From sun up to sun down on April 13, the Sunny King Criterium offers spectators in downtown Anniston a kaleidoscope of colors and whirl of action in 21 bicycle races. With the return of a streaming broadcast, cycling fans across the United States, and around the globe, will be able to see, hear and experience Anniston and the Sunny King Criterium as well!
It is the ninth year for the live streaming broadcast. Alabama Power will return to sponsor the live stream for a fourth year. Resources from Alabama Power provide the energy needed for the remote broadcast production.
The webcast covers nine hours of racing, from Noon to 9 p.m. CDT. It provides incredible influence for area tourism, as well as valuable exposure for the hundreds of competitors, and their teams. Professional sports commentator and broadcast producer Brad Sohner will return to call the action.
“There’s no better place to kick off the criterium racing season for USA Cycling’s Pro Road Tour than in Anniston. It’s a fast, smooth course in downtown with plenty of spectators. Being close to Talladega, speed is the name of the game for the Sunny King Criterium,” said Sohner, who travels around the world to provide live commentary and webcasting production for professional bicycle races.
“It is one of the few events in the country that offers a full nine hours of free webcasting to showcase amateurs and pros,” added Sohner. He and his crew will provide athlete interviews, sponsor spotlights and race commentary until the final sprint finish by the pro men at approximately 9 p.m.
There are five cameras along the course for the broadcast. Last year, people from more than 101 countries accounted for more than 27,000 page views of the broadcast feed. Across the U.S., some of the top cities represented with viewership were Atlanta, Birmingham, Phoenix, Los Angeles, New York City and Nashville.
“The volume of promotional outreach for this event is very impressive,” said Linda Hearn, manager of the Calhoun County Area Chamber and Visitors Center. “The live streaming element is an excellent way to showcase to the world the quality of racers who travel to our area to compete. As an event sponsor, we feel like our area is presented in a positive fashion and conveys to those from outside Calhoun County that we are a cycling destination for not only professional athletes but amateurs as well.”
The webcast is a great way for spectators in Anniston to follow all the action, and get the behind-the-scenes scoop. The best part, it is free to watch! Whether you are in Anniston, or watching from abroad, the live stream is available at the main event website, www.annistoncycling.com. Streaming will also be carried by many national cycling news sites.
On Saturday, spectators at the Sunny King Criterium will enjoy free admission to the races and Noble Street Festival. There will be speakers placed around the course and a large screen monitor at the finish line for fans to follow the bicycle races. This year Steve Cullen will provide the course-side rider interviews and play-by-play from the start/finish area. He is the voice behind Fasturdays Podcast and Co-Owner of the ButcherBox Cycling Team.