Mike Massaro, Dave Burns added to NASCAR on NBC broadcast lineup

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The NASCAR on NBC broadcast team continues to grow with the additions of Mike Massaro and Dave Burns, both confirmed Thursday by NBC Sports/NBCSN Executive Producer Sam Flood.

Each joins the team from ESPN, where they have been for several seasons. Massaro and Burns will handle pit road for both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR XFINITY Series telecasts, which begin next July 4-5 at Daytona International Speedway. They’ll also be a part of NASCAR AMERICA broadcasts on NBCSN.

“We’ve known Dave Burns for a long time, and are excited to welcome back his ability to make strong contributions,” Flood said in a release. “Dave was a member of NBC Sports’ Emmy Award-wining NASCAR broadcast team during our last partnership, and brings extensive knowledge and experience into his role.”

“Mike Massaro has developed into a talented reporter and host, with great relationships that have formed over the course of two decades in motorsports,” said Flood. “We’re happy to welcome him into NBC Sports and looking forward to his work on pit road and contributions to NASCAR AMERICA on NBCSN.”

For Burns, it’s an encore having been part of NBC’s past NASCAR package.

“I feel truly blessed to be back with the NBC Sports team, or more accurately: FAMILY,” said Burns. “NASCAR is such a cool sport to cover, and I enjoyed a great run of success with NBC from 2001-2006. I’ve developed great working relationships throughout NASCAR over the years and could not be more excited about the future.”

Added Massaro, “I’m extremely thankful to have experienced many amazing things over the last two decades, and this opportunity to join NBC’s NASCAR coverage is the validation of a dream. NBC’s dedication to storytelling is something that I value and look forward to advancing as part of the next generation of NASCAR coverage.”

Massaro and Burns join the previously announced pit reporters Marty Snider and Kelli Stavast; other talent includes Krista Voda, announced last week, and the booth team of Rick Allen, Jeff Burton and Steve Letarte. That rounds out the lineup.

A full release can be found on the NBC Sports Group Press Box website.

Top Fuel driver Austin Prock earns 2019 NHRA top rookie honors

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Having just completed a promising first year in NHRA Top Fuel competition, Austin Prock is on the road to even greater drag racing success in his career.

That’s why it’s not surprising that Prock was named the winner of the 2019 Auto Club Road to the Future Award during Monday night’s annual NHRA Awards dinner at the Ray Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California.

The Road to the Future Award is NHRA’s version of Rookie of the Year, and Prock was among the brightest young stars on the circuit this past season, including winning his first national event at the Northwest Nationals at Pacific Raceways in suburban Seattle, the 16th race on the 24-race schedule.

What made that first win all the more sweeter is it came at the same event that his boss, legendary 16-time Funny Car champion John Force, captured his milestone 150th career win.

One month ago, Prock set a personal best run of 3.688 seconds at 334.40 mph over veteran driver Doug Kalitta in the first round of eliminations at the AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals three weeks ago in Ennis, Texas (suburban Dallas).

“I am proud of the season this Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist team put together,” Prock said in a media release. “My guys worked their asses off all season long to give me the opportunity to win the Auto Club Road the Future Award. I couldn’t have done it without them.

“I would have never been here without John Force and Robert Hight (president of John Force Racing). They gave me the opportunity to fulfill my dream and I owe the world to them. I hope I made them proud.”

Prock became only the 10th rookie in the history of the NHRA pro ranks to both win a race in their first season and also go on to win the Road to the Future award. He also was the 13th rookie in the sport’s history to qualify for the Countdown to the Championship, NHRA’s six race playoffs.

Prock becomes the sixth John Force Racing driver to earn the Road to the Future Award, joining Tony Pedregon (1996), Hight (2005), Ashley Force-Hood (2007), Mike Neff (2008), Courtney Force (2012) and Brittany Force (2013).

Austin Prock is the son of veteran crew chief Jimmy Prock, who tuned Hight to his third career NHRA Funny Car championship this past Sunday.

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