Random NASCAR Stuff to talk about.....

Hell yeah! That sounds absolutely perfect. Well done :cheers:
Forgot also have the garage experience or whatever they call it. I don't know about the rest of the group but I plan to hit the Short Track too while I'm there and probably the museum.
Long read...

NASCAR Kicks Off New Era of Remote Production With Rolex 24

New production facility is built by NEP Group; NEP’s Dallas data center plays key tech role

By Ken Kerschbaumer, Editorial Director
Monday, January 29, 2024 - 11:32 am
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The 2024 Rolex 24 at Daytona this past weekend ushered in a new age of remote-production workflows for NASCAR. When the core production team produced the coverage from the recently opened 58,000-sq.-ft. NASCAR Production Center in Concord, NC, about 30 minutes northeast of Charlotte, it was the first time the facility was put to use for an actual race.
Steve Stum, VP, operations and technical production, NASCAR, describes it as an exciting first step. “We had very high expectations going into the Rolex 24 weekend, and the building, field team, and engineers performed as we had hoped. Putting a 24-hour race on NBC from a new facility with a totally new workflow was pretty bold, but everyone felt very excited for the future. There are plenty of bugs to go through now, but, overall, the weekend was a huge success.”

One of the two main production-control rooms at NASCAR’s new production facility in Concord, NC
NEP Group built the facilities in Concord and provided the NEP Alpha and BSI trucks onsite at the track. The trucks provided the cameras, microphones, and router and intercom (BSI also had a truck handling all the in-car cameras). Approximately 40 people were onsite, mostly camera operators and audio people, and 36 video feeds were sent to Concord from Daytona. Daytona International Speedway is connected via 20-Gbps circuits (the plan is to get to 100-Gbps) to an NEP data center in Dallas, which is connected to the NASCAR Production Center via two separate 100-Gbps circuits.
“All the audio and high-resolution–video signals went from Daytona to NEP’s data center in Dallas,” Stum explains. “All of the EVS replay, Calrec audio, and Grass Valley switcher hardware is there. We are controlling all that hardware from our facility here in Concord. We also have backup signals going into NEP’s Pittsburgh teleport.”

NASCAR Productions EVS operators in Concord, NC, control servers located in Dallas, allowing NASCAR to leverage NEP’s data center and technical infrastructure.
The final audio submixing and mixing is done in Concord, along with EVS operations and production control by technical directors and assistant directors in Concord.
The NASCAR Production Center came together very quickly, with only 16 months between breaking ground and opening the doors.
“We were trying to design and build as we went,” says Stum. “Just getting the building done in time was a challenge. We would prioritize rooms to be built, rooms to be designed, and then rooms to be outfitted. As the construction crew got done with a section, NEP would come in and do that section. And then we would move on to the next section. There was a lot of hopscotching, and it was complicated, but it all came together.”
The entire plant is based on SMPTE ST 2110 and will operate in 1080p SDR this year before making the jump to 1080p HDR next year. The key, says Stum, is a facility that has a technical infrastructure and backbone very much managed by NEP.
“We’re very proud to see the new NASCAR Productions facility come to life, a special collaboration between NEP Group and NASCAR many years in the making,” says Glen Levine, president, NEP U.S. Broadcast Services. “This beautiful, new IP 2110 facility gives NASCAR its own on-campus broadcast-production ecosystem, ready to support its live productions anywhere and any way they need to work — a truly unmatched broadcast solution for a major professional-sports league. The facility is also the definition of NEP’s connected-production vision and TFC orchestration system — an operation that’s flexible, scalable, and ready to meet the needs of evolving content creation and distribution that enhances the fan viewing experience.”
NEP’s engineers have a whole different level of knowledge of IP and alleviated the need for NASCAR to hire new IP experts, Stum notes, adding, “Having our own facility gives us the ability to scale up a little bit easier as NEP takes care of all the maintenance, support, and backend stuff.”
Among the most important things to get right when setting up a new remote-production facility are the audio and communication systems. The use of fiber provides the bandwidth to increase the quality of the audio signals routed from the track, through the data center in Dallas, and on to Concord.
“The feedback from the audio team is that it is the best audio they’ve ever heard because of how we’re processing the audio,” says Stum. “We have an Omneo frame here and one on the truck and one in Dallas; and everyone can talk to each other. We also have NEP’s TFC frame in Dallas.”
When fully operational, the new facility will have seven control rooms, three studios, and a dozen edit suites with 10-Gbps connectivity — all humming with activity and content creation around one of racing’s top brands.
The control rooms will handle a number of functions, from producing large-scale racing events to producing digital shows, podcasts, alternate broadcasts, and more.
The three studios are currently being finished. According to Stum, a lot of work went into improving soundproofing so that there is minimal echo. Having three studios gives the production team the flexibility to create different styles of studio show. The largest stage can house a large studio show, the middle-sized studio handles digital and streaming offerings, and the smallest is for one or two guests and a couple of cameras.
“You don’t need big, giant sound stages anymore,” he adds. “These studios help us improve our A game.”
Also being completed is the replay room. When that system is up and running, a 9-ft.-tall by 32-ft.-wide LED wall will be used by rules officials to monitor pit-road action, the race itself, and more.
“We bought replay software from SBG, which is used by F1 and others,” says Stum. “We’re setting that up now, and, hopefully, by April or May, it will be up and running in time for the Chicago Street Course.
“This gives that team more continuity from one week to the next,” he continues, “as opposed to sitting shoulder to shoulder in a room at the track. They will have a better view and a better environment. The race director and the series directors are onsite at the track to talk to crew chiefs, the broadcasters, and the drivers, but these guys will help those guys make calls.”
A room where announcers will call racing off-tube is also being finalized. Like the replay room, it will give them a more consistent race-calling experience, regardless of the type of track. The plan is for the talent to stand in a horseshoe shape so that they can see each other as well as the monitor wall. Stum says new camera systems, like the 35 Bolt 6 4K cameras that will be installed at different tracks, could give on-air talent the ability to tap a touchscreen and follow whichever car they wanted. Images from those cameras could also be stitched together to replicate the view the talent would get looking out the window of a broadcast booth at the track.
“When the talent gets settled in,” he says, “we’ll start playing with some things, but this room will give them a lot of flexibility as to what they want to look at.”
Adds Levine, “Everyone involved should be proud of the collaboration between NEP engineering and integration and the NASCAR engineering and production teams that brought this vision to life.”​

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There is a lot of conversation on this forum about Kyle Larson's and others extracurricular activities. No need to continue trying to be the Thread Czar.
There is a lot of conversation on this forum about Kyle Larson's and others extracurricular activities. No need to continue trying to be the Thread Czar.

I wish we’d see a driver comeback full time like Carl Edwards. Hell I think Harvick still has a couple wins left in the tank, hopefully KH runs a part time Xfinity (Busch) Series schedule like I heard he was still open to.
Carl has said that he tested in the simulator and didnt do very good.

It just gets to be a bit much when you got these young phenoms like Carson Hocevar who get praise and attention from sponsors & fans a like for being a 🏁 or 💥 type driver.
It’s a shame NASCAR drivers don’t ever read this forum and see a little bit of gentle bullying. Lol.
I remember Jeff Gluck came in here once.
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I think the mechanics and engineers @ ECR, Hendrick, Roush-Yates, TRD have it rough.
One of MBM/Carl Long’s crew chiefs was on here last year. Unless he left the team.
Years ago when my avatar was Mike Harmon on here, someone who doesn't post here anymore PM'd me and thought that the picture was me and that I was an old CARS Tour driver from the Hooters Pro Cup days. Should've embraced it and pretended to be a washed up semi-pro driver from the 90s.

You're not Ryan Newman?
Yeah. He is a really nice guy, very enthusiastic about the sport. When I met him, he seemed genuinely excited to see fans waiting for his autograph.

You don’t really see that much these days.

Normally I don’t always like autographs, and Ryan Newman & Kyle Larson are really great drivers, but I felt kinda put off by both of their behavior of how they acknowledge others in line but don’t even act like I exist. Oh well.

Better off serving NBA players I guess.
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