• This topic has 75 replies, 53 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by Houns.
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  • Tom Pidcock Commentary Fail: Who Should Commentate?
  • northernsoul
    Full Member

    It does need to be dumbed down a bit for the olympics due to the broader range of viewers.

    That doesn’t always happen though. The skateboarding wasn’t in the least dumbed down. As my 8yo put it in response to a stream of mostly unfamiliar words: “what the heck?”

    Nobeerinthefridge
    Free Member

    It’s a minority sport that in the grand scheme of things no one gives a toss about. If it wasn’t for the red button, and folks knowing that a Brit had won, the viewing figures would’ve been lower than GB news!

    BearBack
    Free Member

    Unsure if the CBC (Canadian commentators) were the same as the British coverage but it wasn’t too bad. Some knowledge but of course they missed many of the intracies from presumably not keeping up though the UCI xco seasons.

    My personal favourite was when the commentator called him Tim Podcock

    To be fair, he caught it immediately and made a joke of himself about it.

    mos
    Full Member

    Rochelle Gilmore, just did a Google images search, not many of her actually riding a bike.

    mick_r
    Full Member

    I think the initial issue stemmed from thinking it was a BBC commentary.

    You watch the first few minutes of racing wondering how they haven’t possibly noticed Tom straight into top ten and Evie in the top five. So you conclude they are clueless and then every other mistake and random statement starts to grate.

    However the reality was they were just bland bipartisan background noise so the general public knew the name of whoever was at the front. Wonder what they would find to say about horse dancing? 🙂

    I guessed Bart would have been doing NL TV. But yes, BB and Rob Warner make an unlikely but effective XCO commentary duo and would have been perfect.

    robertajobb
    Full Member

    Nobody could accuse Rob Warner of providing dull lifeless cometary.
    I’d have him covering more sports. He’d make some of them waaaaaay more interesting.
    Just picture Rob on team dressage

    beej
    Full Member

    Rochelle Gilmore, just did a Google images search, not many of her actually riding a bike.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rochelle_Gilmore

    Maybe look at something other than just pictures? Very well known in women’s road racing, founded and owned the Wiggle-Honda team, Commonwealth Games gold in the road event.

    Having said that, I’ve never liked her as a co-commentator, she’s done a lot of work for the BBC on women’s road (e.g. World Championships).

    the00
    Free Member

    I haven’t watched any Olympic coverage, of any sport, but it is odd which sports get chosen to have real knowledgeable and competent presenters, and which do not. I imagine there are some good people who would do it for not much of a fee, and these days they wouldn’t even have to be at the event at all.

    hels
    Free Member

    I think Rob and Bart in the men’s event – in an ideal world an ex-rider with similar palmares for the women’s – Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesja? In a perfect world get Jolanda Neff on board when she retires she comes across as a cheery person with plenty of personality, and is encouraging and knowledgeable.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    I haven’t watched any Olympic coverage, of any sport, but it is odd which sports get chosen to have real knowledgeable and competent presenters, and which do not. I imagine there are some good people who would do it for not much of a fee

    It’s a very closed circle, commentary. Once established, you tend to be used again and again and certainly the UCI jas a list of approved commentators (which is why Anthony McCrossan appears so much in CX and track, he gets flown around the world to commentate on events).

    There aren’t many sportspeople who can transition easily from competing to talking about it – to many of them the competition thing just sort of happens and they find it very difficult to describe what they’re doing and why which then carries over into describing what they’re seeing on screen, it’s an incredibly difficult skill.

    But the problem with it being such a niche area and such a closed group that once you’re established you just stay there, even if you’re shit. See Hugh Porter as an example of someone who massively outlived his best before date.

    kerley
    Free Member

    I always feel that I have to defend sports commentators because, quite frankly, cycling itself is pretty dull. Especially the more pedally variants.

    Yep, imagine covering the Tour de France and having to waffle away for 5 hours a day (nice church, was built in 1671 and use for……. etc,.)

    The best move ITV4 made was getting in Alexei Sayle (a keen cyclist) to have an informal chat for an hour while the race was running.

    ayjaydoubleyou
    Full Member

    Yep, imagine covering the Tour de France and having to waffle away for 5 hours a day (nice church, was built in 1671 and use for……. etc,.)

    An english Ashes series will top this. 25 9hr days, half of which will be raining and therefore no play whatsoever. No changing scenery.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    The best move ITV4 made was getting in Alexei Sayle (a keen cyclist) to have an informal chat for an hour while the race was running.

    The first 2 minutes that he was on I was like “WTF?!”
    Then I realised it was hilarious. Agreed, perfect move.

    wipperman95
    Free Member

    It was poor – and just lazy.
    The BBC just took the world feed – fine; Gerald de Kock does the Cape Epic, however he needs a XC expert alongside to explain the technicalities/nuances of the sport. Not an ex track/road rider, who knows diddly squat about the sport.

    As for Eurosport – really disappointing; again taking the world feed. By contrast for the road races/ITT events they used their experts from GCN, and were trackside in the build up, and afterwards.
    So, why not use the GMBN guys? They treated the MTB events as a second class sport…..

    And while I’m moaning (I apologise) a lot of the cycling journalists only bothered mentioning the MTB race because Pidcock & MvdP were riding it; and didn’t bother with the women’s race.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    And while I’m moaning (I apologise) a lot of the cycling journalists only bothered mentioning the MTB race because Pidcock & MvdP were riding it; and didn’t bother with the women’s race.

    That’s been depressingly standard in a lot of journalism. Cycling Weekly used to routinely do 2 pages of coverage of the Men’s race detailing the timeline, the breakaway and the result. Then there’d be a paragraph at the end going “In the Women’s race, Vos won in a sprint finish”.

    ayjaydoubleyou
    Full Member

    Mountain biking seems one of the better sports in this regard.
    Xc gets equal billing, DH gets les airtime due to the reduced number of entrants but quality wise is the same.
    Results/summary articles seem to give a fairly equal report.
    EWS coverage seems a tad male heavy this year but there is the Rude-Moir battle.

    IdleJon
    Full Member

    It’s a minority sport that in the grand scheme of things no one gives a toss about.

    But Pidcock is a bit of a superstar in more than one cycle sport and rides for one of the biggest cycling teams ever, so to comment that he’s a bit jammy for winning the race would suggest that the person making the comment is a bit jammy for getting any sort of ‘expert opinion’ gig.

    thethief
    Full Member

    It’s frustrating, especially when the BBC seemed able to pull in skateboarding and surfing specialists to co-commentate but didn’t bother with our sport.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    Was just flipping through red button to see what sports were on, ended up watching a few minutes of gymnastics. Girl nails a routine (to my uneducated eye it looks pretty spot on).

    Commentator: “Oh she won’t be happy with that at all, that was terrible. The extra spin she had to do to recover from coming up short there will have cost her dearly, the judges will penalise her heavily for that. Such a disappointment.”

    I’m assuming the commentators know what they’re talking about… 😉

    13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Commentator: “Oh she won’t be happy with that at all, that was terrible. The extra spin she had to do to recover from coming up short there will have cost her dearly, the judges will penalise her heavily for that. Such a disappointment.”

    Diving commentary was similar, they had experts commentating for experts it seemed, I couldn’t for the life of me spot what the disastrous and shaming mistake was that one pair had made 😕

    martinhutch
    Full Member

    I couldn’t for the life of me spot what the disastrous and shaming mistake was that one pair had made

    Diving: Small splash is good, big splash is bad – that’s basically all you need to know. 🙂

    jimthesaint
    Full Member

    I thought not having UK commentary for the MTB but having it for the road race was an interesting choice. In this day and age fewer and fewer people watch tele live and instead stream it after the 1st broadcast. I thought the BBC would have looked at the minority sports like MTB, Road Cycling, etc and taken into consideration the chances of the UK picking up a gold in an event and therefore more people watching the event after it has happened. They obviously didn’t do that as we had a near zero chance of a road race gold but a really strong chance of a mtb gold.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    Commentary for the BMX – oh dear God. The bloke might actually have been Rob Warner, couldn’t really tell. However having Shanaze Reade simply yelling “come on Kye/Beth, all the way, all the way, YES!” wasn’t commentary in the slightest…

    Cringey.

    (much as I admire Shanaze for her achievements in both BMX and track, commentary is clearly not one of her strengths).

    Anyway, track cycling starts next week – wonder how that’ll be? Assume it’ll be Simon Brotherton, Chris Boardman and maybe Chris Hoy / Jo Rowsell-Shand.

    nbt
    Full Member

    the bloke was Ed Leigh, former world air guitar champion (*Under his alias Satan Whoppercock), snowboarder and presenter of BBC’s Ski Sunday. Snowboarder Tim Warwood was doing some of the BMX interviews too

    stevious
    Full Member

    However having Shanaze Reade simply yelling “come on Kye/Beth, all the way, all the way, YES!” wasn’t commentary in the slightest…

    I absolutely understand what you mean, but I quite enjoyed the energy of basically just having someone who’s a massive fan* yelling COME ON. I doubt it would be so fun if the did that in all sports though.

    *I know Shanaze Reade is more qualified than ‘massive fan’ but that’s how she came across.

    slowpuncheur
    Full Member

    I’m not sure there’s much more you can do as a co-commentator on such a short event. Hardly time for expert analysis or explaining the nuances of the discipline. At least it brought a sense of drama to what is unfortunately, a pretty sterile environment.

    wipperman95
    Free Member

    I thought not having UK commentary for the MTB but having it for the road race was an interesting choice. In this day and age fewer and fewer people watch tele live and instead stream it after the 1st broadcast. I thought the BBC would have looked at the minority sports like MTB, Road Cycling, etc and taken into consideration the chances of the UK picking up a gold in an event and therefore more people watching the event after it has happened. They obviously didn’t do that as we had a near zero chance of a road race gold but a really strong chance of a mtb gold.

    As I said earlier, road & track are traditional (old school) cycling sports. I still get the sense the MTB is viewed as not ‘proper cycling’ – so they can use any coverage provided. For both road & track, BBC/Eurosport will use their own dedicated experts. Imagine using a football commentator and a MTB-er for the road races & track – it would be ridiculous…..That’s basically what happened with the MTB races.

    nbt
    Full Member

    Ned Boulting was a football reporter when first asked to cover the Tour de France…

    Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    Imagine using a football commentator and a MTB-er for the road races & track – it would be ridiculous…..That’s basically what happened with the MTB races.

    Commentary is its own thing – if Mike Costello (boxing, athletics) did the mountain biking it would be excellent because he is excellent. Ideally paired with a discipline expert but having someone skilled in the art of commentary makes the biggest difference.

    crazy-legs
    Full Member

    Ned Boulting was a football reporter when first asked to cover the Tour de France…

    Yes but he started by doing rider interviews and only much later moved into commentary by which time he’d learned a huge amount about the sport. It’s relatively rare that he’s wrong these days and when he is, he’s quick to own up to it. As Garry says ^^, being a commentator is a relatively broad skill, not necessarily sport specific so long as there is some specific expertise alongside (and/or the commentator has done a lot of research into the various backgrounds and histories of the participants).

    However, it is a skill and just because someone was a good cyclist does not make automatically them a good cycling commentator.

    brant
    Free Member

    Incredible – The BBC have hired the man who usually commentates on his dogs to commentate on the actual RUNNING 😂

    joshvegas
    Free Member

    Diving commentary was similar, they had experts commentating for experts it seemed, I couldn’t for the life of me spot what the disastrous and shaming mistake was that one pair had made 😕

    Ivm not certain but do diving and gymnastics not judge against a submission?
    Like you say “this is my routine” and the judges judge the technical difficulty of the routine and the execution?

    ampthill
    Full Member

    The commentary was terrible. If they’d just watched this year’s worls cups it would have helped. I wonder if at the planning stage they expected no male uk mtb athlete and no female medal contender.

    Europsport sailing commentary is excellent

    Olly
    Free Member

    It absolutely has to be Rob Warner, but with the caveat that he has to put some effort in to get up to speed on the competitors he doesnt know, and has co commentator who does know them, and can call him out on it all the time and call him a pillock.

    A Kaleb to his Clarkson.

    chakaping
    Free Member

    The commentators on the BMX (both disciplines) were good though, particularly the freestyle.

    Did a great job of spotting the tricks and explaining the proceedings in an accessible but not dumbed-down way. Excited but not as inanely jingoistic as much of the BBC coverage.

    Houns
    Full Member

    Well only a couple of weeks late, but here’s the answer (needless to say it’s nsfw)

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