home and away
2006 - all rights reserved
A German court ruled that stadium owners
can claim back damages from streakers. Second division football (soccer) club, Hansa
Rostock were successful in their claim for full compensation from three streakers who
climbed over a fence and onto the field in October 2003. The club was fined around
US$24,000 by the German Soccer Federation and Hansa Rostock wanted their money back. The
streakers attempted - but failed in their defence to prove that the stadium offered
This ruling will set the tone for any future litigation including 'incidents' during the
upcoming World Cup; although it is likely that the sums involved in a similar incident
during such a high-profile tournament will be significantly more substantial! Next year, Matt Giteau will become the highest paid
Australian Rugby player when he joins the new Perth-based team, Western Force. His
contract - which is believed to cover a three year period has a value of around US43.5
million, part of which is funded by a local firm.
And although many believe that Australian rugby and tour Super 14 provinces cannot afford
to support these level of salaries the bar has now been raised to a new level.
spotlight on: betting
Betting online is not only big business but also one of the most successful and lucrative
sectors of the new media industry: .....and you can bet on anything.
For example, before Wayne Rooney (most likely to score goals for England in the upcoming
soccer World Cup) broke a metatarsal in a recent Chelsea vs. Manchester United match,
typical online betting odds for the Football World Cup looked something like this:
Brazil 4.2: England 7.5 Germany: 9.1
Argentina 10.1 Italy: 13.1 Holland: 14.1 France: 26.1 Portugal 26.1 Czech Republic: 34.1 Mexico: 41.1 Sweden: 67.1 Croatia: 81.1 Spain: 81.1 Ivory Coast: 101:1 Serbia & Montenegro 101.1 USA 101.1.....
and if you like the big odds, the final four:
Costa Rica: 751.1 Iran: 751.1 Saudi Arabia: 751.1 Trinidad & Tobago: 1501.1 could make
Things are looking up for the industry
in the US after recent fears of a prospective all-out ban kept stock prices in the sector
Not surprisingly, the American Gaming Association has had a change of heart; and as an
alternative to the 'ban' scenario, it is now examining the regulation and taxation of the
online gaming industry. As a result, AIM-listed Sportingbet was among the share prices
moving in an upwards direction, as it jumped to an almost record high. Something of
an 'if you can't beat'em, join'em' policy decision by the Gaming Association!
While some London residents are finding their businesses on the move as a
result of the development of a major Olympic park close to Stratford, others are already
bearing the fruits of the winning London 2012 bid.
Real estate in nearby Hackney and Tower Hamlets has shot up an estimated 18 percent during
the period between the 'announcement' in July 2005 and March 2006. Other 'fast rising
boroughs' in London include Southwark and Lambeth, both located on the southbank of the
And there may be yet another early winner in the grand plan of hosting the 2012 Olympics.
The Olympic Organizing Committee (LOCOG) is considering inviting a Premiership
Football (Soccer) club to move into the proposed 'legacy' version of the Olympic Stadium
after it has been stripped down from its Olympic size capacity to a 25,000-seater,
permanent facility. And for fans of West Ham (known as the Hammers and seen as very
'geographically viable' candidates) their team are currently seen as the front-runners.
shot: a money losing
While there is potentially a long-list of cities in the USA lining up
to bid to host the 2016 Olympic Games, there may be a caveat for the winner: the city may
also have to take on the host role for the 2011 World Track & Field Championships.
After a failed New York bid to host the 2012 Olympics, the US Olympic Committee (USOC)
submitted a 'last-second' bid for the 2011 Worlds. USOC leaders knew that failure to show
interest in staging the largest world championship of any Olympic sport (196 countries and
1,891 athletes at the most recent biennial event) could have compounded a negative impact
on a US bid for the 2016 Olympics. Although the US application did not nominate a city,
any serious bid would by definition involve a commitment to complete a 50,000-seater track
stadium by 2011. And having racked-up three sequential unsuccessful bids in 1997, 1999 and
2001, the US has not bid again.
The financial demands imposed by the International Track & Field Federation,
especially with respect to television, have scared off potential bidders because the US
lacks the public funding on offer in Europe and Asia. And while the underlying trend
continues, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find full funding from the private
The subtext to this debate originated in 2001 when newly-elected President of the IOC,
Jacques Rogge stated that cities must be more willing to take on money-losing
Credit : ©IOC/S. Romeu
Members of the IOC Executive Board 2005. Rogge seated 2nd left.
Although USOC kicked in US$30,000 to save a World Cup speedskating event in Milwaukee last
fall after local organizers decided they no longer would host the event for financial
reasons, it became clear that the burden cannot be placed solely in the hands of the
private sector, particularly as it is often the destination that benefits in the long run.
After six years hosting an event in swimming's short-course World Cup series, USA Swimming
finds itself in a similar position. The US Swimming Federation has decided it cannot
afford the US$400,000 loss it took on most recent event and will not host one next season.
And as USOC will do nothing to assist or bail out any loss-making international events
hosted in the United States, there appears to be a stalemate.
This adds yet another new twist to the evolving stories of bidding wars to host major
international sporting events. Although public funding in some countries is often
available at the outset, servicing debt after 'the main event' is long over has - in the
past - proved an unpalatable option for a Stadium owner. And all this compounds the
ongoing problems of the more established players as they can little more than keep one eye
open for the new Asian entrants with deep pockets.
Waiting on the sidelines to have an impact on the world of sport are
some of the 'new players' who fall neatly into the 'ecological category'. While the
sports industry has always been a leader in technology of all kinds, ecology-driven
products are now making their way up the league table and showcased accordingly.
2006 sees the first competitive event for electric bicycles. It is also a welcome addition
to the the Third Annual Presteigne Eco Event which brings together a multitude of
The 2006 Tour de Presteigne is not so much a race as a trial to see how long the batteries
last; and the winner of the first electric bicycle competition - which is just one of many
events held in the grounds of Rodd, a magnificent arts and crafts house just outside
Presteigne, in Powys, Wales - will also be the first to take home a trophy made from scrap
icon...... for the elite
The Racing Club de France (RCF) has long been a bastion of the fashionable, Parisian
elite. Champagne on the terrace amongst the grandest sports and social circles is a
long enjoyed tradition. The club - which is located in the Bois de Boulogne - is
also remembered for the its past successes and particularly when it hosted the athletics
events during the 1900 Olympics. Past and present members include the late Duke of
Windsor and Dominique de Villepin, the Prime Minister.
However, despite the fact that the RCF may have produced dozens of 20th-century Olympic
medallists and has long been a weekend retreat for well-heeled families, the 'times they
Bertrand Delanoe, the Socialist Mayor of Paris has decided that this delightful haven in
the posh western parkland of Paris could better serve the community. By introducing a
policy which opens up the private playgrounds for the elite to a wider audience, the
city could earn far more rent and at the same time provide better training facilities for
sportsmen and women.
In its 120 years, the club has never been required to reapply for the tennis courts,
swimming pools and sports grounds that it rents from the city for a modest US$215,000 a
year; but it is now has competition from two other candidates.
The first comes from Arnaud Lagardere,
the billionaire who sponsored Mr Delanoe's ill-fated Olympics bid. His ambition is to turn
the Croix Catelan into a training centre for world-class athletes. The other offer comes
from the Paris Golf & Country Club, which wants to open part of the Croix Catelan to
the public and cut the initial membership charge from US$10,650 to US$1,550. RCF has
produced a $45.4 million plan which will return the club to its original purpose as the
home of high-level sports training for all levels of athletes.
In true democratic fashion, the decision - due in July, is attracting such resistance from
some quarters that the final ruling may have to come via the courts.
and away, politics
play their part....
When Germany football authorities
recently used Chinese stewards during a friendly match in Hamburg, it was not for the
purpose of welcoming the athletes. Instead, they were used to identify students
holding Tibetan flags as a way of demonstrating against China hosting the 2008
Olympics. Any spectators found carrying a flag were forced to remove them.
This is yet another example of how
politics plays such an important role in sports; and just how protesters (and protesters
of protesters) have no geographic limitations in their attempt to present their message at
high-profile international events.
And despite the enormous sums spent on
2,500 military personnel and 13,000 police officers (plus other security) at the
Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia earlier this year, two official Games buses
were attacked by hooligans throwing stones. In the first instance, a bus was
carrying media management for the New Zealand basketball teams; and in the second incident
it was a bus full of Indian Women basketball players.
The lockdown may have kept away the terrorists but these two examples make it clear
that as long as sports events attract a large number of members of the media, some sort of
intentional disruption will likely be following close behind.
Angel or Demon? The Choice of Fair Play
Through November 5, 2006 the Olympic Museum in Lausanne presents an exhibit on the subject of 'Fair Play'.
Success can always be measured, but fair play cannot, wrote
Willy Daume, the former President of the International Committee for Fair Play (CIFP).
The term 'fair play' first appeared in Shakespeares King John. In a warfare context,
it referred to 'courteous relationship between adversaries'; and this message remains the
same today, as the notion of fair play combines moral and aesthetic ideals.
With the intention to demonstrate that fair play does not only apply in the field of
sport, but also in our daily lives and by illustrating that fair play is not incompatible
with performance - even at the very top - and that its absence destroys the very concepts
of play and sharing, the exhibit at the Olympic Museum asks the visitor to consider their
own angels and demons.
A very worthy ambition!
starting blocks.... a triumphant
We all know the man, and some of us know one or more of his
'trophies': Trump Tower, Trump Palace, Trump Plaza, Trump International Hotel & Tower,
and National Golf Club; but most recently Mr Trump has changed direction to take a step
back to his Scottish roots to develop his first golf complex in a cold climate.
A 4-handicap golfer, Trump is friends with Sean Connery and he now plans to build two
championship courses, a 5-star hotel, a golf academy and new housing on the Menie Estate
near Balmedia in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. The half a billion US$ project - located
nearby a windswept stretch of the North-East coast of Scotland is his first venture of its
kind outside of the US; and he hopes one day to attract the British Open to his 'resort'.
However, negotiating with 'foreign' local government officials can often
be a salutary experience and Mr Trump during a recent short visit - and in true Donald
style - was quick to alert local representatives that he had an alternative site outside
Scotland and would take his money elsewhere if was not wanted!
after..... but there is always a Masters....
In the past - when you just could not 'cut it' on the pro
circuit any more, major sportsmen and women had little to look forward to in the way of
'competition'. But in recent years, there has been a greater recognition of
the skills of our heroes and the latest addition to the 'Masters' calendar is the
inaugural five-race, Grand Prix Masters. Veterans such as Nigel Mansell, Alain
Prost, Emerson Fittipladi and Rene Arnoux were elegible to enter: they were 45+ years old;
had at least two years of Formula One experience; and were officially retired from all
forms of motorsport.
The show kicked off in the searing heat of Doha (capital of Qatar) as a group of fiercely
competitive, ex-rivals lined up in identical 3.5 litre V8 engine cars.
Fifty-two year old Mansell and winner of 31 Grand Prix races, clinched the historic Qatar
Grand Prix Masters sponsored by Qatar communications giant Qtel. Ahead of 14 other
drivers, racing in conditions that saw track temperatures soar up to 60 degrees
centigrade, Mansell - driving for Team Altech - started from pole position and finished
ahead of his rivals to take the chequered flag in a time of 52mins 06:00secs. Christian
Danner of Germany, driving under the banner of Team LUK, finished the 24-lap race in
second place in a time of 52mins 06:56secs; and Eric Van De Poele of Belgium grabbed the
third position on the podium at the sun-drenched Losail Circuit.
will be bring you details of
the next four races.
biographies and autobigraphies
1. what is the name of Jackie
a. "A Kind of Grace" b. "A Kind of Race"; c. "The Fastest
2. Who was "The Man Who Could Fly" ?
a. Bob Beamon ; b. Michael Jordan; c. Sebastian Coe
3. which Stan is "Stan the Man"?
a. Stan Smith; b. Stanley Matthews; c. Stanley Bowles
4. whose soul was a 'butterfly'?
a. Arthur Ashe; b. Jesse Owens; c. Muhammad Ali
5. who were "The Rivals"?
a. MacEnroe and Conners; b. Evert and Navratilova; c. Agassi and Sampras D
6. "You can't be serious"was said by MacEnroe at which event?
a. Wimbledon; b. French; c. US Open
7. who hit "Rock Bottom"?
a. David Beckham; b. Paul Merson; c. Paul Gascoigne
8. who was "Driven from Within"?
a. Haile Gebrselassie ; b. Michael Jordan; c. Cathy Freeman
9. which famous cricketeer features in "A Farewell to Cricket"?
a. Vivian Richards; b. Imran Kahn: c. Don Bradman
10. who told a tale of "Blood and Sweatsocks"?
a. Mick Foley; b. Joe Bugner; c. Evander Holyfield
The race for who will be
the fastest in the women's marathon event is hotting up as US athlete, Deena Kastor wins
the London Marathon in a PB (personal best) time of 2:19:36 (only just under 13
minutes slower than the winner of the men's race, Limo from Kenya).
In the absence of Paula Radcliffe - who pulled out of the race injured, winner, Kastor -
who had already expressed her anticipation of an impending encounter - took
away a total of US$105,000 in prize money and bonuses.
Just another example of how the international marathon scene is becoming an event which
makes millionaires of their stars.
States Olympic Committee confirmed that five American cities are competing to be selected
as US candidate to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. Chicago, Houston,
Philadelphia and San Francisco go up against two time host, L.A. which hosted the Games in
1984 (when the Olympics were uncontested) and 1932. Whoever wins the domestic
race will likely face stiff opposition. The host city will be announced in 2009.
Coming up in 2006:
The US Open Golf
Championships in New York; The Tour de France; Henley; The Athletics World
Championships in Gothenburg; The Equestrian World Championships in Germany; and much
1A;2A;3C;4B;5C;6A 7B; 8C
; 9C; 10C
Your chance to look back at some of the previous
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