Gives Canadians unprecedented access to the biggest world-wide Figure Skating and Speed Skating events

TORONTO, June 8, 2011 /CNW/ - CBC Sports announced today a blockbuster five-year agreement with the International Skating Union (ISU), delivering an unprecedented level of coverage of the biggest international skating events on multiple channels and platforms.

"This deal solidifies CBC's long-term commitment to acquiring marquee, signature sports events that entertain and engage Canadians. Viewers have come to expect nothing but the best from our ice skating coverage, and this ensures fans will see Canadian champions competing on the world stage in the most important international Figure Skating and Speed Skating competitions," says Jeffrey Orridge, executive director, CBC sports properties. "CBC Sports is thrilled to partner with the ISU and continue a relationship that has been built over decades of world-class programming."

The agreement will allow viewers to watch the top Canadian athletes in Figure Skating and Speed Skating take on the world's best, including four events held on Canadian soil. The schedule is highlighted by the 2011 ISU Grand Prix Final in Quebec City, December 8-11, 2011. It's only the third time Canada has hosted this prestigious event. The deal also includes the ISU World Figure Skating Championships (including London, Ontario in 2013), the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships, the ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, the ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships plus all international Grand Prix events.  For Speed Skating and Short Track Speed Skating, the agreement includes all major ISU Championships including the ISU World Sprint Speed Skating Championships in Calgary on January 28-29, 2012 and the ISU World Cup Short Track in Saguenay, Quebec on October 28-30, 2011.

The deal calls for a total of more than 120 hours of coverage annually, and will be carried on CBC, CBC specialty channel bold TV, streaming online at www.cbcsports.ca and through a strategic partnership with VisionTV, available in 10 million Canadian homes.  The partnership with VisionTV allows more Canadians to have access to CBC's award-winning figure skating coverage.

"Ice skating is uniquely complementary to VisionTV's program lineup. When it comes to a winning edge, inner strength and remarkable courage are as critical to success as superior technique. Historically, skating has been inspirational, family-friendly viewing, making the tie to VisionTV a strong one," says Bill Roberts, CEO of ZoomerMedia Limited Television Division. "It will be a great multi-year partnership for our company as we work with CBC Sports and the ISU to make one of the most expressive, uplifting, multicultural and musical of sports widely available to Canadians."

CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation is a leader in reaching Canadians on new platforms and delivers a comprehensive range of radio, television, Internet, and satellite-based services. Deeply rooted in the regions, CBC/Radio-Canada is the only domestic broadcaster to offer diverse regional and cultural perspectives in English, French and eight Aboriginal languages, plus seven languages for international audiences. In 2011, CBC/Radio-Canada is celebrating 75 years of serving Canadians and being at the centre of the democratic, social and cultural life of Canada. 

SOURCE CBC Communications

For further information:

James Lamont, Lamont@veritascanada.com 
Veritas Communications, Toronto 416-482-2617; (Mobile) 416-859-5870 

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