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ESPN lays out X Games 16 coverage via online, HD & 3D formats, including in-car 3D cams

ESPN lays out X Games 16 coverage via online, HD & 3D formats, including in-car 3D cams
Richard Lawler
Richard Lawler|@Rjcc|July 27, 2010 4:41 PM
We're just a couple of days away from the beginning of X Games 16 in Los Angeles, and beyond just the high flying acrobatic stunts, it should be also be a broadcasting technological showcase. Just two years removed from making its HD debut, this year's summer X will get 31 hours (up from 20 last year) of dedicated HD coverage on ESPN & ESPN2, 27 hours of simulcast coverage + 10 hours of exclusive video on ESPN3, 28 hours of live video on the ESPN Mobile platform, a YouTube channel plus daily updates on Facebook and Xbox Live. As for that newly launched 3D network? Expect eight hours of live coverage from 14 native 3D cameras (including the "3D Mega Mo" ultra slow motion camera) including men's and women's Super X racing, the Big Air Skateboard competition, and rally car events featuring the first live use of wireless 3D cameras mounted in the car. Even more details are in the press release after the break.

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ESPN 3D to Televise Eight Hours of X Games 16

ESPN 3D will feature eight hours of X Games 16 action from the Los Angeles Coliseum on Thursday, July 29, from 8-11 p.m. ET, and on Saturday, July 31, from 7 p.m.-midnight. Events to be featured include men's and women's Super X racing, Moto X Freestyle, Big Air skateboard competition, Rally Car, Super Rally Car and BMX Big Air.

ESPN 3D X Games 16 production details:

* ESPN 3D will utilize 14 native 3D cameras to capture action at the Los Angeles Coliseum;
* The 3D Mega Mo camera, an ultra slo-mo camera that debuted at the Home Run Derby, will be utilized;
* Coverage will include the first live use of wireless (RF) 3D cameras, one of which will be an in-car camera used during Rally Car competition;
* One pole camera will be placed near the skate/BMX mega ramp;
* ESPN 3D will be hosted by Keir Dillon, a veteran X Games announcer and two-time Winter X Games snowboard superpipe medalist.

ESPN To Distribute 31 Hours of Live X Games 16 Content

Eight Hours of Original Content on ESPN 3D

In a continuous effort of being the leading content provider of action sports coverage, ESPN will telecast 31 hours of live programming from X Games 16, July 29 – August 1, 2010, in Los Angeles, Calif. In addition to the thirty-one original hours on ESPN and ESPN2, the worldwide leader in action sports will telecast eight hours of X Games 16 competition in 3D on ESPN 3D. X Games 16 content will also be distributed across ESPN's family of international networks and global platforms, including ESPN3.com, ESPN.com/Action, ESPN Mobile TV and X Center.

X Games 16 will be delivered to more than 382 million homes and will be telecast live to 175 countries and territories, including Africa, Asia, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Caribbean, Europe, Israel, Mexico, Middle East, South America, New Zealand.

"It is always our goal to serve the fans, athletes and sponsors in as many ways as possible, while still growing the reach of our telecast and brand each year," said Scott Guglielmino, Senior Vice President programming and X Games Franchise. "ESPN has once again proved why the X Games are the definitive action sports franchise. This year we will deliver the most compelling action sports content to fans on more platforms than ever before."

•Television: ESPN will increase its X Games coverage to 31 hours in 2010, compared to 20 last year. ESPN and ESPN2 will feature eight windows of original competition coverage. ESPN2's X Center, nightly highlight show, will air each night of the event.

Hosted by Sal Masekela, the X Games telecast will once again feature a talented collection of on-air commentators. ESPN anchor Dana Jacobson will return to host Burger King X Center nightly on ESPN2. Each episode of Burger King X Center will run for one hour in length and will air immediately following the X Games telecast. Veteran X Games reporter Keir Dillon will host eight hours of live X Games 16 coverage on ESPN 3D.

A roster of action sports icons including Tony Hawk, Jeremy McGrath, Dennis McCoy and Boris Said will join Masekela for the X Games 16 telecast and serve as analysts for the Skateboard, Moto X, BMX Freestyle and Rally Car events, respectively.

In 2009, X Games 15 delivered a 1.0 HH coverage rating, 988,058 HHs and 1,393,420 viewers (P2+) on ESPN making it the most-viewed X Games ever among viewers (P2+).

•Online: ESPN3.com will carry 27 hours of simulcast coverage from X Games 16, plus an additional ten hours of exclusive content.

ESPN.com/Action will provide on-site coverage of X Games 16 and will deliver instant results, photos, live commentary and daily recaps.

The 24/7 action sports website will feature a live landing page called X Stream which will feature numerous extensions including athlete chats, expert sport commentary, audience questions and participation, live results, schedules, Facebook wall stream, athleteTweets and more. X Stream will be live for all four days of X Games 16.

•Mobile: ESPN Mobile TV will carry 28 hours of live coverage of X Games 16, including live coverage of Burger King X Center. ESPN Mobile TV will also deliver encore content from X Games 15 Classix. ESPN Mobile TV viewers will once again be able to participate in text voting opportunities and receive 24/7 mobile alerts.

An X Games 16 Mobile App will also be available on Android, iPhone/iPod Touch, and Blackberry devices. The X Games 16 app features complete venue info, customizable schedules, athlete bios and more. The app cab be downloaded for free by texting GUIDE to 43776 or visiting XGames.com/App.

•ESPN International: Outside the United States, X Games 16 will be delivered to more than 224 million homes and will be telecast live to 175 countries and territories, including Africa, Asia, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Caribbean, Europe, Israel, Latin America, Mexico, Middle East and New Zealand.

In addition, X Games 16 will be syndicated to 46 countries around the world reaching over 58 million homes for which ESPN will produce 10 one-hour syndication shows for networks to air two weeks following the event.

ESPN Deportes will telecast live on Saturday and Sunday with 14 hours of Live X Games 16 coverage. And more than 27 hours of live coverage will air on ESPN's 360 platforms in Australia, Europe and Latin America.

•iTunes: On July 26th, go to www.iTunes.com/XGames for all things X Games 16. The page will include current X Games 16 content (daily highlights and discipline highlights), ESPN Films (30 for 30: The Birth of Big Air, 199 Lives: The Travis Pastrana Story, Shaun White: Don't Look Down, Moto X: Evolution of the Trick, and Down the Barrel), Athlete Music Playlists (from Mat Hoffman, Kenny Brack, Blake "Bilko" Williams, and Josh Hansen), As Heard at X music playlists (from our on-air broadcast), Phone Aps, and Free Podcasts.

•X Box Live: X Games 16 content will include Days 1-4 highlights, Best of Skate, Best of BMX, Best of Motors, and X Games 16 Slammed/Stomped.

•YouTube: ESPN will produce Let's Talk About X segments which will live exclusively on ESPN's X Games YouTube channel. Let's Talk About X will be produced by the ESPN Digital Media team and will feature daily content giving a fans point of view from the X games 16 venues. All X Games 16 content can be found by visiting youtube.com/xgames)

•Facebook: ESPN's X Games page will feature a daily X Games 16 photo gallery, video content, athlete chats, and a daily morning and afternoon show called Inside X. The page will also feature an X Games Gear photo contest where users can upload photos and vote to win autographed X Games 16 items.

•Twitter: ESPN's Twitter feed will feature event updates, breaking news, competition results, ticket giveaways via Twitter scavenger hunts, and a behind the scenes look at X Games 16 athletes and courses.

•Hookit: The X Games 16 community on Hookit.com will feature an interactive chat board, sport-specific tabs with X Games 16 athlete bios, an integrated XGames.com news and headline feed, daily member promotions, and custom X Games badges that users can create and share virally.

●Fantasy & Games: Fans on ESPN.com will be able to join the excitement of this year's "X16" in Los Angeles with ESPN's 2010 Summer X Games Pick'em presented by Samsung. Players select the "winning pick" for each of the listed match-ups through four days of Summer X to accumulate the most points. Daily picks must be submitted before the scheduled start time of the first event each day beginning Thursday, July 29. Prizes will be awarded for the top two overall entries.

Additionally, ESPN Arcade will highlight its Action Sports section of casual games, including popular X Games branded titles like Rally Racing and Rally & Super X as well as Epic Air and Vert Star.

•X Games 16 Music: Once again a full X Games 16 music page will be featured on ESPN.com. Individual tracks featured in the X Games 16 telecast will also be listed on iTunes.

X Games 16 will feature the television premier of the new Linkin Park single, The Catalyst. The X Games 16 telecast will also feature music from A Day to Remember, Stone Temple Pilots, Ozzy Osbourne, Eninem, NERD, Jared Evan, Paper Tounges and many more. The song X Games Without Frontiers, by Peter Gabriel featuring Lord Jamar, will once again be a featured song in the X Games telecast.



ESPN and ESPN2 will continue to expand their programming line-ups by offering 31 hours of LIVE X Games 16 content in high-definition, July 29 through Aug. 1, 2010 from Los Angeles, Calif. In addition to coverage of all X Games 16 competitions, X Center, the daily highlight show for the X Games, will also be shown in HD on ESPN2. ESPN 3D will telecast nine hours of live X Games 16 content in 3D.


Trucks: 7
Cameras: Approximately 71
HD Skycam: A pair of aerial cable cameras will be used for the Big Air and Moto X coverage at the LA Memorial Coliseum

X Center: Entire show will be shot in HD and all highlights featured will be in HD.


Trucks: 2
Cameras: Approximately 13


Huck Tower
Wireless technology that measures skaters and BMX riders' amplitude in real time on the Big Air quarterpipe. A 30-foot high LED tower, constructed from individual LED squares, will display the height of each jump in real time during each contest. Television viewers will also see graphic inserts that display the amplitude live and in replays.

The technology is powered by the ESPN Emerging Technology team, which places a tiny transmitter, roughly the size of a credit card, on each athletes skateboard or bike. The transmitter sends data to nearby towers where it is interpreted for display on the giant LED tower a mere fraction of a second later.

"Quickscore" is an instant scoring system used to report run scores for the Skateboard Street, BMX Freestyle Street and all Freestyle Moto X competitions at X Games 16.

Mega Mo
This Ultra-Slow-Motion device records up to 600 images per second allowing for incredibly clear and detailed replays. It will be used in all X Games 16 event telecasts.

Aerial Jib
A robotically operated camera on a 25-foot arm, the aerial jib provides dynamic tracking shots from above and alongside the Moto X competitions.

In-Car Cameras
Each of the 12 cars in Rally Car will be equipped with at least one on-board camera to show the action from the driver's perspective.

In-Car Commentators
Former X Games Rally Car Co-Drivers Jen Horsey and Chrissie Beavis will provide first-hand analysis from the passenger seat of the Rally Cars during most of the races.


ESPN HD Launch Date: March 31, 2003
ESPN2 HD Launch Date: Jan. 5, 2005
ESPNEWS HD Launch Date: March 30, 2008

About ESPN HD:

Currently in the United States, ESPN HD reaches almost 34 million subscribers and is available to nearly 100 million homes and ESPN2 HD reaches more than 31 million subscribers and is available to almost 93 million homes.

In 2010, ESPN HD and ESPN2 HD will again deliver more than 15,000 hours in high definition including all of ESPN's NASCAR coverage, NBA telecasts, MLS telecasts, MLB telecasts, college football telecasts, National Hot Rod Association races and coverage of NFL Monday Night Football. 100 percent of ESPN and ESPN2's Bristol-based studio programming originates in high definition, including SportsCenter, NFL Countdown, NFL Monday Night Countdown, NFL Live, Monday Night Countdown, Baseball Tonight, Mike & Mike in the Morning and First Take. In addition to live sports programming, ESPN HD and ESPN2 HD produce individual programs, movies and series.
About ESPN 3D:

ESPN was the first network to announce an exclusive 3D channel. The announcement was made in January 2010 and was a culmination of more than three years of testing 3D television technology . ESPN has produced several 3D telecasts, including the FIFA 2010 World Cup in June 2010, the PGA Masters Tournament in April 2010, a Harlem Globetrotters game in February 2010 and the 2009 USC vs. Ohio State college football game. ESPN 3D is available nationwide in approximately 45 million households and has carriage agreements with DirecTV, Comcast and AT&T. Sony was named the first official sponsor of the network in January 2010