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Eskootr Championship: Ready…Set…eSkootr!

Posted on Sep 2, 2022 by Xtreme Staff

You’ve heard of car racing, horse racing – even duck racing. Now electric scooters are standing tall in a brand-new tournament model – the eSkootr Championship

//Words by Verity Butler//

A market set to reach a valuation of almost $42 billion by 2030, it seems almost impossible to turn any urban street corner without nearly crashing head-first into an electric scooter. Five million e-scooter units were sold in 2018 alone – a year that seemed to rapidly kick-start the ever-growing trend of trading out pollution-pumping cars for a quieter, more energy-saving mode of transport.

Besides cleaning up our planet, while simultaneously wreaking pure havoc on our roads, what else could this technology have to offer? Quite a lot it turns out, as 2022 saw the launch of the first-ever e-scooter racing series. An organisation known as the eSkootr Championship (eSC) partnered with NEP to deliver the inaugural season – notably in 9:16 vertical format.

You’ve heard of car racing, horse racing – even duck racing. Now electric scooters are standing tall in a brand-new tournament model – the eSkootr Championship

//Words by Verity Butler//

A market set to reach a valuation of almost $42 billion by 2030, it seems almost impossible to turn any urban street corner without nearly crashing head-first into an electric scooter. Five million e-scooter units were sold in 2018 alone – a year that seemed to rapidly kick-start the ever-growing trend of trading out pollution-pumping cars for a quieter, more energy-saving mode of transport.

Besides cleaning up our planet, while simultaneously wreaking pure havoc on our roads, what else could this technology have to offer? Quite a lot it turns out, as 2022 saw the launch of the first-ever e-scooter racing series. An organisation known as the eSkootr Championship (eSC) partnered with NEP to deliver the inaugural season – notably in 9:16 vertical format.

TOP OF THE RANGE The S1-X is the fastest e-scooter in the world
TOP OF THE RANGE The S1-X is the fastest e-scooter in the world

“The eSkootr Championship is a new category of sport that we’ve been developing from the ground up,” describes eSC co-founder and CEO Hrag Sarkissian. “Having started this project about two years ago, our mission is to create a whole new genre that’s accessible, sustainable and really made for the next generation.

“Our aims also sit alongside helping the micromobility industry that you see growing very quickly, as it decongests and greenifies our major cities.”

“The eSkootr Championship is a new category of sport that we’ve been developing from the ground up,” describes eSC co-founder and CEO Hrag Sarkissian. “Having started this project about two years ago, our mission is to create a whole new genre that’s accessible, sustainable and really made for the next generation.

“Our aims also sit alongside helping the micromobility industry that you see growing very quickly, as it decongests and greenifies our major cities.”

We have a big bilinear footprint, as well as the eSC Fan Hub – our own OTT platform. It’s where people watch, but also engage as part of the community

Pioneering e-scooters as a sport means formulating rules, racecourses and, crucially, a fan base. Therefore, successfully distributing a live stream was fundamental to its growth.

“The biggest thing about our championship is that we are agile and able to integrate in urban environments, so it’s always relevant for audiences,” Sarkissian continues.

A recent race was held atPrintworks London, creating a unique indoor and outdoor course. Comprising 600m of track, scooters wove deftly in front of enthralled fans. Some boasted speeds in excess of 100km/h, particularly on the newly designed S1-X eSkootr. The event itself was a roaring success, with food, drinks and entertainment during and after the race action.

Pioneering e-scooters as a sport means formulating rules, racecourses and, crucially, a fan base. Therefore, successfully distributing a live stream was fundamental to its growth.

“The biggest thing about our championship is that we are agile and able to integrate in urban environments, so it’s always relevant for audiences,” Sarkissian continues.

A recent race was held atPrintworks London, creating a unique indoor and outdoor course. Comprising 600m of track, scooters wove deftly in front of enthralled fans. Some boasted speeds in excess of 100km/h, particularly on the newly designed S1-X eSkootr. The event itself was a roaring success, with food, drinks and entertainment during and after the race action.

GROWING THE BASE Vertical video is a key strategy for building a good social following
GROWING THE BASE Vertical video is a key strategy for building a good social following
GROWING THE BASE Vertical video is a key strategy for building a good social following
GROWING THE BASE Vertical video is a key strategy for building a good social following

“The challenges we faced are what you would expect with a first event,” Sarkissian explains. “There’s a lot to learn, and so much tech that goes into what we do –from the scooter itself, to the data and telemetry we stream.”

Searching for ways to elevate the broadcast from the get-go, eSC turned to vertical (9:16), wanting to immediately use this as a key form of distribution. Rather than having to adapt to it down the line, as other major sports brands have done in recent years.

“The idea is to remove any barriers of entry between the fans and the sport. It’s about getting them up there and close. Again, accessibility is a huge part of our motto. This is just as important for helping fans to consume, along with participate in, eSC events.”

Sarkissian emphasises that, despite being an exciting dimension to the Championship’s broadcast, distribution isn’t solely confined to the vertical space.

“The challenges we faced are what you would expect with a first event,” Sarkissian explains. “There’s a lot to learn, and so much tech that goes into what we do –from the scooter itself, to the data and telemetry we stream.”

Searching for ways to elevate the broadcast from the get-go, eSC turned to vertical (9:16), wanting to immediately use this as a key form of distribution. Rather than having to adapt to it down the line, as other major sports brands have done in recent years.

“The idea is to remove any barriers of entry between the fans and the sport. It’s about getting them up there and close. Again, accessibility is a huge part of our motto. This is just as important for helping fans to consume, along with participate in, eSC events.”

Sarkissian emphasises that, despite being an exciting dimension to the Championship’s broadcast, distribution isn’t solely confined to the vertical space.

STAYING ON TRACK With flashy venues, the races are a real spectacle
STAYING ON TRACK With flashy venues, the races are a real spectacle

“We have a big bilinear footprint, as well as the eSC Fan Hub – our own OTT platform. It’s where people come to watch, but also engage as part of the community.”

Even though eSC is still in its infancy, an early focus on fan engagement – in tandem with respective distribution platforms – means interactivity is already embedded in the experience. It is apparent that, although the prospect of launching a new sporting event may seem an uphill climb, there’s an opportunity to get ahead of the curve when it comes to livestreaming for a dedicated base of viewers.

“A big thing for us is to keep innovating,” Sarkissian concludes. “It’s also about making sure what we do is always relevant.”

Broadcast and streaming archives

This article first featured in the Sept/Oct issue of FEED:Xtreme.

“We have a big bilinear footprint, as well as the eSC Fan Hub – our own OTT platform. It’s where people come to watch, but also engage as part of the community.”

Even though eSC is still in its infancy, an early focus on fan engagement – in tandem with respective distribution platforms – means interactivity is already embedded in the experience. It is apparent that, although the prospect of launching a new sporting event may seem an uphill climb, there’s an opportunity to get ahead of the curve when it comes to livestreaming for a dedicated base of viewers.

“A big thing for us is to keep innovating,” Sarkissian concludes. “It’s also about making sure what we do is always relevant.”

Broadcast and streaming archives

This article first featured in the Sept/Oct issue of FEED:Xtreme.

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