Moto madness at the Tour of Utah
(Photo credit Jonathan Devich)
I’ve been in this sport for a very, very long time. I’ve been commentating for over 15 years and done some great gigs. I’ve worked the stage for some of the biggest events all over…..China and North America.
I had the opportunity at the Tour of Utah on the back of a moto. I would be providing live coverage for Tour Tracker and Fox Sports. I would provide “hits” out on course. They include insight on the riders, the teams, the directeurs, the beautiful state of Utah and other little tidbits. The “hits” have to be quick and to the point. Frankie Andreu and Brad Sohner were hosting Tour Tracker and Todd Gogulski and Steve Brown were hosting the Fox show.
The first day at Utah was to get used to the Moto and the Pilot, Thom Filkens was my pilot. Retired CHIPS police officer who’s done his share of piloting for sure!!! The entire mediamotos team was full of fun, grit, Brit (More than half of them were British) fun, and Sh!t talking 🙂 However, when it came to the GET, they were always there for the GET. The moto had 3 cameras. 2 trained on me and 1 to was on the back of the moto shooting backwards. This shot was cool, especially at the beginning of each stage.
I’ve been in a ton of caravans, but never like this. We litterally were planted in, around, throughout the bike race. The objective was to get the shot without disrupting or interfering with the race. UCI rules state that two cameras can’t be in the envelope at the same time. So, well…we had to improvise a lot. Take advantage of the right moment. I said cameras, not commentators. This got a little “weird” at times because well…which am I ?
Here’s a great shot of Rally taking to the front after the break goes away. Rob Britton in Yellow. This was near Tooele, Utah (Two-ill-uh)
Many of the stages we would move around, speak to the directeurs about strategy for that day or for that moment. All the teams were very gracious and willing to give me insight. Something about a microphone I guess 😉 There was also the times when crashes would happen…literally in front of us, near us. We were always Johnny on the spot to give insight and updates. I was always asked was it scary to ride on the back of a moto at warp speed, not tethered with one hand on a mic. I NEVER felt in danger. Ever. It was crazy some of the spots we were in, or the speeds we would need to reach. But, I was always safe. Toughest shot? Leaning into the car, standing up, counter balancing…to get the LIVE interview with directeurs.
What a great experience and tip of the cap to everyone who help put on the best Tour of Utah to date.
Check out and follow my FB page for my race commentary and adventures for more pictures/videos of the Tour of Utah
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