TYPE: DOCUMENTARY SERIES
CLIENT: RED BULL MEDIA HOUSE
YEAR: 2014 – 2016
PRODUCTION LOCATIONS: USA, BRAZIL, MEXICO, HAITI, JAPAN, TURKEY, BOLIVIA, INDONESIA, INDIA, EASTER ISLAND, RUSSIA ETC.
NETWORKS: RED BULL MEDIA HOUSE,
Matching Champions is a eleven-episode documentary series that travels the globe in search of unique sporting events rooted in ancient traditions and the athletes who put everything on the line to compete for homegrown fame. Each episode uncovers the origins behind three sports from separate locations, many deeply rooted in local culture and tradition.
In addition the series highlights the modern-day athletes who have pursued excellence in these sports and chronicles their pain, sacrifice and ultimate triumph.
People like identical twin brothers from Edirne, Turkey who slather their bodies in fine olive oil and wrestle opponents in the combat sport of Oil Wrestling that dates back to the 14th century. Or the 17-year-old American pogo-stick phenom, who looks to rebound from injury and use his high flying acrobatics to launch an age-old toys’ extreme sport of Xpogo to new heights.
There’s also the residents of the English town of Ashbourne who engage in a no-holds-barred, civil war brawl between the north and south ends for possession of a ball in “Shrovetide Football.” As well as a Norwegian blacksmith, who rides a charging horse in the Renaissance-era tradition of competitive jousting. And, the English construction manager, who is considered the world’s top competitor at Tough Mudder, an annual event in which participants trudge through 12 miles of mud, freezing water and live electricity to find out what they are truly made of.
These stories and many others reveal the guts and glory of ancient sports that exist outside mainstream spotlight, and the athletes who dedicate their lives to excel at the competitive events you never knew existed, until now. This is Matching Champions.