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Golf vs. Cycling(15 posts)

Golf vs. CyclingCar Magnet
Jul 21, 2001 3:19 PM
What's the big deal about golf? It's always in the media spotlight (TV, Radio, Newspapers). I look in the paper and golf gets 2-3 pages, and the TDF gets 1 paragraph. I would hate to see what it would be if Lance wasn't the Tour champ. When you turn on SportsCenter you always know who's winning some crappy, unknown golf tourney in East BF. Cycling coverage? If it isn't the TDF it doesn't exist. Why is it that a game that requires very little athletic ability (just look at the stomachs) gets so much coverage and respect? Competitive cycling by far requires more athletic ability, nutrition and mental toughness. You can be some keg-bellied beer swilling swine and play golf (check out the local links) but put that same person on a bike? Call a cab, ambulance or the coroner's office. I guess cycling will never get the respect and attention it truly deserves. Like a buddy of mine said "Only another cycler will understand".
re: Golf vs. CyclingLone Gunman
Jul 21, 2001 3:53 PM
Possibly a larger "non-coverage" sport is soccer in this country, the world's most popular game. Golf garners so much attention IMO because it takes so little effort (appearance) to win soooo much money at the pro level and it traditionally was the game of the elite, (60's&70's, some traditions refuse to die). The PGA is still a bunch of old rich white men (but I am not pointing to race as a reason) and money talks. The same reason Notre Dame football is on TV every saturday in the fall, because money talks and the Alum ASS. jock sniffers pay lots of loot to buy the air time. I believe the common thread is money, not effort or perceived talent.
Let me take a crack atnutmegger
Jul 21, 2001 5:20 PM
this one. I think the reason golf garners more coverage probably has something to do with the fact that more Americans are interested in golf than in cycling. The money is simply a reflection of this. As for soccer, please! In this country there are so many sports to choose from and to play at an organized level that it is difficult for the sport to attract the best athletes here. In addition, the big three (baseball, football, basketball) are so ingrained in our culture that it is difficult for soccer to gain even a toehold in our consciousness. Here's another cold hard fact, cycling tends to attract, for lack of a better word, misfits who don't find much success in other more commonly recognized endeavors. One such misfit, and I'm not using the word in a derogatory sense, is wearing the yellow jersey as of today.
re: Golf vs. CyclingCar Magnet
Jul 21, 2001 6:34 PM
What really kills me is when the so called "World Wide Leader in Sports" broadcasts womens fast pitch softball (nothing against you ladies out there) instead of the premier cycling event in the world. I mean how much money is in that? If OLN can make it by broadcasting the sports they do, then why couldn't CBS or ESPN? As I mentioned above, Who cares who wins the Greater Flowering Cactus Open? But they still put that crap on TV. Hell the stunt cycle X-gamers are on more than Lance. Dave Mirra and Mat Hoffman are more recognisable than George Hincapie or Bobby Julich. I'm sad to see how little people know of our sport due to lack of exposure.
Advertising DollarsMeDotOrg
Jul 21, 2001 8:06 PM
Before Tiger Woods, way back in the 60's and 70's, before the 'democratization' of golf, it was STILL televised, even though the ratings were terrible.

Why? because Golf attracts an audience of wealthy decision makers like no other sport. Besides the Cadillac, Lexus, and equipment commercials, look at how many 'corportate image' commercials there are during golf.

Television isn't necessarily about ratings. It's about selling air time.
Golf is verrrrry popular nowadayskenyee
Jul 21, 2001 8:56 PM
I'm not even sure why. I think it's boring, but the driving range is amusing, especially when you go after the golf cart ;-)

Most management at companies play golf. Lawyers and judges decide cases during golf matches. Doctors play golf. Golf is part of politics.

Tennis is more of a real sport than golf, but gets a lot less airtime.

As for cycling coverage, I'm not sure about your area, but in the Boston area, we've had coverage of the HP women's cup last weekend, an hour or two of TDF for the past two Sundays, and at least mention in the sports news about a race in Arlington (where a cyclist died last year when losing control and plowing into a tree). There seems to be more coverage than normal.
re: Golf vs. Cyclingdavidl
Jul 22, 2001 4:14 AM
Have any of you ever played a round of golf? Doesn't sound like it. There's a reason it's so popular. It's fun. Golf is the sport that pro athletes take up when they retire. It's the supreme skill game. Look how much trouble Michael Jordan has with it. Try it. That said, there's NOT enough cycling coverage.
re: Golf vs. CyclingLone Gunman
Jul 22, 2001 5:04 AM
DL,
I have often been heard saying "I need to play more of this game or less of it". My entertainment dollars only go so far. $50-$60 (might be able to play 1 or 2 times a week) for an afternoon at the course or an almost uncalculatable (a word?) morning or afternoon on my favorite bike. Money aside, which do I feel better about after I am finished with the activity for the day? I would get all stressed out over having a few bad holes on the putting green and be frustrated. Funny how I have never had frustration after a bike ride, related to the activity.
re: Golf vs. CyclingCar Magnet
Jul 22, 2001 7:55 AM
I've played 3 times with my worst round score of 147 (granted it was over double par). You hit it right on the head " It's the supreme skill GAME" not sport. Golf is right there with bowling and darts. Notice how MJ didn't get on a saddle and start training for the Tour?
Nope, he played a game that he knew he could be semi-competitive in right away while smoking 20-30 Cohibas a day.
Well, Exsquueeze me!Bike Fool
Jul 22, 2001 8:47 AM
As one of those keg-bellied beer swilling swine who plays golf 2-3 times a week and averages 50-100 commuter miles a week, allow me to comment.

Advertising dollars for TV revenue and sales of golf equipment is the absolute bottom line. Joe Keg-belly can watch Tiger Woods hit 350 yd drives with the Wonder-Driver, go down to Edwin Watts and plunk down $400 for the Wonder-Driver and hit 250 yd drives, 15 yds farther than his old Wonder-Driver. Oh, and while he's at it, he'll pick up a couple dozen balls for $50, regardless of the fact that he'll lose most of those in three games, meaning he'll be back to buy another couple dozen for $50 in a few days. We watched Lance crush those guys in the mountains, but how many of us are gonna run out and buy that 16lb Trek he rode? The shoes? The helmet?

There are 28 million golfers in the US. Golf can be played at any competitive level at any age. I can play a match with my 9yr old nephew, the wife and the 70yr old father-in-law, and get my ass kicked because of the handicapping system. How many races of the senior TdF have we seen lately?

I'm just glad I can enjoy both sports, and hopefully not have to hang up either due to geriatricity. Now if I could just figure out how to ride my bike with my clubs, I'd be good to go!

ps. I have worn out my thumb and my clicker going from the TdF to the British Open the last 3 days.
"runaway shoes.com"Big D
Jul 23, 2001 6:47 AM
I'm sure Joe Keg-belly is buying the driver and balls which were advertised during the golf tournament.
I'm not knocking Mercury and USPS for their advertising on the TdF but they I wish they had more variety than "runaway shoes.com" and the Mercury Mountainier.
Maybe some of the bike manufacturers and bike apparel industries etc. should be more supportive.
What commercial sponsors will the Tour have next year?peloton
Jul 23, 2001 6:53 AM
Mercury has made huge comittments to cycling over the past few years, and that is obvious from all the commercials we see on the TDF. If the Mercury cycling team folds though, will Mercury continue to put money in the sport of cycling? The Mercury team folding could cause a lot of problems for cycling in the US. Maybe it could even effect our ability to watch cycling on TV. Imagine if OLN didn't have Mercury as a commercial sponsor this year.
Well, Exsquueeze me!cycleguy
Jul 23, 2001 9:16 AM
"'m just glad I can enjoy both sports, and hopefully not have to hang up either due to geriatricity. Now if I could just figure out how to ride my bike with my clubs, I'd be good to go!"

The same way I did when I was a kid. Get your cart and tie it to the back of your bike. Just be careful going around the corners.
It's all about money, manmoneyman
Jul 22, 2001 1:46 PM
As so many others have alluded to, it's all in the dollars. There are a lot more people on the links than in the saddle. They watch and spend a lot more on golf than we EVER would on bikes. Try and get a tee time on a Sunday morning and you'll see.

It kills me to see all those people on the course riding around in carts drinking beer and smoking cigarettes and calling it exercise.

I used to play a lot of golf. I decided I cold either golf or bike, as I did not have time to do both of them at the level I would like. My golf clubs had three years of dust on them from sitting in a corner in my basement. I sold them a month ago. One of the best decisions I ever made. I used the cash to buy bike parts.

$$
What's the big deal about all this stuff anyway? (major rant)Lazy
Jul 23, 2001 10:46 AM
What's the beef here? Why all the racist comments (I use the term racist figuratively here)? Why does cycling truly DESERVE any respect or attention? Some of the responses to this post are ludicrous IMO. I happen to be a golfing cyclist. I'm sure some are cyclists who are in bowling leagues. Some cyclists might also enjoy curling. Just because some don't enjoy --insert sport other than cycling here-- why is it that it's bad or not a sport?
The real deal as far as TV coverage goes, is that we cycling fans are a pretty small percentage of the consumer base that watches sports. If CBS airs coverage of Paris-Roubaix, and NBC airs a two hour special about the coming MLB season, who do think would get better ratings? If you answered CBS, you need to pull your head out of the sand. I mean really, if ESPN thought they'd make more money showing TdF coverage live for two hours a day than they do showing the WNBA, don't you think they'd do it? If you think a meaningful percentage of sports consumers in the USA care about professional cycling, you've got another thing coming

Depending on your definition of "athletic ability", cycling is a sport that takes very little athletic ability. Cycling takes a huge amount of conditioning. Golf requires very little. Golf takes a huge amount of hand-eye coordination. Cycling doesn't. Physical conditioning (IMNSHO) has nothing to do with athletic ability. There's no doubt that Lance Armstrong is in much better shape than any PGA tour pro. There's also little doubt that LA could quit cycling today and start practicing golf 8 hours a day for the next 10 years and not even win a local club champoinship. What about MLB players? Some of them are overweight beer guzzlers and smokers. Hitting a major league pitch is one of the most difficult things in sports to do. No way any one of us could do it.
It's ridiculous that some sit around and spout out crap like "roadies aren't elitist jerks!" Then, two posts down the board the same people are implying that golfers are a bunch of "keg-bellied beer swilling swine" and couldn't complete a century without major medical problems sprouting up. Guess what though, they don't care if they can complete a century. Why should anyone else?

Bottom line: If you don't like golf don't watch it on TV, and don't play it. No one will care. It's not going away.

If you want to see more cycling on TV, become an advocate. Participate in junior racing. More competitive cyclists means bigger market share, which means more advertising dollars will be spent. More advertising equals more networks broadcasting cycling.

None of this is meant as a personal attack on anyone. If you infer a personal jab from any of this, my apologies.