The final five AMA events fof the 2009 season, beginning with the July 4-5 Laguna Seca round, will air on SPEED on same-day tape delay.
Since March 21, SPEED has presented AMA coverage with a Saturday night program called AMA Pro Prime Time. The program was an experiment in what SPEED calls “destination viewing” which was supposed to provide AMA Pro Road Racing coverage at a consistent time slot each week.
Under that format, however, SPEED aired races a week or two after they took place, a move that proved unpopular with racing fans.
“As the current economy continues to challenge all forms of motor sports, we worked together with AMA Pro Racing to find a more cost effective way to deliver motorcycle coverage to the fans in 2009,” says Rick Miner, SPEED senior vice president of Production & Network Operations. “But at the end of the day, race fans didn’t accept the format and they let us know loud and clear that the experiment didn’t work … so, beginning with Laguna Seca, SPEED will close out the last five events of the season by running same-day event coverage whenever possible.”
The final episode of AMA Pro Prime Time will air June 20 with coverage of the June 7 round at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., so fans will have to put up with one more two-week delay.
“We are very pleased to join SPEED as they share the news with our fans that the final stretch of the 2009 season will offer them the ability to view the excitement of AMA Pro Road Racing the same day that it happens,” says Roger Edmondson, AMA Pro Road Racing president. “SPEED has constantly shown that they have a dedication and passion for our sport and have been an outstanding broadcast partner. Although we believed that destination viewing offered us the ability to expose the personalities of our sport in a unique way, it was clear that our fans were disappointed with the delay in coverage. We applaud SPEED for their decision and financial commitment to our sport in these tough economic times. We look forward to continuing to work with them to deliver the excitement of AMA Pro Road Racing in a format that does justice to the athletes and machines that make it special.”