67% of pro cycling fans would like to be offered more varied content during event broadcasts, with more extensive information on the riders according to the last UCI consultation results published few days ago. 75% of fans also said that they would get more enjoyment out of watching races if they had data on the performances of riders.
Those findings aren’t a surprise for those watching pro cycling races on TV for years, and also comparing with other sports who have drastically improve the content available for their audience.
Transforming the way profesionnal cycling races are experienced by fans during broadcasts is an exciting mission conveyed by a new comer in the industry, Fuoriclasse.
In a sport where tradition remains strong, targeting a broader audience should be one of the main focus of race organizers and broadcasters. It’s time to make the revolution of pro cycling broadcasts. Even in Belgium, where cycling is king, TV audiences for some Classics such as Milan-San Remo or Het Nieuwsblad have decreased this year.
This is a warning for our sport but also a wonderful opportunity to embrace change.
It’s time to open a new era for event broadcast leveraging new technologies.
To attract a larger and younger audience, broadcasters must develop the narrative with more storytelling. « I think as an organizer you should pay more attention to the television broadcast, wrote Luca Guercelina, Trek-Segafredo team manager on Cycling Opinions. These live recordings must be made much more interesting in the flat stages with interviews, data etc. »
Tell a consistent story along the year to fans who watch the main pro races of the calendar would give a stronger rhythm to live broadcasts, reinforcing the performances of the riders as they will be part of the same story.
Within Fuoriclasse, we are convinced that pro cycling broadcasts should be thought as a Netflix TV show : good characters at the heart of the show, writing the scenario in live, with some flashback or reference to what they did in the previous seasons. Each race should be similar to a TV show. A bridge should be built between the different episodes of the season, and between the different seasons.
This bridge would be the data to introduce the riders with innovative new rankings (as expected by a quarter of the respondents to the UCI consultation), more statistics displayed on screens (TV, but also dedicated Apps) to learn that a given rider is the youngest to win a race in the last 20 years, to compare the rider performances in the previous races, etc. 41% of fans would like information about previous race éditions according to the UCI consultation.
This would definitely contribute to build a strong storytelling, complementary to live data on the power, heart rate or cadence. Emphasize existing and past rider performances will make races easier to understand for a broader audience. It will answer many of the questions that fans always ask themselves while watching pro cycling races.
Cycling urgently needs new ideas and to think outside of the box.
More storytelling with more data would be a win-win achievement : a great experience for fans watching TV, better audiences for broadcasters and higher value for race organizers.