My cable offers me 14 24-hour sports channels, 10 (11 once Al Jazeera America launches) 24-hour news/financial channels, and 1 24-hour motorsports channel. With the closure of SPEED I will have 0 motorsports channels and 15 24-sports channels. SPEED was more than just the channel that capitalized every letter of its name despite not being an acronym or initialism. SPEED was the channel that took as many motorsport disciplines as possible and packaged them in a way that made them secondary to NASCAR.
The boom in sports television has lead to a content shortage. Everybody has time to fill and they're paying top dollar. All the racing on SPEED can plausibly be expected to find homes on the other sports channels. The great loss comes from having one centralized network to host it all. Let us never again take for granted having one network provide both the Sprint All Star Race and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
As Fox Sports 1 takes on a greater variety of sports, its reach will expand to homes outside the motorsports niche. Perhaps this will prove a benefit for racing and bring new eyeballs to our sport. At this point, my penchant for reckless optimism should be noted.
I'll remember SPEED as the Channel of "Wind Tunnel," sports cars, and Formula 1 (pre-2013), and I'll forget about "R U Faster than a Redneck" and "Pinks."
While I'm writing about TV networks that carry NASCAR again, there is something to which I'd like to call everyone's attention. At the end of every NASCAR race, qualifying, or practice session, there's a prerecorded disclaimer on screen reminding us "This copyrighted telecast may not be reproduced, retransmitted, or used in any form without the express written consent of NASCAR Broadcasting. NASCAR would like to thank all of our loyal fans for your continued support, and we hope you enjoyed today's broadcast." This usually plays in or near the last commercial break. When you see it, pay close attention to the engine animation. You will notice the engine has dual overhead cams, 4 valves per cylinder, and a flat-plane crankshaft.
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