Slugger Awards awards wash-up & prediction comp update

Mick’s wandering around Dublin today and out of reach of a good wi-fi connection, so I’m stepping in here in his place to say a few things about last night’s awards. We’ll have some photos and videos up here in due course, but I’d like to get a few things on record before the hangover wears off:

Firstly, thanks to everyone who came along and was involved in the night – 200+ people came through the door. Special thanks to the judges (who made the actual presentations), the nominees and winners who made the journey (Derry was well-represented in the room) and commiserations to the runners-up.

Also, the event wouldn’t have been possible without the kind sponsorship from Channel 4 – part of their continued help with the site over the past three years.

Channel 4Tim McGarry got everything right (apart from his insensitivity about my own technical SNAFUs) and Martin Rowson managed to annoy some of the winners with his depictions of them in exactly the right way (I’m looking at you @williamcrawley – Mr Rowson actually proportioned you ‘accurately’ rather than ‘generously’). 😉 Julia Paul did a fine job keeping the closing panel discussion going and there were some good contributions from the floor (though I think we realised that a large chunk of the audience were in the mood for a pint and a chat by that stage – we need to revisit that part of the evening in future perhaps?)

Stratagem got their whole team out in force to keep the night running like clockwork and did a brilliant job thinking of everything that could go wrong (apart from my ability to work a DVD). There was a plan B for each possibility – special thanks to Jill Donnan there who did a massive job bending everyone to her will without them ever feeling bossed around (how do you do that??).

Kevin Murphy did all of the nerve-settling that was needed with the sound and lights and Johnnie Cook at UTV did a great job with the videos. I don’t think it understates anything to say that they really turned the night into the finished article.

On the #ge11 Irish Election comp, Turgon, Stephen Glenn and the team totted up the predictions that came in to work out who was the £150 Betfair prize winner.

It was good to see Simon Dickson in the room – he flew over from London specially for the event. He designed and developed this site with financial help from Channel 4 and NI Screen, bringing the stability needed to cope with huge levels of traffic for the first time.

And lastly, thanks to all of the many people I’m sure I’ve forgotten to thank. You know who you are.

Now: Down to business. So far, with around 40 predictions in, Slugger’s readers are expecting the following result:

  • Fine Gael = 64 seats
  • Fianna Fáil = 36 seats
  • Labour = 36 seats
  • Sinn Féin = 13 seats
  • Others – total = 16 seats

So that’s Labour and FF neck-and-neck. Remember / forget (delete as applicable) where you heard that first!

Betfair’s own markets take a slightly different view as Barry Orr told us last night. Their markets are here. Barry gave £150 to one member of the audience (sorry – I didn’t make a note of the name – who was it?) and I’ve got another £150 in the drawer for the best prediction of the final result – so get your predictions in now:

Remember, if your total doesn’t add up to exactly 165, it’ll be disqualified – no exceptions!

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  • I just realised, thanks also to the staff at the Black Box – our hosts for the evening, and really helpful to us setting up the room. Thanks folks!

  • oracle

    Sounds like you all had a great night, well done to all

  • Mick Fealty

    And thanks also to Paul himself (I have wifi for the next hour), without whom the awards (and much else) would never have happened!

  • Until reading this morning’s Irish News I was completely unaware that Sir Reg Empey had been ennobled as Lord Empey of Shandon. This completely slipped under my radar.

    After stunned reflection on my part I have to say it is entirely within character; This man has risen without trace to the very top of the establishment. And when I say that I know the records show he was this, that and the other but there is no legacy, anywhere, I’ve looked.

    I know it was always on the cards but I did suspect some form of public acknowedgement at the inevitable taking place such as a farewell appearance on Hearts and Minds.

    Had I known I would have nominated him as politician of the year just for sheer personal advancement without anybody noticing.