NASCAR, IMSA, Indycar and NBC have issued statements detailing future plans
NBCSN is a popular sports channel loved by many sports enthusiasts. It was launched in 1995 by what is now Comcast’s NBC Universal to compete with Disney’s ESPN and Fox Corporation’s Fox Sports.
NBCSN is a popular destination for motorsports enthusiasts. They broadcast NASCAR, IMSA, Indycar and more. The channel also hosts the NHL and English Soccer.
At the end of 2021, NBCSN will be shutdown. Key programming from the NBCSN channel will be moved to another Comcast property, the USA network.
“At the conclusion of 2021, we have decided that the best strategic next step for our Sports Group and the entire company is to wind down NBCSN completely, with key elements of NBCSN’s programming moving to USA Network and, in some cases, Peacock for 2022 and beyond,” stated an internal memo from NBC Sports president Pete Bevacqua.
That’s not all doom and gloom. The viewership for NASCAR’s premier series, may increase.
“We’re absolutely committed more than ever to live sports as a company, and having such a huge platform like USA Network airing some of our key sports content is great for our partners, distributors, viewers and advertisers alike,” said NBC Sports Group Chairman Pete Bevacqua.
Currently, the NBCSN channel is in homes of 80.6 million. Meanwhile, USA Network is in 86.2 million homes.
NASCAR, IMSA and Indycar comment
NASCAR issued a statement, “We are committed to ensuring that NASCAR and IMSA races are carried and distributed smartly to our broad and loyal fan base. NBC is a best-in-class partner and we will work together to ensure continued high quality delivery of our events now and in the future.”
Later this year, NASCAR events will begin a shift to USA Network. The Stanley Cup Playoffs will also be shown on USA. Both of those airings will take place before the official shutdown of NBCSN.
Additionally, some motorsports events may be shown on the Peacock streaming service. That won’t start until 2022.
It remains unclear what will happen to coverage of short track racing events such as the NASCAR Pro Series or ARCA Menards Series.
“NBC Sports has always been a transparent partner, and we were aware of this upcoming strategy shift,” said IndyCar in a statement. “Our 2021 broadcast schedule is not impacted by this decision. We plan to discuss our future broadcast arrangements in the late spring.”
Former names for NBCSN
Outdoor Life Network
NBC Sports Network