Pushing Broadcasting to the Limit

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Even by the standards of the world's most prestigious cycling event, this year's Tour de France was momentous. Cycling enthusiasts from all over the world tuned in to watch the indefatigable Lance Armstrong make history with an unprecedented seventh consecutive Tour win.

In the UK, ITV covered the three-week event with a daily hour-long highlights programme on ITV2 plus live coverage on Saturday and Sunday, and a weekly highlights programme every Monday on ITV1.

Mounting a broadcast operation on such a large scale is a phenomenal task. Turnaround needs to be lightning-fast and with a high profile event like the Tour, there's simply no margin for error. A London-based 'dream team' was assembled to take on the job -- and the 'dream workflow' they employed was based around Apple technology.

James Venner, producer/director of production company VTV, has been covering the Tour since 1986. Venner joined forces with freelance editor Peter Wiggins, who has been editing sport for over 15 years and the Tour for nine years. The other key members of the 'dream team' were Soho-based broadcast facility, Molinare, and Apple Solution Experts, Root6, who supplied the equipment and helped install the Xsan at Molinare.

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Monty Solomon
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