NASCAR has finally figured out who will televise the second half of its season.
On Tuesday, the stock-car racing outfit agreed to a 10-year rights deal with NBC Sports Group that begins in 2015.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the eight-year renewal the stock-car circuit signed with Fox Sports last year was for an estimated $2.4 billion. Fox Sports airs the first-half Sprint Cup races (among others), including the Daytona 500.
Through 2024, the NBC Sports Group deal covers the final 20 Sprint Cup Series races (seven of which will air on NBC and 13 on the NBC Sports Network) as well as the final 19 Nationwide Series events (four races on NBC and 15 on NBCSN). The season-ending Sprint Cup Series championship event will air on NBC, returning to network TV for the first time since 2009.
NBC last aired NASCAR races in 2006.
The new deal includes the NASCAR Hall of Fame ceremony and season-ending banquets, as well as rights to certain NASCAR K&N Series, NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Toyota (Mexico) events, as well as Spanish-language broadcast rights on Telemundo and mun2 for national series events and the Toyota (Mexico) Series races. It also includes exclusive TV Everywhere streaming rights and certain video-on-demand rights for the Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series events.
"[NBC's] football package on Sunday night is the No. 1 one show on television, and along with the Kentucky Derby and the Triple Crown, of course the NHL and the Stanley Cup playoffs, the French Open, they are the home to championship programming and we'll be promoted and marketed and shown alongside those top tier events," NASCAR vice president of broadcasting and production Steve Herbst said.
The NBC partnership takes over for ESPN, which currently airs the final 17 Cup races as well as the entire Nationwide Series schedule through 2014. Turner Sports, which holds rights through next year for a six-race summer stretch, which also see its deal end with no renewal. That package, as well as the first half of the Nationwide Series is still available, with Fox being a possible suitor.
"We have enjoyed very strong partnerships with both Turner and ESPN over the years,'' said NASCAR chairman Brian France. "We are committed to being great partners to them throughout the 2014 season and continuing the many friendships that we have with both companies for years to come."
Upon announcement of the deal, ESPN and Turner issued statements:
"ESPN has enjoyed a long and mutually beneficial relationship with NASCAR. We have tremendous respect for the France family, the drivers and all in the sport and wish them well," ESPN president John Skipper said in that release. "We will continue to serve NASCAR fans through SportsCenter and our other news platforms as we continue to enhance our industry-leading collection of quality assets."
David Levy, president of sales, distribution and sports at Turner Broadcasting, said in that company's release: “Turner Sports is proud of the partnership we’ve built with NASCAR over the past 31 years and the role our company has played in helping to grow the sport. We think NASCAR is an attractive property but we are disciplined in our approach to negotiating sports rights and could not come up with a business model that was financially prudent for our company.”