SYDNEY—Gravity Media and Mana Sports and Entertainment Group teamed up to cover the June 5 head-to-head men’s endurance race in Germany that relied on an advanced production setup REMI (Remote Integration Model) .
The race, a head-to-head contest between Kristian Blummenfelt and Joe Skipper and between Nicola Spirig and Kat Matthews was not just a story in which a complete triathlon was completed in less than seven and eight hours, respectively, but also proved to be a remarkable achievement for the REMI model.
“This event was a great opportunity to demonstrate ‘proof of concept’ and highlight what can be achieved through experience and innovation. I really enjoyed watching the event. Technically [a] great achievement; everyone involved should be very proud – well done,” said Gravity Media CEO John Newton.
Some 50,000 people around the world watched the race on YouTube and Facebook. Nine and a half hours of live coverage of the Pho3nix SUB7 SUB8 triathlon in Germany, powered by the Zwift race, was produced by the Gravity Media production center in Sydney.
Coverage of the event highlighted Gravity Media’s technical innovation. Sixteen cameras broadcast from Laustitzring racecourse in Brandenburg, Germany, fed the dial-up remote IP broadcast from Sydney. Live coverage of the race was complemented by pre- and post-race content, featuring special guests, pre-recorded content and technical analysis.
“Gravity Media has an excellent reputation around the world not only for delivering complex technical solutions, but also for our highly skilled and talented production team,” said Saul Shtein, Director of Production and Content at Gravity Media Australia. . “The Sub7 and Sub8 are an example of cost effective turnkey production. From the collaboration with the client on the initial concept, the pre-production, the graphic design, the team… until the broadcasting of the event.
Live coverage was streamed on the Pho3nix Foundation YouTube channel. A peak of 28,880 concurrent viewers watched the riders finish in the allotted time. There have been 202,300 views recorded after 24 hours, and the stream is expected to exceed a quarter of a million views over the next week, Gravity Media said.
The coverage was also reflected on Facebook, where it reached 174,438 views and 15,995 link clicks. Engagement related to social media posts saw a 600% increase from baseline, he said.
More than 90 Gravity Media employees from Australia and France produced the coverage, said Mike Purcell, head of production and executive producer at Gravity Media Australia, adding that equipping all of the company’s offices, including including Germany and the United Kingdom, was used.
“This event was a great success on all levels. Besides the technical feat that was brilliantly executed by the technical teams, on a complicated and very advanced setup, it was also a great collaboration between Gravity Media offices around the world,” said Solene Zavagno, General Manager of Gravity Media. France.
Gravity Media used a large amount of equipment to provide the necessary communications and video circuits used. Talkback was delivered through Unity communications using linked devices. A total of 20 cameras were deployed, including specialized cameras on motorcycles and a drone. Polecams and a gyrostabilized shotover camera were also deployed.
All streams were transported via AviWest linked IP transmitters. Other technologies included 20 EVS recording ports spread across three linked XT3 servers in the control room, multiple SRT video return charges, three GFX engines, and multiple editing suites in Germany and Australia. Staff included two dedicated highlight recorders, a social media team handling all social content and on-screen graphics from Gravity Media’s Australian design team and produced by Girraphic, the company said.
“This project required complex engineering solutions. We worked closely with the Gravity Media team in France to connect the two sites via IP communications and linked camera technology. Our facility has been designed to cater to both remote productions and traditional broadcast methods. This unique flexibility allows us to be nimble for any production, large or small, anywhere in the world,” said Adam Dodman, studio engineering director at Gravity Media Australia.