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Lewis Wiltshire | 17:52 UK time, Monday, 2 April 2007

"PLEASE give our guys and girls the coverage they deserve!"

"Just wanted to thank all at the BBC for the excellent coverage"

The first of those sentences was in an email I received today, complaining about our lack of coverage of the World Track Cycling Championships. The second of those sentences was in an email I received today praising our coverage of the World Track Cycling Championships.

Most people were aware that we had covered Team GB's glorious day in Mallorca in text form - their complaint was that it was not on our main Sport front page. In fact it was on the front page but admittedly it had slipped into the bottom half of this page by lunchtime.

The reason for this, as I explained to those cycling fans who emailed in, was that is a sports news website. Good stories like Team GB's medal haul start high up the site and slowly drop down. The report of Sunday's events in Mallorca was published at 1828 on Sunday. We wouldn't be doing our jobs properly if it was still one of the main stories by Monday lunchtime. The slogan on our site says: "All the action as it happens", not "All the action as it happened".

Now what we should have done, I now suspect, is move the story on. Clearly there was interest enough that we should probably have written a subsequent piece - interviewed someone, written an analysis of what Team GB's superb day means for the future of the sport in this country. Had it been football, rugby or cricket we would have done that - I admit. Probably I misjudged the wider interest in a real success story for British sport.

Victoria Pendelton won three golds for Team GB in SpainBut it raises, for me, an interesting issue. How come BBC Sport was sufficiently widely praised and condemned for our coverage of the same event? To my mind, we're all one team - TV, web, radio. We did cover the event extensively when viewed across all these mediums, it's just that if you only saw the web content, I accept you would be disappointed. Although even then, it's worth saying that we streamed the live video on the website - more than 2000 people watched it. And we have also incorporated into our cycling page a feed from the official British Cycling website, specifically so it will pick up content like this.

So what can we learn from this (apart from taking on board how organised cycling fans can be in getting feedback to us!)? I'll certainly remember in future how large the appetite is for cycling success stories in particular and British sporting success stories in general. And we should probably have made more on the website of what my colleagues in television were doing around the cycling.

In the meantime, let me remind everyone that we are offering an amazing cycling prize. That link enables me to tell everyone to literally get on their bike, in the nicest possible way of course …!


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