SAM 2010: SAM Revisits NASCAR Media Group, Virtually

At SVG’s fourth-annual Sports Asset Management forum, held July 20 at the PGA Tour Entertainment facility in St. Augustine, FL, a former SAM host took the stage to give attendees an update on what has happened in the two years since the SVG community visited his facility for the 2008 event. Scott Rinehart, director of internal operations for NASCAR Media Group, offered a virtual tour of the new NASCAR Hall of Fame, a marvel of sports-asset management that is still being finalized.

“The footprint that we’re talking about — including studios, the ballroom, and the Hall of Fame itself — takes up an entire city block,” Rinehart said.

The Charlotte, NC, facility opened in February when Inside NASCAR on Showtime began production there. Since then, NASCAR Media Group has begun feeding signals from the track to international broadcasters and supported SPEED, ESPN, and local broadcasters in the production of the Hall of Fame induction ceremony. All the while, thousands of hours of content on videotape continues to be logged daily as the total number of videotapes in the NASCAR library falls.

“The goal is to get the 35,000 hours of content that we have remaining logged by March,” Rinehart said. “We had 3,500 sq. ft. at our old facility for the physical library. The pressure was on to get as much encoded as we could because we’re down to 530 sq. ft. in our new facility to house physical videotapes. We moved them to an unoccupied floor.”

The new facility has more than 400 TB of online storage and 3.5 PB of near-line storage and is averaging 1,130 full-file restores each week.

Rinehart walked the audience virtually through the building, from the second floor — home to engineering, IT, and cameras — to the 20th floor, housing business offices, conference rooms, and a “media playroom.” He gave plenty of facts and figures on the facility (81 miles of single-strand fiber, 65 miles of Cat 6 cables) and discussed how the process of building it has enabled NASCAR Media Group to take its show on the road.

“We are breaking out, working with the University of South Carolina, ACC, Raycom, and others, sharing what we know and helping other folks,” Rinehart said. “The biggest thing on the business side for us is that we’re now the biggest fiber conduit in and out of the Charlotte area.”