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    Published on January 13th, 2012 | by mrgrumpyninja


    Random thoughts from MGN.

    I was just looking through an old folder and found this so thought I’d chuck it up, keen to know what you guys think.

    Welcome back readers, I guess technically this is my third and final trial column and the boys can let me go after this if they want to, so I better try and make this half way decent or just hope that there is no one else equally qualified waiting in the wings to write a column, like a trained circus monkey.

    When I signed on to do this, The guys said to me make it controversial and say what you want, but I’m not sure that is always the right way to do things, if only because New Zealand is such a small place that everyone is only two steps away from being the next person you need to do business with, so while this is an opinion column, I try where possible to base it on facts and available information where possible.

    So this month I decided since that since we are almost at the start of our summer motorsport season, I’d explore the idea that “There are too many events this season”, is that a Question or statement? Well, You can decide.

    Now, let’s say up front that this is probably an upper North Island thing, as I don’t think people in Wellington, or the South Island feel that they have too many events going on, perhaps in your eyes it’s the exact opposite.

    So anyway, without debating the impact of who/where you are, lets talk about the idea that there are too many events happening, in particular with Drifting, and to a lesser extent Drag Racing, perhaps you could also include shows in that to, although they are arguably not motorsport.

    I’m going to focus on drift, as Drag racing has its own issues currently.

    So are there too many events? Well in my opinion No, there are not, however what has happened is that promoters are scheduling the “premium” events too close together.  Yes we run on a short summer season here, but seriously who is it actually helping to have two weeks between events?

    It sure isn’t helping drivers, who have very short periods to try and repair breakages and have massive outlays on things like tires, fuel, and crew costs to think about.  There is no giant pot of sponsor money for most of these guys, and the end result is that drivers are forced to choose which events to do, which eventually will weaken the fields in all events. It is no longer a case of selling an event on coverage, as a small picture in a mag, or 15 seconds on TV is only a small part of what sponsors want, and that’s IF you are lucky enough to have any.

    I have no issue at all with grassroots days, the more chances people have to improve the better, but at the same time I also don’t need to see a facebook invite every day reminding me that it’s coming up. If you want big numbers, then why don’t you all stop working against each other, and agree who is having which dates an d leave a couple of weeks between events?

    So the other side to this is spectator numbers, my estimate is that to attend any premium event these days is around $50 per head (admission, travel, food/drink) , which regardless of how you look at it becomes a factor for most people, that just multiplies if you are a couple or family, So common sense, says less time between events = less people attending as it starts to become a financial stretch to get to everything.

    So where does that leave us? Well I guess that is up to you all to decide, I know that personally between the international speedway season, drift and shows, I just don’t have the budget to go to everything, so then I have to pick based on which events deliver the best bang for buck on my entertainment dollar. If I can’t be guaranteed a field vs say the internationals at the speedway….where do I go?

    Something to think about for anyone putting on events.

    Photo credit Saret Em, Saretvision, best crowd shot I have seen for a long time :) check his work out

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