The NASCAR Cup Series returns to Nashville Superspeedway on June 20, marking the first time in 37 years. NBC is celebrating the occasion by creating a new promotional campaign with two superstars. Dale Earnhardt Jr. and three-time Grammy winner Brad Paisley will partner to promote the upcoming race, as well as NBC’s coverage of NASCAR.
The new promotional campaign will debut on Sunday, May 30, during NBC Sports’ coverage of the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500. The duo will appear at The Grand Ole Opry House and welcome stock car racing’s top series back to Music City. They will then host the pre-race coverage live from the Peacock Pit Box on pit road at Nashville Superspeedway.
“I’m so excited that NASCAR is returning to Nashville – after 37 long years!” Paisley said in a press release from NBC Sports. “I get to kick off the 2021 NASCAR season by hosting the NBC Sports’ pre-race coverage with my buddy Dale Jr. – how cool is that going to be?”
NBC Sports will provide coverage for multiple races at Nashville Superspeedway. The Xfinity Series race will take place on Saturday, June 19 at 3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN. The Cup Series race will follow on Sunday, June 20 at 3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
Earnhardt Openly Campaigns for Racing in Music City
The 15-time Most Popular Driver has long promoted motorsports in the Nashville area. He has campaigned for NASCAR to return to the Fairgrounds Speedway, making multiple speeches in the area. According to WKRN, the most recent example occurred prior to the ARCA Menards Series race on May 8. Earnhardt spoke to the gathered crowd and explained that the short track would add more excitement to the Cup Series.
In addition to campaigning for NASCAR to head back to Nashville, Earnhardt made an impact on another racing series. He joined the ownership group for the Music City Grand Prix, which will head to Nashville in early August and take over the streets near Nissan Stadium.
When the NASCAR Cup Series heads to one of Earnhardt’s favorite cities, he will continue to celebrate motorsports. He will join forces with a Nashville icon and kick off NBC’s portion of the season. Earnhardt will then head to the booth and call the Ally 400.
“I’m thrilled to work with my friend Brad Paisley to welcome NASCAR back to one of my favorite cities,” Earnhardt said in the NBC Sports press release. “I can’t wait to get on the Peacock Pit Box with Brad, celebrate the passionate racing fans in and around Nashville, and kick off NBC Sports’ portion of the NASCAR season in style.”
Paisley Previously Helped Kick Off a Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway
The race at Nashville Superspeedway will not be the first time that the country star will set the stage for the Cup Series race. According to ESPN, he previously served as the grand marshal for the Bank of America 500 playoff race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 2017.
Paisley joined a list of special guests at one of NASCAR’s most iconic tracks before giving the command for the drivers to start their engines. U.S. Olympic skier Hannah Kearney, an Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Champion, served as the honorary pace car driver while country singer Carly Pearce performed the national anthem.
Following Paisley’s command, Martin Truex Jr. led 91 laps en route to the win. He held off Chase Elliott and Kevin Harvick, two of the other playoff drivers. This race was one of eight that Truex won during the 2017 season, a list that also includes the championship race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Four years later, Paisley will join forces with NASCAR once again. Although he will do so in a very different role. Instead of shouting to the drivers, he will partner with Earnhardt to entertain the fans at Nashville Superspeedway, as well as the viewers at home.