As the second major of the year, following on from the Australian Open, Roland Garros is considered the pinnacle of clay court tennis. Globecast provided contribution and European satellite distribution services for coverage of the tournament. In total, more than 1400 hours of feeds were transmitted over the 15 days of the tournament.
For this year’s tournament, Globecast provided an end-to-end service, including encoding (HD MPEG 4), contribution and distribution services. Live signals from each of the seven main courts at the stadium, as well as the international Super Signal of daily highlights and a number of unilateral ad hoc signals, were provided to MP & SILVA. Globecast also handled the aggregation and multiplexing of two muxes (one with signals from four courts and the other comprising three), an SCPC signal for the international Super Signal and the daily highlights. The latter was via its UK facility.
Contribution was supported via two fully redundant fibre paths; signals were fed through to Globecast’s national switching centre at Serte, Paris then on to the London teleport at Brooksman Park for satellite uplink. Globecast provided a full 72 Mhz transponder on Eutelsat 7B to maximise the reach of the distributed content.
The entire project was set up and managed by a dedicated team of Globecast staff, including four senior engineers and project managers to handle set up, pre-tournament
tests and the provision of service for all the duration of the event. During the tournament, an additional team from the Serte MCR was assigned to the project.
A range of value-added services also formed part of the package delivered to MP& SILVA. These included bookings, help desk and customer support for Licensed Rights Holder Broadcasters. These services were supported by Globecast’s Booking and Operations teams in Italy, which also provided constant monitoring of all the feeds via the Globecast Teleport in Rome.
Alessandro Alquati, Managing Director of contribution at Globecast, said, “Being involved in such an iconic event like Roland Garros is always an honour. As with every major tournament, there is the drive to deliver bigger and better coverage each year and this is what we helped MP & SILVA provide to its broadcast customers. However, a project of this size and magnitude is not without its challenges. The main challenge we had to face was implementing the service and beginning transmitting in a very short time frame. These were minimised due to the breadth and depth of our offering; we were able to provide a one-stop service covering everything from encoding to fibre links through to satellite capacity and uplinking as well as provide a team of specialist staff to support the whole event.”