|Launched||October 1, 2004|
|Owned by||Lucas Oil Products, Inc.|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)
|Formerly called||Maverick Television|
|Dish Network (US)||248 (HD)|
|DirecTV (US)||214 (SD)|
|Verizon FIOS||810 (HD)|
|Available on select cable systems||Check local listings|
MAVTV (originally known as Maverick Television) is a general entertainment cable and satellite television channel, focused towards what the network's management claims is an "action-oriented family audience", featuring films, motorsports, and other acquired series programming.
MAVTV launched on October 1, 2004 based out of Atlanta with distribution limited to select cable companies, with the name a shortening of Maverick Television. The network was privately held and founded by four former executives from Showtime Networks—Steve Severn, Steve Smith, Doug Jost, Rob Stevens.
Purchase by Lucas Oil and change of programming direction
In October 2011, longtime partner lubricants company Lucas Oil purchased MAVTV; the company had provided and sponsored most of the network's motorsports rights even before their purchase, and the network was likely to go dark without the purchase as programming rights had deteriorated towards barter programming and heavy repeats of library content. The network was quickly reformatted away by the new management from a completely male focus featuring lowbrow comedies, low-tier male targeting programming and Canadian content dramas with low cost purchase rights, and late night shows featuring women in bikini shoots towards a general family programming direction.
On July 4, 2012, Lucas rebranded the network, keeping the MAVTV name (now all capitalized), but with the MAV initials standing for "Movies, Action, and Variety" with the addition of films and more concert programming to the schedule, and a gradual drawdown of racing-related programming to a smaller, yet important part of the schedule to maintain its cable carriage mainly among digital sports tiers, including the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series and the Lucas Oil Pro Pulling League. The network also airs classic programming such as The Lone Ranger, Starsky & Hutch, and Bonanza as well as a number of programs from the now-defunct SPEED Channel.
The network added a full HD feed in the 3rd quarter of 2008 to complement the standard 24/7 lineup; the 480i SDTV network is optimized for widescreen television sets in full mode to provide a full widescreen experience. MAVTV also produces and carries a large library of native 1080i HD series.
Before Lucas Oil took over full management of the network, MAVTV carried programming such as the second season of Rad Girls, SpeedFreaks, Women's Flat Track Roller Derby, American Tailgater, AMA Motorcycle Racing, Wrestlicious TakeDown, Ultimate Combat Experience, Bikini AllStars and Best of the Best. In addition, MAVTV presented a documentaries slanted only towards men, entitled Manumentaries. Except for existing Lucas Oil programming and the AMA, none of this programming currently remains on the network's schedule. Overnights had been filled by music video/interactive SMS programming from NOYZ via a time brokerage agreement before that company went bankrupt in early 2008.
In 2007, MAVTV struck a deal with the Women's Flat Track Derby Association to broadcast two of the three roller derby finals: the Eastern Regional Tournament (Heartland Havoc, which was broadcast as a series of one-hour weekly episodes) and the National Championships (Texas Shootout).
MAVTV contracted with the Automobile Racing Club of America, the auto racing sanctioning body, to air at least 6 races in 2008, including both 100-mile dirt races at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield, and the Southern Illinois State Fairgrounds in DuQuoin.[dated info] SpeedFreaks hosts Kenny Sargent and Crash Gladys also appeared on episodes of the Lucas Motorsports hour.
MAVTV did their 1st live motorsports event, the Lucas Oil Challenge Cup featuring the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series on October 27, 2013 from Lake Elsinore Motorsports Park. They will also do live coverage of the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals, one of the biggest midget car races every year. The East Bay Winter Nationals & Show Me 100 from the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series and all Moto1 rounds of the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motorcross championship in 2014. They will also cover several King of the Cage MMA events live in 2014.
In 2014, MAVTV partnered with professional road racing series Pirelli World Challenge to air the Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car Championship.
On April 27, 2010, MAVTV signed a deal with Sony Pictures giving them access to select titles from Sony's film library. The deal is part of MAVTV's programming strategy to expand its schedule to include Hollywood blockbuster films. The network added films from the Warner Bros. library in July 2012.
MAVTV can be found in the US on Cablevision (iO), Charter Communications, GCI in Alaska, select cable systems within the Caribbean Co-op, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FIOS, DirecTV, Dish Network, and C-Band Satellite. MAVTV was added to the Dish Network lineup on May 8, 2009 in high definition.
On November 29, 2012 Verizon FiOS announced it is removing the channel from its TV service effective on or after December 31, 2012. It is available as an "On Demand" service. However the channel is returned to Verizon on June 10, 2014.
- [Update] WFTDA tournaments on MAVTV | Lead Jammer - Roller Derby News
- Roller Derby Madness - New York Times
- TV schedule on ARCA's Website ARCARacing.com