Leading virtual sports developer Inspired Entertainment announced it is to air its Virtual Grand National product on national television in the United Kingdom. The broadcast will take place prior to the start of the iconic real-life horse race.
The announcement comes just in time for the 170th anniversary of the annual Grand National race. As many as 40 runners and jockeys will take part in the most prestigious steeplechase in the world, which once again will be held at the historic Aintree racecourse, located in the metropolitan county of Merseyside, Northwest England. The runners and their riders will have to overcome 30 trademark Grand National fences, including the dangerous Becher’s Brook, the Canal Turn, and the Valentine’s Brook, among others.
The news of the broadcast comes shortly after the announcement of Inspired Entertainment’s sealing the deal for a long-term partnership with The Jockey Club and Carm Productions. It was revealed that the Virtual Grand National product is to feature the aforementioned 40 runners and their jockeys that will compete for the prize of the 2017 Grand National as well as the thirty trademark fences of the iconic steeplechase.
Representatives of Inspired Entertainment’s governance disclosed the virtual race software uses complex data algorithms in order to deliver the most authentic predictor of the popular steeplechase to this date. Once the 2017 steeplechase draws to an end, Inspired Entertainment will continue to feature the historic Aintree racetrack in its Virtual Horse Race offering.
The Inspired governance also unveiled their Virtual Grand National product was developed alongside another forthcoming offering of the company, namely the Grand National Race of Champions. The latter is to feature a number of legendary horses that have graced the iconic Aintree racecourse throughout the past hundred years. The two races will be featured in the coverage of the main race day.
Both mobile and desktop users will be able to stream the virtual events on a daily basis as the races will be aired in retail betting shops and other gaming locations across the world via the Inspired network of landbased and digital platforms. Members of the company’s governance also revealed Inspired has developed a bespoke Grand National Race of Champions slot, compatible with mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. The mobile slot’s release is to coincide with the Grand National live broadcast.
Chief Commercial Officer of Inspired Entertainment, Steve Rogers, deemed the creation of the virtual race product a challenge but went on to say Inspired’s joint venture with its partners proved to be highly rewarding. In Rogers’ words, the end result proves to be one of the most realistic and sophisticated virtual sports offerings to this date. The Chief Commercial Officer concluded by expressing his certainty that both punters and viewers would be highly impressed with the authenticity and quality of the virtual race’s animations.
The Virtual Grand National 2017 is scheduled to air April 7 on ITV 4 at 8 pm local time, one day ahead of the real-life steeplechase. The show will then be repeated on the following day, April 8, at 11.30 am, right after The Opening Show on the same channel.