Industry News

NBC Sports begins British Open coverage

THE 148TH OPEN IS COMING… TO NORTHERN IRELAND, AS NBC SPORTS ONCE AGAIN DELIVERS THE MOST ANNUAL COVERAGE OF ANY GOLF EVENT

Watch GOLF Films Short The North”, a Tribute to Northern Ireland and its Prominent Role in the Popular Game of Thrones Series

Coverage Enhancements Include Most Cameras of Any Golf Event, Toptracer & Bunker Cam Technology, Popular “Playing Through” Commercial Break Format

PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland, (July 15, 2019)As golf’s original major championship descends upon Northern Ireland for the first time in 68 years, NBC Sports today kicked off its weeklong on-site coverage surrounding The 148TH Open from Royal Portrush Golf Club. With 410 total hours of coverage in the lead-up to and throughout The Open this week, coverage is led by 200 hours of linear programming, coupled with 210 complementary hours of streaming coverage, including featured holes and marquee groups. Spanning from Thursday’s opening tee shot through Sunday’s final putt, NBC Sports’ Emmy-nominated tournament coverage will feature nearly 50 live hours, annually the most live coverage hours from any golf event, which this week will be complemented by nearly 70 hours of news programming, led by Golf Central Live From The Open, which will offer expanded weekend coverage this year.

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“The tradition that surrounds golf’s original championship takes on added significance this week with The Open returning to Northern Ireland,” said Mike McCarley, president, Golf, NBC Sports Group. “Our extensive approach will feature an unprecedented amount of coverage, with live coverage from the first tee shot early Thursday morning through the final putt on Sunday evening. One of the things that makes The Open so unique is its visual appeal, especially when the element of weather comes into play as it so often does.”

AN HOMAGE TO NORTHERN IRELAND AND ITS ROLE IN GAME OF THRONES: In a tribute to The Open’s return to Northern Ireland and its proximity to the numerous and iconic set locations for the popular HBO series, NBC Sports will incorporate a handful of content elements that highlight the intersection of golf’s original championship with visuals synonymous with Game of Thrones. Voiced by the series’ Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon), those elements will include the GOLF Films Short “The North,” which focuses on the defining landscape traits surrounding Royal Portrush, and what’s at stake for those in the field at The 148TH Open.

COVERAGE ENHANCEMENTS AT THE 148TH OPEN: NBC Sports’ coverage of The Open will utilize 150 cameras, the most for any golf event, and will employ additional production enhancements such as:

  • “PLAYING THROUGH” COMMERCIAL BREAK FORMAT: Enhancing both the viewership and commercial experience, NBC Sports’ popular “Playing Through” split-screen commercial format returns for The Open, ensuring viewers don’t miss key stretches of the action during commercial breaks. During NBC Sports’ coverage of The Open at Carnoustie in 2018, an additional 181 shots of live golf were shown because of “Playing Through”.
  • GOLF CENTRAL LIVE FROM THE OPEN EXPANDED WEEKEND COVERAGE: Golf Central Live From The Open will feature expanded hours on Saturday-Sunday, complementing NBC’s early coverage from Royal Portrush. Coverage will include live look-ins at the practice ground as the leaders prepare for their round.
  • TOPTRACER TECHNOLOGY: Coverage will have the capability of utilizing Toptracer on all 18 holes at Royal Portrush. Topracer will be utilized on tee shots either via live video or via NBC Virtual Follow, a live trace over a graphic representation of the hole. Toptracer also will be featured on approach shots via cameras that can travel anywhere on the course.
  • BUNKER CAMS: NBC Sports’ coverage of The Open will once again make use of the popular “bunker cam” technology, embedding a camera into the lip of seven bunkers at Royal Portrush to offer a unique perspective as players attempt to make their escape.
  • INFLUENCE OF WIND: Wind indicators will be utilized around the course to measure changes in wind conditions in real-time, providing immediate ultra-precise data so viewers can easily distinguish what a player is facing over a given shot.

AIRTMES FOR THE 148TH OPEN WEEK (All Times EST):

Monday, July 15

7-9 a.m. Morning Drive

9-11 a.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Sky Sports – On The Range

7-9 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

Tuesday, July 16

6-10 a.m. / Noon-2 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

10 a.m.-Noon Morning Drive

9-10 p.m. Vantage Point with Mike Tirico

Wednesday, July 17

6-10 a.m. / Noon-2 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

10 a.m.-Noon Morning Drive

11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Thursday, July 18

Midnight-1:30 a.m. Midnight Drive

1:30 a.m.-4 p.m. The Open – First Round

4-5 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Friday, July 19

1:30-4 p.m. The Open – Second Round

4-5 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Saturday, July 20

5-7 a.m. The Open – Third Round

7-11 a.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

7 a.m.-3 p.m. The Open – Third Round (NBC)

3-4 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

1-1:30 a.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN, Saturday Overnight)

Sunday, July 21

4-7 a.m. The Open – Final Round

7-10 a.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

7 a.m.-2 p.m. The Open – Final Round (NBC)

2-4 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open

10-10:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

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ABOUT NBC SPORTS GROUP’S GOLF DIVISION
NBC Sports Group’s GOLF division delivers multimedia golf content, technology and services. Anchored by GOLF Channel – co-founded by Arnold Palmer in 1995 – GOLF content is available to nearly 500 million viewers in nine languages across more than 70 countries around the world. GOLF features more live coverage of the sport than all other U.S. networks combined, including global tournament action from the PGA TOUR, LPGA Tour, European Tour, NCAA, THE PLAYERS, The Open, Olympics, Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup, as well as high-quality news, instruction and original programming. Delivering unmatched coverage from the world of golf via GOLF Digital, fans can access 24/7 live streaming through the NBC Sports App, as well as complementary coverage via PGA TOUR LIVE on NBC Sports Gold. In addition to these all-encompassing media platforms, NBC Sports connects the world to golf through a wide array of technology and lifestyle services, including: GOLFNOW, the world’s largest online tee time booking platform; GOLF Business Solutions, solving business needs through leading technology, marketing and services; GOLFPASS, an all-in-one digital membership delivering comprehensive benefits tailored to the modern golfer’s lifestyle; Revolution GOLF, the world’s largest direct-to-consumer digital platform in golf, offering best-in-class video instruction and game improvement products; GOLF Advisor, the ultimate digital destination for the traveling golfer, featuring the largest number of user-generated golf course ratings and reviews in the industry; GOLF Academy, a North American network of instructional facilities; and GOLF Am Tour, the world’s largest amateur golf tour. GOLF’s global reach originates from its world headquarters in Orlando, Fla., and extends to its international office in Belfast, Northern Ireland; regional offices across North America, Europe and Australia; and also includes collaborations with Sky Sports and serving as the Official Media Partner of St Andrews Links.

-NBC Sports Group-

Media Contact:
Jeff Szklinski
GOLF / NBC Sports Communications
814-880-6933
Jeff.Szklinski@GolfChannel.com

David Schaefer
GOLF / NBC Sports Communications
407-429-8402
David.Schaefer@GolfChannel.com

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