Precision timing solutions like chip timers on the trail and scoring buttons in each indoor lane measured athletic performances to the hundredth of a second. Live scoring tech with seamless broadcast integration displayed exact rep counts, finish times, and mission critical broadcast graphics that increased visibility for sponsors and informed hundreds of local spectators and tens of thousands of viewers online.
What is your name?
How long have you been involved in this sport?
Since the sport has been a sport, really! I was onsite for the second year of the CrossFit Games and officially involved in 2009. I spent over a decade with the media team at CrossFit, Inc. in various roles – most notably broadcast host for our ESPN and CBS shows. I recently moved to Cookeville, TN, the home of CrossFit Mayhem. From the perspective of my freelance career, Mayhem – home of the Fittest Man, Woman and Team – is hard to beat as a home base. I’ve also recently signed on as the Media Director for NOBULL – the most relevant and upcoming brand in the functional fitness space.
What led you to work with Throwdowns?
Throwdowns had previously knocked it out of the park on several of our other events like Mayhem for Mustard Seed Ranch, but what really made the decision for us to work with them on this elite competition was their ability to create and deliver the technology that could take our livestream to the next level.
Our sport is niche to begin with, and difficult to follow in the best of conditions. In the absence of live scoring, you simply cannot engage viewers at home or accomplish the level of storytelling commensurate to the level of the athletes on the field. Live scoring is mission critical for a broadcast, bar none. Commentators depend on it for analysis, viewers are accustomed to it and – in the role of event organizer – it presents opens an entirely different stratosphere of visibility.
What do you like most about using Throwdowns?
Going into the event, the live scoring tech that integrates into the broadcast was a huge part of our decision, and we also really appreciated that their sole focus on the sport of functional fitness helps to grow its community and the economy around it. Perhaps more than anything was their “Get it done or die trying,” attitude. The fact that THEY DELIVERED — and were a lot of fun to work with, was very sweet icing on the cake!
How did Throwdowns make organizing a large sanctioned competition easier for you?
They were essentially our adjunct IT department for both the online qualifier and the live event. They handled all of the staples like selling tickets, registering athletes, building heats schedules, and lots of other time consuming tasks. That freed me and Rich up to work on partnerships, programming, facilities issues, and pretty much everything else.
How has Throwdowns helped you connect to your athletes?
They managed our entire online qualifier, and their system automatically handled delivering the invites to athletes. Their platform also managed/seeded our heats schedule, the leaderboards/scoring, and quite a few other touch points that involved athletes. What athletes probably loved the most, though, were the precision timing buttons that they smashed at the end of the each workout. It might seem like a small detail, but based on feedback so far, it was one of the most memorable aspects of the entire event.
Would you work with Throwdowns on another large sanctioned event?
Absolutely! They’re good people and have demonstrated that they can deliver mission critical tech that satisfies a very high standard under a LOT of pressure. That’s hard to come by, and we’re already starting to think ahead about next year’s event.