I do wonder at Bernie Ecclestone’s ability count and to reason, if it comes to that. Or maybe he simply holds us all in utter contempt and thinks he can get away with the most egregious bullshit – that would be more likely, I think.
Threatening to end the rump of Fi coverage that is still available on the BBC (Guardian), he says:-
“ “We will never move all countries to pay‑per‑view only though it wouldn’t make any difference here in the UK,” said Ecclestone.
He explained that of the 25m households in the UK, “Sky reaches over 10m. We don’t get 10m on the BBC, normally about 6m or 7m.” ”
That’s as crap an argument as I’ve seen in a while, ignoring the bizarre syntax of the first sentence – the fact that Sky reaches over 10 million households does not mean that all of them watch F1, you dozy bugger. It doesn’t even mean that all 10 million plus are capable of receiving F1. Odds are that the actual viewer numbers are similar to those at the BBC had F1 remained there. Indeed, they might even be lower, many of those those who watched on BBC being unwilling or unable to switch to Sky, he’s not saying.
Ecclestone also said, somewhat disingenuously (that’s me being polite):-
“”Sky have done a super job”, and added that the live rights slipped through the BBC’s grasp due to its complacency. “The Beeb were sure we wouldn’t be able to go anywhere else,” ”
Personally, I could have sworn that the live rights slipped through the Beeb’s grasp due to the grasping sod’s obsession with money, and nothing at all to do with the interests of either the views or F1. And also, because of the funding cuts imposed on it, I suspect it was simply impossible for the BBC to compete with Sky.
And for the record, would he like to tell us why he’s happy to move the UK to pay-per-view, something I will never do even though I have a Sky account, but not all other countries? Could it be that other countries would have told him to fuck off and found a way to protect their national broadcaster? And how long will it be before Sky hoovers up all mainstream sport in this country?
I might consider F1 (though I am by no means as interested in it now as I was, say, 5 years ago), if I could pay a couple of quid to watch just F1,** but no way am I – or could I afford to – going to pay the thick end of £500 to enhance the income of this profiteering little prick, while being saddled with a zillion channels that I have zero interest in – I loathe football, and cricket, and, really, have no interest in televised sport at all, so even if I could afford them, the Sky sports packages – you have to buy both to get F1 – have nothing, beyond F1, that I might be even remotely interested in.
**I’ve checked the Sky website, there’s no way to get just F1, which I think is a marketing mistake – there must be many F1 fans who would pay to watch just that but have no interest at all in buying into a massive sports package dominated by football.