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ciderman

£10 Speedway - Is It The Answer?

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Do you know what, I get really annoyed when people compare speedway to football and their ticket prices...I don't go to blooming football, not even if it was a quid to get in!

 

The simple fact is that speedway is too expensive for the normal family to attend, especially every week (and just to re-iterate, I am talking about a family, not a singleton)and this is supposed to be a family sport.

 

A slightly better comparison for me would be the cinema...and I can do that for the whole family (2 adults and 2 children - eldest now classed as an adult) for less than the cost of one adult going to an Elite league meeting....yes £15 for the four of us, no matter if the film is 1 and a half hours or 3 hours.

 

Agree crazy, you see a lot less families at speedway now compared to 40/50 years ago.

As most kids cant watch it on tv either unless they can afford sky. These are the fans of the future. Most kids now have never heard of speedway, unlike the time when it was 2nd. to football for fan numbers, and we had several kids cycle speedway teams on our east Swindon council estate, who could all afford to go to The Abbey on a Saturday night to watch world champions in action.

The movies are pretty cheap, especially Orange Wednesdays.

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being a rye regular like you ben, i think the 16 quid uncle len charges at rye for PL racing has killed the rockets support over the last couple of seasons. the racing is better at rye this year and the matches are closer, yet the crowds keep falling. the long term die hards like me will continue to pay it, but a lot of fans just can't afford it or will refuse to pay it. putting the prices up every season is not the answer to increase speedways crowds.

I agree with you. I know football is different but at West Ham year after year the season tickets went up more or less 5 times the cost of living. In the end it reached £700 per season and after 30 odd years as a season ticket holder i said enough was enough. Speedway is going the same way. I love speedway in general but Rye being my team since '76 i am on the verge of saying that's it. I was happy with team unlike most. But what i don't like is the continual changes of racetime and day as i am generally a creature of habit. At £16 it is in my opinion £4 over what it should be. I always buy a programme but for £2 the Rye effort is rubbish and i would rather they gave up with the non news and went to a scorecard. Also not helping me was the move away from the cobras and i have little or no interest in the current NL fixtures that i see as only fillers for the lack of PL meetings / competitions. On a more broad take i used to do 80 meetings a year and i'm down now to 50. Despite living 5 minutes from Arena Essex i never find i enjoy the place so with the cost of fuel these days i dont go if its not an attractive fixture or even if the weather is slightly dodgy i won't chance it.

The meetings themselves are poorly run taking over 2 hours for fifteen heats becoming the norm. The constant returning to the pits for the obligatory clutch warming and spoonfull of fuel is a real turnoff. Speedway has many turn offs these days and for me theses are just as bad as the rising costs

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A a typically dopey hatcham comment but it does unwittingly touch on a serious point, which is "What is the most important thing, the price or the product.?"

 

In almost any form of entertainment you will get a temporary surge of interest by reducing the price but the question is can that interest be sustained ? A sizeable number of speedway fans do not go every week, for a variety of reasons. If the price is reduced for one week people will make the extra effort to go because they think they are getting a bargain, bur if it was reduced from from say £16 to £10 for a whole season then £10 becomes the norm, not a bargain so can a 60% increase in crowds be sustained for a whole season in order to reach the break even figure on the reduced price. ? I doubt it but we will never know unless it is tried so that is a decision for those holding the purse strings.

 

The other thing is that if you reduce the prices to £10 for a whole season and it doesn't work it then becomes harder to persuade even the hardcore fans to start paying £16 again.

 

Personally I think we just live in an era when people have too many other things to spend their money on.

 

 

The best post on this thread. :approve:

 

Of course everyone wants something cheaper but not with damage to the sport as you have highlighted. Halving prices and expecting more than double the crowd is totally unrealistic and a quick way of going bust. I recall an experiment with bus fares in either Leicester or Nottingham where they halved the fares and had to scrap the experiment as the numbers only showed marginal increase in revenue. Who wants to lose a speedway to try to demonstrate such an extreme theory.

One thing I do agree with is showing bigger crowds in televised meetings. For TV meetings, the home club is payed a substantial hosting fee and it is up to that club what it does with it. Most popular is to use the money to influence floating fans to attend by reduced or free attendance. It looks better on screen to see such great support and in the long term might remind or show the new fans that the sport was worth supporting. From some of the TV meetings I have seen, obviously some clubs haven't bothered and just pocketed the money into the general account, whilst giving the transmission a very poor impression to the viewing public. Teams that do this, miss the point why they are given the money. Some argue that it is to replace the fans who prefer to watch the TV meeting at home, instead of attending but the size of the hosting fee would suggest that it is more than capable of doing that. A televised meeting is probably the greatest advertising opportunity that most clubs will ever get in a season so why not shove the boat out and market and promote it. Our first TV meeting in modern times at Brough happened this year and through offers and promotions were able to make the crowd on screen very presentable. New uniforms and worktops were supplied to all key staff and I must say it looked so professional. In fact the workwear is still being used so our presentation was upped and has continued.

One thing that is not necessarily a good thing is a free ticket. Existing fans usually take umbridge that others are getting in for free, but don't look at the future and having others alongside them on the terraces with greater atmosphere and financial stability. This was proved more obvious, when in the last couple of years, clubs have tried to court Polish expats clubs and Polish individuals. In my experience, free tickets get increases in numbers but only for that meeting. At Newcastle, we changed that so that the ticket allowed admission for say £5, and we felt that more of those new fans came back without upsetting existing fans. I do most of the 'shows' when we take my bikes, riders, etc, and these tickets are handed out, so I personally get to see new fans that appear after the shows.

At the end of the day, the policy of getting bigger, and keeping bigger crowds, is the policy of bringing friends and a greater percentage start to become regulars. As Glyn Taylor always used to say "bring a friend to hold onto". :lol:

Edited by Tsunami

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This is a tough one. British Speedway has got increasingly expensive over the years (way ahead of inflation). On the other hand, slashing admission costs to £10 is a huge risk, for the reasons stated by Tsunami.

 

Unless, of course, clubs cut their outgoings by a third. Then the books would still balance, and some clubs may even start making money, which could then be invested back into the sport (improvements to facilities for those who own their own stadiums, a proper training programme, 80cc tracks, etc).

 

All the best

Rob

Edited by lucifer sam

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You know, i have waited the best part of 20 yrs to see Milton Keynes Knights return to the track.

 

I couldn't get to the first match at Mildenhall a couple of weeks ago so i was really happy to hear they are facing a Rye House team after the PL match against Newcastle on Bank holiday Monday.

 

I now find out that in order for me to watch 6 heats of amateur racing after 2 PL teams i couldn't care less about i am expected to pay £16 !!!

 

I was under the impression that Rye House own their stadium, operate the catering etc, etc, so just how can this admission fee be justified for PL ?.

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Without reading through all the thread and if it has been mentioned before sorry.

 

How about if all clubs for the month of August only charge adults £10 and children under 16 £2 and throw in a one page score card for 50p with the score card money going to the Speedway Riders Benevolent Fund or similar.

 

Might be worth it given that the kids are at home and the floating spectators who might be on holiday in the region of the track.

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Without reading through all the thread and if it has been mentioned before sorry.

 

How about if all clubs for the month of August only charge adults £10 and children under 16 £2 and throw in a one page score card for 50p with the score card money going to the Speedway Riders Benevolent Fund or similar.

 

Might be worth it given that the kids are at home and the floating spectators who might be on holiday in the region of the track.

 

Think you will find that some clubs already do 'Kids for a Quid' , 'kids free with an adult' and similar promos during the summer hols when the kids are off school.

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£10 is enough to pay. We don't do PL or EL as we couldn't afford it.

We have done PL occasionally if there was a team we wanted to see.

Edited by whippy

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My two penneth would be that £10 entrance for EL is suitable on occasions such as Sky matches, special promo nights, rather than every meeting. £10 represents good value in comparison to the regular £16. IMO There should be say 25% of the season where the entrance fee is amended based on the meeting type. How's about all KOC meetings, except Semis and Final, have reduced pricing.

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You know, i have waited the best part of 20 yrs to see Milton Keynes Knights return to the track.

 

I couldn't get to the first match at Mildenhall a couple of weeks ago so i was really happy to hear they are facing a Rye House team after the PL match against Newcastle on Bank holiday Monday.

 

I now find out that in order for me to watch 6 heats of amateur racing after 2 PL teams i couldn't care less about i am expected to pay £16 !!!

 

I was under the impression that Rye House own their stadium, operate the catering etc, etc, so just how can this admission fee be justified for PL ?.

 

I cannot really see what you are complaining about: Those six races are extra races to entertain those who have gone along to see the PL match; if the PL meeting was not going ahead the extra six races would not exist. Having said that I expect that if you are happy to hang around until the match you are not interested in to finish you would be able to get in for next to nothing.

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A a typically dopey hatcham comment but it does unwittingly touch on a serious point, which is "What is the most important thing, the price or the product.?"

 

In almost any form of entertainment you will get a temporary surge of interest by reducing the price but the question is can that interest be sustained ? A sizeable number of speedway fans do not go every week, for a variety of reasons. If the price is reduced for one week people will make the extra effort to go because they think they are getting a bargain, bur if it was reduced from from say £16 to £10 for a whole season then £10 becomes the norm, not a bargain so can a 60% increase in crowds be sustained for a whole season in order to reach the break even figure on the reduced price. ? I doubt it but we will never know unless it is tried so that is a decision for those holding the purse strings.

 

The other thing is that if you reduce the prices to £10 for a whole season and it doesn't work it then becomes harder to persuade even the hardcore fans to start paying £16 again.

 

Personally I think we just live in an era when people have too many other things to spend their money on.

You make a good point there and I agree that at first it will generate a lot of interest and then fade off, and like you say, how can you then raise the price if it's not working?

 

Maybe one idea would be to do a variety of special offers; promotions (are you reading this, promoters?)

 

One week it's normal price (Poole, Coventry, local derbies, for example)

Another week do a special family offer. £35.00 for family of 4, £30 for family of 3, or whatever.

Then all under 16s free.

Another week it's £10 admission

 

Put special coupons in local papers or have competitions on local radio.

 

Some of these are already being done I know but it would seem not often enough.

 

In business you have to think like the customer, what would make me use my business? How could I be tempted?

 

As BWitcher said, Sky meetings for £10 is a no brainer really, they have little to lose.

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You make a good point there and I agree that at first it will generate a lot of interest and then fade off, and like you say, how can you then raise the price if it's not working?

 

Maybe one idea would be to do a variety of special offers; promotions (are you reading this, promoters?)

 

One week it's normal price (Poole, Coventry, local derbies, for example)

Another week do a special family offer. £35.00 for family of 4, £30 for family of 3, or whatever.

Then all under 16s free.

Another week it's £10 admission

 

 

They did this at Forest a few seasons ago. Games were put into categories, A, B and C. A classed games were premium prices for the games against the sheep shaggers down the A52 in Derby and other big name teams which will always sell out regardless of price. B classed games were normal price I think, and C classed games were games where crowds were always going to be low.. the likes of Gillingham midweek which hold no interest to anyone, and so were kids for a quid games. Worked well, provided you don't mind a load of annoying kids creaming crap for 90 minutes.

Edited by Marmite

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got a nice suprise when attending plymouth v berwick, £12 admission and £2 for a proggie

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I recall an experiment with bus fares in either Leicester or Nottingham where they halved the fares and had to scrap the experiment as the numbers only showed marginal increase in revenue.

 

On the other side, between 1975 and 1979 the Greater London Council cut all bus fares to 20p or 30p for longer distances and that was the only period in the history of London Transport Buses that they made a profit.

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Somebody said you cannot compare speedway to the cinema and whether they are right or wrong I do not know: I do however know that if I go to a Lakeside speedwayy match on Friday it would cost me a minimum of forty pounds but if I go to my local cinema on a Friday night I could take a family of four for twenty pounds and that includes a taxi and four burgers from McDonalds.

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