One of the longest-running relationships between a sporting event and a network will continue on Sunday, May 29, when the Indianapolis 500 airs on ABC for the 47th consecutive year. ESPN on ABC’s coverage from Indianapolis Motor Speedway begins at 11 a.m. ET with The Indianapolis 500 – A Centennial Celebration presented by Honda. The race telecast is presented by GoDaddy.com and begins at noon, with the race’s green flag at 12:12 p.m.
Brent Musburger hosts the telecast, while Marty Reid will call the race with analysis by former IZOD IndyCar Series star Scott Goodyear and 1998 Indy 500 winner Eddie Cheever. Reporting from the pits will be Rick DeBruhl, Jamie Little, Dr. Jerry Punch and Vince Welch.
ESPN will use 62 cameras to televise the race fully in high definition, including a 360-degree rotating onboard camera mounted behind the driver on multiple cars. Unique views will be provided by Bat Cam, a high definition camera running on a cable over pit road and the frontstretch that can move at more than 80 mph. All 33 cars will carry GPS boxes for the Sportvision RaceFX system to provide telemetry and pointers to help identify the cars for viewers. ESPN will use a radio replay system that can record, play back and edit radios from any of the 33 drivers and viewers will learn more about the technical aspects of the sport with segments from the Emmy-winning ESPN Craftsman Tech Garage.
ESPN Classic Airing 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 Tribute
ESPN Classic will present a week-long tribute in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500. The 2011 edition of the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” airs Sunday, May 29, on ABC, with pre-race at 11 a.m. ET.
All week long beginning Monday, May 23, ESPN Classic will air classic Indy 500 races and SportsCentury programming. On the actual 100th anniversary, May 30, ESPN Classic will present a 22-hour marathon anchored by a re-air of the 2011 race.
NASCAR Nationwide Series Live from Charlotte on ABC
The NASCAR Nationwide Series races at Charlotte Motor Speedway this weekend and ABC will have a live telecast of the Top Gear 300 on Saturday, May 28. NASCAR Countdown airs at 2 p.m. ET with the race’s green flag at 2:46 p.m. Also from Charlotte, ESPN2 airs coverage of NASCAR Nationwide Series qualifying on Saturday at 10 a.m.
Allen Bestwick will call the action with analysis by Dale Jarrett, the 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, and two-time champion crew chief Andy Petree. Reports from two-time champion crew chief Tim Brewer will air from the ESPN Craftsman Tech Garage, while pit reporters will be Dave Burns, Mike Massaro and Shannon Spake.
NASCAR Countdown from the ESPN pit studio will be hosted by Nicole Briscoe with analysis by 1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Rusty Wallace and former NASCAR Sprint Cup series race winner Ricky Craven. The studio team will interact with the booth during the telecast of the race.
Jarrett, Smith, McGee on NASCAR Now Roundtable
ESPN NASCAR analyst Dale Jarrett, NASCAR Now lead reporter Marty Smith and ESPN the Magazine’s Ryan McGee will be panelists on NASCAR Now’s weekly roundtable discussion program airing Monday, May 30, at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2. Allen Bestwick will host the edition of ESPN2’s daily NASCAR news and information program.
Michelle Bonner hosts a half-hour episode of NASCAR Now airing at 7 p.m. on Tuesday of this week. The show will not air Wednesday through Friday due to ESPN2’s coverage of French Open tennis, but returns Saturday, May 28, at 11a.m. following ESPN2’s telecast of NASCAR Nationwide Series qualifying at Charlotte Motor Speedway. In addition to hosting the Saturday edition, Bonner also hosts NASCAR Now’s weekend edition airing Sunday, May 29, at 10 a.m. with a preview of that night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Charlotte. ESPN analyst Ricky Craven, Smith and Mike Massaro will report from Charlotte.
NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Action Sunday
Highlights from the recent event for the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series event at Heratland Park Topeka will air in a one-hour format on Saturday, May 28, at 11:30 a.m. ET on ESPN2.
The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series will return to action over the weekend of June 4-5 in Englishtown, N.J., with coverage on ESPN2 and ESPN3.com.
ESPN.com Offers RacingLive! During NASCAR Charlotte Event
NASCAR fans looking for an online gathering during ESPN’s telecasts of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series now have a place to go on ESPN.com.
RacingLive! on ESPN.com is a live blog where fans can engage in debate and discussion with ESPN.com writers and editors during the NASCAR Sprint Cup races. On Sunday, May 29, RacingLive! Charlotte will kick off to coincide with the NASCAR Sprint Cup All-Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Fans can join ESPN.com’s NASCAR experts in dissecting every aspect of the race live at http://espn.go.com/racing/nascar/.
ESPN.com motorsports writer David Newton will be onsite at the race to report on the weekend’s action and news.
ESPN Radio Raceday Airs Saturday, Sunday
Each weekend morning, ESPN Radio’s RaceDay starts its engines at 6 a.m. ET with host Pat Patterson anchored from Daytona Beach, Fla. Patterson also originates the broadcast from several racetracks with key races during the season. On both Saturday and Sunday mornings, ESPN Radio’s RaceDay listeners get an hour of news, previews and analysis, as well as profiles and interviews with NASCAR’s biggest names and newsmakers and the involvement of listeners via calls and e-mails.
Additionally, many of ESPN’s NASCAR reporters and analysts contribute each week as ESPN networks televise the entire NASCAR Nationwide Series and the final 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup races, including the 10-race “Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup” championship. A list of ESPN Radio affiliates can be found at www.espnradio.com.
Visit www.espnmediazone.com for ESPN’s latest releases, schedules and other news, plus photos, video and audio clips and more.