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KXAN News 36 at Thunder Hill


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Jen Ohlsen of KXAN in Austin, Channel 36, came out to Thunder Hill today to do some taping for a segment that is planned to air on the Sunday night "Sunday Sports Section" on Channel 36 at 10:30 pm and will probably run again some time during the week.

KXAN is on Channel 4 on Time Warner Cable in Austin.

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Ahh, now it makes sense.

By the way, Jen Ohlson is someone we should get out to the track for a celebrity race (something Brian Callaway has already suggested).

Jen was the most-lettered athlete in Colorado high school history, with 15 letters in five sports, and was the USA Today high school athelete of the year her senior year.

She played soccer and ran track in college, and has completed 18 marathons. She's the first female from Texas to finish the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon, and is training for an Ironman in Canada.

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One of the problems we've always had with television stations is the fact that we don't have video they can use.

We either have amateur video shot from the grandstand in poor light, or we have video that is owned by someone who won't give us permission to use it.

Television has to have pictures, good pictures, or they can't do the story. If they can come shoot video of an event or practice, great. But they have a lot of things to do, and many of them happen just when we are racing. We aren't a high priority, even when the sports reporter (Jeff Power at News 8, or Jen Ohlson, who did a piece last year on Charlie Turner) wants to do it.

Last year, two local pro cameramen shot video at Thunder Hill. One was Merle Bertrand, who is in post-production on his documentary; the other was Thad Yousling, who wants to shoot races. (It was Thad's video that was shot at the Big Shot and used that weekend on News 8.)

We wanted to shoot video last Thursday, but the station had a conflict, so we had to go with Friday. Some of the local people we wanted to use either weren't available, or their cars were in pieces.

David Snokhous and Terry Tschoerner were able to bring their cars out; David on very short notice (like, 11:00 Friday morning, be there at 1:30). We appreciate their efforts, and their comments, which were very good.

The only racing footage we had was shot by Thad at the Big Shot (though he got some great stuff for Mary Ann at the last TSRS race, including the last five laps between Ronny New and Tommy Gural for the win) and included interviews he did with about a dozen drivers.

Jen Ohlson used all of that to put together a terrific piece and gave Thunder Hill nearly three minutes of air time. (Priced TV air time lately?)

I'd always like more, and I think we are worth more in coverage, but we don't yet have the visibility other sports have, and have to come from behind.

Don't forget to call, write or email Channel 36 and let them know we appreciate the coverage.

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They actually ran it again this morning during their morning show, so I'm not sure it will be run again. As they seemed to like it, you might watch their news programs this evening; they could run it in shorter form.

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