Live from Greenville, it’s NASCAR

Saturday, April 10, 1971 – ABC’s “Wild World of Sports” provides the first live, flag-to-flag coverage of a NASCAR premier series event, televising the Greenville 200 from Greenville-Pickens Speedway in its entirety. Bobby Isaac, a late entry, led 181 of the race’s 200 laps to pick up his 32nd career victory.

David Pearson, Dick Brooks, Dave Marcis and Benny Parsons completed the top five in a race that lasted 1 hr., 16 min., 46 sec. There was one caution for five laps.

ABC had previously televised edited versions of select NASCAR races on its “Wide World” program but never live races in their entirety. The broadcasting group used five cameras – three above the grandstands, one in Turn 2 and one hand-held camera assigned to roam pit road. A sixth camera was used for graphics (starting lineup, running order, etc.)

On-air talent for the program consisted of ABC host Jim McKay and veteran automotive reporter Chris Economaki in the booth along with broadcaster Ken Squier on pit road.

The race, which featured a 26-car field, was blacked out within a 150-mile radius of Greenville, S.C.

The race purse of $20,600 was a record for a 100-mile NASCAR race.