ITV Sport provides live coverage of a wide range of sporting events for British network, ITV. It holds broadcast rights for various high profile sporting events including the French Open, FIFA World Cup & Tour De France.
Since 1991, ITV has produced and screened comprehensive live coverage of Rugby Union’s biggest tournament, the IRB Rugby World Cup. Held every four years in a different host country, 2011 saw 20 qualifying teams head to New Zealand, where they competed across 13 different venues during September and October.
ITV Sport once again relied upon industry specialists Gravity Media – then branded Gearhouse Broadcast – for provision of bespoke project solutions and broadcast equipment for the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
Network facilities based at a Technical Operation Centre in Auckland City, and Hosting Studio at the nearby Viaduct Harbour, had to link seamlessly to ITV’s Studio and transmission facilities in London.
In order to effectively deliver all the action and excitement to ITV viewers, the Broadcast operation needed to be in High Definition 1080i 25hz 16:9 with 8 channels of audio.
An experienced team of Gravity Media specialists worked closely with the client to identify the best overall broadcast and integration solutions. Specialist equipment used was also provided by Gravity Media.
In addition, the Master Control Areas for engineering and quality control comprised of test and measurement equipment from Tektronix utilising the WFM 700 and the 601E series.
Routers were selected from the Pro-bel series and the Pro-bel HD/SD routing systems, whilst Leitch equipment was selected for the HD distribution and glue products.
This project saw Gravity Media and ITV Sport further cement an already-strong working relationship. Pristine & seamless delivery of every moment of thrilling Rugby World Cup action was delivered successfully to viewers throughout the entire competition.
ITV Sport’s technical director Roger Pearce said the production company was “pleased” with the package supplied by Gravity Media’s team of experts. “We find them to be reliable in terms of their equipment, their people and their technical support capabilities” he said.
ITV was later awarded the contract for the Rugby World Cup through to at least the 2023 tournament.