For the second year in a row, ESPN has won the Media Eclipse Award for Television–Live Racing Programming for its telecast of “The Breeders’ Cup Classic” at the 2011 Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs.
This is the third consecutive Media Eclipse Award in the Live Television category for ESPN, which won the award last year for its Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I) telecast on ESPN and for its 2009 telecast of the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), shown on ABC.
“To win this award three years in a row is a great testament to our overall production,” said Mike McQuade, vice president of event production for ESPN and coordinating producer for the Breeders’ Cup Classic telecast. “We treat the Breeders’ Cup as a big event and we produce it as a big event. This year’s Classic had a number of captivating storylines and our group did an excellent job telling these stories and bringing the audience right to the action.”
The Breeders’ Cup Classic telecast was produced by McQuade and David Ceisler and directed by Doug Holmes. Joe Tessitore hosted the program. He was joined by analysts Randy Moss and Jerry Bailey. Jeannine Edwards, Jay Privman, and Caton Bredar were the reporters. Hank Goldberg and Kenny Mayne were the handicappers. Bill Nack provided narrated pieces. Trevor Denman was the racecaller. Nick Luck was the international expert horse analyst.
Judges for the National Television–Live Racing category were: Pete Macheska of Fox Sports; former NESN producer Joel Feld, and award winning television producer Toni Slotkin.
Honorable mention in the National Television Live Programming category went to NBC Sports for its live telecast of the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) from Baltimore, Md., which aired on May 21. Fred Gaudelli was the producer.