Great Outdoors Games Record Viewership

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Last Updated: Feb 22nd, 2007 – 18:37:03

Great Outdoors Games Record Viewership

By Denise Parker

Aug 18, 2005, 15:53

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ABC’s  broadcast of Great Outdoor Games boasted the
most-watched telecast ever in the event’s
sixth year of competition, which
includes the popular archery ‘Eliminator’
round.

   CELEBRATION, Fla. — ESPN’s Great Outdoor Games
VI presented by Dodge broke viewership records by reaching 245 million
households during its Sunday, July 17, telecast on ABC, which featured the
Eliminator Archery competition.
 
   The Eliminator — which is sponsored
by the Archery Trade Association and its nonprofit foundation ArrowSport — was
shown on ABC early Sunday afternoon immediately after the British Open. The show
was the highest-rated broadcast in the network’s history of covering the Great
Outdoor Games. The shows 2.4 broadcast rating was a 26 percent increase over
the same shows 1.9 rating a year ago.
 
   It’s exciting that our
segment was up 26 percent,’ said ATA Vice President Denise Parker, who provided
the archery event’s color analysis for ABC Sports. ‘It helped that Tiger Woods
won the British Open, which was a great lead-in to our broadcast, but we also
know that if people weren’t interested in archery and the Great Outdoor Games
they could have switched channels. ABC and ESPN inform us that archery pulls
very strongly among women and family viewers, which is exactly the audience
we’re trying to attract.’
 
   Keith Brown of Greensboro, N.C., won the
Games’ archery gold medal by defeating Jerry Decker of Dalton, Pa., in the
championship match. Taking third place was Mark Wagner, of Des Moines, Iowa, who
was making his first appearance at the Games. He defeated three-time gold
medalist Randy Hendrix of Clemmons, N.C., in the bronze-medal
round.
 
   Parker said one reason archery is so popular at the Great
Outdoor Games is that the 16 archers competing in the event are fun,
family-oriented people. ‘We have lots of great stories out there on the shooting
line, and ESPN knows how to capitalize on their appeal,’ Parker said. ‘Whether
it’s Keith Brown’s engagement, Jerry Decker’s family cheering him on, or Mark
Wagner getting help and advice from his dad, viewers relate to them. They’re
likable guys who show their true emotions. That makes for a good program. They
all have strong roots in archery and their families, and they give viewers a
great reason to root for them.’
 
   Along with the record-setting archery
broadcast, ABC and ESPN aired eight other shows from this year’s Great Outdoor
Games VI. Overall viewership of the Games increased 38 percent this year from
2004 and 60 percent from 2003. Those original broadcasts, which ran from July 13
to 17, reached an average of 850,000 households for each show. ESPN and ESPN2
will rerun the Great Outdoor Games shows and its highlights throughout the
year.
 
   The Great Outdoor Games also enjoyed an impressive increase in
visits to its Web site, www.greatoutdoorgames.com, resulting in a record number
of hits. According to the Web analytics program Hitbox, visits to the site
increased 43 percent over 2004, while the number of page views increased 20
percent.
    
   The 2005 Great Outdoor Games took place July 7-10 at
Disney’s Wide World of Sports’ Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The Games
featured more than 180 athletes from around the world competing in head-to-head,
single-elimination contests in timber, target, ATV and sporting dog events.

 

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2005 by Bowhunting.net

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