I don’t know about you, but I’ve found the TSN re-broadcast coverage of the TDF frustrating. I look forward to the Tour, and yes, I want to watch it on my big screen TV as I sit on my comfy couch. I prefer not to watch it on line, via some shoddy, free internet streaming video. I want crystal clear, big screen coverage. So, when the Tour is actually being broadcast on TSN in the evenings, I’m a happy guy. From 5:30pm to about 7:30pm, I can watch intently. But, TSN doesn’t re-broadcast it everyday… They’re only broadcasting select stages in the evenings… So, maybe I should just be glad it’s on a major Canadian sports network at all, but come on – either re-broadcast every stage, or don’t at all. Save fans the frustration of coming home after a busy day of work to find, ‘Fail’, no Tour, and then having to go scouring for video highlights somewhere else.
Sure, I could get my own act together and figure out ahead of time which nights TSN is broadcasting it. I could do that. And then I’d also have to be sure to wake up early enough to catch the live morning stages when needed. Oh, woe is me… haha… But hey, like most people I just want things to be simple. I want things to be ‘user friendly’ (isn’t everything supposed to be user friendly these days) and teasing us with otherwise great, but only ‘select’ re-broadcast coverage of Le Tour is not very user friendly.
Of course, I ‘get it’ that TSN probably can’t make the numbers work, with Tour coverage viewership not being high enough in Canada to warrant daily evening coverage. Canadians want to see women’s soccor, CFL highlights, NHL trade news and MLB scores, and all that when they get home from work. And in the end, it’s viewership that drives it all, because the more viewers broadcasters have, the more they can charge for commercial time and it’s the commercial time revenue that brings home the bacon, so to speak. TSN surely knew that it just does make financial sense for them to fill 2 hours of primetime air every night with Tour coverage. So, with that in mind, I hope TSN sees a healthy viewership of the stages it does broadcast this year, and that it doesn’t just annoy people like me so much we stop sourcing our nightly Tour fix via TSN. Fingers crossed, viewership will be high, and we’ll see them do a full offering in years to come.