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Tough Mudder signs ESPN partnership, enters New Zealand market

Active lifestyle and endurance events company Tough Mudder has continued its expansion drive by agreeing a content partnership with ESPN Media Distribution, the rights agency division of the global sports broadcaster, along with breaking into the New Zealand market for the first time.

ESPN will serve as the international distributor for Tough Mudder’s global digital and linear broadcast video rights to the company’s competitive event series and original video content offerings for the 2017 and 2018 seasons.

Programming includes: World’s Toughest Mudder, Toughest Mudder, The Challenge Within and Mission Mudder.

The ESPN partnership excludes rights in the UK and Ireland for Challenge Within and Mission Mudder, which are held by pay-television broadcaster Sky. Tough Mudder agreed a video content partnership with Sky in January.

Meanwhile, Tough Mudder has struck a multi-year deal with Sports Media and Entertainment 360, which becomes the official licensee of events in New Zealand.

The 2017 New Zealand event weekend will feature Tough Mudder’s signature 10-12-mile obstacle course challenge on November 4-5 at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park. The partnership with SME360 marks the first time Tough Mudder will license its events in the country.

The new partnership follows the success of Tough Mudder’s 2016 licensed events hosted in Bali and United Arab Emirates, which attracted close to 7,000 participants from more than 38 countries.

In addition to global expansion, the 2017 events season marks the first year of the company’s new competitive live event offerings including Tougher Mudder, a competitive start wave with prize money for top finishers.

Meanwhile, Toughest Mudder, an eight-hour, overnight competitive event with more than $100,000 (€94,000) in prize money, is to be awarded over the course of six global events.