Dale Earnhardt Jr. will make his IndyCar debut as an analyst for the 2019 Indianapolis 500, as NBC Sports activities has tapped him to hitch Danica Patrick.
One other NASCAR driver can be overlaying IndyCar‘s largest race, as NBC Sports activities has employed Dale Earnhardt Jr. to function an Indianapolis 500 analyst.
Earnhardt, who’s in his second season as a part of the NASCAR on NBC workforce, has by no means broadcast an IndyCar Collection race earlier than. Nor did he ever compete within the Indy 500 throughout his 19-year profession; actually, 2019 would be the first time he’s even attended the race.
He had 5 Prime 10 finishes within the Brickyard 400, which is the NASCAR Cup Collection race that takes place at Indianapolis Motor Speedway; his finest end was fourth in 2012.
That makes him look like a curious selection to hitch an IndyCar broadcast sales space; nevertheless, as NBC’s press launch factors out, Earnhardt Jr. is tremendously in style and since he’s by no means been to this occasion earlier than, he’ll robotically convey a recent perspective.
“Dale Jr. is among the hottest personalities in racing historical past, so including Dale to our inaugural broadcast the Biggest Spectacle in Racing on NBC was a no brainer,” mentioned NBC Sports activities government Sam Flood.
“Dale has by no means been capable of attend the 500, and now he may have the chance to expertise each side of this huge occasion—from the get together within the Snake Pit and the lots of of 1000’s of followers within the grandstands to the important thing strategic choices and daring strikes on observe.”
The transfer comes lower than a month after NBC Sports activities introduced Danica Patrick would even be an analyst for this 12 months’s Indy 500. It’s actually completely different to see an IndyCar sales space with drivers who’re extra recognized for NASCAR; in spite of everything, NBC hasn’t introduced any IndyCar drivers over to pitch in with its protection of the Daytona 500.
However with this being NBC’s first 12 months overlaying the Indianapolis 500, they’d be clever to try to make as large a press release as doable. Hiring recognizable, in style faces like Patrick and Earnhardt (who was named NASCAR’s Most Fashionable Driver greater than a dozen instances) is unquestionably going to create buzz, even when it additionally means much less skilled evaluation in the course of the race.
For his half, Earnhardt has been capable of adapt to different occasions comparatively rapidly, because the community additionally enlisted him to help with its protection of the Winter Olympics, Tremendous Bowl and Stanley Cup Remaining. If anybody can segue into a brand new sport, it’s him, and on Wednesday he actually gave the impression of he’s decided to supply high quality up within the broadcast sales space.
“I absolutely perceive the accountability we’ve of bringing this race to tv viewers throughout the nation,” he mentioned within the press launch. “There’s no higher broadcast workforce to do it. I’m blessed to be part of it.”
NBC’s full Indy 500 workforce additionally contains Mike Tirico (host), IndyCar veterans Leigh Diffey (play by play), Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy (analysts), with NASCAR veterans Krista Voda and Rutledge Wooden. The common IndyCar workforce of Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Kevin Lee and Jon Beekhuis can be within the pits, with extra reporting by Robin Miller and Dillon Welch.
However will Dale Earnhardt Jr. convey extra eyeballs to the Indianapolis 500? And extra importantly, is Dale Earnhardt Jr. going to be a high quality analyst for a league he’s by no means been concerned with earlier than? We’ll discover out on Could 26.
Subsequent: Danica Patrick joins NBC Sports activities for Indy 500
The 2019 Indianapolis 500 takes place Could 26. For full protection of the 2019 IndyCar season, observe the IndyCar class at FanSided.