This weekend’s historic race will bring a historic amount of television coverage. ESPN will use 100 cameras for the ABC broadcast of the Indianapolis 500, which is about five times more than it uses for a typical college football game. During an interview on Inside INdiana Business Television, Kate Jackson, the first woman to produce the TV broadcast, says the Indy 500 is the largest and one of the most intricate productions that ESPN does.
This year’s race will mark ABC’s fifty-second consecutive year airing the event. And, thanks to a sellout, the race will be broadcast live on television in the Indianapolis market for the first time in more than 60 years.
In addition to the race broadcast itself, ESPN will air four full episodes of its flagship show, SportsCenter, from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Those shows will be the first live SportsCenter programs from the Indy 500 in more than a decade. The first of those episodes is set for this evening at 6:00. Other shows will air Saturday and Sunday morning.
Jackson says she grew up in a racing houselhold in Iowa. Her father and brother raced in the Midwest. She was named coordinating producer in 2011 and oversees ESPN’s production of Verizon IndyCar Series races.