Photo by Pauley2483 / Flickr.com
Mike Massaro has been around racing his whole life. He first started off young by helping his dad work on NASCAR Modified racecars. While his father raced, he was his number one fan cheering him on from the grandstands.
When deciding to become a sportscaster in high school, he looked up to people such as Al Michaels, Mike Joy, Jack Arute, and Bob Costas.
During college, he worked with media on campus, with the AM radio station.
"When I was in college, I worked with the AM side of things [at WECB]. I did reporting but most of my time was with baseball. I would've loved to cover the games but I was mostly in them," Massaro said with a laugh.
In 1993, he got into the world of sportscasting with as the public address announcer at Stafford Motor Speedway. He would continue to serve that occupation until 1995, when he was promoted to PR director, a position he would hold until 1997.
In 1997, Massaro went down to Daytona for Speedweeks. During the same time, MRN was holding auditions for turn positions, also occurring during the IROC race.
"It was a luncheon at Daytona with the drivers and I sort of 'snuck in' and found out the number, driver, and color combination. When I went back to the hotel, I scribbled down on one side, the number, and on another, the color."
The simple idea would work for Massaro. He was hired for a turn announcing position at MRN that year and would remain there until 2000.
During that time with MRN, he would also work with TBS, NBC, and TNN for their NASCAR coverage. In 1999 & 2000, he would work on pit row for NBC & TBS. At TNN, he hosted Inside NASCAR.
In 2001, Mike Massaro was hired by ESPN. The network, however had lost their NASCAR contract. Despite that, Massaro worked on RPM2Night up until 2003, when the show was cancelled. Afterwards, he'd continue to do garage reporting for races and cover the Patriots during the off-season.
In late 2006 to early 2007, business picked up at ESPN on the motorsports side. Massaro was hired for a pit reporting job for Cup and Nationwide races. Along with it, he'd work on the daily ESPN2 NASCAR show, NASCAR Now, as a frequent host and reporter.
In 2011, he was inducted into the Manchester (CT) Hall of Fame.
"[To be inducted] was a great honor, this was a town I grew up in and there were other people there in the world of sports already inducted. Nothing means more to you than for your hometown to honor you."
Also in the Manchester HoF is recently retired NASCAR pit reporter Dick Berggren.
"He blazed the trail for future reporters to come, it's about the only place, in my mind, where I actually feel like I have done something as great as him."