via press release:

Dave Rieff Named to Anchor Role for ESPN NHRA Drag Racing Coverage


When the newly re-named NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series begins its 13th season on ESPN next weekend, a name and voice familiar to fans of the series will be in a new role on ESPN’s television coverage team.


Dave Rieff, who has been a pit reporter since ESPN began its NHRA coverage in 2001, will move into theanchor announcer position for the 2013 season. Rieff will host ESPN’s telecasts of both the Mello Yello Series and the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series.


The season begins with the 53rd annual O’Reilly Auto Parts NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif., Feb. 14-17. ESPN2 will air same-day coverage of qualifying on Saturday, Feb. 16, at 10 p.m. ET and same-day coverage of eliminations on Sunday, Feb. 17, at 8 p.m. In addition, ESPN3, ESPN’s multi-screen live sports network, will have live coverage of Friday qualifying at 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 15, with the full day of eliminations live on Sunday starting at 2 p.m.


All of ESPN’s NHRA coverage can also be seen on computers, smartphones and tablets through WatchESPN and the free WatchESPN app for those who receive their video service from an affiliated provider.


Rieff will call the action from the booth with analyst Mike Dunn, who is beginning his 12th year with ESPN. The former racer is one of only three drivers in NHRA history to win more than 10 times in both the Top Fuel and Funny Car classes. Gary Gerould, John Kernan and Jamie Howe will report from the pits and trackside.


“I’ve been very lucky during the 17 years I’ve been involved with the NHRA to be around many of the greats of the sport, both television personalities and public address announcers,” said Rieff. “People like Dave McClelland, Steve Evans, Bob Frey, Marty Reid and Paul Page.


“Little did I know all those years ago I’d end up getting to know these great people and would be able to work with them and glean as much knowledge as I could. I’m very grateful for this new opportunity and hope to be able to take the best of the best from each of these men and bring it to the forefront.”


Rieff and Dunn have previously worked together in the booth on some ESPN3 qualifying shows as well as co-hosting some other drag racing programs on ESPN.


“It’s always a great opportunity just to get to sit next to Mike and talk about drag racing,” said Rieff, “It’s like one of those sitting around at home on the sofa situations, two guys that really love their sport and come at it from different sides of the fence, so to speak, and we’re able to bring that energy and passion to the viewers.


“There’s so much anticipation for the upcoming season and I can’t wait to get started.”


The NHRA will be televised on ESPN networks in 182 countries and territories to more than 56.5 million homes, including coverage in Africa, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Caribbean, Central America, Europe, Middle East, Mexico, New Zealand and South America. In addition, U.S. troops and their families serving around the world in 175 countries and on Navy vessels at sea can watch NHRA through the American Forces Network.



2013 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Schedule on ESPN

(all times Eastern)


Date Event Time Network

Feb. 16 Pomona Qualifying 10 p.m. ESPN2
Feb. 17 Pomona Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Feb. 24 Phoenix Qualifying 1 a.m. ESPN2
Feb. 24 Phoenix Qualifying (re-air) 8 a.m. ESPN2
Feb. 24 Phoenix Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
March 17 Gainesville Qualifying 1:30 a.m. ESPN2
March 17 Gainesville Qualifying (re-air) 8 a.m. ESPN2
March 17 Gainesville Eliminations 7 p.m. ESPN2
April 6 Las Vegas Qualifying 10 p.m. ESPN2
April 7 Las Vegas Eliminations 11 p.m. ESPN2
April 20 Charlotte Qualifying 5 p.m. ESPN2
April 21 Charlotte Eliminations 7 p.m. ESPN2
April 27 Houston Qualifying 3 p.m. ESPN2
April 28 Houston Eliminations 2 p.m. ESPN2
May 4 Atlanta Qualifying 8 p.m. ESPN2
May 5 Atlanta Eliminations 6:30 p.m. ESPN2
May 18 Topeka Qualifying 5 p.m. ESPN2
May 19 Topeka Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
June 1 Englishtown Qualifying (Part 1) 5 p.m. ESPN
June 2 Englishtown Qualifying (Part 2) 1 a.m. ESPN2
June 2 Englishtown Eliminations 4:30 p.m. ESPN2
June 15 Bristol Qualifying 7 p.m. ESPN2
June 16 Bristol Eliminations (Part 1) 1 p.m. ESPN2
June 16 Bristol Eliminations (Part 2) 11 p.m. ESPN2
June 22 New England Qualifying 8 p.m. ESPN2
June 23 New England Eliminations 7 p.m. ESPN2
June 29 Chicago Qualifying (Part 1) 5 p.m. ESPN2
June 30 Chicago Qualifying (Part 2) 11 p.m. ESPN2
June 30 Chicago Eliminations 9 p.m. ESPN2
July 6 Norwalk Qualifying 6 p.m. ESPN2
July 7 Norwalk Eliminations 7 p.m. ESPN2
July 20 Denver Qualifying 10 p.m. ESPN2
July 21 Denver Eliminations 6 p.m. ESPN2
July 27 Sonoma Qualifying 7 p.m. ESPN
July 28 Sonoma Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Aug. 3 Seattle Qualifying 10:30 p.m. ESPN2
Aug. 4 Seattle Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Aug. 17 Brainerd Qualifying 11 p.m. ESPN2
Aug. 18 Brainerd Eliminations 9 p.m. ESPN2
Sept. 1 Indianapolis Qualifying (Part 1) 11 a.m. ESPN2
Sept. 1 Indianapolis Qualifying (Part 2) 5 p.m. ESPN2
Sept. 2 Indianapolis Eliminations Noon ESPN2
Sept. 14 Charlotte Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Sept. 15 Charlotte Eliminations 8:30 p.m. ESPN2
Sept. 21 Dallas Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Sept. 22 Dallas Eliminations 8:30 p.m. ESPN2
Sept. 28 St. Louis Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Sept. 29 St. Louis Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Oct. 5 Reading Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Oct. 6 Reading Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Oct. 26 Las Vegas Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Oct. 28 Las Vegas Eliminations 8 p.m. ESPN2
Nov. 9 Pomona Qualifying TBD ESPN2
Nov. 10 Pomona Eliminations 7 p.m. ESPN2


Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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