaugural coverage of the Indianapolis 500 as an analyst alongside host Mike Tirico. Patrick retired from racing after last year's Indianapolis 500. Her eighth appearance in "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" prepped her for a return as a television personality. She told The Associated Press racing at Indy last year after an eight-year run in NASCAR refreshed her knowledge bank and gives her plenty to discuss. Patrick will be a studio analyst on race day and contribute to NBC Sports' pre-race, in-race and post-race coverage. She will also be part of the broadcast team for qualifying on May 19 and will promote the race across NBCUniversal platforms. "This is an event that means so much to me," she said in a telephone interview ahead of Wednesday's announcement. "I am so glad I did the 500 last year because my information is much more current and relevant. I think it's going to be quite a bit of work — I've always thought being part of the … [Read more...] about Danica Patrick to Join NBC’s Indy 500 Team
By Jenna Fryer Associated Press Published 2:49 PM EST Feb 1, 2019 Charlotte, N.C. – NASCAR’s biggest stars have all moved on. Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are television analysts while Tony Stewart is racing sprint cars again. Danica Patrick traded her firesuit for athleisure-wear while Carl Edwards just kind of disappeared. America’s top motorsports series is in need of a new face. The rapid wave of retirements brought in a crop of fresh-faced young drivers tasked with carrying NASCAR through a tough transition, but no clear superstar to fill empty seats and shape the next generation of racers. It might be a job best suited for Kyle Larson, considered by many the best hope to bridge the gap between grassroots racing and NASCAR – and perhaps attract new fans to motor sports in a time of need. He is young at 26, and like childhood idol Gordon he hails from California and made his name racing sprint cars. Larson has the raw talent to take risks that … [Read more...] about Can Kyle Larson be the next NASCAR superstar?
Jenna Fryer Associated Press Published 9:27 PM EDT Oct 14, 2018 Talladega, Ala. — Tony Stewart hired Aric Almirola because he believed the journeyman would win races for Stewart-Haas Racing. Almirola came close time and again this year but fell short. The boss made sure to keep Almirola’s spirits high every chance he got, including a pre-race pep talk Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway. “He just keeps telling me, ‘Calm down, take deep breaths,’” Almirola said. “He’s like, ‘You’re going to win, I promise you. The day I told you I was going to hire you, I knew you were going to win races for my company. Put yourself in position, and it will happen.’” He put himself in position Sunday to cap an absolute SHR rout at Talladega with an overtime victory that earned him an automatic berth into the third round of NASCAR’s playoffs. It also snapped a 149-race losing streak for Almirola and atoned for his … [Read more...] about Almirola advances in NASCAR playoffs with Talladega win