Technology to bring fans closer to the action
PUEBLO, Colo. (January 5, 2011) - The Professional Bull Riders and executive producer and creative lead David Neal announced that the 2011 Built Ford Tough Series television broadcasts will have several new features.
The broadcasts will be available in HD on both VERSUS and NBC. Coverage in 2011 begins with the season opener from world-famous Madison Square Garden in New York. VERSUS will air its coverage on Saturday, Jan. 8, at 8 p.m. ET and NBC will air its broadcast on Sunday, Jan. 9, at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Beginning in 2011, all Built Ford Tough Series telecasts will be produced for the PBR by David Neal Productions, a Los Angeles-based production company led by the 30-time Emmy® Award winner and Peabody Award winner. Neal worked 30 years with NBC Sports and was responsible for some of the network’s most memorable broadcasts. He was executive producer for NBC Sports for the past five years, responsible for all NBC Sports productions, following five years as executive vice president for NBC Olympics.
The redesigned production will feature more natural sound, with an emphasis on the action on the dirt and in the chutes. A significant element of the audio strategy involves placing wireless microphones on 12 riders in each round of competition.
“We want to bring you closer to the action, to let you hear the riders as they prepare for their ride,” said Neal. “We’ll also enable our viewers to hear what it’s like to be on the back of a bull.”
Coverage will also feature a super-slow-motion “X-MO” replay system, along with a Telestrator, allowing the color commentators to diagram and analyze each ride.
“We’ll use technology to explain the sport, allowing our experts Ty Murray, Justin McBride and J.W. Hart to break down the elements of each ride,” Neal said. “We want our viewers to see the differences that result in a successful ride or a buckoff.”
Another feature being added is the “Truth Booth,” where riders will re-watch their rides and describe what went right and what went wrong.
“Our fans will hear from the riders about what happened, both good and bad, in their own words” said Neal.
Working with Neal as senior producer is nine-time Emmy® Award winner Carlos DeMolina, who has 22 years of experience including 16 with NBC Sports. The director will be Brian Douglas, who has more than 30 years of experience, including the past 12 as head of television production for the Winter Olympic Games. Rounding out the production team is creative director Cory Kelley, owner of ChromaZone Productions Inc., a leader in sports and entertainment post-production, located in Nashville, Tenn.
Returning for his fifth season as the play-by-play broadcaster is Craig Hummer, who will be joined each week by one color commentator. The color commentators will be nine-time World Champion and PBR co-founder Ty Murray, two-time PBR World Champion Justin McBride, and PBR Ring of Honor member J.W. Hart. The behind-the-chutes reporters will be Leah Garcia, who has worked for the PBR since 2004, and Erin Coscarelli, a regular contributor to various FOX Sports regional and ESPN telecasts, who made her PBR debut at the 2010 event in Times Square.
VERSUS will televise 49 nights of action from each of the 27 regular season BFTS events and four performances of the Built Ford Tough World Finals. VERSUS became the broadcast home of the PBR in 2002, and has televised the BFTS each week. It has also broadcast the PBR Built Ford Tough World Finals, the richest bull riding event in the world, from Las Vegas each October. It is the 10th season in a row that VERSUS, the fastest-growing cable network in the country, has televised the BFTS.
NBC will televise the Jack Daniel’s Invitational from Indianapolis at 2:30 p.m. ET on Jan. 30, and the Built Ford Tough Invitational powered by F-150 EcoBoost from Tampa, Fla. at 3 p.m. ET on Apr. 10. The network will televise Championship Sunday from the PBR Built Ford Tough World Finals from Las Vegas at 4 p.m. ET on Oct. 30. The PBR made its network television debut on NBC in 2001. The PBR and NBC have broadcast a series of BFTS events each year, including Championship Sunday from the World Finals.
The PBR ranks among the most prolific sports on television with approximately 400 hours of primetime programming annually. The PBR has 32 international broadcast partners and can be seen in 85 countries.
About the Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR)
The PBR is the world’s premier bull riding organization. More than 100 million viewers annually watch over 400 hours of primetime PBR programming on VERSUS, NBC, CBS and networks around the world. The PBR has awarded over $100 million in prize money and 20 riders have earned over $1 million, including Justin McBride with $5.5 million – the most of any western-sports athlete in history. The PBR was nominated as 2010 Sports League of the Year at the Sports Business Journal Sports Business Awards, alongside the National Football League, National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball. Nearly two million fans attend Built Ford Tough Series and Touring Pro Division events each year. For more information on the PBR, go to www.pbr.com, or follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TeamPBR and http://twitter.com/TEAMPBR.MEDIA ROOM - Please note that action-packed photos of the winning rides from BFTS events will be posted on the PBR website and available for downloading within six hours after the competition. Here's how to locate the website and download the images: