NATE RYAN JOINS NBC SPORTS GROUP FULL-TIME AS LEAD MOTORSPORTS WRITER AND ON-AIR REPORTER
Award-Winning Motorsports Journalist and Former USA Today Writer to Lead NASCARTalk Editorial Coverage, Contribute to NBC SportsWorld and Serve as On-Air Correspondent
Former Motor Racing Network Contributor and 2011 NMPA Writer of the Year Dustin Long
Also Joins NBCSports.com's NASCARTalk Franchise as Editor and Writer
STAMFORD, Conn. - January 20, 2015 - NBC Sports Group has expanded its relationship with former USA TODAY Sports auto racing writer Nate Ryan. Ryan's new, full-time position covers broadcasting and editorial work, as he will serve as an on-air reporter during NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN, and play a leading role within NBCSports.com's expanding compilation of digital coverage devoted to NASCAR and motorsports. Ryan joins as Lead Writer for the soon-to-be-introduced NASCARTalk franchise, which will serve as NBCSports.com's destination for coverage surrounding America's most popular racing brand. In addition to NASCARTalk, Ryan will also contribute long-form stories to the recently introduced NBC SportsWorld. The announcement was made today by Rick Cordella, SVP and GM of Digital Media for NBC Sports Group, and Jeff Behnke, VP of NASCAR Production.
"We are thrilled to welcome Nate to NBC Sports on a full-time basis," said Cordella. "Over the last decade, Nate has established himself as one of the most talented writers in sports, and a respected authority figure within the NASCAR media corps. We are looking forward to adding his extensive knowledge and multimedia talents to our growing lineup of content dedicated to NASCAR."
The appointment marks an extension of Ryan's contributions to NBC Sports Group's NASCAR coverage, which began last February with regular appearances on NBCSN's NASCAR AMERICA via reports from NASCAR venues nationwide and regular visits to NBC Sports' studio locations in Charlotte, N.C. and Stamford, Conn.
"I'm enthused and humbled by the expansion of my role at NBC Sports, where I've been working with tremendously diligent and gifted people since last season," Ryan said. "I've worked with a similar group in my past nine years at USA TODAY Sports, which was instrumental in helping hone my writing and reporting while building contacts throughout the industry. I'm eagerly anticipating the application of those skills across the multiple platforms of digital and TV at NBC Sports, whose impressive breadth as a cutting-edge network provides the opportunity to keep my hand firmly in writing while also continuing to grow and learn in front of the camera."
Working alongside Ryan on the NBCSports.com NASCAR beat will be longtime NASCAR journalist and former Motor Racing Network Senior Writer Dustin Long, who has also joined NBC Sports Group on a full-time basis as an Editor and Writer for NASCARTalk. Long and Ryan will provide editorial coverage as well as original video content to NASCARTalk, which will focus on Sprint Cup, XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series coverage. MotorSportsTalk will continue to cover open wheel and off-road racing.
Prior to joining MRN, Long spent 13 seasons covering the NASCAR circuit for the Landmark chain of newspapers that includes the Virginian-Pilot, the Roanoke (Va.) Times and the News and Record in Greensboro, N.C. Long won the National Motorsports Press Association's Writer of the Year Award in 2011. In addition to Long and Ryan, Jerry Bonkowski and Chris Estrada serve as regular contributors to NBCSports.com's motorsports coverage.
Ryan joined USA Today Sports in January 2006 as an auto racing writer, and recently completed his 12th full season of covering the Sprint Cup Series. He has covered more than 300 races in NASCAR's premier series, beginning with the June 22, 1997 opening of California Speedway as a writer with the San Bernardino County Sun. He moved to the Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch as a backup NASCAR writer in 1998 and took over the full-time beat in May 2002.
Ryan is a five-time winner of the Russ Catlin Motorsports Journalism Award and was twice named Writer of the Year by the National Motorsports Press Association. He has held a weekly Thursday morning spot on Sirius Satellite Radio's The Morning Drive since 2007 and has been a regular fill-in for the hosts and other programs since 2008, co-hosting several dozen times. Ryan graduated from Northwestern University in June 1995 with a bachelor's degree in journalism.
ABOUT NASCAR ON NBC
On July 23, 2013, NASCAR and NBC Sports Group reached a comprehensive agreement that grants NBCUniversal exclusive rights to the final 20 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, as well as the final 19 NASCAR XFINITY Series events, beginning this coming 4th of July weekend from Daytona International Speedway.
With this partnership, NBC's 20 Sprint Cup race schedule includes a designation as the exclusive home to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, when the elite national series races through its final 10 events of the season. The Chase culminates with the season-ending championship event, which returns to network television in 2015 for the first time since 2009. Of NBC Sports Group's 20 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events, seven will be carried on NBC annually, with 13 airing on NBCSN. Four of NBC Sports Group's 19 NASCAR XFINITY Series races will air on NBC, with 15 airing on NBCSN.