On the heels of highly popular "Drivers Only" broadcasts at Pocono (2017) and Talladega (2018), FOX NASCAR puts its eight-driver team to the test at Charlotte on Saturday for the third-consecutive year – this time with a twist. Chad Knaus joins the FOX Sports lineup on Saturday for the "Drivers Only + Chad" NASCAR XFINITY SERIES race telecast, live on FS1 at 1:00 PM ET, joining all eight returning drivers from last season. For the third time, Kevin Harvick has the call alongside analysts Clint Bowyer and Joey Logano. Ryan Blaney, Erik Jones and Bubba Wallace cover pit road, while Brad Keselowski returns to host from FOX Sports’ virtual studio in Charlotte alongside analysts Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Knaus.
On Saturday’s "Drivers Only + Chad" NASCAR XFINITY SERIES race telecast:
NASCAR XFINITY SERIES PLAY-BY-PLAY ANNOUNCER ADAM ALEXANDER SAYS THE "DRIVERS ONLY" DRIVER ANALYSTS HAVE QUICKLY GROWN INTO BROADCASTERS:
"All those guys have become naturals in their broadcasting roles and keenly aware of what is required, what works and what doesn’t. There’s power in numbers, so they also provide a bit of security and comfort to each other. The first year, I made sure I was in the booth really early and stayed glued to their sides in the booth for the entire race, but this year, I could take the afternoon off and no one would notice."
ALEXANDER IS IMPRESSED WITH THE DRIVERS’ QUICK TRANSITION FROM RACE CAR TO BROADCAST AFTER CUP SERIES PRACTICE:
"Those guys don’t get enough credit for the transition they make for the ‘Drivers Only’ broadcast, because 90-percent of the time, they are jumping out of their Cup car after final practice and running like their hair is on fire to the booth, pit road or the host desk for the start of the Xfinity race. Other than during the Cup race, that’s as intense a part of their weekend as they will experience. They’re still sweating when they step into the booth. To be able to turn off that intensity behind the wheel and turn on a smiling face, add charm and personality and get focused on calling a race, is simply amazing to me."
ALEXANDER SAYS HIS ROLE IN "DRIVERS ONLY" BROADCAST HAS GOTTEN EASIER EACH YEAR:
"We’ve kept the same group of guys in the booth the entire time, and they have gotten better and better – almost to the point you’d think they do this every week. Prior to the first ‘Drivers Only’ broadcast at Pocono, I went to Kevin Harvick’s house and spent a lot of time explaining my prep process and relaying what is and isn’t important for his database. Now, he has called so many races that he doesn’t need that. Joey Logano also has spent so much time in the FOX Sports booth and on NASCAR RACE HUB that he doesn’t need much coaching. And Clint Bowyer, well, I’ve never seen someone call a race, leave the booth, forget everything we taught him, return the next time, and in five or 10 laps, be right where he needs to be. He’s a natural."
— Fox Sports —