Davey Coombs, president at MX Sports Pro Racing, has offered a detailed look at what went so badly wrong for the broadcast of the 2022 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship.
Here’s Davey’s letter, in full and unedited:
To the American Motocross Community,
The 2022 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship has been an exceptional series so far. We’ve seen massive crowds at every round, great racing on perfectly prepped tracks, and the competition in both classes has been exciting and entertaining. The series is celebrating 50 years of AMA Pro Motocross, and the 2022 season is shaping up as one of the best we’ve ever had, with one glaring exception, and that is the train wreck that’s been our live streaming package.
In our failure to have dependable livestream coverage through the first half of the series, we have let down a large segment of very loyal motocross fans. MAVTV Plus simply did not work. The app could not handle the global traffic load that came with Lucas Oil Pro Motocross, and no one felt that disappointment more than we did at MX Sports Pro Racing and MAVTV. With both Ryan Dungey and Antonio Cairoli joining the rest of the stars in this series, we knew the whole motocross world would be watching this summer. Unfortunately, MAVTV Plus was not up to the task, and the problems and inconsistencies with the service gave the series a black eye—several, actually. We have been working diligently with MAVTV to find a fix, and after five rounds of frustration, they made the difficult decision to move the streaming coverage to an entirely different (and much more dependable) platform in FloSports, on a new “MAVTV on FloRacing” channel. They are honoring the existing MAVTV Plus subscriptions through the end of this month, and MAVTV Plus will soon be refunding the balance of their annual subscriptions.
Lucas Oil has been our title sponsor ever since MX Sports Pro Racing took over the reins of the series in 2009. They have also partnered in broadcast production with Lucas Oil Studios and through television coverage through their MAVTV network, showing the first motos while NBC Sports Network aired most of the second motos, with a few on NBC proper each season. NBC Sports Network had also been our commercial partner in the series for more than a decade. But last year NBC decided to shutter the sports channel in the wake of the troubled 2020 Olympic Summer Games in Tokyo, which were postponed for an entire year due to COVID, and then finally held last summer with no fan attendance permitted. NBC still airs motocross—Saturday’s first 450 moto at Southwick will air live on the network channel—but not the vast majority of the series.
With NBC Sports Network out of the picture, that meant our previous streaming platform, Peacock, was no longer an option either. At that point MAVTV offered to step in and make Lucas Oil Pro Motocross their #1 priority, offering to show all four motos live from each round, with no preemptions for other sporting events or shows. They also had their new streaming platform, MAVTV Plus, to replace Peacock, at a similar price point for fans: $6.99 a month. Unfortunately, MAVTV Plus did not work the way it was supposed to, and for that we are truly sorry. It was a disaster, and it could not have come at a worse time for Lucas Oil Pro Motocross, which has otherwise been humming on all cylinders. I appreciate all of the people at Lucas Oil and MAVTV who tried to fix the problems, and I also commend them for coming to the very difficult decision that they were better off moving to FloRacing than to take any more time trying to fix a much larger problem that could not be rectified quickly. And yes, FloRacing is honoring the $6.99 per month price that MAVTV Plus originally offered, which is significantly lower than their regular monthly subscription. MAVTV Motorsports Network will also continue airing Lucas Oil Pro Motocross.
On a personal level, I would like to apologize to all of the fans and viewers who have struggled to watch with MAVTV Plus. I hope the change to watching “MAVTV on FloRacing” is as seamless as it is easy. I also want to apologize to all of the competitors and race teams, as well as the event promoters and sponsors, who have all worked so hard to make the 2022 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship the success that it’s otherwise been. The effort that everyone has put into motocross deserved better streaming coverage than we have given them this summer, and for that I am truly sorry. One thing that has remained true since Round 1 and will continue through the rest of the season is our commitment to providing our audience with the best coverage and easiest access to watch the races from anywhere you might be. We hope you continue to tune in to see these amazing riders on these great racetracks.
President, MX Sports Pro Racing