Friday, May 1, 2013: On Saturday May 4th, 2013, history was made. The Toronto Rush of the American Ultimate Disc League (AUDL) became the first ever professional Ultimate team to host a game on Canadian Soil. If that wasn't enough, the Rush also broke the attendance record for a professional Ultimate game, with an attendance of 2293 fans.
The previous record was set in 2012 by the Philadelphia Spinners with a then recorded attendance of 1800 fans. Heading into Saturday, the Rush were feeling confident that they had a shot at surpassing that number. But few could have anticipated the overwhelming support Toronto showed its newest team. At the scheduled start time for Saturdays contest, there were still hundreds of fans lined up on Bloor St. waiting to get in to Varsity Stadium, forcing organizers to delay the start time to ensure people wouldn't miss a second of the action.
In July of last year, Cosmos Sports became a founding partner of Toronto Rush and were tasked with handling the team's Ticket Sales, Corporate Partnerships, Marketing and game day operations. Never one's to back down from a challenge, Cosmos embraced the task with open arms. Ultimate is a rapidly growing, and popular sport in North America, and especially Toronto. But, most familiar with the game are familiar with it from a playing standpoint, not a spectator standpoint. There in lies the challenge; creating a paradigm shift about what it means to be an Ultimate fan. Saturday was step one on the path to achieving that goal.
UX Tv, an online streaming company specializing in broadcasting elite level Ultimate, was also on hand to capture the day, as the game was streamed live in HD for those who couldn't make it to enjoy the moment live. A highlight package of the game will be produced and will be available on the Toronto Rush website and YouTube page later this week.
Moving from the stands to on the field, the Rush have found immediate success in their inaugural season, beginning their first campaign with a perfect 5-0 record; solidifying overall first place in the AUDL.