Teams Selected, At-Home Play Begins for Focus Rally: America, Ford’s Interactive Reality Show
* After nearly two months of searching, the final cast has been chosen for Focus Rally: America, a five-week interactive reality show featuring the 2012 Ford Focus, which begins airing on Hulu™ on Feb. 1
* Six teams of two were cast based on the vibrancy of their personalities and their social networking abilities
* Starting today, fans can register online at www.focusrally.com, and sign up to be a virtual team member joining their favorite team on the rally. By using the web or mobile devices, virtual team members will assist their team in challenges through earning points, rewarding selected players along the way with amazing experiences as well as eight 2012 Ford Focus vehicles
* Focus Rally: America will be hosted by World Cup and Olympic gold medal winner Jonny Moseley; it will be produced by Ford and seven-time Emmy Award-winning reality producer Elise Doganieri
DEARBORN, Mich., – After poring through more than 1,000 applications and conducting hundreds of interviews, the final cast has been selected for Focus Rally: America, a five-week interactive reality show featuring the 2012 Ford Focus. And starting today, fans can begin participating in the game from home.
Focus Rally: America will be produced by Ford and seven-time Emmy Award-winning reality producer Elise Doganieri. The program – which begins airing on Hulu™ on Feb. 1 – will be hosted by World Cup and Olympic gold medal winner Jonny Moseley, who most recently starred on the prime-time show Skating with the Stars.
The 12 participants (six teams of two) have diverse backgrounds and come from different parts of the country – from New York to Washington state. Some are friends. Others are couples. But all have something very important in common, says Jeff Eggen, Ford Experiential Marketing manager.
“They are all adventurous, funny and very entertaining,” he said. “And all of the teams have great chemistry with each other.”
Those qualities were key factors in the selection process, according to Eggen, because unlike other reality shows where content is filmed all day and then edited down for broadcast, contestants competing in Focus Rally: America will be featured in daily webisodes on Hulu and in streaming video segments that will be broadcast in real time on www.focusrally.com and other social channels.
“Focus Rally: America is essentially running around-the-clock for five weeks so the teams need to be engaging for people to want to tune in,” Eggen said.
The social vibrancy of the candidates also factored into the selection process.
“Focus Rally: America is different from other reality programs in that the teams will enlist fans from social channels like Facebook and Twitter to help them compete against other teams. These fans will then be able to interact with the teams throughout the race, developing real-time ‘life lines,’” said Eggen.
“The teams will reach out through various social networks to their online friends, fans and followers for help deciphering clues and solving challenges, so we looked for people whose social vibrancy could serve as a natural base for them to build their team of supporters,” he said.
Introducing the cast of Focus Rally: America
Six teams will compete against each other to win the title of Focus Rally: America champion. The winning team will receive a grand prize of $100,000, and both team members will receive a new 2012 Ford Focus. The teams, named after the color of the Focus they will be driving, are:
* TEAM INGOT SILVER: Jeff Nash, 29, and Margot Baill, 27, both from Chicago; dating. Margo is a product development manager and Jeff owns his own bar.
* TEAM YELLOW BLAZE: Bryn Drescher, 33 originally from Essex, U.K., and Donna Ruko, 33, both now reside Los Angeles; friends. Bryn is a lifecoach and Donna is a lounge host/supervisor.
* TEAM RED CANDY: Brittany Boddington, 25, from Northridge, Calif., and Matt Farah, 28, from Redondo Beach, Calif.; friends. Brittany is a writer, model and bartender and Matt is an automotive video host.
* TEAM BLUE CANDY: Adam Lustick, 27, and Clayton Early, 28, both from Brooklyn, N.Y.; friends. Adam is a comedian and caterer and Clayton is a director of student affairs.
* TEAM BLACK: Benjamin Kemp, 28, from Philadelphia, and Michael Pericolosi, 25, from Lumberton, N.J.; friends and band members. Benjamin is in marketing and event planning and Michael is a bartender and trainer.
* TEAM STERLING GREY: John Jung, 28, and Carolyn Bee, 24, both from Seattle; co-workers. John and Carolyn are both advertising account managers.
Starting today, fans can play from home
Focus Rally: America will offer virtual followers an unprecedented level of engagement before and during the race. Not only will viewers be able to follow along in real time when the race gets started, but they also will have the ability to impact the outcome of the game by playing along and participating online or through a mobile digital experience.
“Virtual team members play a huge and important role in the game. The drivers will lean on their digital teammates to help them compete in interactive challenges along the way,” said Eggen. “Also, by participating virtual teams qualify to win some amazing experiences plus eight 2012 Ford Focus vehicles.”
Starting today, fans can register at www.focusrally.com, where they can meet all of the teams and join up to become a virtual team member of their favorite team through the duration of the rally. Throughout the rally, virtual team members will be notified via SMS when they are needed to participate in challenges. Virtual team members can also earn points through daily interaction on www.focusrally.com, with selected players being rewarded along the way with amazing experiences as well as eight 2012 Ford Focus vehicles. Throughout, www.focusrally.com will be the insider spot for all the latest happenings real time. Fans can also watch episodes nightly on Hulu starting Feb. 1.
For more information, please visit www.focusrally.com.
About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 163,000 employees and about 70 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.ford.com.
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