How many ...?

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How many ...?

Post by tubeguru » 03 Jun 2017, 11:45

Having been on the forum longer than anyone else, and having started it when some of you were literally kids, I've seen the various "eras" of the forum come and go.

The trend I have seen over the last 12 years is that various groups of people take up challenging, and then slowly drift away. For me, the peak of the forum activity and usage was around 2006 to 2007, when just about everyone seemed to be at it. Since then a lot of the first members of the forum have disappeared, never to be seen again. As time has gone by, I've noticed usage of the forum dropping off to the point where it seems almost a dead "sport" these days.

I was wondering just how many people who still use this forum regularly actually partake in tube challenging much these days. For example, what was the attendance figure for the Zone 1 Challenge on Friday just gone?
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Re: How many ...?

Post by andytube » 03 Jun 2017, 20:56

I only look at this forum once every few weeks now as there doesn't seem to be much happening.

I still very much want to give my 2014 route another crack, with much better planning. But like many other people, when you have work and family commitments, it's difficult to get up to London to work on the route.

Would be nice if we could get more people doing the challenge as I always like to read the "match report" of people's attempts. Maybe it needs a bit of advertising.
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Re: How many ...?

Post by Going Underground » 03 Jun 2017, 21:47

That would be me then..... :P Oh and as for a GWR full network attempt, seriously what is the point now as the rules are pathetic beyond belief.....
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Re: How many ...?

Post by Tube Geek » 04 Jun 2017, 08:42

I am certainly going to be doing a bit more challenging soon, even if I was on here for over a year before I did anything.
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Re: How many ...?

Post by tubeguru » 04 Jun 2017, 11:27

Going Underground wrote:
03 Jun 2017, 21:47
That would be me then..... :P Oh and as for a GWR full network attempt, seriously what is the point now as the rules are pathetic beyond belief.....
This is a good point. The rules are now so restrictive that I'm surprised anyone can actually complete properly and comply with them all.
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Re: How many ...?

Post by quisquidillius » 04 Jun 2017, 14:36

I'm sort-of active.
Zone 1 Challenge (Olympics 2016): 3:44:31.67 - we were very unlucky indeed!
South London Challenge (Summer 2016): 1:58:40 - going to try again soon!
All Lines Challenge (August 2016): 44:38 - happy with this ... For now!

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Re: How many ...?

Post by RJSRdg » 05 Jun 2017, 07:41

There were 11 challengers at the Zone 1, and 15 at the R15 (appropriately enough), with several notable absences due to date clashes (Hugo, Andrew C, Josh and Alex spring to mind). 25 competitors have taken part in the R15 this season, and on several occasions Tangy ran out of envelopes, so hardly a 'dying sport', certainly not in its short form.
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Re: How many ...?

Post by Elsie » 05 Jun 2017, 13:06

I am new to all this but living in Derbyshire makes it awkward ... but not as awkward as a wife that thinks me doing this is (in her words)

"Completely f**king stupid, pointless and you need to get a life".

There is absolutely no way I could do more than I do now, no matter how much I'd like to.
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Re: How many ...?

Post by DavidC » 05 Jun 2017, 21:22

I have never attempted a FNC but, over the last year or so, I have enjoyed attempting several of the alternative challenges and have written up my attempts. I appreciate the history contained in the various sections as well as the current discussions about all challenges, including FNC. I have gone through phases of dabbling with several of the games, but normally manage to disengage eventually. With one exception in another sphere, I don't think I have met any of you in person yet - maybe one day for one of the challenges.

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Re: How many ...?

Post by Tube Geek » 05 Jun 2017, 22:00

Tube Geek wrote:
04 Jun 2017, 08:42
I am certainly going to be doing a bit more challenging soon, even if I was on here for over a year before I did anything.
Also I am about to go into Y9 which means of revision for GSCEs, so I will have to do some soon or ill be waiting a few years....
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Re: How many ...?

Post by Steeevooo » 06 Jun 2017, 08:56

How has nobody mentioned that the absence of a fully (and constantly-) updated front page to this website, containing an encyclopedic background to the entire history of Tube Challenging is quite clearly to the detriment of the future of Tube Challenging? Sort it out Moley!!! ;)

On a serious note though, I'd say that the number of people attempting FNC has reduced for a variety of reasons, including the below:
  • The fastidiousness of Guinness World Records in their criteria that need to be met for attaining an official World Record - when Sam and I set our first world record all those years ago, the criteria at the time were stretching but by no means impossible, and were generally workable. Now, with the expectation that you will film the entirety of the attempt and obtain truly independent stopwatch operators who are not known to any of the participants prior to the event, the criteria are just too excessive for a lot of people to even consider going for a record.
  • Equally on the record setting front, I think that this might just be a natural progression. As time passes, the record will naturally get faster, and therefore by definition it will get closer to the "Optimum" record time. As such, whilst previously there may have been many people who feasibly believed that they could set the record, this group of people will naturally get smaller as people's routes/fitness/abilities will preclude them from believing that they can actually attain the record.
  • Ignoring the above, there should also be a question of just how many people have ever been active in attempting to set the record at any given time anyway? Sure, I believe there were more people "challenging" when I first came onto the scene (at the time of Tube Relief), but I don't believe the number was actually that great in terms of people regularly attempting to beat Geoff & Neil's time. That said, I've read of very few attempts since Andi and I set our most recent record, which would link into the above two points.
  • That neatly brings me into my last point. Whilst there have been many people registered on this forum to do challenge attempts, a lot of the have been for charity (especially in the past for Tube Relief), and therefore not actually for record attempting purposes. I personally think there are fewer people today attempting the Full Network Challenge in name of charity, and this could be down to a few reasons. I suspect that the environment that we live in today will certainly deter some people from considering it suitable, but I also feel that perhaps there have been so many people over the years doing the challenge for charity that people are naturally looking for other, more "original" activities to do in order to raise money.
I also don't necessarily think it is appropriate to directly compare the number of participants on the Annual Zone One day to pass judgment on the number of active challengers. Back in the day, Zone One day was the only opportunity to meet up with other challengers and participate in an alternative activity to the FNC. These days there are an abundance of other activities that people can get involved in, from the Random 15 events (6 per annum) to the Annual Parks Challenge to the Cannon Street Run events. All of these are pretty well attended, and show, to me at least (and speaking as somebody who doesn't really do the Alternative Challenges all too often) that Tube Challenging, whilst perhaps not in its purest form, is still in a pretty good condition.

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Re: How many ...?

Post by michael_churchill » 06 Jun 2017, 10:38

The hoops that Guinness make you jump through are truly ridiculous. Filming the whole thing? I'd like to see Guinness provide proof that one of their adjudicators sat through all 15+ hours of footage.

To be honest, what is the point of getting an "official" record from Guinness? A small chance that your names will appear in print in what is now an annual for kids who want to see the most-tattooed man or the rabbit with the longest ears? A certificate that proves that, to Guinness, you are as important as the dog that can pop the most balloons in one minute?

Why can't the tube challenge community just self-adjudicate? If tube challenge is a "sport", for "proper" world records, Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps don't have to apply to Guinness. In fact in their cases, Guinness don't decide what's a world record, the IAAF for athletics and FINA for swimming do. Athletics and swimming world records do appear (hidden at the back) in Guinness's book, but the IAAF and FINA tell Guinness what those records are.

Perhaps we should form our own "governing body" - Guinness might pay attention to that. Most have names in French, so I would suggest FICM - Federation International du Challenge Metro ! :wink:

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Re: How many ...?

Post by michael_churchill » 06 Jun 2017, 10:58

Steeevooo wrote:
06 Jun 2017, 08:56
  • Equally on the record setting front, I think that this might just be a natural progression. As time passes, the record will naturally get faster, and therefore by definition it will get closer to the "Optimum" record time. As such, whilst previously there may have been many people who feasibly believed that they could set the record, this group of people will naturally get smaller as people's routes/fitness/abilities will preclude them from believing that they can actually attain the record.
michael_churchill wrote:
06 Jun 2017, 10:38
Perhaps we should form our own "governing body" - Guinness might pay attention to that. Most have names in French, so I would suggest FICM - Federation International du Challenge Metro ! :wink:
Steeevooo makes a very good point. We'll probably see more FNC attempts when the record needs to be "reset", when the Battersea extension opens and/or if the Croxley extension ever happens. I was joking about the FICM, but why not? When the record needs to be reset, boycott Guinness. We'll know what the record is.

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Re: How many ...?

Post by Going Underground » 06 Jun 2017, 11:03

Steeevooo wrote:
06 Jun 2017, 08:56
I also don't necessarily think it is appropriate to directly compare the number of participants on the Annual Zone One day to pass judgment on the number of active challengers. Back in the day, Zone One day was the only opportunity to meet up with other challengers and participate in an alternative activity to the FNC. These days there are an abundance of other activities that people can get involved in, from the Random 15 events (6 per annum) to the Annual Parks Challenge to the Cannon Street Run events. All of these are pretty well attended, and show, to me at least (and speaking as somebody who doesn't really do the Alternative Challenges all too often) that Tube Challenging, whilst perhaps not in its purest form, is still in a pretty good condition.
Steeevooo, yes that is a really valid point which I hadn't considered as aside Z1 day there wasn't too much on a regular basis and we never had the excellent social side we have now as well :D
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Re: How many ...?

Post by Tube Geek » 06 Jun 2017, 14:47

All it takes is one major route change/extension for Guinness to reset the time and get a sudden boom
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