IndyCar: Leigh Diffey Signs Extension with NBC Sports

Leigh Diffey on air on NBC at Laguna Seca

As tweeted earlier today from Octagon’s Twitter, Leigh Diffey will remain at NBC Sports and the voice of IndyCar for years to come

In the world of sports broadcasting, a casual viewer or enthusiast will tune in to watch television coverage of their favorite team presented by their favorite television network. This could come from local coverage such as Sam Rosen calling New York Rangers games on the MSG Network. Or national coverage like Joe Buck calling Monday Night Football across the ESPN Family of networks.

The leading voice of the play-by-play commentary makes or breaks the networks’ coverage. It is an important responsibility for the individual to not only call the action but to keep the viewer invested. They are a key element in developing a connection to what’s being presented to them on screen.

Motorsports

The world of motorsports is no exception. For generations, fans from across the world have tuned in to their televisions to view their favorite race. Whether it was listening to Murray Walker call Formula 1 Grand Prix on BBC and ITV, or Ken Squier leading lap-by-lap commentary of NASCAR coverage on both CBS and TBS, these legends helped pave the way for the next generations.

From Paul Page’s and Bob Jenkins’ respectable tenures in being the voices of American open-wheel racing across the ESPN family of networks to Bob Varsha’s memorable tenures in being America’s motorsports voice across the ESPN, CBS, NBC, and FOX Sports’ families of networks, the emotional connection between the viewer and what was being presented to them provide the viewer with moments that will live with them forever.

In this generation, one could argue that the effectiveness of a sports telecast’s lead play-by-play commentator is more critical than ever before. The energy, excitement, and enthusiasm presented to the viewer is hard to come by. Criticism of the coverage may overshadow one’s enjoyment of the televised event. Some may find a connection where they least expect it. Some hear a voice as the overall best in a particular sports’ TV coverage. When you can make a valid argument that the lead makes sports television a better place, that’s when fans know that they are listening to someone special.

Diffey’s New Deal

Global sports and entertainment agency, Octagon announced that Leigh Diffey had signed a contract extension with NBC Sports. He will continue to serve as the lead lap-by-lap commentator for NBC Sports’ coverage of the IndyCar Series. While terms of the deal are not disclosed, Diffey’s role continues as the lead lap-by-lap commentator for NBC Sports’ coverage of IMSA. In addition, Diffey will continue to be a lead voice in NBC Sports’ coverage of both the Summer and the Winter Olympics, for the Track & Field, Bobsledding, and Luge competitions.

2013 was the season that Leigh Diffey elevated his stature from motorsports broadcast leader to a household name. The enthusiasm he brings elevates a smile upon the face of the viewer. It’s clear that as the lead commentator Leigh Diffey is a fan at heart at the end of the day. A passion that helps the viewer be reminded why they enjoy sports television in the first place.

With Sky Sports continuing to elevate their coverage of Formula 1 for years to come, it puts a smile on one’s face knowing that this generation’s voice of IndyCar television coverage will be around for a while.

Featured Image Credit: Joe Skibinski/Penske Entertainment