F1 loses its SPEED; More to Tips trade?

Posted: October 12, 2012 in Hockey, Racing

It has not been officially announced yet, but U.S. fans of Formula 1 racing will have to tune their televisions to a new network starting next season.  SPEED TV – part of the Fox family of networks – will no longer be this country’s supplier of the world’s top echelon of motorsport (after 17 years) as the F1 airing rights switch hands to NBC Sports.  The main factor at play in all of this is that Fox is choosing to rebrand SPEED as an all-sports type of network.  Yes, there is already Fox Sports Network but it is working at a much smaller level than what SPEED has been at for the past decade.

I for one am highly disappointed in this forthcoming change.  Not so much the reworking and ultimately the loss of SPEED, but more so for the change in F1 coverage.  The current on-air crew is spectacular: Bob Varsha – the broadcaster with decades of experience covering F1 and all racing ; David Hobbs – the ex-racer with an immense racing resume and full of incredible stories; Steve Matchett – the former F1 mechanic throughout the 90s who is an encyclopedia of technical knowledge.  Toss in long time on-site paddock reporter Peter Windsor (whose F1 credentials are endless) and his successor the past three seasons Will Buxton and you have arguably the best Formula 1 broadcasting team in the world.

I know it is very early on in this change and details from NBC will eventually emerge, but based on their racing coverage in the past and what is being left behind at SPEED, I do not foresee much of an appetite to give the same devotion toward watching the series.

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On Tuesday afternoon, the Everett Silvertips made a bit of a splash by trading second year forward Ryan Chynoweth to the Tri-City Americans in exchange for a conditional fifth round bantam draft pick.  It became well documented after the move that Ryan had made a request to be traded.  A large reason for that was due to a bit of a slow start to his season and getting bounced around at the bottom of the lines sheet by new faces.

I was really surprised when I saw the news as Ryan was definitely a long-term piece of the rebuilding process for the Tips.  Sure the first couple of weeks to the season weren’t anything eye opening from him but last season was a very solid, promising year.  It seemed that it would only be a matter of time before he hit his stride and began to be a steady contributor to the team.  Beyond that you can’t deny his pedigree and figure that, at some point, his bloodlines alone would give him that little bit of an extra boost.

Now don’t even get me started on junior hockey players requesting trades.  Unless it’s for a family situation back home I find it completely uncalled for and a huge mistake by the player.  However, that’s a path to kick some rocks down at a later time.  That was my first real assessment of the situation.  My second?  The chance to have a little bit of fun with it in terms of potential underlying factors.  Let’s see if the Silvertips and Kootenay ICE make a decent deal at some point this season.  Kootenay’s General Manager is Jeff Chynoweth – Ryan’s dad.  Jeff’s dad – Ed Chynoweth – is the founding father of the Western Hockey League and the Canadian Hockey League umbrella itself.  Needless to say, the name has some clout and when one of them talks people listen.  So, would it really be that far-fetched to wonder if Jeff offered possibilities of future business between the teams in exchange for the Tips granting his son his wish?  Or if that wasn’t discussed but the Tips choose to play that card if they ever do put in a call to Cranbrook?

How far off base – or, more appropriately, off the rink – am I with that?  Hell, I’m probably not even in the same building.  It’s just something fun to ponder and to keep in the back of your mind; more entertaining than anything else.  Which, with watching a rebuilding team on the ice, entertaining mental distractions could be a good thing to have at the ready.

 

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