Thoughts and Opinions On Today's Important Issues

Monday, June 07, 2010

Red Bull Attendance Update

Looks like Spanky got an airplane ride in a Red Bull plane

  • "Riding in a Red Bull Air Race plane at over 300 kilometers per hour and going through the same high-G twists and turns that the pilots perform is sort of like life in politics, Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan said after taking what he called the most memorable ride in his life ahead of the weekend’s race in Canada..."

    The Finance Minister is from Windsor but had never seen his home town from that perspective: “We flew around the local area and part of it was upside down."

That's not all that was upside down.

Let's see now, Dwight and Edgar (aka Eddie) spent $5M to get us Red Bull again which was to generate lots of money for the area

  • "Duncan said that the direct impact to the economy is about $24 million but perhaps more important the indirect impact is estimated to be as much as about $100 million. “The $24 million is the direct impact. You can use a factor of five for that for the direct and indirect impact.

Remember what Edgar (aka Eddie) said:

  • "Last year the race came at a time when CUPE workers with the city were on strike and we still had 300,000 people attend the races," he continues. "I expect to see a huge increase over those numbers this year."

Here are the numbers from Red Bull:

  • "Arch and Bonhomme were locked in another classic duel on a cool and overcast day in front of a huge crowd of 110,000 watching from Windsor and Detroit with about 160,000spectators in attendance for the two days of high-speed, low-altitude racing."

As for YQG:

  • "Windsor Airport had prepared room for up to 250 visiting aircraft, but the volatile weather scared off the typically fair-weather set, with officials saying only about 20 aircraft actually made it."

Dwight and Edgar were wrong. Very wrong. And at a sponsorship fee that increased by 56% in one year. From 750,000 attendees down to 160,000 about half of last year when the expectation was to have more than 300,000.

Which other event costs the Government almost $50 for each person who attends and fails to accomplish its objective?

If only 110,000 watched in Windsor, then obviously revenues are much less, especially if one discounts the number of people who normally come here to visit over the weekend.

If the numbers keep dropping, next year's race will attract well under 100,000 people.

Why then does Dwight like Red Bull:

  • "It’s a good distraction for people,” he said."

It's time that we let another City take over the air race!


This was reported in the Detroit Free Press. A huge tragedy almost took place in which many could have been killed or injured:

  • "Pilot Matt Hall tells how he avoided crash into Detroit River
    His plane was too badly damaged to compete Sunday

    WINDSOR -- Matt Hall flirted with disaster Saturday when he almost crashed his Red Bull Air Race plane into the Detroit River.

    Hall, the former Australian ace fighter pilot, admitted Sunday just how close he was to a watery grave in qualifying during the Windsor round of the world championship.

    "A foot or so lower and I would have been in the water permanently," said Hall, 39, who saved his MXS-R aircraft from smashing to pieces on the river, or, worse still, spinning out of control and hitting spectators lining the course near Hart Plaza.

    "It all happened and was done with before I had a chance to think about it," said Hall, who lost lift in his plane after a series of high-G turns and dipped both wings and his right-hand wheel into the river before powering up and out of what could have been a bad wreck.

    "I was back in the air before I was aware of it," said Hall, whose wife was watching from the riverbank in Windsor. "I just knew I had to get it away from the crowd line."

    Had Hall's propeller hit the water, his plane surely would have crashed or cartwheeled across the river and perhaps struck spectators on the bank.

Does this make sense either? What if his plane ran into trouble over Windsor? Time for a Transport Canada investigation

  • "Hall was not injured in the incident but, accompanied by a support helicopter, had to land his crippled airplane back at the Windsor Airport, where the Red Bull hangars are located."