Sports Innovation Award
British Rowing – Go Row Indoor
British Rowing launched a new health and fitness focussed indoor rowing programme, Go Row Indoor, in late 2016. This market driven, consumer led innovation is a potential game changer for the sport. It is designed to unlock barriers to participation and growth of the sport, bring the industry together and provide a collective voice and profile for the sport that hasn’t previously existed. Success means more people indoor rowing, having a great experience, and identifying themselves as rowers.
British Rowing went back to basics and asked gym goers what they want and who was best placed to make it happen. The outcome is a fresh new programme with cross-sector collaboration at its core.
At its heart is an indoor rowing education programme which includes a REPs accredited fitness professional training course, delivered by a new Master Trainer team and incorporating a series of indoor rowing class models. This is supported by a range of resources and products including free to download workout videos, training plans, an indoor app, LiveRowing, and more. An Indoor Rowing Industry Forum has also been formed to bring key players in the industry together for the first time.
Sam and Daisy Coleman have revolutionised the norms of running a competitive powerboat racing team. The brother and sister pairing, from non-boating backgrounds; in their first season racing together they knew they had to think outside the box if they wanted to beat their seasoned, more experienced rivals. In a stock series where all the boats are the same it’s the crews that make the difference they knew they needed more seat time. But training and testing is expensive; being normal people they don’t have the disposable income like those normally associated with Offshore racing so worked exceptionally hard to get sponsorship to fund their racing careers. Nothing can prepare you for the green flag when you have 11 boats alongside you, heading for the same mark on a course ever changing. They knew they couldn’t get the experience they wanted on the water so found innovative solutions using video/data logging equipment to help improve their performance and identify their competitors’ weaknesses. In between races they studied hard to find marginal gains. They went on to win the UK P1 Championship by 47 points and are next week off to Mumbai for the World Championship.
InCrowd – TribeCast
TribeCast goes beyond the functionality of existing systems to facilitate engaging sponsor driven live activations through in-stadia digital media, creating new revenue streams and personalised marketing channels for rights holders.
Betting odds, weather, final scores, live match statistics, interactive gamification content plus multiple other sets of dynamic material including social media and crowd interaction are now all supported through the TribeCast platform. All content can be curated and subsequently displayed quickly with great ease by a single operator.
TribeCast reduces existing production times down to so much as a sixteenth of competing software, condensing operations into just one hour, down from two days, thanks to the exclusive auto-generate facility. TribeCast also provides a more advanced and intelligent system for automatically assigning, tiling, scaling and positioning video content to user defined regions of the perimeter boards. TribeCast can be integrated into existing current stadium hardware platforms at short notice.
TribeCast also gives a more convenient and cohesive tool set which equips operators to produce playlists which can be quickly created, modified, reorganised and reused at a moment’s notice and used across multiple stadia.
TribeCast now supports an industry-leading output of greater than 4K resolution across up to seven different display outputs.
Jockey Club Services
Jockey Club Services (JCS), a division of The Jockey Club, has built a world class platform of services which is now offered to the professional sports market. JCS’ clients have experienced marked improvements in the performance of their clubs and savings across many facets of their businesses allowing profits to be re-invested back into their sport.
With expertise in Procurement, Ticketing, Finance & Accounting, Payroll, Public Wi-fi, and IT Services, Live Music and Catering, JCS has provided procurement services to 12 Football League clubs and five county cricket teams, ticketing to three county cricket teams, the Badminton Horse Trials, live music to The Ageas Bowl and has created the Rewards4Cricket Loyalty programme being run by Hampshire, Glamorgan and Durham County Cricket Clubs. JCS has also expanded finance and accounting services partnering with Table Tennis England and England Squash, with others in the pipeline.
The significant economies of scale which JCS is passing on to other professional sports organisations will only increase as new partners come on board.
Levy Restaurants UK
Levy Restaurants UK, the official catering partner at Liberty Stadium, developed the catering and hospitality strategy and concepts at the stadium through a tiered approach, creating packages directly answering the clients specific business needs.
Throughout the project traditional style of stadium hospitality has been challenged, and eight high street dining and eight new informal food styles created, including a bakery and bistro.
Levy Restaurants UK created a portfolio of catering concepts, each with an individual and unique identity, ranging from a grab and go sports bar to executive suites and a Directors Lounge.
runbritain Click Your Clock
The #clickyourclock weekly competition, run in conjunction with runbritain/UK Athletics, is a programme which was established to promote the runbritain handicap scoring system and embellish an individual journey in a mass sport.
Put simply, the programme allows running participants to develop a handicap score based on their previous performances at licensed runbritain events (including Parkrun). This initial handicap provides a score on any terrain, over any distance but encourages continuous personal progression towards individual targets and goals rather than direct competition against fellow athletes.
Anyone can participate in the programme, and you don’t necessarily have to run a personal best time when it comes to lowering your handicap score either; if the course was hilly, windy or multi-terrain the handicap score you receive based on your performance will reflect this, meaning a time slower than your PB could still represent a runbritain handicap score improvement.
With numbers rising towards 1000 plus runners entering each week, it is a programme which continues to grow and is used as a pathway for enjoyment by many.
NB: At 2016’s European Athletics Golden Tracks awards ceremony #clickyourclock won the biennial European Athletics award for innovation.
Table Tennis England
‘Non-mainstream’ sports have long struggled to secure TV coverage outside of major events such as the Olympics and Commonwealth Games.
And although we secured live coverage of the 2016 PG Mutual National Championships on ITV4, attracting 150,000 viewers, it came at a cost of 53p per viewer.
With traditional TV proving a tough – and expensive – nut to crack, and delivering an audience of people already engaged with the sport, we decided to think differently when it came to England’s home European qualifier against Greece.
We wanted more viewers at a lower cost, and to reach new eyes, so we went where the audience is – becoming the first NGB to team up with TheSPORTbible and use Facebook live to reach their nine million followers.
A groundbreaking project which dovetailed with our vision of Getting Everyone Talking About Table Tennis, the results – 2.2 million unique viewers at 0.003p each – certainly turned heads.
TASS (Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme)
The Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) has this year focused on athlete lifestyle support for dual-career athletes, with the key objective to advance this integral service.
Their new approach has included an applied CPD and networking event for lifestyle practitioners, improved access to resources, the creation of a lifestyle advisory group and the opportunity for athletes to be mentored by a former Olympic athlete.
TASS has aimed to tackle the topical issues of duty of care and athlete wellbeing by upskilling their network, as well as hoping to galvanise the discipline into a proactive service.
The impact of this strategy is expected to reach multiple sports and have a positive effect beyond the 430 student-athletes who are currently supported within the TASS network.