Lost Speedways Receives High Praise In Mainstream Response
Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s new streaming show is a hit even with non-racing fans
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (July 28, 2020) -- Two weeks into the launch of Lost Speedways, Dale Earnhardt Jr. admits to being overwhelmed by the universally positive reception to his new show on Peacock -- a reception that includes high praise from mainstream media critics and self-admitted non-racing fans.
"It's such a relief, because the truth is you never know how people are going to react," Earnhardt said. "Typically when we get involved with a show it's because somebody else brought the idea to us and somebody else created it. But Lost Speedways was our idea and our creation; it was our necks on the line. I'm blown away at all the positive feedback. The only thing people are complaining about is wanting more episodes. I hope to be able to give them more."
In a review in the Los Angeles Times, television critic Robert Lloyd admitted to having no interest in motor sports but said Lost Speedways felt deep and friendly to him. "Stories emerge that go beyond the cars and drivers (though they're in there too) to involve community and family, secrets and legends and the unpredictable workings of time," Lloyd wrote. "Quite beautiful, in a melancholic way."
In its review of Peacock's original programming, IGN gave this verdict: "Lost Speedways has that rare ability to pull you into its stories in a way that’s easy to understand even if you’re not a racing aficionado," David Griffin wrote. "Much of the success of the series can be attributed to co-host Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s enthusiasm for exploring these ancient monuments to racing."
The Boston Herald review reached this conclusion:
"Any fan of racing history, or even history in general, will find themselves embracing Lost Speedways."
Earnhardt's Lost Speedways is a non-scripted-style program that highlights abandoned race tracks and the people and moments that made them great. It is one of several original programs created for the launch of Peacock, the new streaming service owned and operated by NBC Universal. Peacock has three levels of subscription -- free, premium and premium plus -- and boasts at least 20,000 hours of content.
“Lost Speedways was a fantastic addition to Peacock’s launch slate,” said Rick Cordella, EVP and Chief Revenue Officer, Peacock. “Certainly racing fans are drawn to the show, and it also attracts any sports fan interested in a good story.”
The Today Show produced a feature piece on Lost Speedways for its July 17 show, as NBC's Sam Brock visited Earnhardt at his North Carolina home affectionately known as Dirty Mo Acres. (Watch: Dale Earnhardt Jr. visits legendary racetracks of the past)
Much to the delight of Earnhardt and co-host Matthew Dillner, the show has started a surge of track explorers. Many of those who have enjoyed the show have flocked to locations highlighted in Season 1.
On July 17 Dillner and executive producer Mike Davis hosted a live chat on YouTube to engage with fans and speak about the origins of Lost Speedways. The nearly 2-hour conversation not only gave viewers the chance to critique the show, but it opened the door to new ideas for future episodes.
"Of all the different pieces of feedback we've received, the most inspiring are the recommendations from fans to highlight particular speedways of their pasts should we ever get a second season," said Davis. "We are reminded very quickly that racetracks occupy important real estate in the hearts and minds of people today, even if those tracks are long gone."
-- DIRTY MO --