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Dec 29, 2011

ESPN and HRTV recognized with Media Eclipse Awards


New York, NY (Sports Network) - The Media Eclipse Award in the Television - Live Racing Programming category has been given to ESPN for its live coverage of the 2011 Breeders' Cup Classic. This is the third straight year that the network has been honored in the Live Television category.

"To win this award three years in a row is a great testament to our overall production," said Mike McQuade, who is Vice President of Event Production for ESPN and coordinating producer for the Breeders' Cup Classic telecast. "We treat the Breeders' Cup as a big event and we produce it as a big event. This year's Classic had a number of captivating storylines and our group did an excellent job telling these stories and bringing the audience right to the action."

November's $5 million Classic featured leading thoroughbred Havre de Grace, a four-year-old filly taking on male runners. The 1 1/4-mile race was won by 14-1 longshot Drosselmeyer whose jockey, Mike Smith, had won the event two years earlier aboard the mare Zenyatta.

ESPN won the award last year for its Breeders' Cup Classic telecast and in 2009 for the telecast of the Belmont Stakes, shown on ABC.

The Media Eclipse Award for Television-Features goes to HRTV for the documentary "Inside Information: Randy Romero." The program was broadcast on December 26 of last year.

"Because of the subject matter - physical and emotional abuse, severe burns, the horrific breakdown of Go For Wand - this was a show that was emotionally hard on everyone who worked on it, but no more so than for the man who lived through the events," said Amy Zimmerman, executive producer of HRTV and the co-writer of the documentary. "Everyone at HRTV is very grateful to Randy Romero for his honesty and assistance in letting us to tell his story."

HRTV has now won Media Eclipse Awards four times. Last year it was honored in the Television-Features category for "Inside Information: Swale" the 1984 Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes winner. Earlier the network picked up an award for best Feature in 2006 for the Pony Highway production of "On the Muscle" and in 2008 for the Hennegan Brothers' documentary "The First Saturday in May."

The Eclipse Awards are voted upon by the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Daily Racing Form and the National Turf Writers And Broadcasters. The 41st annual Eclipse Awards will be presented on Monday, January 16 in Beverly Hills, CA.

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