June 14, 2019 at 10:59 #1445257KevMcParticipant
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You say you don’t care about racing and only subscribe to the product, yet you’re reading a Bruce Millington column about racing.
Of course i won’t say you’re lieing as that’d be blasphemy, but surely if you didn’t care surely you wouldn’t be reading such material?
Racing on terrestrial TV is massive. Look at the demand that the likes of football & rugby gets when it’s on shown to the mainstreams. It’s one of the reasons millions of us only tune into rugby when the 6 nations is on.
It hit home with me the other week when i was out with a mate and he mentioned he was flicking through the channels after his work on the Friday of the Oaks, came across Racing and persisted to watch it. He had a small study and a few bets and became engaged with it. That’s how it starts for many of us that don’t have family members or friends who are big into the game.
It’s not something i ‘worry’ about either, but i can definitely see the massive advantage it has to the sport.
P.S. – I actually agreed with Millington for once in my life, fashion & food etc. has to be expected on a channel with such a varied audience.
Just as i agree that ITV is not the place for huge sectional analysis although reference to them by Weaver, Blake etc. isn’t something i’d shy away from if it’s backing up a selection etc.June 14, 2019 at 20:10 #1445296
In all fairness, KevMc, I only read Millington’s article because I was bored and there was a link to it on the RP Facebook page.
You are, of course, correct to say terrestrial coverage is a massive boost for any sport – don’t think anyone disputes that.
But it doesn’t alter the fact I could only stomach the Derby Day coverage by deploying the mute button from start to finish!June 15, 2019 at 15:50 #1445418Mike007Participant
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Annoying today as well. Weaver who was picking losers all day said that a horse looked a picture in the paddock. Not saying he would win the race just said the horse looked well. It won and Olli Bell says about 10 times post race to Weaver what a great shout. Haha.June 15, 2019 at 16:20 #1445420GingertipsterParticipant
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As such many of us care only about our personal enjoyment or otherwise of watching racing broadcasts and do not care in the slightest what ratings the broadcaster gets or what this supposedly means for the future of the sport.
Fair enough, Ian. Do think it’s worth remembering though, that if you and I had been born in to an age where there was no terrestrial tv… We may not have been lucky enough to find this sport we now love. I’d hate to think of future generations missing out.value is everythingJune 16, 2019 at 01:45 #1445469
I get what you mean, Gingertipster, but an era without terrestrial TV would be before TV covered racing at all (the era of Pathe news in cinemas) or some point in the future.
As for the past, I remember being in a newsagent during a family holiday in Alnwick in 1977 and persuading my father to buy me a copy of The Sporting Chronicle, I remember racing references in Billy Bunter books at school, being fascinated by racing results and cards in The Guardian, all non-TV related entry points to racing.
And today, in the internet era, there are websites, apps, social media and a host of ways young people can get the opportunity to be similarly intrigued.
Terrestrial TV coverage matters, but I don’t think it is the be all and end all any more many imagine it to be.June 16, 2019 at 13:16 #1445502Marginal ValueParticipant
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I have not much to do today, so I thought I would throw my hat into the ring.
IanDavies – I watch horse racing for the….err….horseracing (and nothing else) a concept broadcasters have never quite been able to grasp in recent years. I agree with this one, but I would add that talking to the people connected to the horses is good too.
Commentator Richard Hoiles – The horse should be front and centre of any race day. I agree with this one.
Andrew Cooper Clerk of the Course at Sandown, and Rupert Arnold, the chief executive of the National Trainers Federation, both outlined their belief it is necessary for the public to see the horses beforehand – “we’re in the entertainment business after all and the horses are the stars of the show”. And the public includes people watching on TV.
Tonge – From some of their comments over the past few years regarding public perception & engagement, many trainers and jockeys would be quite happy with that sort of “private club” scenario, but they’ll soon change their tune once the sponsorship, on which the entire industry now depends, dries up. All races at today’s four meetings in the UK and Ireland are sponsored. This is normal. None of them are being shown on terrestrial TV. Sponsorship is small beer compared to how much owners and punters contribute to the racing industry in the UK.
Gingertipster – If there were/is no terrestrial coverage then how would anyone know they liked racing enough to get/buy/watch the dedicated channels? …… Do think it’s worth remembering though, that if you and I had been born in to an age where there was no terrestrial tv… We may not have been lucky enough to find this sport we now love. I’d hate to think of future generations missing out. Younger (new) people use social media to obtain information, eg. there are thriving twitter and facebook accounts about Frankel, and many other racing-related items. Under forties watching day time TV are almost non-existant.
KevMc – Racing on terrestrial TV is massive. Look at the demand that the likes of football & rugby gets when it’s on shown to the mainstreams. It’s one of the reasons millions of us only tune into rugby when the 6 nations is on. Racing on terrestrial TV is relatively inconsequential, and becomes more diminished as time passes. Football and Rugby coverage does not include casual glide-bys by C-List celebrities, descriptions of what the fans are wearing and interviews with people about where they bought their clothes, tours of the catering outlets, or asking random fans for their views on who will win. Your outlook about the Six Nations suggests that terrestrial TV should show only Group One races.
I cannot imagine that current ITV coverage persuades anyone who is not already interested to take a shine to the sport.
It is one of the BHA’s roles to promote racing. Having, in recent years, allowed newspapers to reduce dramatically their coverage of racing in their sports pages, it seems they have no desire to encourage people to become fans of the sport via new media either. Their PR people have not been able to place anything on the front page (which has sixty-nine stories on it today) of the country’s biggest sports website about racing’s biggest and best festival just two days from now.
As I write this (Sunday morning) the front page of their very own BHA website contains no mention of Royal Ascot, but does have these items:
Building a brighter future for our sport, our horses and our people
Next fixtures dates – (no mention of Royal Ascot)
Find out about the high standards of equine welfare in British Racing
Class 2 Open Handicap Chase re-scheduled to Newton Abbot’s 25 June fixture
Investec Derby Festival 2019 – Handicappers Blog
Kemboy tops 2018/19 Anglo-Irish Jumps Classification
Why anyone might make a fuss over TV coverage when the BHA shows no aptitude or desire to promote the sport, makes me think we are talking about a very small issue while the elephant in the room goes unnoticed.June 17, 2019 at 16:25 #1445635yeatsParticipant
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Superb post Marginal ValueJune 21, 2019 at 18:43 #1446431phil walkerParticipant
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A few comments on Friday’s racing on ITV from a jumps fan who has zero interest in Royal Ascot:
– Was it just me or did AP McCoy look as embarrassed as I did during the pathetic end-of-show sing song? The BBC never did anything so downmarket.
– Were people actually applauding the people doing the fashion or were they just pissed out of their brains?
– How many (few) of the racegoers that go to Royal Ascot will attend any other race meeting during the year? Like the coachloads of men that drink themselves silly at places like York during the summer, is Ascot only interested at how many people they can get through their front door?June 21, 2019 at 19:29 #1446443TongeParticipant
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Was it just me or did AP McCoy look as embarrassed as I did during the pathetic end-of-show sing song?
I thought he was every bit as bad as the rest myself.
Those fashion clowns are awful. I’m not a fan of the fashion myself anyway but they seem to be utterly without any fashion expertise, interest in the racing or charisma and only seem interested in necking as much fizzy wine as they can get their hands on and giggling with “celebrities”. Encourages exactly the sort of behaviour that the sport is trying to reduce and I am sure irritate the people who DO tune into Royal Ascot for the fashion as much as those who want to watch the racing. They should get Chris Hughes to do it. I feared the worst when he was brought in (and had to Google him…) but I actually think he’s rather good. Bit of a coup to find somebody with wide popular appeal outside racing who actually has a genuine interest and is a decent presenter. He has a huge following on social media and uses it to promote the sport. Looks like a lot of his fans tune in to the racing to see him too so hopefully some will develop an interest.
All races at today’s four meetings in the UK and Ireland are sponsored. This is normal. None of them are being shown on terrestrial TV. Sponsorship is small beer compared to how much owners and punters contribute to the racing industry in the UK.
Sponsorship is critical to the survival of racing and it isn’t just race sponsorship. Have a look at your racecard next time you’re at the races and see how many runners have a sponsor listed in addition to trainer, owner etc. I doubt many of the smaller stables could continue to operate without this and many large stables would have to curtail their operations. Whether race sponsorship is attracted or not does not depend entirely on whether a race or meeting is shown on terrestrial channels as many sponsors come from within the industry (betting, breeding, products associated with the course or, of course subscription tv services) or small local businesses and are happy to target a niche audience. However, if you want to attract big sponsors from outside, you need to be on telly.June 23, 2019 at 22:00 #1446826
I am delighted to be able to report that, thanks to the wonderful mute button, I was able to thoroughly enjoy the four and a half hours coverage of the entire card on Saturday.
It has to be said, however, that the thankfully silent, but nevertheless grotesque images I was seeing on screen between races hinted strongly at a bunch of self-indulgent presenters deluding themselves that literally everything they say or do is entertaining.June 24, 2019 at 13:36 #1446894wordfromthewiseParticipant
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It was plain to see that unlike most of the other temporary pundits Ruby Walsh had put in a shift with the form book before doing his paddock duty with the terminally bland Cumani on Saturday.The conclusions may not have been correct but the work was there for all to see.
Walsh does have a no nonsense way of communicating though that may spoil the lightweight banterish vibe that I think ITV are trying to cultivate.
Not really seeing the point of Luke Harvey being down at the start ,as an ex jock he could offer a lot more insight to what he notices and what is going on down there but instead all we get is him trying to be mates with the often reluctant jockeys.
I personally don’t mind fashion coverage on big meetings but Charlotte Hawkins sounds incredibly insincere and fake and once again there is no attempt ( except when they do pre-recorded fashion features) to make the content interesting.June 26, 2019 at 11:28 #1447013CaladanParticipant
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Until recently, I was a fairly casual armchair fan. I’ve started to get into it a bit more this year, going to a couple of meetings, having a few TV Saturdays for betting.
Having it on terrestrial TV is great, makes everything is so easy.
Secondly, the coverage, honestly I had no idea it was a problem until I saw a few comments on Twitter.
The race commentary is very good. They have people interviewing the jockeys in the parade ring, down at the start, after the race is over. There is a bit of superficial analysis between races, they do their recommendations. It wouldn’t matter who they had on, I am not using ITV as a source for my bets, I use the Racing Post and other info online. I don’t mind the fashion stuff or other light segments, it helps sell the event, add a bit of humour. Anyway, I am likely reading the RP or checking the odds in my betting app anyway, so a bit of background noise is fine.September 8, 2019 at 16:45 #1453209wordfromthewiseParticipant
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I’m afraid Fran Berry is not a good pundit.Monotone voice and not very insightful comments.September 19, 2019 at 17:38 #1458991patriot1Participant
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Disappointed that one of the ten biggest betting races of the year has been relegated to ITV4 this year.
I’m guessing it’s because ITV feel there’s enough sport on the main channel on Saturday with the rugby.
Be interesting to see if there is any impact in the betting turnover on Saturday.October 5, 2019 at 21:46 #1463894Mike007Participant
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Was anyone yawning like I was today, hearing Ed Chamberlain after every race telling us that the bookies were getting a bashing. And I mean every race.
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