VERSUS TO TELEVISE 2009 TOUR DE FRANCE IN HD FOR FIRST TIME EVER
NETWORK SET TO DELIVER MORE THAN 250 HOURS OF RACE COVERAGE
FEATURING LANCE ARMSTRONG'S SHOT AT RECORD EIGHTH TOUR VICTORY
- press release -
NEW YORK, N.Y. (June 24, 2009)- VERSUS, the exclusive television home of the Tour de France in the
U.S., will kick-off its ninth year of wall-to-wall coverage of the most intense and grueling
competition in all of sports on Sat., July 4, at 9:30 a.m. ET. The network will begin its first day
of Tour coverage at 8:30 a.m. ET with a one-hour special chronicling Lance Armstrong's career and
his 2009 comeback season. For the first time ever, each stage of the Tour will be produced in full
Throughout the 23-day, 2,000-mile competition, the network will air an average of 13 hours of race
action per day. Daily coverage includes live race action and an expanded primetime show. Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen, the undisputed voices of cycling, will once again call all the race action and Frankie Andreu and
Robbie Ventura will return as the field reporters. Craig Hummer and Bob Roll will host the
primetime show each night.
This year, the last four Tour de France champions-Lance Armstrong (1999-2005), Oscar Pereiro (2006),
Alberto Contador (2007) and Carlos Sastre (2008)-will all be competing against each other for their
chance to once again wear the coveted yellow jersey in Paris. Armstrong and Contador will both be
riding for Team Astana.
"There is no other sporting event in the world that compares to the Tour de France and there is no
other television network that could give the race the tremendous scope of coverage it deserves like
VERSUS. As we head into our ninth year as the home of the Tour, the network's commitment to cycling
has never been stronger with more than 250 hours of HD race action this July," said Jamie Davis,
President of VERSUS. "The 2008 race was VERSUS' most-watched Tour in network history, but with four
past champions competing this year, including the return of cycling legend Lance Armstrong, there is
no doubt that this year's competition will be even more captivating."
With the quest to deliver unprecedented access via new and unique production enhancements VERSUS has
placed a camera on the U.S. cycling team Garmin-Slipstream's bus to give viewers an insider's look
at the team's daily meeting as they prepare for the day's stage. Other enhancements that VERSUS
will offer include profiles and features on teams and riders; advanced on-screen
statistics/biometrics to illustrate the intensity at which the riders are competing; and a
telestrator to analyze and breakdown sprint finishes, among others.