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Only Lance Network is slammed for lack of Vuelta - BikeBiz

Only Lance Network is slammed for lack of Vuelta

16 696 sign online petitition to make OLN, the Canadian cable network that broadcasts the Tour de France in the US, to show more than just a one-hour highlights programme of the Tour of Spain. The Vuelta finishes next week, and OLN refuses to buckle, with the company CEO saying "The fact is that people that like to watch logrolling turn out in greater numbers [than those who will watch the Vuelta.]"
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A petition was started in July by Frank Thomas, a US cycle sport fan.

http://www.petitiononline.com/.../signed.cgi?vuelta3

According to Cableworld.com, OLN president and CEO Gavin Harvey said:

"It's great to see that kind of passio. The alternative is terrible if people just don't care about what you do."

However, last year's Vuelta coverage on OLN had "microscopic" Nielsen ratings.

"The fact is that people that like to watch logrolling turn out in greater numbers," said Harvey.

"We fans of the professional cycling circuit and viewers of the Outdoor Life Network petition your reconsideration of your decision to only carry one one-hour Vuelta a Espana tour recap," wrote Thomas on his petition.

"We find this one one-hour broadcast hardly worthy of such an event. The Vuelta a Espana is the third crown jewel of the Grand Tour, which includes the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France.

"Additionally, a pro-cycling team sponsore by you [OLN TV], the United States Postal Service Team presented by Berry Floor will be participating. Key riders that rode in the Tour de France will be competiting for the top podium position. We find it unfathomable that you would not want to cover a team that you are a sponsor of.

"We are fans of racing coverage year round, and are not just Tour de France viewers.

"We would like to note that we were elated with the coverage given the Tour de France. You've truly delivered a premiere package that no other network, commercial or cable would ever dream of providing and for that, we are extremely grateful.

"More importantly, you've exposed many non-racing viewers to the beauty of the sport and won many converts over who would tune in. They would find in your coverage, that pro-cycling is not only about Lance Armstrong, but about the ride, the rider and the fan. More exposure now, sustained exposure throughout the racing season and just plain exposure will ensure further growth of your viewership."

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