For the first time ever, two Goodyear blimps will simultaneously provide live aerial television coverage of a sporting event as they circle overhead Miami’s SunLife stadium for ESPN’s coverage, beginning at 7 p.m. ET, of the Nov. 9 NCAA football matchup between Virginia Tech and Miami.
The “Spirit of Goodyear” and the “Spirit of Innovation,” weather permitting, will each provide a unique feed to ESPN, allowing the broadcaster to select the best angle of the aerial shot. Though Goodyear blimps have provided TV networks with live aerial views since 1955, never have two provided coverage of the same event at the same time, Goodyear said.
Goodyear owns and operates three airships in the U.S. but it is rare to see two flying together, according to Nancy Ray, Goodyear’s director of Global Airship Operations.
The two blimps are currently housed in the company’s Pompano Beach, Fla., hangar. The previously Ohio-based “Spirit of Goodyear” recently relocated to Florida, joining “Spirit of Innovation” in preparation for its retirement in early 2014.
Goodyear said it is on schedule with its replacement, as construction of the new Goodyear NT airship continues inside the company’s Wingfoot Lake hangar in Suffield, Ohio. Test flights on the new airship are expected to commence in early 2014.