Sports Ticker (23rd Oct 2020) - Project Big Picture, British horseracing and TRP v SIS

Published on 26 October 2020

Welcome to the latest edition of the RPC Sports Ticker - providing fortnightly bite-size updates from around the sports industry.

Access the full Sports Ticker here.

In this edition, we take a look at the rejection of Project Big Picture by Premier League clubs, the UK horseracing crisis and the recent Court of Appeal breach of confidence judgment in The Racing Partnership v Sports Information Services. We also consider the cost-cutting measures at next year's Tokyo Olympics and the LA Lakers clinching a 17th NBA title. 

As always, if there are any areas you’d like more information on (or if you have any questions or feedback), please let us know or get in touch with your usual RPC contact.

1. Project Big Picture: Clubs reject plans to reshape English football 

In arguably one of the most turbulent fortnights in English football history, Premier League clubs have unanimously rejected Project Big Picture – a proposal that has been described as potentially being  “the biggest shake-up in English football since the launch of the Premier League”.

2. British horseracing pulls up against government's plans

The Jockey Club has called for financial assistance from the UK government following its decision to halt plans to allow spectators to attend events.

3. Court of Appeal decision on confidentiality of live sports data

The Court of Appeal has handed down its decision in the sports data dispute between The Racing Partnership (TRP) and Sports Information Services (SIS). TRP is a supplier of live betting and horseracing data which brought a claim against SIS in a bid to protect the exclusivity and value of its data.  SIS had set up an unofficial data package for races at Arena Racing’s courses.

4. Tokyo Olympics to slash costs by $280m 

Organisers of the Tokyo Olympics have announced they will be introducing cost-cutting measures for next summer’s Games in a bid to save up to 30 billion yen ($283 million). Following the postponement of the Games due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IOC and local organisers are now trying to “simplify” the event through a series of cutbacks - the details of which were recently revealed.

5. LA Lakers NBA win at Disney 

Following the longest season in NBA history, and more than 90 days away from friends and family, the Los Angeles Lakers ended a decade-long wait for its 17th NBA title - beating Miami Heat earlier in the month to seal a 4-2 series victory. 

Extra time... 
… and finally, Jerry Quy, who has played the role of Gunnersaurus, Arsenal’s dinosaur mascot, has been let go by the north London club, as part of its 55 redundancies announced in August. In response to the news, high-earning Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil tweeted, “I was so sad that Jerry Quy aka our famous & loyal mascot @Gunnersaurus and integral part of our club was being made redundant after 27 years, as such, I’m offering to reimburse @Arsenal with the full salary of our big green guy as long as I will be an Arsenal player”. The club has since confirmed that that the mascot would return once supporters were allowed back at United Kingdom football matches after coronavirus safety measures were eased, although they did not clarify whether Quy would continue in the role. (See more here). 

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