FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, July 18th, 2019

IN-DEPTH STORYTELLING ELEVATES NBC SPORTS’ COVERAGE OF THE 148TH OPEN IN NORTHERN IRELAND

Vantage Point with Mike Tirico, David Feherty Vignettes, Men In Blazers,
GOLF Films Shorts & “Tee-to-Greens” Complement Live On-Site Coverage

PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland, (July 16, 2019) – As Northern Ireland plays host to golf’s original championship this week for the first time since 1951, NBC Sports will present nearly 50 live hours of its Emmy-nominated tournament coverage from Royal Portrush Golf Club, along with nearly 70 hours of news programming, led by Golf Central Live From The Open. Throughout the week, coverage will be fueled by unique storytelling highlighting the tradition of The Open, as well as the significance of its return to Northern Ireland for the first time in 68 years.

“THE TROUBLES” AIRING TUESDAY ON VANTAGE POINT WITH MIKE TIRICO: A GOLF Films Short, “The Troubles,” details the significance of The Open’s return to Northern Ireland for the first time since 1951, and will air within Tuesday night’s new episode of Vantage Point with Mike Tirico at 9 p.m. ET. Documented by NBC Sports’ David Feherty (a Northern Ireland native), the piece reflects on the country’s long-lasting violence and dissension, and – following a peace agreement in 1998 – the subsequent excitement for The Open this week.

Vantage Point also will share the story of Nick Edmund, a man walking (and playing golf) across Ireland to raise funds and awareness for those battling cancer.

Golf Central Live From The Open additionally will detail how a veteran’s alternative therapy program at Waterville Golf Links in Ireland is providing relief for U.S. service members with PTSD, through a profile on retired U.S. Army Ranger Mike Morales.

DAVID FEHERTY VIGNETTES HIGHLIGHT UNIQUE ASPECTS OF THE OPEN: In addition to “The Troubles” piece, Feherty will deliver a collection of his signature vignettes to highlight underappreciated and perhaps overlooked aspects of The Open and his native Northern Ireland. Excursions for Feherty will include an education on the ancient game of Hurling, a sport of Gaelic and Irish origins; a journey to locate a proper source for traditional Irish music; and a morning spent at sea attempting to catch his breakfast. Other content elements will include a story on the 2007 Walker Cup team, and a recollection of Rory McIlroy’s course record-setting 61 at Royal Portrush as a 16-year-old.

THE MEN IN BLAZERS SHOW AT THE OPEN RETURNS ON NBCSN: NBC Sports’ critically-acclaimed The Men in Blazers – Roger Bennett and Michael Davies –return to The Open for the second consecutive year, abandoning their Panic Room studio in the “crap part of SoHo” in Manhattan for a distant corner of Royal Portrush for a nightly show, Wednesday-Sunday on NBCSN. The show will include featured guests, daily highlights, non-traditional stories and cultural elements from The Open presented in the duo’s signature, unconventional style. Dedicated features for the nightly show include a tribute to Game of Thrones Northern Irish ties; an examination of the origins of nearby “Giants Causeway”; a profile on Max Faulkner, who won the 1951 Open at Royal Portrush; a piece on a traditional ulster fry breakfast; and a glimpse of Rory McIlroy’s upbringing in Northern Ireland.

In addition to the nightly show on NBCSN from Royal Portrush, Rog and Davo will offer their unique takes on The Open through a series of features for NBC Sports’ overarching coverage.

AN HOMAGE TO NORTHERN IRELAND AND ITS ROLE IN GAME OF THRONES: In a tribute to The Open’s return to Northern Ireland and its proximity to the numerous and iconic set locations for the popular HBO series, NBC Sports will incorporate a handful of content elements that highlight the intersection of golf’s original championship with visuals synonymous with Game of Thrones. Voiced by the series’ Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon), those elements will include the GOLF Films Short “The North,” which focuses on the defining landscape traits surrounding Royal Portrush, and what’s at stake for those in the field at The 148TH Open. Other planned elements refencing the series include a pair of vignettes: “The Dark Hedges” and “Game of Thrones”.

FRANK NOBILO’S “TEE-TO-GREENS” PREVIEWS ROYAL PORTRUSH: GOLF Channel analyst Frank Nobilo will help prepare viewers for Royal Portrush through his popular “Tee-to-Green” segments. Detailing the nuances of the course layout, Nobilo will detail which holes will likely prove pivotal for those in the field in their effort to win the Claret Jug.

NBC SPORTS’ COVERAGE HIGHLIGHTED BY DEEPEST BENCH IN GOLF: Having covered The Open for 40 years collectively, Paul Azinger (2005-’15), Nick Faldo (2004-’07 & 2016-’18) and Mike Tirico (1997-2018) will contribute their extensive familiarity in calling golf’s original championship and be joined by the deepest and most-experienced roster of analysts, hosts, reporters and personalities in golf.

NBC Sports Live Tournament Broadcast Team Tom Abbott, Paul Azinger, Notah Begay, Billy Ray Brown, Curt Byrum, Nick Faldo, David Feherty, Terry Gannon, Dan Hicks, Peter Jacobsen, Gary Koch, Justin Leonard, Todd Lewis, Jim “Bones” Mackay, Roger Maltbie, Frank Nobilo, Jimmy Roberts, Mark Rolfing, Steve Sands, Mike Tirico
Golf Central Live From The Open Broadcast Team Notah Begay, Ryan Burr, Brandel Chamblee, Jaime Diaz, Nick Dougherty, Trevor Immelman, Justin Leonard, Rich Lerner, Todd Lewis, Frank Nobilo, Mark Rolfing, Ken Schofield
Morning Drive Damon Hack (Monday-Wednesday), John Cook (Wednesday)
GOLF Channel Digital Mercer Baggs, Jay Coffin, Will Gray, Rex Hoggard, Ryan Lavner, Bailey Mosier-Chamblee, Nick Menta

AIRTMES FOR THE 148TH OPEN WEEK (All Times EST)

Tuesday, July 16
6-10 a.m. / Noon-2 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
10 a.m.-Noon Morning Drive
9-10 p.m. Vantage Point with Mike Tirico

Wednesday, July 17
6-10 a.m. / Noon-2 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
10 a.m.-Noon Morning Drive
11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Thursday, July 18
Midnight-1:30 a.m. Midnight Drive
1:30 a.m.-4 p.m. The Open – First Round
4-5 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Friday, July 19
1:30-4 p.m. The Open – Second Round
4-5 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
11-11:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

Saturday, July 20
5-7 a.m. The Open – Third Round
7-11 a.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
7 a.m.-3 p.m. The Open – Third Round (NBC)
3-4 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
1-1:30 a.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN, Saturday Overnight)

Sunday, July 21
4-7 a.m. The Open – Final Round
7-10 a.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
7 a.m.-2 p.m. The Open – Final Round (NBC)
2-4 p.m. Golf Central Live From The Open
10-10:30 p.m. The Men in Blazers (NBCSN)

ABOUT NBC SPORTS GROUP’S GOLF DIVISION
NBC Sports Group’s GOLF division delivers multimedia golf content, technology and services. Anchored by GOLF Channel – co-founded by Arnold Palmer in 1995 – GOLF content is available to nearly 500 million viewers in nine languages across more than 70 countries around the world. GOLF features more live coverage of the sport than all other U.S. networks combined, including global tournament action from the PGA TOUR, LPGA Tour, European Tour, NCAA, THE PLAYERS, The Open, Olympics, Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup, as well as high-quality news, instruction and original programming. Delivering unmatched coverage from the world of golf via GOLF Digital, fans can access 24/7 live streaming through the NBC Sports App, as well as complementary coverage via PGA TOUR LIVE on NBC Sports Gold. In addition to these all-encompassing media platforms, NBC Sports connects the world to golf through a wide array of technology and lifestyle services, including: GOLFNOW, the world’s largest online tee time booking platform; GOLF Business Solutions, solving business needs through leading technology, marketing and services; GOLFPASS, an all-in-one digital membership delivering comprehensive benefits tailored to the modern golfer’s lifestyle; Revolution GOLF, the world’s largest direct-to-consumer digital platform in golf, offering best-in-class video instruction and game improvement products; GOLF Advisor, the ultimate digital destination for the traveling golfer, featuring the largest number of user-generated golf course ratings and reviews in the industry; GOLF Academy, a North American network of instructional facilities; and GOLF Am Tour, the world’s largest amateur golf tour. GOLF’s global reach originates from its world headquarters in Orlando, Fla., and extends to its international office in Belfast, Northern Ireland; regional offices across North America, Europe and Australia; and also includes collaborations with Sky Sports and serving as the Official Media Partner of St Andrews Links.

-NBC Sports Group-