92nd Indianapolis 500 Live Sunday on ABC; Expanded Pre-Race on ESPN2
After three weeks of practice and qualifying, preceded by months of anticipation due to the reunification of American open wheel racing, the 92nd Indianapolis 500 is set to take the green flag. ESPN on ABC will have live, high definition coverage from Indianapolis Motor Speedway beginning with pre-race at noon ET on Sunday, May 25. The race starts at 1 p.m., with the telecast presented by GoDaddy.com.
ABC is covering the Indianapolis 500 for the 44th year in 2008, extending the second-longest relationship in television history between a sporting event and television network. Weekend coverage of the Masters has been on CBS for 53 years.
An expanded pre-race show airs at 11 a.m. on ESPN2, leading into the ABC telecast.
Brent Musburger hosts the telecast, while Marty Reid will call the race with analysis by former IndyCar Series star Scott Goodyear and 1998 Indy 500 winner Eddie Cheever. Jack Arute, Jamie Little, Brienne Pedigo and Vince Welch will report from the pits.
Coverage of the Indianapolis 500 also includes a 30-minute preview show, Ready to Race: The 92nd Indianapolis 500, airing Saturday, May 24, at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2. Welch hosts the program.
ESPN2 also airs highlights of the Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade, held on the day before the race, at 5 p.m. Saturday. Bob Jenkins and Marlo Klain co-host the telecast, with reports by Mike King.
ESPN2 Goes Live for Indy Carb Day, Pit Stop Challenge, Indy Lights Race
ESPN2 has expanded its Indianapolis 500 coverage to include a live telecast of Indianapolis 500 Carburetion Day, the final practice for the 92nd running of the famed event, and the Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge. The telecast begins Friday, May 3, at 11 a.m. ET and airs until 4 p.m. with a simulcast on ESPN360.com.
Lead announcer Marty Reid and analysts Scott Goodyear and Eddie Cheever will be in the ESPN booth, while Jack Arute, Jamie Little, Brienne Pedigo and Vince Welch will report from the pits.
Also included in the five-hour telecast will be live coverage of the Freedom 100 Firestone Indy Lights race. The race features the Indy Racing Leagues developmental series.
ESPN Classic Airs Indianapolis 500 Marathon Saturday
Open wheel racing fans can rev up for the Indianapolis 500 as ESPN Classic presents three classic runnings of the event as well as a profile of one of the top Indy 500 drivers of all time, all airing Saturday, May 24, the day before ABC�s live coverage of the �Greatest Spectacle in Racing.�
The special day of programming begins at 1 p.m. ET with an airing of the ESPN Classic signature series SportsCentury featuring four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser. The 1987 Indianapolis 500 airs at 2 p.m. as Unser wins his fourth Indy 500, finishing just ahead of Roberto Guerrero and Fabrizio Barbazza. Mario Andretti started on the pole.
The 1991 race airs at 4 p.m. with Rick Mears joining the exclusive four-winner club, winning from the pole. Michael Andretti and Arie Luyendyk pick up second and third.
The day concludes with the event that started Danica Patrick�s rise to IndyCar stardom, the 2005 Indianapolis 500, airing at 6 p.m. Dan Wheldon passed Patrick in the race�s closing laps to take the victory.
ESPN Classic also will replay Sundays 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 on Monday, May 26, at 9 a.m.
NASCAR Nationwide Series Live in Prime Time from Charlotte
ESPN2s season-long coverage of the NASCAR Nationwide Series continues with a live, prime-time telecast of the 300-mile event at Lowe�s Motor Speedway in Charlotte, N.C., Saturday night, May 24, beginning at 7 p.m. ET with NASCAR Countdown. The telecast also airs in high definition on ESPN2 HD and will be simulcast on ESPN360.com, ESPN MobileTV and ESPN Deportes.
Dr. Jerry Punch will be the lead announcer for ESPN2�s coverage, joined in the booth for analysis by 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Rusty Wallace and two-time Cup Series champion crew chief Andy Petree. Dave Burns, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake will report from the pits, while two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion crew chief Tim Brewer will be in the ESPN DISH Tech Center.
Allen Bestwick will host NASCAR Countdown with analysis by Wallace and Brad Daugherty, a former winning team owner in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, in the ESPN pit studio.
Two-time series champion Dale Earnhardt Jr. joins the ESPN coverage team as In-Race Reporter, talking to Wallace on the race�s pace laps and during caution periods.�
NASCAR Now Expands Monday for Roundtable Discussion of Charlotte Weekend
The Monday, May 26, edition of NASCAR Now will expand to an hour and will include host Allen Bestwick leading a roundtable discussion with ESPN analysts and reporters of the weekends NASCAR action Lowes Motor Speedway as well as other NASCAR news. The program airs at 5:30 p.m.
Half-hour episodes of NASCAR Now air Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday of this week at 6 p.m., and at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, while the one-hour weekend edition airs Sunday at 10 a.m. with a preview of that nights NASCAR Sprint Cup event at Charlotte.
NASCAR Now is hosted by Ryan Burr, Nicole Manske and Bestwick and originates from ESPN�s high definition studios in Bristol, Conn. Contributors include NASCAR Insiders Marty Smith and Angelique Chengelis, analysts Ray Evernham, Tim Brewer, Brad Daugherty, Boris Said and Tim Cowlishaw, ESPN.com reporters Terry Blount and David Newton and D.J. Copp, a member of Bobby Labonte�s NASCAR team.
NASCAR Now viewers also benefit from frequent contributions by the NASCAR on ESPN team including Rusty Wallace, Dale Jarrett, Dr. Jerry Punch, Andy Petree, Dave Burns, Jamie Little, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake.
ESPN’s Moto X World Championships Re-Air on ESPN2
ESPN2 is giving fans the chance to see encore performances of the inaugural Moto X World Championships that were held in April at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego. X Games host Sal Masekela led an unprecedented line up of athlete analysts, including Travis Pastrana, Jeremy McGrath, Ricky Carmichael, Doug Henry and Brian Deegan. ESPN and ESPN2 aired eight hours of live coverage of the new annual event which featured the best Moto X riders in the world competing for the title of Moto X World Champion in a variety of disciplines, including Freestyle, SuperMoto, Speed & Style, Best Trick, Step Up and Moto X Racing. ESPN2 re-airs the event starting May 20.
The schedule includes SuperMoto and Best Trick, airing Tuesday, May 20, at 8 p.m. ET; Best Trick, Step Up and Speed & Style, airing Thursday, May 22, at 8:30 p.m.; and Freestyle and Step Up, airing Saturday, May 24, at 10:30 p.m.
ESPN Classic Featuring Two Classic NASCAR Races, Tony Stewart SportsCentury
Race fans will have the opportunity to watch two classic NASCAR Sprint Cup races this week on ESPN Classic.
The 1986 First Union 400 from North Wilkesboro (N.C.) Speedway airs Thursday, May 22, at 2 p.m. ET, while the 1994 Food City 500 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway airs Friday, May 23, at 3 a.m. Both races originally aired live on ESPN.
Also airing on ESPN Classic this week is an episode of the award-winning ESPN program SportsCentury featuring NASCAR star Tony Stewart. The show airs Wednesday, May 21, at 9 a.m.
ESPN Original Movie 3 Airs Monday on ESPN2
NASCAR fans at home on Memorial Day will have an opportunity to watch the critically-acclaimed ESPN original motion picture 3, based on the life of seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Dale Earnhardt. The movie airs Monday, May 26, at 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
The 2004 movie stars Barry Pepper as Earnhardt, J.K. Simmons as his father, Ralph, and current NASCAR driver Chad McCumbee as Dale Earnhardt Jr.
NHRA Fans Can Relive Events on ESPN Classic
Fans of the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series will have opportunities all week to relive some of the great events of the 2003 and 2004 seasons as ESPN Classic opens the archives and brings the events back to life on TV. The programs air at 11 a.m. ET Tuesday through Friday of this week, as well as Monday of next week.
On Tuesday, May 20, fans can watch the action of the 2003 Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals from Pomona, Calif., while Wednesday�s program features the 2004 Checkers-Schucks-Kragen NHRA Nationals from Phoenix. The 2004 Mac Tools NHRA Gatornationals from Gainesville, Fla., air Thursday with the 2004 NHRA Summitracing.com NHRA Nationals from Houston airing Friday. On Monday, May 26, fans can watch the 2004 O�Reilly Auto Parts Thunder Valley NHRA Nationals from Bristol, Tenn.
ESPN2 is the home for the NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series and the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series.
Three Episodes of Car Wars with Funkmaster Flex Airing This Week
A new season of the ESPN2 reality show Car Wars with Funkmaster Flex continues with three episodes this week.
The show features popular New York TV and radio personality Funkmaster Flex, who opens each episode with music is my life but cars are my passion.� Flex oversees a competition involving amateur car customizers and the real-life drama associated with the contest. The contestants put everything on the line to win.
Three back-to-back episodes air Saturday, May 24, beginning at 10:30 a.m.