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ESPN on ABC To Televise Indy 500 in High Definition

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For Immediate Release - May 9, 2007


ESPN on ABC To Televise Indianapolis 500 in High Definition - Multi-Platform Coverage Devoted to Greatest Spectacle in Racing


ESPN on ABC’s live telecast of the 91st running of the Indianapolis 500 will be in High Definition, a first for the historic motorsports event, and part of ESPN’s multi-platform coverage of The Month of May at Indy. The race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway will be run on Sunday, May 27, with ABC’s telecast to start at noon ET.


In addition to the race telecast, coverage of both weekends of qualifying by ESPN on ABC and ESPN2 will also be presented in HD. GoDaddy.com will be the presenting sponsor for ESPN and ABC’s coverage of Indianapolis 500 Pole Day, Bump Day, and the Indianapolis 500.


ABC will cover the Indianapolis 500 for the 43rd year in 2007, extending the second-longest relationship in television history between a sporting event and television network. Only The Masters and CBS have been together longer.


“The start of the Indianapolis 500 is one of the most dramatic moments in sports, and providing flag-to-flag coverage of the Greatest Spectacle in Racing in High Definition will add to our viewers’ enjoyment of the race,” said John Wildhack, ESPN executive vice president, programming and acquisitions.


Marty Reid will be ESPN on ABC’s lead announcer for Indianapolis coverage, joined in the booth for analysis by former IndyCar Series driver Scott Goodyear and 1989 NASCAR champion Rusty Wallace. Jack Arute, Jamie Little, Brienne Pedigo and Vince Welch will report the action from the pits, while Brent Musburger will host the race telecast.


"One of the most frequent requests from our fans is a high-definition telecast of the Indianapolis 500, and we're thrilled to fulfill that demand,” said Joie Chitwood, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president and chief operating officer. "This will bring home the color, pageantry and excitement of 'The Greatest Spectacle in Racing' in vivid detail to the ever-growing numbers of homes with HD sets."


The HD coverage will make its debut this weekend as drivers will run for the pole position on Saturday, and ABC and ESPN2 will have five hours of live coverage of time trials beginning at noon ET. ESPN2 will have more than three additional hours of live coverage of the second day of Indianapolis 500 time trials on Sunday.


Saturday’s coverage of Pole Day will begin on ESPN2 at noon for two hours. After an hour off, coverage will resume on ABC at 3 p.m. and continue until 6 p.m., returning to ESPN2 from 6-7 p.m. On Sunday, ESPN2’s coverage begins at noon and runs for two hours, then resumes from 5-6:30 p.m. ABC and ESPN2’s coverage of Indianapolis 500 time trials will also be on the air the weekend of May 19-20, including coverage of Bump Day on Sunday, May 20.




Date Time Network Event

May 12 12-2 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Pole Day

May 12 3-6 p.m. ABC Indianapolis 500 Pole Day

May 12 6-7 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Pole Day

May 13 12-2 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Time Trials

May 13 5-6:30 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Time Trials

May 19 4-6:30 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Time Trials

May 20 1-3 p.m. ABC Indianapolis 500 Bump Day

May 20 5-6:30 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Bump Day

May 25 4-6:30 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Carburetion Day - Pit Stop Challenge - Indy Pro Series Race

May 26 5:30-7 p.m. ESPN2 Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade

May 26 7-7:30 p.m. ESPN2 Ready to Race: the 91st Indianapolis 500

May 27 Noon ABC Indianapolis 500 (race start 1 p.m.)




Online and on-demand, ESPN will also bring racing fans a comprehensive package of live and archived content through ESPN360.com, ESPN Video on Demand and content available for download via the Apple iTunes Music Store.


On ESPN360.com, the signature broadband service from ESPN, there will be a dedicated Indy 500 section to the service, providing more than 20 hours of live coverage from Time Trials, Bump Day and Carb Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, as well as condensed versions of classic Indy 500 races from 1982, 1985, and 2006, Indy 500 Flashback vignettes, complete ESPN Classic Big Ticket programs looking at the 1981 and 1982 races, and episodes of ESPN Classic's award-winning SportsCentury biography series examining the Andretti and Unser families.


Live online coverage on ESPN360.com includes:

Saturday, May 12 - Indy 500 Pole Day - 12:00-3:00 p.m.

Sunday, May 13 - Indy 500 Time Trials - 12:00-6:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 19 - Indy 500 Time Trials - 12:00-6:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 20 - Indy 500 Bump Day - 4:00-6:30 p.m.

Friday, May 25 - Indy 500 Carb Day - 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.


Additionally, fans will find on-demand offerings available through ESPN Video On Demand and Apple's iTunes Store. On ESPN Video On Demand, 15-minute versions of multiple past races (1982, 1985, 2006) and the 2007 race will be offered throughout May. On the iTunes Store, fans will be able to purchase the condensed, 90-minute versions of the 2007 race as well as past races from 1982, 1985, 1992 and 2006.



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