NASCAR: Why isn’t Martinsville being shown on USA Network?

Christopher Bell, Joe Gibbs Racing, Martinsville Speedway, NASCAR playoffs (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Christopher Bell, Joe Gibbs Racing, Martinsville Speedway, NASCAR playoffs (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

The round of 8 of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs is set to conclude this Sunday afternoon with the Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway.

Two spots remain open in the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series Championship 4 at Phoenix Raceway after Hendrick Motorsports’ Kyle Larson won the round of 8 opener at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Joe Gibbs Racing’s Christopher Bell won the following race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Both of those spots will be awarded in this Sunday afternoon’s 500-lap Xfinity 500 around the four-turn, 0.526-mile (0.847-kilometer) Martinsville Speedway oval in Ridgeway, Virginia. One spot is guaranteed to be awarded on points, while the other will either be awarded on points or via a win.

Hendrick Motorsports’ William Byron and Team Penke’s Ryan Blaney find themselves above the Championship 4 cut line, while 23XI Racing’s Tyler Reddick and Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin find themselves below it but within striking distance. RFK Racing’s Chris Buescher faces a must-win situation.

Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville is being broadcast live on NBC, not USA Network.

Both of the season’s two remaining races, including this Sunday afternoon’s round of 8 finale at Martinsville and next Sunday afternoon’s Championship 4 at Phoenix Raceway, are set to be shown live on NBC.

NBC is set to conclude the season having broadcast 10 races live since the switch from Fox’s portion of the schedule back in June.

During NBC’s portion, 10 races were shown live on USA Network, the NBCUniversal-owned network which took over from NBC Sports Network as the alternative network following the latter’s shutdown at the end of 2021.

There were 10 races left on the regular season schedule when the switch from Fox occurred. Six were shown live on USA Network, while the other four were shown live on NBC. USA Network led off the playoffs with four races in a row, with NBC then taking over for the final six. This Sunday’s race is the fifth of those six.

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Tune in to NBC at 2:00 p.m. ET this Sunday, October 29 for the live broadcast of the Xfinity 500 from Martinsville Speedway and then again at 3:00 p.m. ET next Sunday, November 5 for the live broadcast of the NASCAR Cup Series Championship Race from Phoenix Raceway. Begin a free trial of FuboTV now if you have not already done so!