Motor Racing Network
TypeRadio network
Country
United States
Ownership
OwnerInternational Speedway Corporation
ParentNASCAR Holdings
Key people
Bill France, Sr. (founder)
Ken Squier (network founder)
History
Founded1970, Concord, North Carolina[1]
Launch date1970 (1970)
Coverage
Stations328
Links
Websitemrn.com

Motor Racing Network (MRN) is a U.S. radio network that syndicates broadcasts of auto racing events, particularly NASCAR. MRN was founded in 1970 by NASCAR founder Bill France, Sr. and broadcaster Ken Squier, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of NASCAR. Its first broadcast was the 1970 Daytona 500.

MRN is one of the two main radio broadcasters of the NASCAR Cup Series and Xfinity Series, covering events held at tracks owned by NASCAR, along with Dover International Speedway and Pocono Raceway. It also broadcasts the NASCAR All-Star Race, and the entire Truck Series season (although clearance of Xfinity and Truck Series events may vary by station). Almost all of the remaining Cup and Xfinity races are broadcast by the Speedway Motorsports-owned Performance Racing Network (PRN), besides the Brickyard 400 (which is broadcast by the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Radio Network in association with PRN); many stations have affiliations with both MRN and PRN in order to air a full NASCAR schedule. All races are also carried on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio.

In addition to NASCAR races, MRN broadcasts the majority of the ARCA Menards Series and once had exclusive coverage of the United SportsCar Championship (IMSA now does the radio broadcasts) and Formula One, including the United States Grand Prix, which returned in the 2012 season at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas and offers other race related programs.

The MRN flagship station is WNDB, which serves Daytona Beach, Florida. The network headquarters moved near Charlotte, North Carolina in 2008.

Programs

While MRN's primary role is doing radio broadcasts of NASCAR races, they also produce daily radio programs that are carried by some of their affiliates. They also stream the programs on their website and offer most shows as a podcast on Apple iTunes.

Three MRN announcers also host daily call-in shows on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio channel 90 year round. Mike Bagley and Pete Pistone co-host The Morning Drive Monday through Friday from 7:00 to 11:00 a.m. Eastern time. Dave Moody hosts Sirius XM Speedway from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Moody was also the first NASCAR personality to host a show on satellite radio back in 2003 on Sirius Satellite Radio despite the fact NASCAR races and other NASCAR-related shows were exclusively on XM Satellite Radio. This changed on January 1, 2007 when MRN's Barney Hall announced the launch of Sirius XM NASCAR Radio on Sirius XM.

Affiliate stations

MRN has about 600 affiliate stations, including:

Alabama
Arizona
Delaware
Florida
Iowa
Kentucky
Michigan
Minnesota
Missouri
New Hampshire
New York
North Carolina
Ohio
Texas
Virginia

Announcers

Current

2013 Motor Racing Network announcers (from left to right) Buddy Long, Kurt Becker, Alex Hayden, Mike Bagley and Kyle Rickey riding in a golf cart at Road America.
2013 Motor Racing Network announcers (from left to right) Buddy Long, Kurt Becker, Alex Hayden, Mike Bagley and Kyle Rickey riding in a golf cart at Road America.

Booth announcers

Cup
Xfinity and Trucks

(For Companion Races; Alex Hayden, Jeff Striegle, Steve Post, Dave Moody and Mike Bagley Rotate Week to Week)

Turn announcers

Cup

Dave Moody primarily works turns 1 and 2 at most tracks (i.e. Daytona and Talladega), the backstretch at the short tracks (Martinsville and the September Richmond race (Mike Bagley works the April race), turn 1 at Pocono and the esses at Watkins Glen. When the Truck and Cup Series share a weekend at an SMI venue (except for the All-Star Race), Dave Moody works the booth for the Truck race. This occurs during both Las Vegas Motor Speedway races.

Mike Bagley primarily works turns 3 and 4 at most tracks, the backstretch at Dover, turn 2 at Pocono, and the backstretch at Daytona and Talladega. He has been used by NBC Sports in a similar rule since 2017 at Watkins Glen International and Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2018 (Indianapolis is technically an SMI venue for radio purposes, as SMI's radio network works that race).

Both men also work these same positions for the Xfinity and Truck Series when they share the same track and weekend with the Cup Series as well as standalone Xfinity and Truck races (usually road course races that aren't shared with the Cup Series (like Mid-Ohio).

Standalone/fill-in as needed

Pit reporters

Cup
Stand-alone races

Former

MRN's Ned Jarrett interviewing Bill Elliott after a victory
MRN's Ned Jarrett interviewing Bill Elliott after a victory
Ned Jarrett during his days as an MRN pit reporter
Ned Jarrett during his days as an MRN pit reporter

References

  1. ^ Elkins, Ken (April 15, 2013). "Motor Racing Network building in Concord sells for $2.75M". Charlotte Business Journal. American City Business Journals. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  2. ^ "Biography of Eli Gold". eligold.com. Retrieved July 23, 2017.