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BBC Sport Academy launches SMS challenges with Flytxt
Posted: 30-Jul-2002 [Source: Flytxt press release]

[SMS helps get young people motivated to take up sports.]

London -- BBC Sport Academy, the grass-roots sports development initiative for young people has today announced "Text Message Challenge", a series of cool sporting challenges with Flytxt, the wireless marketing expert.

Starting from August 1st a series of eight weekly sports challenges will be sent out to young subscribers to test their skills against the "best of the best" in each of the Academy profile sports.

The text service, which is targeted at the 10 ? 16 age bracket, will be advertised on the BBCi website, in magazines including Match, Shoot Monthly, Smash Hits, Bliss and J17, as well as on several websites, including mykindaplace, Trouble.com and Another.com. To register for the service, users should text or log on to www.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy from July 23rd. Subscribers are asked to provide their name, their age and their postcode. Subscription to the Sport Academy text challenge is free and will be limited to the first 25,000 subscribers. The challenges include high profile sports stars from the world's of football, rugby, golf, tennis and swimming amongst others. Kieoron Dyer tests how many headers subscribers can keep up, Nick Faldo puts blindfolded from five yards and Tim Henman sees how many exchanges members can make with tennis volleys. Once Academy members have completed the challenge, they can either text back their score or log on to the www.bbc.co.uk/sportacademy website to access the leader board. The website also offers video master classes of the stars performing the challenges, plus hints and tips on technique to beat them at their own game. The technology behind the wireless Sport Academy is that which the BBC used for its phenomenally successful Bitesize service, the multi-media revision tool for GCSE students. Txt Bites, the wireless extension of this, provided specially selected GCSE Q&As for up to five subjects - Maths, Physics, Chemistry, English and Biology, which were sent directly to students via SMS to help them prepare for their exams. The BBC is again white-labelling Flytxt's technological platform, which allows the BBC to write and deliver text messages to their subscription base through Flytxt's user-friendly interface.

Peter Salmon, BBC Director of Sport said: "The BBC Sport Academy is all about getting young people motivated to take up sports. We all know every teenager has a mobile phone these days and the Academy SMS Celebrity Challenges can make them sit up, get out and take part"

Lars Becker, CEO of Flytxt said: "The BBC are again at the controls of this campaign, using Flytxt's innovative technology and user friendly interface, but sending and receiving all the messages themselves. For this campaign, SMS is a great way to reach the target audience while they're out and about doing sports."

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