FOX Sports’ Josh Sims Embraces Full-Time Move to NASCAR (EXCLUSIVE)

Josh Sims

Josh Sims/FOX Sports Josh Sims (right) interviews Ben Rhodes.

Veteran sports reporter Josh Sims made the leap to FOX Sports in July 2021 and began covering the sport full-time while also working as a pit reporter in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He is now preparing to kick off his first full season with the broadcaster, and he is ready for a truly memorable year that will include even more interviews and wild races.

A New Jersey native, Sims spent a decade as a reporter before moving over to FOX Sports. He didn’t grow up as a NASCAR fan considering that the sport isn’t huge in that area. However, he gained an appreciation starting in 2015, which only grew after he covered the 2016 Daytona 500 and the final battle between Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr.

This first race led to several others over the years, as well as pre-race shows every single week. Sims began covering NASCAR at an in-depth level and quickly became a fan, especially after noticing the level of access provided to members of the media.

“I always tell people that back when I was covering the Carolina Panthers, you would kill to get a chance to have a one-on-one with Cam Newton when he was the biggest thing in town,” Sims told Heavy in an exclusive interview. “I mean, I remember getting one-on-ones with Jimmie Johnson once a season. I remember being able to grab Jeff Gordon when he’s doing his retirement at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. … You don’t get that in other sports.”

Sims made the full-time leap to FOX Sports in July and fully immersed himself in NASCAR. He already had a solid background of knowledge and a relationship with the drivers, but he still had more work to do. He put in considerable time doing research in preparation for his first race. He also received guidance from veteran members of the team, such as Jamie Little, Kaitlyn Vincie, Larry McReynolds, and Adam Alexander among others.

“Getting the information is only one part of the job,” Sims continued. “Then you have to dive into it. I kind of enjoy doing that part of it because learning about this stuff, and learning the storylines just makes the race so much more interesting when you’re covering it. You know, if an incident happened between two drivers eight years ago at this track, some people might have forgotten it. Those two drivers hadn’t forgotten it. And if you have that information, you can add that to the broadcast.”

Several Drivers Played an Important Role in Sims’ Early Content

Jumping into the role of a pit reporter and analyst midway through the season was not a simple task. There were no exhibition races to aid in the preparation. Instead, Sims had to hit the ground running right at the start of the playoffs.

The veteran sports reporter spent time shadowing Regan Smith before grabbing the microphone and contributing to the FOX Sports coverage. Sims used this opportunity to learn as much as possible about his new role while also figuring out which drivers would provide solid content.

“Ben Rhodes. Look no further than that,” Sims told Heavy. “I mean, from the jump, when I was shadowing Regan, we went over and talked to him and [crew chief] Rich [Lushes] and I was just like, ‘This guy’s always got something to say and he’s kind of funny.’ You know the guys that will give it back to you when you can kind of talk and have a little back and forth and banter and stuff.

“And then [Rhodes] obviously wins the championship, and the press conference is legendary. And I had a chance to do a one-on-one with him after. But even going into a couple of races after I first started, I just knew Ben Rhodes is one of those guys that’s always going to have something interesting to say and be entertaining.”

Along with Rhodes, Sims also specifically mentioned some of the biggest names in the Cup Series. For example, 2018 champion Joey Logano took time to work with Sims on his first piece for FOX Sports. He drove Sims around town in one of his most powerful vehicles and properly welcomed the reporter to the NASCAR beat.

“I’ll always be thankful to Joey Logano for doing kind of my first piece with ‘NASCAR on FOX.’ Because he didn’t have to do that, you know, and he didn’t have to do that to the extent of what he did. He took me on the ride around town. He played the game, and they tricked me and did all these little things. But he’s just a genuinely good dude and that was a lot of fun.”

Sims has spoken to several Cup Series drivers during his time with a FOX affiliate and after joining the FOX Sports fold. The list includes Hamlin, Bubba Wallace, Erik Jones, and Truex. Sims has had great experiences with all of these drivers, but he does have a “special place in his heart” for Truex, who also hails from New Jersey.

Sims will now build upon these relationships as he covers another full season in NASCAR. He will join the rest of the FOX Sports crew and prepare for all of the surprising moments, head-turning races, and interviews featuring drivers in the heat of the moment.

Sims Remains Ready for Throwback Weekend

While there are several tracks and races on the 2022 schedule that spark excitement, Sims is ready for one particular weekend. He remains excited about Throwback Weekend, the annual celebration of NASCAR history when drivers bring back special schemes.

FOX Sports provided coverage for the 2021 Throwback Weekend and went all out for the experience. The analysts in the studio wore some of their Sunday best from decades ago while the pit reporters broke out NSYNC t-shirts and some flannel.

Sims was not part of the FOX Sports family during Throwback Weekend, but he hopes to take part in 2022. He is ready to fully embrace the experience and design a costume fitting with whatever theme fits the Truck Series race.

“I need to know the era they’re going to do,” Sims said. “Because like, it could span a lot of different ways. If we go 90s, I have a good idea of what I wear. 80s and 70s, that’s a little bit tougher. I’d have to do some research to kind of figure out where I’m going to go. I have some ideas, but I need to flush them out before I determine it.

“Because if you’re going, you’ve got to go 100%. You can’t just go in and be like, ‘Oh, I’ll just put on this and then the rest will be normal. No, you’ve got to go all out. They went all out last year, and I want to be part of it and go all out.”

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