Yesterday was a glorious day for the British patriotic types out there: Bradley Wiggins became the first Briton ever to win the Tour de France. A great lift for British sport ahead of the Olympics (from which Sky was masterfully excluded by the BBC), the victory also means Sky’s sponsorship of the team has paid off nicely. Even Murdoch, whilst busy resigning his UK directorships, was tweeting jubilantly about the race.
You can tell it went down well with management at BSkyB (Sky’s owner), too. Team Sky’s backup car, following the action yesterday, contained a jubilant looking Jeremy Darroch – the CEO of BSkyB - who punched the air with his fists and cried out with joy when Wiggins crossed the finish line. The dollar signs were visibly sparkling in his eyes…
Sky has spent the last few months campaigning hard ahead of the Olympics, swapping its ‘Believe in Better’ slogan for ‘Believe in Britain’, and daubing billboards everywhere with giant collages of British sports personalities cycling and throwing and running and jumping. Very patriotic stuff. And a guaranteed way to get us all signing up for a Sky+ HD package as soon as we get home from work.
Still, congratulations are in order for Wiggins, and what a good bit of reputational image-boosting for BSkyB after recent tricky press over News International and the phone-hacking scandal.