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NASCAR on television in the 1970s

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

One of the earliest telecasts of a NASCAR race was the 1960 Daytona 500, parts of which was presented as part of CBS Sports Spectacular, with announcer Bud Palmer.[1]

In the ensuing years, but before 1979, there were three main sources of NASCAR telecasts:[citation needed]

  • ABC's Wide World of Sports, the sports anthology program, provided coverage of select NASCAR Winston Cup races in the 1970s. In 1971, it presented a 200-lap race at Greenville-Pickens Speedway in its entirety, the first such broadcast of a NASCAR race. Throughout the 1970s, ABC presented portions of the Daytona 500, Southern 500, and other important races.
  • In the late 1970s, CBS Sports Spectacular aired some races; like Wide World of Sports, they were taped and edited.
  • Car and Track, a weekly auto racing show hosted by Bud Lindemann, recapped all of NASCAR's top-series races in the 1960s and 1970s in a weekly 30-minute syndicated show.

CBS Sports President Neal Pilson and motor-sports editor Ken Squier believed that America would watch an entire stock car race live on television. On February 18, 1979, CBS presented the first flag-to-flag coverage of the Daytona 500.[2] Richard Petty won NASCAR's crown-jewel race for the sixth time, but the big story was the post-race fight on the track's infield between Cale Yarborough and Donnie Allison, who crashed together on the final lap while leading.[2] The race drew incredible ratings, in part due to the compelling action both on and off the track, and in part because a major snowstorm on the East Coast kept millions of viewers indoors.[3]

List of races televised

1970

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/22 Daytona 500[4] ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
4/12 Alabama 500[5] (Talladega) ABC Bill Flemming Keith Jackson
4/18 Gwyn Staley 400[6] (North Wilkesboro) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
5/9 Rebel 400[7] (Darlington) ABC Jim McKay Ned Jarrett
5/24 World 600 (Charlotte) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
7/4 Firecracker 400[8] (Daytona) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
7/25 Nashville 420[9] ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
9/7 Southern 500[10] (Darlington) ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
10/4 Wilkes 400 (North Wilkesboro) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
10/11 National 500[11] (Charlotte) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki

From 1962 to 1978, the Daytona 500 was shown on ABC's Wide World of Sports.[citation needed] During the 1960s and early 1970s, the race was filmed and an edited highlight package aired the following weekend.

During the period on Wide World of Sports, the booth announcers typically served as roving pit reporters during the running of the race, as well as interviewing in victory lane. The booth commentary was recorded in post-production.

1971

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/11 Twin 125's (Daytona) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
2/14 Daytona 500[12] ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
4/4 Atlanta 500 ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
4/10 Greenville 200[13] ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
5/2 Rebel 400 (Darlington) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
5/16 Winston 500 (Talladega) ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
7/4 Firecracker 400 (Daytona) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
8/6 Myers Brothers 250 (Winston-Salem) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
9/6 Southern 500 (Darlington) ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
10/10 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki

1972

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/17 Daytona 125 ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
2/20 Daytona 500[14] ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
3/5 Miller High Life 500 (Ontario) ABC
3/12 Carolina 500 (Rockingham) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
3/26 Atlanta 500 ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
4/16 Rebel 400 (Darlington) ABC Bill Flemming Donnie Allison
7/4 Firecracker 400 (Daytona) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
9/4 Southern 500[15] (Darlington) ABC Chris Economaki
10/8 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki

1973

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/15 Twin 125's (Daytona) ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart and Chris Economaki
2/18 Daytona 500 ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart and Chris Economaki
4/1 Atlanta 500 ABC Keith Jackson Chris Economaki
7/4 Firecracker 400 (Daytona) ABC Keith Jackson Jackie Stewart and Chris Economaki
9/3 Southern 500 (Darlington) ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki

1974

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/14 Twin 125's ABC Keith Jackson Jackie Stewart and Chris Economaki
2/17 Daytona 500[16] ABC Keith Jackson Jackie Stewart and Chris Economaki
5/19 Mason Dixon 500 (Dover) ABC Bill Flemming Chris Economaki
10/6 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC

In 1974, ABC began the first semi-live coverage (joined-in-progress) of the Daytona 500. Coverage was normally timed to begin when the race was halfway over. Brief taped highlights of the start and early segments were shown, then ABC joined the race live already in progress, picking up approximately the last 90 minutes of the race. This format continued through 1978.

1975

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/13 Twin 125's (Daytona) ABC
2/16 Daytona 500 ABC Bill Flemming Jackie Stewart
3/23 Atlanta 500 ABC
5/4 Winston 500 (Talladega) CBS Ken Squier
5/25 World 600 (Charlotte) CBS Ken Squier
7/4 Firecracker 400 (Daytona) ABC
8/24 Champion Spark Plug 400 (Michigan) CBS Ken Squier Johnny Rutherford
9/1 Southern 500 (Darlington) ABC
10/5 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC
11/9 Dixie 500 (Atlanta) CBS Ken Squier Johnny Rutherford

1976

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/15 Daytona 500[17] ABC Bill Flemming Jackie Stewart
3/21 Atlanta 500 ABC
4/11 Rebel 500 (Darlington) ABC
5/2 Winston 500 (Talladega) CBS Ken Squier
5/30 World 600 (Charlotte) CBS
6/13 Riverside 400 CBS Ken Squier Richard Petty
7/4 Firecracker 400 (Daytona) ABC
8/8 Talladega 500 CBS Ken Squier Lee Petty
8/22 Champion Spark Plug 400 (Michigan) CBS Ken Squier Bobby Unser and Ned Jarrett
9/6 Southern 500 (Darlington) ABC
10/10 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC
11/7 Dixie 500 (Atlanta) CBS Ken Squier

The 1976 Daytona 500 was held on the same day of the final day of competition in the Winter Olympics (also broadcast on ABC). ABC carried 30 minutes of live coverage of the start of the race, then switched to the Olympics for 90 minutes to carry taped coverage of the final two competitive events (a cross-country ski race and the final runs in the bobsled), held earlier that day. Then it was back to Daytona for about an hour-and-a-half for the finish.

1977

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/20 Daytona 500 ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart
4/3 Rebel 500[18] (Darlington) ABC Keith Jackson Jackie Stewart
5/29 World 600[19] (Charlotte) CBS Ken Squier David Hobbs
10/9 National 500[20] (Charlotte) ABC Al Michaels Chris Economaki
11/20 Los Angeles Times 500[21] (Ontario) CBS Ken Squier David Hobbs

1978

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/16 Twin 125's[22] (Daytona) ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart
2/19 Daytona 500[23] ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart
3/19 Atlanta 500[24] ABC Al Michaels Chris Economaki
4/9 Rebel 500[25] (Darlington) ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart
5/28 World 600 (Charlotte) CBS
7/4 Firecracker 400[26] (Daytona) ABC Jim McKay Chris Economaki
9/4 Southern 500 (Darlington) ABC
10/8 National 500 (Charlotte) ABC
11/19 Los Angeles Times 500[27] (Ontario) CBS Ken Squier David Hobbs

1979

Date Event Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
2/15 Twin 125's[28] (Daytona) CBS (shown 2/17) Ken Squier David Hobbs
2/18 Daytona 500[29] CBS Ken Squier David Hobbs
3/18 Atlanta 500 ABC
4/8 Rebel 500[30] (Darlington) ABC Jim McKay Jackie Stewart
6/17 Gabriel 400[31] (Michigan) ABC Al Michaels Jackie Stewart
7/4 Firecracker 400[32] (Daytona) ABC Bill Flemming Sam Posey
8/5 Talladega 500[33] CBS Ken Squier Lee Petty
9/3 Southern 500[34] (Darlington) ABC Bill Flemming Jackie Stewart
10/7 National 500[35] (Charlotte) NBC
11/18 Los Angeles Times 500[36] (Ontario) CBS (shown 2/25/1979) Ken Squier Brock Yates

In 1979, CBS instituted the live "flag-to-flag" coverage policy.[37][38] The ground-breaking 1979 broadcast ushered in the 22-year run of NASCAR on CBS.

During its entire run from 1979-2000, CBS also carried the Busch Clash (live), and in most years, carried the Twin 125s (tape-delayed).

See also

References

  1. ^ Ryan McGee (2007). ESPN Ultimate NASCAR. ESPN Books. pp. 42–43. ISBN 1-933060-25-5.
  2. ^ a b "1979: Petty winds up in 'fist' place". January 23, 2003. Retrieved February 14, 2011.
  3. ^ McGee, Ryan (January 14, 2008). "Dramatic '79 Daytona 500 put NASCAR on the worldwide map". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved December 15, 2015.
  4. ^ 1970 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  5. ^ 1970 Alabama 500 on YouTube
  6. ^ 1970 NASCAR Grand National Gwyn Staley 400 @ North Wilkesboro (Full Race) on YouTube
  7. ^ 1970 Rebel 400 on YouTube
  8. ^ 1970 Firecracker 400 on YouTube
  9. ^ 1970 Nashville 420 on YouTube
  10. ^ 1970 SOUTHERN 500 on YouTube
  11. ^ 1970 National 500 on YouTube
  12. ^ 1971 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  13. ^ 1971 Greenville 200 on YouTube
  14. ^ 1972 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  15. ^ 1972 Southern 500 on YouTube
  16. ^ 1974 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  17. ^ 1976 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  18. ^ 1977 Rebel 500 on YouTube
  19. ^ 1977 World 600 on YouTube
  20. ^ 1977 NAPA National 500 on YouTube
  21. ^ 1977 Los Angeles Times 500 on YouTube
  22. ^ 1978 Twin 125's @ Daytona on YouTube
  23. ^ 1978 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  24. ^ 1978 Atlanta 500 on YouTube
  25. ^ 1978 Rebel 500 on YouTube
  26. ^ 1978 Firecracker 400 on YouTube
  27. ^ 1978 Firecracker 400 on YouTube
  28. ^ 1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Daytona Twin 125s (Full Highlight Program) on YouTube
  29. ^ Full Race Replay: 1979 Daytona 500 on YouTube
  30. ^ 1979 Winston Cup Rebel 500 part 1 of 3 on YouTube
  31. ^ 1979 Michigan 400 on YouTube
  32. ^ 1979 Firecracker 400 on YouTube
  33. ^ 1979 Talladega 500 on YouTube
  34. ^ 1979 Southern 500 @ Darlington on YouTube
  35. ^ 1979 NASCAR Winston Cup NAPA National 500 @ Charlotte Motor Speedway (Full Race) on YouTube
  36. ^ 1979 Los Angeles Times 500 Part 1 of 3 on YouTube
  37. ^ Mark Aumann (January 23, 2003). "1979: Petty winds up in 'fist' place". Turner Sports Interactive. Archived from the original on May 25, 2011. Retrieved 2007-06-09.
  38. ^ "1979 Daytona 500". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2007-06-09.
This page was last edited on 19 January 2021, at 11:00
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