Attendance at this month’s British Grand Prix "is expected to be significantly down" as F1 fans "rebel against ever-increasing ticket prices," according to Christian Sylt of the London INDEPENDENT. The cheapest tickets for next Sunday’s race at Silverstone start at £145 ($227) -- "among the highest of any Grand Prix." This appears "to have priced out many F1 enthusiasts as the downturn bites." A course spokesperson said sales “aren’t that strong.” Public interest "has also been hit by the lack of British success as neither Jenson Button nor Lewis Hamilton has won a race this year." At close of business, Silverstone’s website showed that 22 ticket categories "are still available while only 11 are sold out." A Silverstone spkesperson admitted that sales "started slowly." However, they have "picked up significantly in the last six to eight weeks" (INDEPENDENT, 6/18).
Events and Attractions
The annual int'l horse show, CHIO Aachen, in Aachen, Germany "will break a number of records," according to J. Johannmeier of BILD. The event "has the highest prize purse of any sporting event in Germany." The '13 edition has a total prizemoney of €2.67M ($3.57M). Co-Tournament Dir Michael Mronz said, "That is an appropriate reward for the performances of human and animal." The event's highlight is the Rolex Grand Prix on June 30, in which the winner of the horse jumping event will win €1M ($1.34M). The CHIO Aachen "will take place between June 21-30 and will see 1,750 different horses compete." Tourmanent Dirs Frank Kemperman and Mronz have a budget of €12M ($16M), and they "will need every cent to pay each of the 1,200 employees." An average of 360,000 people attend the event. So far "more than 200,000 tickets have been sold." This year's edition "could see a new attendance record." Mronz: "Of course that would be nice. However, most important is the sport. We have expanded the CHIO area as well as the stands." About 600 equestrians from 30 countries "will take part in the event, another record" (BILD, 6/18).
The Football League "has announced six special league fixtures to be played on the opening weekend of the new season to mark its 125th anniversary." The six matches -- two in each division -- "will feature some of the founder members of the world's first league football competition" (TELEGRAPH, 6/18). ... South Korea has invited North Korea to attend next year's Asian Games in the western port city of Incheon. Culture, Sports and Tourism Second Vice Minister Park Jong Gil said the invitation was sent to North Korea about two months ago, but Pyongyang has "yet to respond" (KYODO, 6/18). ... More than 100,000 tickets have been sold for next week’s Rugby World Cup Sevens in Moscow. The figure makes the three-day World Cup "by far the best-attended rugby tournament in Russian history, and among the most popular sports events this year in Russia" (R-SPORT, 6/18). ... On Wednesday at 10pm local time, the fifth game of the ACB finals between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona Regal will determine this year's champion. The game will be played at the Sports Palace in Madrid, and tickets ran out Monday. The Palace will host more than 13,000 fans, as it did in two finals games last year. Attendance at the first game of the series in Madrid was 10,859, on June 9, with that number jumping to 12,348 for the second game, also in Madrid, which was played on June 11 (AS, 6/18).