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Whenever I think of O and TV, I think of the World Rally Championship – another sport with staggered starts and a race aginst the clock. WRC has a huge global audience – the difference being of course everyone knows how to drive a car and can appreciate the skill of the rally driver.
The problem with Orienteering is only a small part of the population can understand and appreciate the talent of the elite orienteer. The challenge for TV orienteering is to present the action of an intricate and technical sport in a way that can be understood by a general viewer. Not easy. But in some respects that has nothing to do with race concept. Until there has been experience of good TV productions of traditional formats you can make no judgement of how good or bad our traditional formats are for TV.
Whether a sport is “boring” or “interesting” is not the only thing for TV sports. What I have seen from South Africa makes me wonder at the irony that one of the most boring sports to watch on TV is also the most popular.
Orienteering is not boring, it is not understood. That is the problem that needs to be solved, and changing race formats (Micr-O anyone?) is not necessarily the answer.