Badminton has signed a new 3 year deal with the BBC - how fantastic I hear you cry! But here's the sting in the tail. To avoid any potential clashes with other major sporting event coverage on a Bank holiday Saturday the event will be run Friday -> Monday! That means cross country on the sabbath.
Now I can see the benefits of this to sponsors (hopefully larger TV audiences), but on balance I'm a little skeptical. One of the great things about Badminton on a Bank Holiday weekend is you get the Monday to recover, especially if you've been camping.
I'm sure there are plenty of pro's and con's for this move, and I haven't made up my own mind on this yet, but I can't help but feel a little sad about it. Saturday just always seemed to fit cross country and Sunday the Showjumping. I wonder if in 2010 it will have quite the same feel?
This is of course no different to the Derby being moved from a Wednesday to a Saturday, so perhaps it's just a case of getting used to it.
The PR machine will need cranking up to make sure this change is firmly in the front of everyone's minds come next year, it would be preety disappointing to turn up on the saturday to find dressage when you expected cross country......