ESPN Classic, ESPN360.com to air NASCAR Awards
NASCAR will honor the top
drivers in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup racing at the series’ annual awards banquet Friday
night, live from the Waldorf-Astoria at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN Classic and
ESPN360.com. The event will be re-aired at midnight on ESPN2.
In addition, ESPN Classic will air highlights from the NASCAR NMPA Myers
Brothers Awards Luncheon at 8:30 p.m. Friday prior to the start of the banquet
coverage. Held on the day before the banquet, the luncheon highlights NASCAR
awards such as rookie of the year and ends with the presentation of the Myers
Brothers Award by the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA) to the individual
or group making the greatest contribution to NASCAR racing in the past year.
Jimmie Johnson and members of the Hendrick Motorsports organization will be
toasted as the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup championship team for the second consecutive
year during Friday night’s awards banquet. The rest of the drivers who finished
in the top 10 of the series point standings also will receive awards onstage.
Comedian/actor David Spade will be the featured performer at the banquet. Spade
is a long-time fan of NASCAR, having served as Grand Marshal in 2006 at Atlanta
Motor Speedway and as the Honorary Mayor at Darlington Raceway in 2003.
Multi-platinum, Grammy-winning recording
artist Kelly Clarkson also will perform during the banquet. Clarkson, whose
collaboration with NASCAR this year included a live performance before the
Daytona 500 and a television spot for the “NASCAR, How bad have you got it?”
campaign, will perform her songs “One Minute” and “Since U Been Gone.”
Dr. Jerry Punch, the lead announcer for NASCAR
coverage on ESPN, will serve as the onstage master of ceremonies for the