AIGLE (SWITZERLAND), 21 June 2009 – The UCI is proud to announce that the free access online webcasting of the NISSAN UCI Mountain Bike World Cup offered by Freecaster.tv has been watched by a total of 1.75 million viewers around the globe, during the opening five rounds of the DHI and 4X, and four rounds of the XCO. Viewership is rising rapidly as more and more people rediscover the excitement of mountain bike racing, with over 400,000 people having tuned in for the LIVE coverage alone. 2009 marks the second year that Freecaster.tv has broadcast LIVE and delayed the NISSAN UCI World Cup and World Championships. This year is the first time the partnership between the UCI and Freecaster.tv has been exclusive, and the strategy is already delivering impressive results which continue to grow as the 2009 season progresses and the World Championships approach.
Freecaster.tv, a well known online broadcaster, has increased awareness of the NISSAN UCI Mountain Bike World Cup by including special productions to support the races. These features include pre-race teaser clips, the Fox Racing Shox coursewalks, VholdR helmet cams, rider interviews, team profiles, technical explanations and regular highlight shows. All this entertainment is offered free of charge and is readily embedded by the event web sites, fan sites and main stream portals who are all keen to support the resurgent interest in racing that the live coverage has spawned.
Any online media can embed the Freecaster.tv player in their pages to entertain their own visitors without redirect by using the http://freecaster.tv/live page to generate codes.
“This is really great news for the sport of mountain biking and our partners who support it" states Pat McQuaid, President of the UCI. "After only six World Cup events we are barely at the halfway stage of the season yet have already reached an audience of well over a million, many of which are experiencing live mountain bike racing for the first time. We are very happy that together with Smaragd’s TV production, Freecaster.tv have been able to provide this service and allow fans to follow every round of the season from the comfort of home!”
“The UCI’s TV production team and Freecaster.tv have put in an unbelievable amount of technical development work and now the goal is to reach 3 million viewers by the end of the season. This is truly a new era for mountain biking, not only for the fans, but also for the athletes, the teams and their sponsors”
The teams, the athletes and their sponsors are also recognising the importance of the live coverage:
“There has been a huge expansion in the video medium for mountain biking.” observes Martin Whiteley, Team Director for Trek World Racing. “Freecaster.tv has led the renaissance in World Cup race coverage and made it a success. I feel that video is key to engaging and maintaining the interest of our target market, who would much rather watch the action as it unfolds than read a written press release.”
“Having Freecaster.tv broadcast live coverage on top of great highlights and complete race runs is amazing”. says Fabien Barel, winner of the last round of the DHI in Maribor. “It is easy for the fans to stay on top of the action from each round and the drama of racing is pure entertainment”.
“Freecaster.tv has used more bandwidth for the first few rounds than we forecast for the entire 2009 season! With countless web sites and forums now covering MTB racing LIVE, the fans are tuning in for 1 hour in average for DHI, 30 minutes per XCO and 30 minutes per 4X."” says Raymond Dulieu, founder of Freecaster.tv. “"We’d like to thank our partners for the faith they’ve had in this project and for helping us achieve our goals at a time when much of the industry’s support was less forthcoming. Thanks to their belief in the LIVE coverage, we’ve been able to help MTB racing reach more people on the Internet than ever before… and we’re convinced the best is yet to come."
LIVE Webcast NISSAN UCI Mountain Bike World Cup Calendar
July 25-26 – Canada – XCO DHI 4X
August 1-2 – Canada – XCO DHI 4X
September 13 – Switzerland – XCO
September 19-20 – Austria – DHI 4X
LIVE Webcast NISSAN UCI Mountain Bike World Championship
September 5-6 – Australia – XCO DHI 4X