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Inside Track

SportsTech Monthly Roundup #3: USA Cycling Partners with Comcast SportsTech

Dear SportsTech Community,

It seems that for the last many weeks, we’ve been analyzing the lull of sports, but now we’re reaching a moment when a handful of professional sporting organizations are beginning to inch closer to the point when they return to meaningful competition.

We’ll get to that in a moment, but first we have some exciting news to share with you.

🇺🇸🚴‍U.S.A. Cycling Partners with Comcast SportsTech

Since 1920, USA Cycling has carved a track that has covered an array of disciplines, from BMX, cyclocross, mountain biking, road cycling, and track racing. All along, their mission has been to achieve sustained levels of international success on their racing circuits and technology has been a critical component driving their organization forward.

This week, we’re proud to announce that USA Cycling and Comcast NBCUniversal SportsTech are joining together in a partnership that will help develop the sport of cycling in America by connecting them to the global ecosystem of sports, technology, and media companies.

Learn more about this exciting partnership here.

🚀 Program Updates 

We take the health and safety of our employees, partners, and founders seriously. That’s why we’ve made the choice to push our accelerator program to early 2021. Our application deadline is now August 15, 2021 and the program will kick-off February 22, 2021. To stay updated on our program deadlines, please read our update here.

And if you think you have a game-changing tech start-up we encourage you to apply today! If you’ve been watching, waiting, and feeling like you weren’t quite ready, then now’s the time to get that application rolling.

🙌 Stories We Are Reading About in Sports

Olympians Getting Creative In Training | Via: USA Today

When your Olympic training venue of choice is closed, focus turns on creativity to remain in tip-top shape. That means many Olympic athlete’s homes become center stage for their training regimens: fireplace mantles become climbing walls, beach volleyball bumps move to backyards, gymnasts turn to their “pommel” couch, and swimmers push cars uphill.

Sports Bettors Helping Stock Market Surge | Via: Axios 

Many wondered how sports bettors would place bets in the absence of live sports. After all, there’s only so much Russian table tennis and low-stakes horse races one can bet on. An interesting analysis published by Axios seems to indicate that some of the recent successes on the market may be sports bettors who were looking to keep their streaks going. According to their research, 43 percent of North American men, 25-34 who bet on sports at least once per week were the same demographic that flocked to Robinhood, the digital investment app. So, for customers who loved DraftKings approach to gamifying line-ups and live sports, there is some evidence bettors fit a need for betting in an app like Robinhood.

Returning Sports New Look, Changes

🏀 NBA Players To Get Royal Treatment in League Bubble 

Via: Bleacher Report

When the NBA returns to action in the relative safety of a sanctioned bubble hosted by Disney’s Wide World of Sports, there will be amenities-aplenty for players including players-only lounges complete with access to video games, barbers, a 24-hour concierge service, movie screenings, DJs, and of course, the opportunity to be viewers at other NBA games. All personnel and players will also be guided by a 100-page manual that outlines safety protocols and procedures throughout the season.

⛳️  PGA Golf Return A Playbook For Other Sports | Via: New York Times

Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas was the site of the Charles Schwab Challenge, the PGA Tour’s return to golf after a pandemic-induced layover. Even though the state had approved attendance for fans at 50 percent capacity, the PGA staff were already so far down their logistical planning that they decided to keep it player and personnel only. The vast testing approach the PGA has created for current and next-stop events will likely be referenced as other pro leagues watch from afar. On the televised side, fans saw social-distancing, empty fairways, and Purell aplenty. Entire routines have also been up-ended. Players who missed the cut hung out on the range because flights had been pre-arranged to take them to the next stop on the tour. Players used to having assistants toss them balls on the range, were solo. For the duration of the season, players are acutely aware their routines will be much different. “Just because we played one week doesn’t mean we can go party and go do everything else like we used to,” said Collin Morikawa. We still have to follow these guidelines and maintain safety and strict rules with how far we stay from each other because it’s still out there.”

📸  Picture of the Month

Masked Fans Attend College Football Game in 1918 | 📸 via: Georgia Tech Alumni Twitter Page 

Will this 102-year-old photo mirror what our lives will be like when live sports with fans commence? This photo, taken by a Georgia Tech student shows fans in the midst of the Spanish Flu pandemic wearing masks and slight social distancing on concrete seats. The Golden Tornadoes eventually played six games at that stadium in 1918.

🚀 We’re Just Getting Started

It seems like we’ve been analyzing the state of sports through a lens of suspended animation. For the last many weeks, we’ve been looking at how safety procedures and technology implementation would potentially influence the competitive landscape of sports. Now, as sports finally make their return, we’re able to watch in real-time just how these updates will play out. It’s one thing for fans to collectively have something to cheer for in the absence of normality for so long, but for those of us who are so jazzed by the convergence of sports and technology, the fun part is just about to begin.

We hope you continue on this journey with us and experience just how much the world of sports is about to change. Be sure to keep an eye on these stories and more on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. If you have any stories or experiences to share that you’ve personally experienced in sports, we’d love to hear from you!

Until next time,

— The SportsTech Team

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