LiveU’s EcoSystem boosts Eurovision Sport for UCI’s first integrated Cycling World Championships’ coverage
Eurovision Sport has deployed LiveU’s EcoSystem for enhancing Cycling World Championships’s production
The sports arm of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) Eurovision Sport leveraged its ongoing relationship with LiveU at the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships, deployed solutions from across the LiveU EcoSystem, for creating agile and enhanced coverage of the largest cycling event ever held, increasing the number of takers around the world for the event.
Taking place in Scotland, with Eurovision Sport’s remote Broadcast Operation Centre (BOC) situated at BBC Scotland headquartered in Glasgow, this was the first time the UCI has combined its multiple World Championships into a single, integrated event. There were 13 World Championships taking place across seven disciplines. These included mountain biking, road cycling and track (both Men’s and Women’s) alongside Para-cycling.
Franck Choquard, Head of Content & Platforms, Eurovision Sport, said, “This event was a huge project. What we were looking at was how we could use innovative technologies to be more cost-effective alongside the guarantee of resiliency in the field. Our discussions with LiveU were around two main use cases. The first was the need to bring signals back from various sites, including from motorbikes, helicopters and other moving vehicles alongside ENG teams, to the BOC, which was operated by our regular production partner Actua Films. This was undoubtedly more cost-effective than using RF and gave us the flexibility we needed. The second was to secure the contribution network with ten venues being used around Scotland with an “ultimate backup solution”. We required a resilient, IP-based solution with bonding for these, so we used LiveU, bringing back a pair of feeds from each relevant site.”
Operated by Actua Films, 12 multi-camera LU800s were used in multi-camera mode, both for content acquisition and for securing signals. As Choquard added, “LiveU is ideal for use on moving vehicles with its capabilities really coming to the fore.”
In addition to contribution, Eurovision Sport and its takers benefitted from LiveU’s solutions for production and distribution. Eurovision Sport has very successfully developed a hybrid model, which it used here, with SDI deployed where possible to the BOC center, backed up by LiveU cloud services. Choquard continued, “We used both LiveU Matrix and Cloud Connect to contribute the production feeds in LRT™ or SRT to some of the takers. We have our Digital Content Hub, and we used this in combination with the LiveU EcoSystem. We had takers who wanted a lot of material for their digital platforms but didn’t want to spend to access satellite feeds. Our LiveU workflow was perfect for this. For several events, some takers then created their own remote productions.”
The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) is the largest public service media alliance in the world. It has 112 Member organizations in 56 countries, as well as 30 Affiliates in Asia, Africa and the Americas. Eurovision Sport has an extensive relationship with LiveU, formalized into an ongoing solutions framework two years ago, including field units, cloud services and data packages.