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Ben Ainslie’s Thought on Olympic Classes

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JimC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Aug 08 at 10:44pm
Originally posted by AdrianM

Which is why F1 gp in the UK pulls in over 100,000 spectators paying way over £100 a ticket

Participation numbers my friend. Who cares about spectators?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Scooby_simon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Aug 08 at 11:03pm

Originally posted by JimC

Originally posted by AdrianM

Which is why F1 gp in the UK pulls in over 100,000 spectators paying way over £100 a ticket

Participation numbers my friend. Who cares about spectators?

 

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Jimbob Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Aug 08 at 11:55pm
Well. I've recorded and watched most of the races televised by the BBC on its interactive sites, and I am a very keen sailor who knows what the participants are doing. I was very disappointed at how boring it appears. It is very interesting in parts for me but boring too. I've found the best way to watch is to fast forward during the boring bits (most of each race except starts and mark roundings).
Comments are:-
Non sailors will think it's like watching paint drying, (at times so do I). They will be wondering why Ben Ainslie and the Yngling girls get medals for doing that;
Speaking as a spectator, basically there is not enough general action nor boat interaction. Even when it was windyish the boats appeared very slow. And we need better presentation, more like the America's Cup. And dare I say it, maybe match racing knock out like the AC but on shorter courss would be better.
And it is ridiculous in this day and age to say that spectators don't matter. Without them, the sport will eventually get kicked out of the Olympics, lose all its large amounts of funding and go back to obscurity. Although maybe that's what a lot of sailors want. Anyway, the Tornado being dropped is the first sign of this. And funnily enough I saw some Tornados flashing about in the backgound during the 1st Star race and was wishing we were watching that.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Chris 249 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 2:03am
Jimbob, where is your evidence for the proposition that without TV
viewers, the sport will get kicked out of the Games?

Can you please point us towards, say, a current IOC OPC report, or a
statement by an ISAF head, or someone senior in the IOC? Without
evidence, how can you call a counter-claim "ridiculous"?

And where is the evidence that the IOC counts TV ratings so high? Yes,
we all know about the TV rights income - but baseball (which rated quite
highly on TV, and is the national sport of the country that pays 50% of the
total TV rights fees) has just been dumped from the Games.

Apparently the big hit in the vital US viewing market this Games has been
Phelps - a man who goes up and down a pool slower than a Yngling on a
good day. Is swimming novel? No. Exotic? No. Extreme? No.

Paul Henderson has said, publically, that all the claims that sailing will
get dumped if it doesn't get more TV is tosh.

Seriously, how on earth can you and I claim to know more about IOC
politics than Henderson? And Hendo was pretty radical in some ways, he
wasn't about preserving the status quo.

By the way, if it DOES get down to ratings, we are dead. Here's info from
the IOC OPC report, showing sports and their viewer hours from 2004 (in
thousands of hours);

BASEVALL - 119 (or 136?) thousand viewer hours - DUMPED
ARTYSTIC GYM – 467
DIVING – 362
SWIMMING – 363
VOLLEYBALL – 1,230 (seems wrong, can't be bothered to go back and
check)
ATHLETICS – 977
SAILING – 18
SOFTBALL – 142 - DUMPED
ITTF – 778
BOXING -285 XXXXXX
SLALOM KAYAK - 81 - RECOMMENDED FOR DUMPING; LATER PRESERVED

So even to get up with the sports that were going to be/will be dumped,
we have to increase our ratings by about 5 to 9 times. If we do that by
dumping all the traditional classes, we will have to live with probably
alienating most of the sailors in the world. WTH should we bother to have
anything to do with ISAF if they do not represent the types most people
actually sail?

And yes, there have been some high-rating TV sailing classes. The GP
18s for example, rated well - then they died. The pro windsurfers rated
well in terms of live spectators, and they are now much less popular than
they used to be.

As the national report on sports viewing, sponsorship and participation
points out, there is no real correlation between viewer numbers and
participation numbers.

BTW, when I googled "Olympic sports TV ratings", first thing I got was an
article that mentioned windsurfing as one of the "exciting, fun, sexy and
photogenic" new sports brought in to lift TV ratings - yet the windsurfers
in the average Olympic regatta race are probably slower than the Laser.
So there's one more journo over there in China who hasn't "realised" that
faster boats =better.


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Post Options Post Options   Quote AdrianM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 7:24am

Originally posted by Chris 249



Apparently the big hit in the vital US viewing market this Games has been
Phelps - a man who goes up and down a pool slower than a Yngling on a
good day. Is swimming novel? No. Exotic? No. Extreme? No.


A swimming final though is considerably more exciting to watch than paint drying.  When sailing starts to become material for comedians  then I think we can be concerned for its' Olympic future irrespective of what Paul Henderson may say.

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Post Options Post Options   Quote laser4000 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 8:19am
Originally posted by AdrianM

Originally posted by Chris 249



Apparently the big hit in the vital US viewing market this Games has been
Phelps - a man who goes up and down a pool slower than a Yngling on a
good day. Is swimming novel? No. Exotic? No. Extreme? No.


A swimming final though is considerably more exciting to watch than paint drying.  When sailing starts to become material for comedians  then I think we can be concerned for its' Olympic future irrespective of what Paul Henderson may say.



So why the hell don't we have downwind slaloms in bladeriders for weymouth..
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Strawberry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 9:21am
Originally posted by Chris 249


VOLLEYBALL – 1,230 (seems wrong, can't be bothered to go back and
check)



The probably mean women's beach volleyball. It's hardly surprising that attracts viewers. But I would guess very few of them actually care what's happening in the sport.

Maybe that's the answer? Get the 3 Blondes in a Boat in Bikinis!


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Post Options Post Options   Quote DiscoBall Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 10:08am
Originally posted by JimC

Originally posted by AdrianM

Which is why F1 gp in the UK pulls in over 100,000 spectators paying way over £100 a ticket

Participation numbers my friend. Who cares about spectators?


Jim - I'd reckon out of my non-sailing male friends probably 80-90% have tried karting at least once (stag dos, birthdays etc...) and probably less than 10% have been sailing (and regard my fascination with it as not a little eccentric...).  With female friends I'm less sure what the numbers would be but would guess it would still be the same way round.

Sailing is undoubtedly more accessible than motorsport (at least financially) for longterm participation, but I suspect F1 and similar events give an awful lot of people a hankering to try it, if only occasionally.

Again more people through the door would hopefully mean more conversions to regular sailors.

It also can become a virtuous circle - if people have tried the sport then their comprehension and the amount they identify with the physical act of sailing will allow them to get more out of the coverage.  Sports like golf, snooker, cricket and darts all claim many hours of tv even though they really are extremely slow - but they're easy for people to try and identify with.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote AdrianM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 4:21pm

Originally posted by JimC

Originally posted by AdrianM

Which is why F1 gp in the UK pulls in over 100,000 spectators paying way over £100 a ticket

Participation numbers my friend. Who cares about spectators?

Popularity was the word used by Chris not participation and if something ain't popular there aren't that many folk who will pay a few hundred quid for the privilege of camping in a wet field to go and watch it.  Who cares about spectators?  To continue with Chris' line of thought all the car makers, tyre suppliers et al who pump millions into the sport to get some precious air time for their brand name.  They don't do it to get more people into motorsport but to more people to buy their common garden average tin box saloon. With the possible exception of Ferrari who do it the other way round, sell lots of tin boxes to make enough cash to let them go racing...



Edited by AdrianM
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Post Options Post Options   Quote k_kirk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Aug 08 at 4:32pm
Originally posted by AdrianM

With the possible exception of Ferrari who do it the other way round, sell lots of tin boxes to make enough cash to let them go racing...
I think you've got that far off. They're not tin boxes to begin with and they sell in very small numbers when compared to other car makers and finally the Ferrari F1 lineage and road monsters share a whole lot of common technology. So in other words, F1 is the real life test & development lap for the boys in red. They would still sell as many cars without F1 and they always have. Anyways, back to sailing and Ben shall we?
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