Wok racing is a hybrid format, developed by the German TV host and entertainer Stefan Raab. In this crazy ‘sport’ event, athletes race down bobsled tracks on modified Chinese woks in timed runs. The participants compete in one-person woksleds and four-person woksleds. The Wok Championship first took place in Winterberg in Germany in 2003, and was then transferred to Innsbruck, Austria. Among the participants are B-stars of the entertainment worlds (music, fashion, TV), as well as famous athletes with ongoing professional careers. One of them, Georg Hackl, famous Olympic luge champion from Germany, won the one-person wok races in the last couple of years. He also holds the speed record for one-person wok (91.70 km/h). The so-called ‘World Wok Racing Championships’ are aired as a special edition of Stefan Raab’s TV show TV Total on the German TV channel ProSieben. As the event is obviously explicitly developed for television (which is not typical for sport events) and because the profits benefit the network directly, it is labelled as an ‘infomercial’.
1. What is your opinion about such mergers of sport and entertainment? Are they events symbolic of a fun society, or do they have any additional value?
2. As a destination manager, would you choose such events to promote your location?