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SELECTED ISSUE
Sports Management
08 Feb 2016 issue 113

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Leisure Management - Game Changers

Innovation

Game Changers


A look at the technology and innovation currently making waves across the world of sport

Viuing launches disposable €15 TV screens

Viuing, a technology company based in Barcelona, Spain, has come up with a way of adding to fans’ experience of live sports events.

It’s developed a disposable device with a built-in screen, offering spectators a live TV feed of the event and giving them an alternative viewpoint of the proceedings.

One of the founders, Marc García, used to work for motorcycle giant Yamaha and often worked at motorsport events. “I used to go to the races all the time,” he says, “but given my job, I had access to areas that others didn’t. One day I decided to watch the race from the stands and realised how little the public can actually see from there.”

Once Viuing is opened, the user will begin receiving a TV signal and will be able to see every second of the event, providing further, real-time information and footage with replays.

Viuing utilises RF technology and has a battery power of six hours. Water resistant and recyclable, the €15 devices are being made available at a number of sporting events.

Details: www.viuing.com

 



Fans will be about to see live TV during sports events
 


The disposable devices will cost fans around €15 to buy
 
Xtraction saves money by repairing artificial pitches

A pioneering approach by Sports Maintenance Services (SMS) has saved Middlesbrough College in the UK an estimated £150,000 by rescuing a 3G artificial sports pitch ruined by recent floods.

The 7,000sq m (75,300sq ft) playing surface seemed destined for landfill after the River Tees in northern England burst its banks and washed over it. An early inspection confirmed that the carpet had been rucked in several places, the sub-base was compromised and some of the rubber infill had been washed away.

A new on-site reclamation and reinstallation process – called Xtraction – brought the pitch back to life and halved the cost of replacing it with a new surface. The SMS team cut the carpet’s seams, rolled it and separated 320 tonnes of infill from it – all without damaging the existing shock pad underneath.

SMS then reinstalled the entire carpet system, which was later certified as fit to use for matches up to World Rugby standards by Sports Labs testing.

SMS’ Jason Lewis-Lamb said: “The monetary saving was impressive, but the real value was in the reuse of materials and the project’s sustainability. The economically-friendly Xtraction process prevents waste and eliminate carbon emissions throughout the entire supply chain within the synthetic turf industry.”

Details: www.xtraction.com

 



Xtraction is able to rescue damaged turf
2018 World Cup final to be played on hybrid turf

The football World Cup final will be played on a part-synthetic pitch for the first time in history, after British firm SIS Pitches won the contract to lay the surface at Russia’s 2018 Luzhniki Stadium venue.

SIS clinched the multi-million pound deal to install its “new grass innovation”, known as SISGRASS, in the stadium. The facility will host the opening match and one semi-final of the World Cup.

The grass consists of 95 per cent natural turf, which is reinforced with plastic.

“Footballs haven’t been made of leather for a long time and now the grass isn’t quite what it seems either, but this new surface actually improves the game,” said SIS chief executive George Mullan.

“It’s the first time a World Cup final has been played on anything but all-natural grass and we’ve come a long way to get this system to the pinnacle of world sport.”

The patented system was created after SIS Pitches approached Dutch engineers to design a ‘giant sewing machine on tracks.’ The machine used in the process crawls across a pitch, implanting or stitching laser guided precision rows of 240 million lengths of two-tone green synthetic yarn 180mm deep into the sub-surface.

The surface can take between three and seven times as much use as a regular natural grass pitch – depending on weather – and can be laid in a week.

Details: www.sispitches.com

 



The new SISGRASS system in place
A new way to raise funds for sports charities

New York-based Weinstein Carnegie, an agency specialising in philanthropy and CSR, is coming up with alternative fundraising methods – with the help of athletes and celebrities.

Rather than inviting stars to speak at an auction or gala dinner, Weinstein Carnegie are matching them to charities.

Explaining the concept, co-founder Harrie Bakst told Sports Management: “We service non-profit organisations, brands and talent, with a specific focus on marketing, fundraising and partnerships.

“Where we differ from others is that we work with and represent the stakeholders – non-profits, brands and talent – under one roof,” she said.

“It enables us to understand the different sides of the equation and what the value is for each party.”

Initiatives include setting up a celebrity tennis match in the Manhattan Armory, persuading one of the world’s greatest baseball players to pitch calls at an investment bank and inviting a contemporary artist to produce limited-edition skateboards for the Museum of Modern Art.

The agency also develops strategies for athletes’ charities – such as tennis player James Blake’s cancer charity and NYC Marathon organiser Mary Wittenberg’s work to improve opportunities for women in sport.

Details: www.weinsteincarnegie.com

 



The company has worked with US tennis star James Blake’s cancer charity
 


The tennis court inside Manhattan Armory
 

Originally published in Sports Management 08 Feb 2016 issue 113

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