The Canberra Raiders Senior Management group were treated to two excellent games of American Football last weekend. As part of their sports tour of the United States, the group attended the Washington Huskies (College Football) and Seattle Seahawks (NFL) games. The United States sets a worldwide standard for live sporting experiences and game attendances, a key focus of improvement for the Raiders. The Senior Management group is comprised of Chief Executive Officer Don Furner, Head Coach Ricky Stuart, Commercial and Marketing Manager Jason Mathie and Football Manager John Bonasera

The Seahawks made the most of their critical game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, winning a tight contest that boosts their playoff hopes. The match was played at Seattle’s Century Link Stadium with over 65,000 fans in attendance. All in the group noted the atmosphere and game-day experience was second to none. The Seahawks have managed to transcend being just a sporting team, becoming a key aspect of the identity of Seattle.

Seattle Seahawks home ground. 

Sell-outs are a regular occurrence at Seahawk games, even with frigid temperatures and snow in winter failing to deter fans. The Raiders have many hard core fans who stick with the team through the good and bad times, however the mass fanaticism and respect on display at the game showed the Seahawks and their fans have set an extremely high standard many teams are envious of.

Canberra Raiders Senior Management group ready for game day. 

Mathie, having been involved with the Raiders for close to 20 years, recognised the potential for a similar aura to one day surround the Raiders.

“Simplistically this is what I want to see resonate from the Raiders. I firmly believe in what our Club stands for, hence the reason I have been around for so long. If we can more positively demonstrate the good of our Club to the region, particularly on game day, then I have no doubt more people will regularly come to our games.” Mathie said.

Recent Enhance research showed that the Raiders game day experience improved significantly in 2015. The Raiders have a very strong commitment to the community, which is evident at games, and will hopefully lead to a greater improvement in 2016.

The Seahawks were winners of Super Bowl in 2013.

A day prior to the NFL action, the group watched the Washington Huskies take on rivals Washington State Cougars as part of the College Football season. Held in front of over 70,000 avid fans at the Huskies home ground in Seattle, the match was another great experience that showcased the spirit and atmosphere synonymous with College Football.

Over 70,000 fans at the Huskies game. 

Mathie was impressed by the pride and spirit shown by the fans at both games.

“Visiting both the Huskies College Game and Seahawks NFL matches last weekend was comforting in that it reinforced that on a smaller scale at the Raiders we positively engage with our fans and members at GIO Stadium, but the thing that stood out most to me was the pride and respect on display by attendees. They love their team because of the values that it stands for, the Club honours its community and collectively they mutually respect their opposition.” Mathie said.

Husky fans. 

Less than a week into their sporting tour, the Senior Management group has already experienced and learnt numerous new ideas and methods that will be benefit the Raiders in the future. Continuing to improve the Raiders game day experience is a key aspect of this, with the Seahawks setting a high standard for which the Raiders can one day aspire to reach.

CLICK HERE for the group’s experiences visiting the Seattle Seahawks training facility.