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What a great summer of sport!

19 septembre 2012

Let’s take a look back over this fantastic summer of sport. From la Roja’s triumph during the UEFA Euro 2012 in Ukraine and Poland to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games – we have picked some highlights from the past few months that have demonstrated sporting success, performance and emotions. These major events were also an opportunity to discover emerging countries in the sporting landscape and an occasion for many brands to showcase their involvement in the sporting world.

The Tour de France was a good appetizer with Bradley Wiggins on the top step of the podium, giving Britain its first winner of the competition. He was nicknamed   »Le Gentleman » by French supporters, in recognition of his gesture: he made the peloton go slower to wait for Cadel Evans, the defending champion, after the Australian rider had suffered three punctures from carpet tacks strewn on the narrow road. Already a triple Olympic gold medal winner (Athens, Beijing), he made sporting history for the second time a few weeks after the Tour de France by winning the Gold medal in the London 2012 time trial. His performances will certainly boost growth and popularity in British cycling.

The summer went on with the UEFA Euro 2012 – it was the 14th edition of the tournament, the first one to be held in Eastern Europe. After their victory over Italy, Spain became the first team to successfully defend their European Championship title and are now the first European team to win three consecutive major tournaments. Over 1.44 million people attended the matches and official fan zones welcomed more than 7 million supporters during the event. Meanwhile, the different games had many football fans glued to their television across Europe. Poland brought in an all-time record TV audience (14.7 million average). The England-Italy match was the most watched quarter-final in the tournament’s history (20 million average). The final earned the highest Spanish TV audience in history (15.5 million average; 17.9 million peak). Moreover, at least one of five fans watched the matches outside their homes. On social media, the official UEFA EURO 2012 Facebook page succeeded in getting more than 1 million fans and at its peak there were seven tweets per second using #EURO2012. For statistics fans, here is an interesting article from The Guardian that gives some key figures and records: http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2012/jul/02/facts-figures-euro-2012

It is quite difficult to choose the best highlights from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games as both events featured so many historic and touching moments. The Independent proposes a selection of pictures to highlight the 50 Best moments of the Games: http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/olympics/the-50-best-moments-from-the-london-2012-olympic-and-paralympic-games-8120627.html?action=gallery&ino=1
How will the London 2012 Games be remembered? Will the 21st century’s generation remain inspired by the event? This is quite a simple but challenging question when it comes to legacy. Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016 Organising Committees used the London Games as an opportunity to learn and start building on the positive vibes. The Sochi.Park in Kensington Gardens offered ice skating performances each evening and a virtual and interactive 4-D trip to the snowy peaks of Krasnya Ployana; Rio took the spotlight at the end of the closing ceremony, with more than 200 dancers and musicians highlighting Brazil’s cultural diversity.
Moreover, the 2012 Games increased the number of participating countries to 206 nations, including one athlete from South Sudan who competed as an independent athlete. China, Russia, Great Britain and the United States remain on the top of the ranking (total number of medals). To have a different perspective of the 2012 Olympics medal table, take a look at the Havas Sports & Entertainment infographics and its ranking of sporting nations (gold medals per capita):

http://media-cache-ec3.pinterest.com/upload/134263632611984675_1gKGiBU3.jpg

On September 5th, the Global Sports Forum supported the 1st edition of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Marketing Summit. London Mayor Boris Johnson and Sir Keith Mills opened the Summit alongside Sir Philip Craven, President of the IPC. The different panels examined the London experience and its impact, and allowed for conversational debate on how partners can benefit from Paralympics  as young and rising brand. This is the first time in history that all tickets have been sold out, which generated a £25m revenue. Moreover the Paralympics offers sponsors the opportunity to activate their partnerships at a major sporting event and seduce sports fans. It can help brands educate employees and customers about disabilities, which could help change mentalities and the traditional landscape of marketing.

What’s next? The summer has almost ended but do not worry, the autumn will offer some sporting events to follow to close this fantastic year!  From November 2nd to 18th, the 7th FIFA Futsal World Cup will be held in Thailand. Brazil will defend their title as they became the first host country to win the competition in 2008.
From November 5th to 11th, we will see if Roger Federer meets the home favorite and now Olympic champion Andy Murray during the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in London. Finally, you will be able to watch many qualifying games for the FIFA World Cup 2014 (630 days to go!). And get ready for 2013: in one year (September 7th, 2013), the winning bid for the 2020 Olympic Games will be announced – Madrid, Tokyo and Istanbul are in the race.

Conclusion: sport never ends, so stay tuned on www.globalsportsforum.org and our social media pages to get the latest news!

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