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Everything posted by mikebv

  1. Always amazed me how so few tracks seem to have a "proper" marketing person to increase the awareness in the local areas... If all tracks could deliver just another 500 (a ludicrously low number which shows where the sport is), a night the whole spectrum changes re paying costs and being able to then pro actively develop the sport.. And it doesn't have to be the same 500, just any 500 each week... With those who attend now and again targeted (and incentivised) to visit more as they are the "quick wins".. My city of Manchester has well over 2.5 MIllion people all living with 45 mins of the NSS... Some living in the centre but most by far living in satellite towns around it... What an opportunity for someone to work to a performance related pay scale to try and entice just a minuscule percentage of that 2.5 Million to attend..? Give them a basic and a good percentage of any growth in income... Let them dish out free and reduced tickets to people who they know don't go now, as 500 non attendees paying even a tenner is an extra five grand if they go an watch., and you then push some multi meeting tickets at reduced rates to try and get them into the habit of going.. Knowing names, addresses, emails, phone numbers, birthdays of individuals and their families, sending Xmas cards etc etc etc is a very, very basic marketing technique used in the entertainment sector, to keep your business in contact with (and therefore remembered by) your customers.. Helping you to reward your most loyal customers while also giving you the chance to get back those who maybe have stopped going, or get the infrequent punters to attend more often... As for websites? Even if a track doesn't want to fork out for improvements, I am sure every track will have a college or a uni nearby that has graduates building them for masters degree passes and would jump at the chance of a 'real life' project to 'hand in' as part of their coursework.. Young, modern thinkers delivering a website to be aimed at people of a similar age and outlook.. However, as so many seem to have zero local marking, it is therefore no surprise that at national level there isn't some kind of joined up campaign to raise awareness of the sport generically, and tracks locally off the back of it.. As a collective they spend literally millions of pounds each season in costs, yet spend almost zilch in getting someone to help increase their income... As for a sponsor.? Sadly the ridiculous operating model will prevent any major brand being associated with it, (even if the fan numbers and their demographics were different), hence Poland wouldn't use it in their leagues as fans, media, and sponsors would simply walk away.. So much could be done at a local level for so little cost and given the ridiculously low numbers needed for 'success', I am always truly amazed so little is actually done..
  2. mikebv

    Plymouth Gladiators 2022

    Possibly, but looking at the news tonight it seems relaxing rules around Europe isnt on the agenda for too many as more lockdowns take place.. I would think it is still a big risk committing to anyone from mainland Europe...
  3. mikebv

    Plymouth Gladiators 2022

    Although Schlein and Pedersen have both retired, so that is two heat leaders down already on last year.. And that is where the need is the greatest for those teams who start late in their team building.. Newcastle last year being an obvious example..
  4. mikebv

    Kings Lynn 2022

    Speedway riders are pretty much 'Ex Everyone" the speed they change teams... And of course whilst guesting some can pretty much represent every team in the league, in particular the top league, with only five other teams to ride for.. When you go on YouTube and watch league matches from say five or so years ago it is amazing to see current riders riding for teams that I had zero recollection of them ever riding for, with many being one season only team members. I suppose when you use averages you will always get "We need a 5.96, to complete the team, so he'll do as he isnt bad around our place"...
  5. Supply and demand for the U24's has meant (forced) the second and third tier clubs to have increased their salaries.. A good time to be a better than decent young up and coming rider.. Someone suggested that Tom Brennan would have been better joining an U24 team in the top division.. At this stage of his career getting those type of numbers in the 2nd tier would be far better.. You can upgrade your kit quite significantly for long term progress with that type of remuneration..
  6. Wow... Over £53k for a signing on fee and over £500 a point in the SECOND tier of Polish Speedway? And circa half that in the third tier... Some money that for a young up and coming rider to aim for..
  7. Correct... However, the business models of Football and Speedway are a world apart.. Many owners of Football teams happily run at hundreds of millions of (serviceable) debt due to owning all fixtures and fittings, own the land the stadium is built on, and have in some cases, literally billions of pounds of assets. ... Not to mention guaranteed enormous income from TV... With the ultimate safety net being that if it all goes pear shaped then someone else will see the opportunity of the untold riches that can be delivered and give you a huge purchase fee... Speedway in most cases are tenants with an asset base of circa a tractor, a fence and an air bag, with some riders who may, or may not, have any intrinsic value... In football a team can spend 200 million during a transfer window, all adding to the debt, however they are not guaranteed success because other teams can spend tens and tens of millions too, all safe in the knowledge that their asset base is higher than their debts... In Speedway, one club spending £100k more than their rivals just adds salary inflation into the market, when the last thing the sport needs is teams spending more.. Football needs a 'Manchester United' to keep it at the forefront of billions of people's thoughts globally. . But it also needs a 'Watford' who can compete with them on a reasonably level playing field... There should be a salary cap which all sign up to, with the number of riders per team being driven by the riders expectations of salary, against what the salary cap is... Teams should never pay any more than that, however added on sponsorship can and should count. With the caveat being it is "proper sponsorship" not like happens in football for example where the 'oil rich clubs' in particular skirt around FFP by gaining huge sponsors through not exactly transparent means... Eg. Say there were 18 teams split into two, eight in the top tier and ten in the second, with five men per team, then that would be 28 matches for the top tier, and 36 for the second tier, if home and away twice.. 14 home matches @ £18 would generate £252k if 1000 average per week (an absolute minimum crowd surely to what tier one teams do get I would suggest). Take off the VAT and that's around £200k to cover rider and meeting costs.. £5k per night for the riders (an average of a grand each, some higher some lower) would mean £140k paid out for 28 matches... Headroom of £60k to pay other costs... In the 2nd tier @ £16 admission at 700 per meeting it would deliver just under £202k for 18 home matches (£161k ex VAT).. £3k per night for the riders (an average of £600 each, some higher, some lower) would mean £126k paid out for 36 matches.. Headroom of £35k to pay other costs.. A decent heat leader doubling up could earn as an average therefore around £3.2k a week for four meetings.. Not huge money given what they do, however very decent in comparison to the average wage, and as we often say, they can still work November to March doing other things. ..
  8. Exactly... Surely at least some of them can see how winning any Speedway title with so few competitors (and the ridiculous way it can be won with every rider in the league possibly playing his part regardless of team), is pretty much as shallow a victory as any could be.. (Apart from maybe the boat race).. In a sport that brings great financial reward I get "throwing money at it" as there will be competition which, whilst not as rich, can still provide decent opposition, and you can speculate to accumulate.. The Football Premier League and Polish Speedway are two examples where spending big can give rewards but those who spend less can still compete.. And the Poles launching the U24 League shows how they want this conveyor belt of talent (not just Polish), to continue so as to ensure their Leagues stay full of fans, sponsors and coverage.. In Speedway there is far too disparate a distance between the haves and the have nots, with, you could argue, several clubs plying their trade in the "wrong" league for their size and backing.. How few teams need to be left before someone starts to properly equalise team strengths through salary spend? A salary spend that never goes over a certain amount that all sign up to, and will keep clubs in the black.. Eg. Could you run six man teams for £4k per team per night in the top league? And say £3k a night in the 2nd Division? Run twice a week in both leagues and that's £8k being shared between six lads in the top tier and £6k being shared in the 2nd.. We know that DU'ing is necessary as it is clear Promoters are quite happy for riders to be full time pro's, so heat leaders doing both leagues would pick up a decent return every week, taking a decent share each of the £14k their two teams will be paying out.. Or maybe run with the same £'s per night but five man teams thus increasing the return for the rider? Averages certainly dont equalise teams as is obvious every year, as they are delivered by too many variables, with fans every pre season pointing out the clear wooden spoon contenders, and not often being wrong.. Not many take any win of either match or even league too seriously, so surely success should be measured in the growth of the leagues, and ultimately through that, the sport itself?
  9. It is an incredible business plan for so many isnt it? Knowing (and pro actively planning) that you will lose money on the thing you are selling as costs will be a fair old way in excess of income.. Therefore, you rely on subsidies from others, or your own other business interests to offset those costs.. But yet you do fundamentally exactly the same thing, year in, year out, and never actually make any tangible lasting changes or improvements to your business as "getting through" is your major measure of attainment.. Pumping an incredible amount of money into a sport which is followed each week track side by how many? 20,000 or so max in the whole of the nation? An incredible amount that achieves virtually nothing in pushing the sport, and thus their own businesses, forward.. You have to admire their dedication but at the same time, question their operating and business plan as both are a long way away from being good enough for the purpose of running a professional team sport... There MUST be another way surely where all work together to reduce costs and all then benefit collectively to invest in the sports future..?
  10. That NDL racing that had an operating model that seemed to bring on newly opened tracks so much they "progressed" to level two, and also seemed to be a profitable proposition for those who did move "up" or stayed put at that level? As has been said often, that level should form the basis "core" of UK Speedway with a 2nd tier running with around 10 clubs at (old) "NDL Plus/Championship Lite" standard.. "If it's NOT broken then break it".. Another new adage from the Sport.. I remember on the Newcastle thread someone publishing the accounts for one of their recent seasons, and their outgoings were truly eye watering for (no disrespect), a track that doesnt usually attract top level riders given their Sunday race day, and are often mid to lower mid table in the 2nd Division... Living in this "hand to mouth/will they see the season out or wont they?" existence cannot do the sport any favours, particularly as you are never focused on its development or progression, but instead just on its survival.. You would think that at least for one season all would come together, agree a "lower level", and agree a total payroll spend for each club and then using some of the money saved, which they currently pretty much "waste for zero return", actually deliver a joined up, collective marketing campaign which can move the whole entity forward.. They seem collectively to spend literally millions for next to nothing in return.. All very strange...
  11. mikebv

    Birmingham Brummies 2020

    If Tony Mole was getting circa 1200 with all the goodwill and enthusiam of reopening after so many years then 1000 is a challenge I would think.. Not sure how many in the Championship seem to hit those sorts of figures every week..(?) Good to see some "new ideas" though so who knows what could be achieved? One thing missing for me from many plans when launching Speedway is a strong, innovative, targeted, modern marketing plan leading up to launch which initially captures the local publics attention, and then engages with them individually and constantly via social media/personally ongoing to hopefully keep them informed, engaged, valued and still coming... New owners always seem to spend loads of time, money and focus on getting riders in to their stadiums, without spending anything like a decent budget on someone who is capable of getting punters into their stadiums as well.. Hopefully the new team at Birmingham have "someone" capable, and a budget set aside, to do this.. The right person, and marketing plan, could be worth their weight in gold... Best wishes to those willing to give it a go..
  12. mikebv

    Birmingham Brummies 2020

    Looks like some good ideas have been brought to the table which hopefully will work... In the wider picture, it just goes to show how "small" the sport as a whole really is when in such a huge conurbation like Birmingham, which runs into millions, getting just 1000 of those people into a Speedway meeting will provide such a challenge, and requires such focus and planning.... Best wishes to the those giving it a go, the share scheme and sponsorship will hopefully raise enough to offset the need for attracting what will be a very challenging 1000 per meeting I would think given the history of attendances there.. Could the NDL be a better possible "starting point" given the majority of the 500/600 who attended regularly will be 'die hards' who, I would imagine, watch any level of Speedway? (And putting a competitive team together when starting later than others could be a challenge which could impact crowds if not achieved) The NDL might bring less pressure due to less payroll, whilst all the ideas are brought together for a season or two? Best of luck to them anyway..
  13. You are correct.. It is quite incredible really that those outside looking in can often see so much potential in the sport if only if was "ran properly" like other team sports... Whilst those within the "speedway bubble" seem not to see anything other than the 'same old, same old' as the ONLY way forwards... (Or ultimately backwards as sadly the reality appears to often be)... So much potential (as FIM meetings ran in the UK shows).. But destined to remain unfulfilled l fear....
  14. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    Why would teams want to race every week? Do what Sweden and Poland do and race home one week and away the next.. You only have to see how crowds can get impacted at the end of a season when clubs cram in weekly 'home' Speedway to complete fixture lists.. With so few teams, and so many Fridays from Good Friday to November, surely all could run Fridays during that time? (If they wanted to)...
  15. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    Maybe given Tuesdays and Wednesdays are such big football nights in the UK, Speedway should avoid them? Tuesday's are sorted given Sweden run, so maybe Wednesday could be avoided too? With no school next day, Fridays will always have that advantage over a weekday, but as you say, if people want their kids to go they will take them whatever the night... (And Poole seem to do ok on a Wednesday)... The reality is whatever night they run, unfortunatley there isnt enough adults going to ever have enough kids there to make any major difference to the sports future by encouraging them to become regulars.. I suppose the made up stuff we have today is the best we can expect..
  16. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    But it shouldn't be 7 man teams if you cant make the leagues credible entities using that template.. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result each time? Madness is the definition I believe.. (Which is quite Ironic really as there was seven in that band, and then six)....
  17. mikebv

    Kent kings are no more ??

    To be fair to any of Speedways landlords, when they see the sport lose tracks/tracks change promoters due to losses made, so consistently, you can see why they may put up restrictions on any lease.. If the sport had a following that delivered circa £50k a night through the turnstiles then rent increases wouldn't be an issue, nor would a change of promoter to "save the team" be ever needed.. Which I would suggest would provide landlords with more confidence in the tenant...
  18. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    8 teams. 7 riders per team. Equals 56 riders needed.. 8 teams. 6 riders per team. Equals 48 riders needed.. 8 teams. 5 riders per team. Equals 40 riders needed.. Use six or five man teams and you have plenty of riders to come in and replace those missing.. Far better to deliver a credible offering, and do it on nights that can deliver your best crowds, and thus grow the sport as a collective..
  19. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    It makes total sense to allow tracks to race on the night they feel will deliver their best crowds.. And for an entertainment business you would think Friday would deliver more punters than a Wednesday. (Especially the much needed families with young kids who hopefuly will become adult punters in later years).. Absolute crackers that they hold back the sports growth by preventing teams from riding on nights they want to because it means not enough guests will be available.... A ruling that destroys all the sport's credibility, and therefore reduces crowds significantly, and keeps major sponsors and mainstream media away, prevents tracks from riding on nights that they feel would increase the crowds that follow the sport.. An amazing plan...
  20. So, therefore, the only correct and sensible thing to so is to carry on with such a winning formula isnt it? Keep running seven man teams even though there isnt enough riders, meaning every team can share several riders with someone else in the league below and thus, very little demarcation between the top two leagues.. Thus, zero aspirational attainment to grow... Keep running fixed (restrictive) race nights simply to ensure all the riders have an opportunity to do a seven day stretch and have loads of rides... With whether your fans thinking it is the best night to race on being very much a secondary (and maybe even lower?) consideration.. And keep running two leagues with an ever dwindling number of clubs taking part, thus rendering both pretty much worthless recognition wise in winning.. Even more so when any team who wins can, and invariably will, get help from every other team in the league to attain that "success"... They seem to have unearthed a new adage.. "If it IS broken, dont fix it".
  21. mikebv

    Kent and Eastbourne

    Who could have predicted though that running such operating and business models for so many years would prove to be unsuccessful?
  22. But to be fair to any "second strings/reserve level" riders riding in Sweden, they race against the absolute best in the world, both alongside, and against.. A "bit" easier for that level of rider to score points over here I would think....
  23. mikebv

    Sheffield Tigers 2022

    Really? A bit of transparency? Imagine the carnage that would cause when "certain teams" get allowed to track a rider who clearly isnt eligible according to the rules... The less we know, the less we can flag up as being clearly wrong... Lift carpet and brush under it, and if all else fails....? "It is in the interest of British Speedway"..
  24. mikebv

    Wolverhampton 2020

    Those that DU could wear 'half n half' kevlars in their two teams' colours when they race against themselves.. Guaranteed to be some close racing with a few dead heats, and the score would remain close all through the meeting... Just what Speedway needs.......
  25. mikebv

    Oxford Cheetahs 2022

    The "top flight"..... Akin to being Snow White's tallest dwarf .....

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