Louisville Magazine

Breeders Cup 2018

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#BC18 BREEDERSCUP.COM 9 "e enhanced production will guide viewers through the VR-360 degree experience and educate them as to what's going around them," McDonald says. "It will basically be color commentary on top of what you can see, pointing out key moments throughout the day." e virtual reality component also offers a picture-in-picture capability so that, for example, viewers can monitor a horse being saddled for the Breeders' Cup Classic while in the background there are useful features such as an interview with a trainer, entries and odds for the race, minutes to post and a social media feed from the hashtag #BC18. "Everything has changed," says Peter Rotondo, vice president of the Breeders' Cup. "It's not like the old days when you put on a show and people were forced to watch what you give them. ose days are over. Now you can watch whatever you want and that's what you'll get at the Breeders' Cup." NBC Sports unveiled the "BatCam" earlier this year at the Kentucky Derby, giving viewers a breakthrough, overhead view of the field racing down the back- stretch. e new camera is a Panasonic HD box camera mounted on an overhead wire that can move at speeds that would make Triple Crown champion Justify blush. With the ability to reach top speeds of greater than 100 mph and the capability of motoring from 0 to 60 mph in 1.5 seconds, the "BatCam" was able to follow the Derby field and give viewers a unique perspective of how the race was unfolding. "e 'BatCam' provided an extraor- dinary view of the Triple Crown races," Rotondo says, "and thankfully NBC had it at the Preakness or no one would have seen anything in that fog." For the Breeders' Cup, Rotondo says NBC is hopeful of adding a 'BatCam' for the stretch run. e jockey cam was a popular addition to last year's Breeders' Cup at Del Mar, es- pecially since it was worn by Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith as he piloted Caledo- nia Road to a 3 ¼-length triumph in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. anks to the camera attached to Smith's helmet, fans had a bird's-eye view of the 2-year- old filly's dramatic charge from last in a large field of 13 to a decisive victory at the finish line. "We had it on Mike Smith last year and you could see what he sees from the second he walks out of the jockeys' room and all the way throughout the race," McDonald says. "We got lucky that he won with Caledonia Road because people got to see what it was like for Mike as he rallied from 13th in that field and passed all of those horses. at video has received over 150,00 views for us and is the type of ancillary, unique content that we strive to present each year." "We will definitely be bringing back the jockey cam in 2018 and hope to increase the number of races it's used in," he continued. e Breeders' Cup various social me- dia platforms will also be on overdrive during the two days of racing and the week leading up to the World Champi- onships. e Breeders' Cup's Facebook, Twit- ter, Instagram and Periscope accounts will be abuzz with activity, keeping on- and off-track followers informed about the latest news and developments and provide them with an opportunity to interact with friends, family and other viewers about what's happening at Chur- chill Downs. "You have to be where your fans are and social media is where people are consuming most of their content so we've tripled-down on our social efforts the last few years and will continue to do so" McDonald says. "We'll have a core social media team of about six people working the event this year and will be partnering with a University of Louis- ville social media and communications class to add to those numbers. "A key component of social media is the amplification opportunity it provides — you can go from no one talking about something to millions of people talking about it within seconds, depend- ing on what it is. is is something that never happened years ago," he contin- ued. "With the Breeders' Cup, the races are at the heart of our event but there's also the social aspect of people having fun at the event and social media plays an important role for us in delivering that message. Each platform is different but they are effective in reaching and satisfying our audience." McDonald adds that the ability to use analytics to discover what fans want and to then provide that content in seconds has been vital for the Breeders' Cup in recent years, and this year promises to be no different as a 35-year-old event once again embraces the changes that have made it so vibrant for so long. Download on the App Store or Google Play Experience Virtual Reality on App, website and YouTube Share and keep track minute by minute on your favorite platform VR #BC18 BREEDERS' CUP MOBILE WWW.BREEDERSCUP.COM SOCIAL MEDIA HASHTAG Breeders' Cup Interactive Here's a quick guide to Breeders' Cup social media and interactive options: • Go to Breederscup.com for the Players' Show, a live video stream that includes races, entries, results, charts and more. • Visit Facebook.com/breederscup for news, video and real-time cover- age of food, fashion and celebrities. • To get the latest news on and off the track, tune in to the Breeders' Cup handle on Twitter: twitter.com/ BreedersCup. To follow the conver- sation use and search #BC18. • Follow @breederscup on Insta- gram. Capture and share your own Breeders' Cup moments using #breederscup and #BC18.

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