While I’m without a doubt stoked with the success of The Tour of Utah, I can’t help but sit in awe at what the organizers of the USA Pro Challenge have done in two short years. The visibility of the race and quality of field is simply off-the-charts for the short time it’s been in existence. Now, with the iconic Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen and Bob Roll announcing the race on NBC Sports, it looks like the entire month of August will feel like my birthday every day!
Congratulations to the organizers of the USA Pro Challenge on this unprecedented coverage. Read the release below.
Denver (June 13, 2012) – This August, people across the country will have the opportunity to witness the action and excitement of elite professional cycling through live daily coverage of the USA Pro Challenge, one of the largest professional cycling races in the world, on NBC Sports Network and NBC. Featuring unprecedented network coverage for the event, the broadcast partnership has been extended through 2014 and will include 29 hours of race coverage over seven days beginning Monday, August 20. New for 2012, coverage on NBC has been extended to include two hours on Saturday, August 25 and Sunday, August 26, more than any other cycling domestic cycling event.
“The NBC Sports Group’s extended partnership with USA Pro Challenge demonstrates how much we believe in the sport.” said Jon Miller, president of programming for NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network. “The USA Pro Challenge is a major event in the U.S. and we are excited to once again air daily live coverage on NBC Sports Network in addition to the four hours on NBC.”
Coverage of the seven-day race begins on NBC Sports Network on Monday, August 20, at 4 p.m. ET, with the final stage in downtown Denver set to air live for two hours on NBC Sports Network and two hours on NBC on Sunday, August 26, beginning at 2 p.m. ET.
In addition, Universal Sports will re-air NBC’s coverage of Stages 6 & 7 on August 27 and August 28 at 6 p.m. ET, respectively.
Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen, the undisputed voices of cycling will be on site in Colorado to provide observations and insight for each day of NBC and NBC Sports Network’s coverage. Former cyclist Bob Roll will serve as the in-race reporter.
The 683-mile route starts in Durango and will take the riders and spectators through 12 official host cities, as well as many others on the way to the exhilarating individual time trial finish in downtown Denver. Featuring some of the best riders in the sport of cycling, the race comes on the heels of the Olympics and the Tour de France.
“We want to make the USA Pro Challenge accessible to as many people around the world as possible,” said Shawn Hunter, CEO of the USA Pro Challenge. “With the added live coverage on both Saturday and Sunday—two hours each day on NBC Sports Network and two on NBC – and the repeat coverage on Universal Sports, we are able to reach fans around the country that aren’t able to make it to Colorado, as well as new audiences.” Providing coverage in several different formats and at different times of day, fans will have multiple opportunities to catch the action.
The day before the race starts (Sunday, Aug. 19), NBC Sports Network will air a one-hour preview show at 3:30 p.m. ET, featuring in-depth profiles of the race’s top riders.Prior to the race each day, with the exception of Sunday, NBC Sports Network will give cycling fans an up-close look into the daily lives of their favorite riders with a 30-minute pre-show. The documentary-style shows, airing at 3:30 p.m. ET, will offer inside access to the riders and their preparations for the race.
NBC Sports Network will provide live daily HD coverage of the seven stages of the competition.
Highlights of the stages will be featured each night at 11 p.m. ET. Universal Sports will re-air NBC’s coverage of Stages 6 & 7 on August 27 and August 28, respectively.
NBC Sports Group’s broadcasts of the USA Pro Challenge will give viewers the best cycling coverage possible with features including: cameras on many of the teams’ cars; a pointer feature which will easily identify and focus on one rider in the peloton; exclusive, in-depth profiles and features on teams and riders; and advanced on-screen statistics/biometrics to illustrate the intensity at which the riders are competing.
NBCSports.com will offer cycling fans up-to-the-minute news throughout the entire race with daily standings and results; video recaps of each stage, exclusive fan videos and interviews from some of the best riders in the world. The website also features videos from the Pro Challenge Spotlight series, which takes a look into the lives behind some of America’s top riders.
Broadcast schedule for live coverage of the 2012 USA Pro Challenge
(all times ET and subject to change)
Stage 1: Monday, August 20 – Durango to Telluride – 4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 2: Tuesday, August 21 –Montrose to Crested Butte/Mt. Crested Butte – 4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 3: Wednesday, August 22 – Gunnison to Aspen – 4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 4: Thursday, August 23 – Aspen to Beaver Creek/Vail Village – 4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 5: Friday, August 24–Breckenridge to Colorado Springs – 4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 6: Saturday, August 25 – Golden to Boulder – 2-4 p.m. (NBC); 4-6 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)
Stage 6 Re-air: Monday, August 27 – 6-8 p.m. ET (Universal Sports)
Stage 7: Sunday, August 26 –Denver Individual Time Trial – 2-4 p.m. (NBC Sports Network); 4-6 p.m. (NBC)
Stage 7 Re-air: Tuesday, August 28 – 6-8 p.m. ET (Universal Sports)
About the USA Pro Challenge
For seven consecutive days, the world’s top athletes race through the majestic Colorado Rockies, reaching higher altitudes than they’ve ever had to endure as they ascend over three mountain passes, each exceeding 12,000 ft. in elevation. After attracting more than 1 million spectators in 2011, making it one of the largest cycling events in U.S. history, the USA Pro Challenge is back for 2012. Featuring a challenging, 683-mile course with more than 42,000 ft. of vertical climbing, the second annual race will spotlight the best of the best in professional cycling and some of America’s most beautiful scenery.
Referred to as “America’s Race,” the USA Pro Challenge will take place August 20-26, 2012, a week proclaimed by Governor John Hickenlooper as “Colorado Cycling Holiday,” and travel through 12 host cities from Durango to Denver.
About NBC Sports Group
When the Comcast-NBCUniversal transaction was completed in January 2011, the broad reach and storied history of NBC Sports united with Comcast’s 24/7 ability to super-serve fans to create the NBC Sports Group. The sports media company consists of an array of broadcast television, cable television and digital sports assets, including NBC Sports & Olympics, NBC Sports Network, Golf Channel, 11 SportsNets (regional sports networks), and their respective digital properties. Together, the assets of the NBC Sports Group possess an unparalleled collection of television rights agreements, partnering with some of the most prestigious sports properties in the world: the International Olympic Committee and United States Olympic Committee, the NFL, NHL, PGA TOUR, PGA of America, USGA, Churchill Downs, MLS, Tour de France, French Open, IndyCar, and many more.