NASCAR: Why aren’t Mike Joy and Clint Bowyer announcing Nashville race?

Ally 400, Nashville Superspeedway, NASCAR (Photo Credit: The Tennessean)
Ally 400, Nashville Superspeedway, NASCAR (Photo Credit: The Tennessean) /

Sunday evening’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Nashville Superspeedway is the first race of the 2023 season which is set to be shown on NBC.

From now until the champion is crowned in early November at Phoenix Raceway, there are no more off weekends remaining on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule.

Sunday evening’s Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway is set to begin a stretch of 20 consecutive race weekends to close out the 36-race regular season, including the final 10 races on the regular season schedule and all 10 races on the playoff schedule.

Sunday’s race also begins NBC’s portion of the broadcast schedule. Since 2015, Fox has covered the season’s first 16 points races, while NBC has covered the remaining 20.

The 16th points race of the season took place at Sonoma Raceway two Sundays ago, leading into the calendar’s one and only in-season off weekend.

As a result, Sunday’s 300-lap race around the four-turn, 1.33-mile (2.140-kilometer) Lebanon, Tennessee oval will not feature a broadcast booth with lead announcer Mike Joy and color commentator Clint Bowyer.

The NBC booth for the remainder of the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season consists of lead announcer Rick Allen and analysts Steve Letarte, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Jeff Burton.

This broadcast “booth”, which has featured these four individuals since Earnhardt joined the team in 2018, is actually split up into two physical booths, with two announcers in each. Allen and Letarte have been in a booth together since 2021, while Earnhardt and Burton have been in the other.

Not all of NBC’s 20-race portion of the schedule is set to be shown on regular NBC, however. Four regular season races and the final six playoff races are set for NBC, but the other six regular season races and the first four playoff races are set for USA Network.

USA Network is owned by NBCUniversal and took over from NBC Sports Network last season as the alternative broadcast channel during NBC’s portion of the schedule. NBC Sports Network ceased operations at the end of 2021.

As for Fox, their first points race of the 2024 season is scheduled for Sunday, February 18, that being the 66th annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway.

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Tune in to NBC at 7:00 p.m. ET on Sunday evening for the live broadcast of the Ally 400 from Nashville Superspeedway. Begin a free trial of FuboTV now and don’t miss it!

DraftKings Sportsbook, which is currently offering fans an instant $150 just for signing up and placing a single $5 wager, lists polesitter Ross Chastain of Trackhouse Racing Team and Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. as the +550 co-favorites to win the event. Reigning race winner Chase Elliott of Hendrick Motorsports is listed as the seventh favorite at +900.