Special to NYSportsJournalism.com
November 5, 2014: Nascar is going extra laps to expand its audience by trying to make it younger and more diverse, the latest example of which is a programming alliance with Nickelodeon to be part of NickSports, a two-hour, weekly primetime programming block that debuted Sept. 3, on Nicktoons.
For its first entry, Nascar on Nov. 5 will debut the docu-series, Hammer Down, described as an original, four-episode series featuring four of Nascar’s rising stars: Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr. and Kenzie Ruston.
Produced by Nascar Productions, the eight- to 12-minute episodes "will give audiences an all-access pass into the young athletes’ lives as they aspire to become elite Nascar drivers, while also enjoying time with friends and coming of age as young adults."
“Hammer Down gives young sports fans an inside look into the world of Nascar through relatable personalities,” Zane Stoddard, Nascar vp-entertainment marketing and content development, said in a statement. “Nickelodeon is the leader in the kids’ entertainment space and we’re thrilled about the opportunity to align with such an influential brand to reach the next generation of Nascar fans.”
The first two episodes, “A Picture of Speed” and “The Family Business,” to air Nov. 5, spotlight Nascar Camping World Truck Series drivers Wallace, 21, and Blaney, 20, respectively.
In the episodes, the drivers will "share their racing roots, walk viewers through a Nascar race shop and garage and open up about their hobbies and the practical jokes that continue to bond them as friends," according to Nascar.
Among other inside info, Wallace reveals that he eats a lot of Fruit Roll-Ups. "That's kinda bad," the 21-year-old says. "But that's okay. I'm a kid, just like you."
The final two episodes will be focus on Nascar Sprint Cup Series driver Larson, 22, and Ruston, 23, the highest finishing female in Nascar K&N Pro Series history, and are scheduled to air later this month.
"We’re thrilled about the opportunity to align with such an influential brand to reach the next generation of Nascar fans.”
The weekly NickSports block also includes original and acquired long- and short-form content from the NFL, MLS, and WWE. It airs every Wednesday from 9-11 PM. ET.
According to Keith Dawkins, svp/GM for Nicktoons, TeenNick and Nick Jr., "More than 70% of kids ages 7-14 in the U.S. play two-to-three organized sports a year, so the interest and enthusiasm is already there. Our NickSports block will bring kids and families into the huddle by giving them an all-access pass to their favorite athletes, teams and leagues.”
In addition to Hammer Down, Nascar Productions said it would create four 60- to 90-second vignettes that would air during the NickSports block. The vignettes will "focus on key strategic Nascar initiatives that reflect principles of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), the athleticism of Nascar drivers and the sanctioning body’s Green efforts, among other topics."
Back to Home Page