Sunday, March 25, 2012

Blowin' Up

It's official...Sports Television ♥s Twitter.

It began at the Daytona 500 back in February. Granted, the 500 that usually runs about four hours lasted more than 37 hours, what with all the rain delays, and that late race Red Flag for cleanup of Juan Pablo Montoya's spectacular spin into the jet dryer that resulted in a river of fire cascading down the 31° banking across the track.

Every decent explosion needs a catalyst or trigger. Twitter's sports trigger was pulled by NASCAR driver Brad Keselowski who snapped a photo with his iPhone of the fire from the seat of his #2 Penske Racing Miller Lite Dodge, and Tweeted it. It went viral, and the announcers filled the time with a lot of talk about Twitter. I blogged about it here and here.

The Twitpic™ that launched 100K followers
Fast forward to this weekend and SpeedTV's Formula One coverage of the Malaysian Grand Prix...

Right out of  the box, SpeedTV's talking heads have been touting Twitter alongside their broadcast product this season. During Saturday morning's Qualifying Show, the #SPEEDF1 hashtag was used enough to become a Trending Topic on Twitter. Even as a Twitter user this surprised me. A half billion people worldwide watch F1 on television, but it never occurred to me that millions of them might be on Twitter.

College basketball's March Madness is the big sports story of the month. I don't follow b-ball, college or NBA, but I'm sure it's powered by Twitter now. (I have seen some March Madness hashtags, and probably missed uncounted many of my readers know the names of college cagers?)

I guess Twitter is a natural sidebar to info/data-rich sporting events like motor racing and baseball, in fact I signed up on Twitter to follow Lance Armstrong when he made his Tour de France comeback attempt in 2009. Armstrong's tweets were his attempt to reach his fans and supporters directly, without the often hostile filter of the European Cyclopress.

3:31AM Update:
Malaysia didn't disappoint. Rain fell hard 10 minutes before the start. The race was red flagged on Lap 9, and the rain delay ran an hour. The rest of the race has been a bang-up delight! My favorite kind of race...Starts in the wet...dries during the race...but rain threatens throughout, complicating strategy.

The McLarens lead the race before the Red Flag
Not much happening on Twitter...too much happening on track!

WOW! That was a helluva race! hot damn! Oh look...29 tweets I've ignored during the final 6 laps!

Two outta three on the podium are beaming like they stole the Crown Jewels...and they did!

So, I'm down with 18 more races like this one!

1 comment:

  1. Twit one's life away instead of play it for real? Think not.