QOTD: How Better to Show Daytona?

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

It gets buried in the larger sports conversation by the NFL, but the 24 Hours of Daytona took place over the weekend.

I caught a little bit Saturday, but Sunday it seemed impossible to find on my cable. I think it was streaming on Peacock, which I have, all weekend, so I could've watched it that way. I'm not complaining, to be clear, since I could've popped Peacock on and yet I chose to watch something else. But I wonder if limiting so much of the race to streaming will help it grow an audience. After all, IMSA isn't NASCAR.

I know NBC and its partner networks had other sports to show, and other scripted shows. Indeed, the cable portion of the race I saw was on USA and it was followed by figure skating. So I am not blind to the corporate considerations. And, obviously, a 24-hour race doesn't neatly fit into a window like a mileage race that will take three or four hours.

Still, there has to be a better way, given how many channels are out there, for NBC to show the race other than streaming. Some people won't pay for it. Some will struggle to work it.

On the other hand, by shunting the race off to Peacock, NBC has set it up so those willing to get Peacock will be able to watch it uninterrupted.

What say you? Is streaming the best way to watch a race like that? Does it help or hurt the sport's growth?

Sound off below.

[Image: Said Marroun/Shutterstock.com]

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Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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4 of 15 comments
  • Bobby D'Oppo Bobby D'Oppo on Jan 31, 2023

    In countries with access to the international live feed, IMSA is one of the most watchable and accessible major racing series. Very little to dislike there. The Radio Lemans team do a great job filling the air and conveying the nuances of race strategy without losing sight of the human element. I do think they could stand to spend a little more time exploring car tech, but that's more a personal preference than outright criticism.

    One big issue with broadcasting a 24-hour endurance race is balancing the desire to have the series shown on major networks with the reality of the prohibitively high cost of full-race TV rights. It's why the streaming model works so well, and why the major network broadcast team should be lauded for the how they navigate and deliver a condensed showcase of a sport that is sometimes difficult to penetrate.

  • Ltcmgm78 Ltcmgm78 on Jan 31, 2023

    I got a Peacock Premium subscription last year and watch IMSA and IndyCar on it. I'm in favor of having one place where the race runs without interruption. Put the start and finish on linear TV. IMSA does a good job of telling you how to find the coverage.

  • Fred Fred on Jan 31, 2023

    I have Xfinity so I get Peacock for free. If I didn't I probably wouldn't subscribe to it.

  • Norman Stansfield Norman Stansfield on Feb 01, 2023

    Have a computer monitor with an HDMI connection laying about? Plug a video stick on it, put the app and monitor the race.