UNIVERSAL SPORTS AT THE VANCOUVER GAMES TO COMPLEMENT NBC UNIVERSAL’S MULTI-NETWORK COVERAGE OF THE VANCOUVER OLYMPIC GAMES
Universal Sports to air more than 80 hours of daily Olympic news and information during the 2010 Games; Plus, nightly Olympic news studio show now airing as COUNTDOWN TO VANCOUVER
NEW YORK and WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., January 4, 2010: In a network first, Universal Sports will present Universal Sports at the Vancouver Games, delivering five hours of live daily news and information through five newly-created studio shows, as well as continuous news and results updates throughout the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Universal Sports at the Vancouver Games begins Friday, February 12, the first day of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, and continues until the Closing Ceremony on Sunday, February 28. The shows will originate from sets in Vancouver and Whistler, Canada, as well as from Universal Sports’ network facilities in Westlake Village, California.
Throughout the Vancouver Games, the daily five-hour news and information block begins at 10 a.m. ET/7 a.m. PT. Programming elements also include continuous studio news updates every 30 minutes, as well as a live, up-to-date Olympic results ticker. The format is geared to supplying viewers with an in-depth, daily dose of Olympic news and information, including interviews, results and analysis, as well as constant information and direction on where to view NBC’s multiplatform coverage of the Games, whether on broadcast, cable, video-on-demand, the internet or wireless platforms.
“Bringing Universal Sports to the Olympics enables us to open up a new dimension in how we cover the Games,” said Gary Zenkel, President of NBC Olympics. “For the first time we will have a platform that allows us to pause from coverage and focus attention on the evolving stories and excitement of the Olympic Games.”
“Universal Sports will offer ongoing, daily Winter Olympics news to help an already savvy audience stay on top of what is happening in Vancouver, and direct fans to more of their favorite Olympic events on each NBCU sister network and nbcolympics.com,” Universal Sports Chairman & CEO Claude Ruibal said. “This is incredibly valuable to our affiliates, our advertisers and, most importantly, the fans and our viewers.”
Universal Sports at the Vancouver Games Daily Programming Block (times and programming elements subject to change):
10-11:30 a.m. ET: Vancouver Olympic News Center – This studio show reviews action from the previous day, with extended highlights, results, interviews and analysis, as well as previews of that day’s upcoming action. This show includes roundtable sessions with guests, newsmakers, athletes and analysts.
11:30-12 noon ET: “Medals & Music” – Special presentation of the medal ceremonies and musical concerts from the Olympics plus highlights and interviews with the Olympic medalists.
12-12:30 p.m. ET: “Meet the Olympic Press” – This show includes a cast of rotating U.S. and Olympic beat reporters as they discuss the developing stories and hot topics from the Winter Games.
12:30-1:30 p.m. ET: Reprise of Vancouver Olympic News Center
1:30-2 p.m. ET: “Olympic Review/Preview” – This show focuses on the Games’ individual sports, with in-depth analysis of each, plus results, previews and key statistics and information from each venue. Guests include NBC Sports and Universal Sports Olympic commentators, plus athlete interviews from on-location venue reporters.
2-3 p.m. ET: “The Vancouver Figure Skating Hour” – A look back on and ahead to primetime figure skating, detailing key athletes, competitions and storylines. Includes continuing news updates and live results ticker.
10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. (ET): Live Updates – During the five-hour block, there will be Live Olympic news updates starting at 10:30 a.m. ET and then continuing at the top of ever hour until 4 p.m. ET, with a news ticker providing round-the-clock results.
With only weeks remaining until the Vancouver Games, serious Olympic fans looking for a timely daily dose of pre-Games news and information are tuning in nightly to Countdown to Vancouver. Countdown to Vancouver, airing nightly at 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. ET can run as long as 30 minutes, and includes the latest updates from around the world, as Olympic-caliber athletes enter the crucial, final days of training and competition, with many still battling to qualify for Olympic team berths.
Countdown to Vancouver is anchored by Olympians such as freestyle skier Jeremy Bloom. Nightly content includes breaking news, competition highlights, and vignettes, as Universal Sports tracks the fortunes of 2010 Olympic prospects, including Alpine ski racer and reigning World Cup champion Lindsey Vonn; short track speed skater and five-time Olympic medalist Apolo Anton Ohno; and reigning halfpipe gold medalist Shaun White.
The evening Countdown shows in January and into early February will build drama and awareness toward the Feb. 12 debut of Universal Sports at the Vancouver Games.
Universal Sports at the Vancouver Games will also include an outstanding Olympic Winter Games announcing roster, to be announced soon, with expertise that will serve as the foundation of this unprecedented daytime Olympic television news destination for NBCU’s fast-growing, all-sports network. As the drama of Vancouver unfolds, viewers can rely on daily analysis by celebrated U.S. Olympians, analysts, renowned commentators, and seasoned journalists, as they follow the athletes, the competition and the scene in and around Vancouver and Whistler.
ABOUT UNIVERSAL SPORTS: Universal Sports, a partnership between NBC Sports and InterMedia Partners, serves as the preeminent multiplatform destination for Olympic-related and lifestyle sports programming available on television and online. Universal Sports, available in more than 57 million homes, is in nine of the top 10 DMAs including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Francisco, Atlanta, Washington D.C. and Houston, plus Seattle and Denver. Major world championship and Olympic qualifying events found on Universal Sports range from track and field, skiing, swimming, gymnastics, marathons and cycling, to volleyball, rowing, triathlon, fencing, speed skating and martial arts. UniversalSports.com delivers an immersive experience via live and on-demand competition coverage, as well as interaction with top athletes through blogs and in-depth access to Olympic sports news and information year round. For more information on the availability of the Universal Sports 24-hour television channel, please visit UniversalSports.tv.