A packed Stade de France during the 9th IAAF World Championships (© Getty Images)
The IAAF has been encouraged by some of the early TV broadcast data for 2003 World Championships in Athletics supplied to them by Sponsorship Intelligence, a specialist research company.
With the World Championships taking place in Paris, primary, dedicated broadcasts for the 2003 World Championships drew an average rating of 5.6 on France TV, which was 3.5 times better than that achieved in 2001, when the competition was held in Edmonton, Canada, but also up 33% on French broadcasts for the 1999 edition hosted in Seville, Spain.
Outside the host market there were also encouraging signs of improvement. The average rating for 2003 World Championships programmes on German broadcasters ARD and ZDF broke 4%, this being a significant improvement on the equivalent 1.5% observed for 2001 and more than the 3.1% recorded in 1999.
There was also positive news outside Europe. In Japan, broadcaster TBS aired more than 30 programmes from the World Championships. While this is a similar level of coverage to that of the previous two Championships, each 2003 TBS programme pulled in an average of more than 7 million Japanese viewers, which is 2 million more per programme than for both 1999 and 2001. Indeed, the highest rated 2003 programme broadcast on TBS covered the women's Marathon, this being watched by a staggering 20.8 million viewers in Japan, which is an increase of 40% and 78% for 2001 and 1999 respectively.
The total number of territories covered by rights holder contracts was 179 and, although the IAAF is still waiting for confirmation from post-event reports, the envisaged number of hours planned for certain key markets prior to the Event was:
• In France, over 60 hours of coverage on FR2 and FR3.
• In Germany, over 60 hours of coverage on ZDF and ARD.
• In Italy, over 90 hours of coverage on RAI2, RAI3 and RAI Sat
• In Spain, over 90 hours of coverage on TVE La2 and Teledeporte
• In the UK, over 50 hours of coverage on BBC1 and BBC2
• Across Europe, approx. 70 hours of coverage on Eurosport
• In the USA, approx. 30 hours of coverage on ABC and ESPN2
• In Canada, approx. 26 hours of coverage on CBC
• In Caribbean, Central America and South America, over 30 hours of coverage on ESPN Latin America and ESPN Dos, with 72 hours of coverage also in Caribbean on CSTN
• In China, approx. 36 hours of coverage on CCTV
• In Japan, over 100 hours of coverage on TBS
• In Australia, over 75 hours of coverage on SBS
• In South Africa, approx. 85 hours of coverage on SS5, CSN and SS2
• Across Sub-Saharan Africa, approx. 45 hours of coverage on CFI