Editorials & Opinion

๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡บ Rediscovering 14 years of OGAE voting results: We analyse and reminisce

This is an updated version of an article published in April 2019

Every year, many Eurovision fans eagerly await the results of the annual OGAE poll. OGAE is made up of over 40 fan clubs from around the world. For the poll, they cast votes in Eurovision’s classic 12 to 1 points system. With the OGAE voting historically taking place across April, it is one of the first opportunities for fans to discover how a significant number of real people are reacting to this year’s entries.

OGAE voting hand-in-hand with betting odds?

Therefore, this can also have a knock-on effect in shaping the rankings at various betting agencies. Last month, we re-analysed how accurate betting odds from a month before the last 14 contests were in predicting the eventual finishing positions. There will be various references to this throughout the article below so it may be worth giving that a read first!

As in the betting odds analysis article, we have taken statistics from all 14 OGAE polls that have taken place thus far. The poll was introduced in 2007 and has taken place every year since. Let’s have a look exactly how good an indicator the OGAE poll is for predicting the eventual results!

๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Helsinki 2007

Between 2007 and 2010, the only figures we have been able to find is the top 5 placings via Wikipedia which we presume to be reliable as they cite OGAE International as their source. Therefore, you can see this below.

RankPointsCountryEntryEurovision Placing
1184๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ SerbiaMarija ล erifoviฤ‡ โ€“ Molitva1st
2159๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡พ BelarusKoldun โ€“ Work Your Magic6th
3155๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ SwitzerlandDJ Bobo โ€“ Vampires Are AliveSF (20th)
4142๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ CyprusEvridiki โ€“ Comme ci, Comme รงaSF (15th)
5107๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท GreeceSarbel โ€“ Yassou Maria7th

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed 1st in the OGAE poll.
  • 20% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the OGAE poll.
  • 60% of the top 5 countries in the betting odds a month prior the contest finished in the top 5 of the OGAE poll.

2007 was a strong start for the OGAE poll! OGAE members agreed with Eurovision televoters that Marija ล erifoviฤ‡ from Serbia strongest entry in the contest. Notably, the eventual runner-up, Verka Serduchka from Ukraine, did not appear in the top 5 of the OGAE poll. This is just the first example of a couple where novelty acts are often underscored by OGAE members in comparison to Eurovision voters.

It is also worth noting that BelarusSerbia and Switzerland were all in the top 5 of the betting odds prior to the contest. Similarly to the underscoring of novelty acts, this is just the first example of several where OGAE rankings and betting odds rankings are strikingly similar.

๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ Belgrade 2008

Next, here are the top five finishers from the 2008 OGAE poll.

RankPointsCountryEntryEurovision Placing
1308๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช SwedenCharlotte Perrelli โ€“ Hero18th
2216๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ SwitzerlandPaolo Meneguzzi โ€“ Era StupendoSF (13th)
3178๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ SerbiaJelena Tomaลกeviฤ‡ feat. Bora Dugiฤ‡ โ€“ Oro6th
4145๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ IcelandEuroband โ€“ This Is My Life14th
5145๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด NorwayMaria โ€“ Hold On Be Strong5th

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed outside the top 5 in the OGAE poll.
  • 20% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the OGAE poll.
  • 20% of the top 5 countries in the betting odds a month prior the contest finished in the top 5 of the OGAE poll.

In complete contrast to the previous year, the OGAE results and betting odds showed little resemblance in 2008. While Serbia was the only country to appear in the top 5 of the OGAE poll and the betting odds, only Norway appeared in the top 5 of the OGAE poll and the Eurovision final results.

Russia‘s Dima Bilan was nowhere to be seen amongst the top of the OGAE poll. More surprisingly in hindsight was the absence of Ukraine‘s Ani Lorak, Greece‘s Kalomira and Armenia‘s Sirusho. These three female ethnic dance-pop entries are often looked back on fondly by Eurovision fans of today.

๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บ Moscow 2009

Up next is the 2009 OGAE poll! The top five finishers were as follows.

RankPointsCountryEntryEurovision Placing
1304๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด NorwayAlexander Rybak โ€“ Fairytale1st
2176๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท FrancePatricia Kaas โ€“ Et Sโ€™il Fallait Le Faire8th
3159๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช SwedenMalena Ernman โ€“ La Voix21st
4142๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฆ Bosnia & HerzegovinaRegina โ€“ Bistra Voda9th
5123๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ SpainSoraya โ€“ La Noche Es Para Mรญ (The Night Is For Me)24th

Analysis

  • The winning entry was placed 1st in the OGAE poll.
  • 20% of the eventual top 5 at Eurovision placed inside the top 5 of the OGAE poll.
  • 20% of the top 5 countries in the betting odds a month prior the contest finished in the top 5 of the OGAE poll.

2009 was all about Norway. Alexander topped the OGAE poll, the betting odds and the Eurovision final scoreboard. Nothing else quite matched up though. The pre-contest betting odds were much more on the ball, predicting 60% of the top 5 correctly. Nevertheless, neither the betting odds or OGAE saw Iceland coming. Yohanna was nowhere to be seen in the OGAE poll and barely scraped into the top 15 of the betting odds.

Once again we see OGAE resist voting for popular ethno-pop tracks. Neither AySel and Arash from Azerbaijan or Hadise from Turkey were as popular with OGAE as they were with Eurovision voters.

Our journey down memory lane continues on the next page…

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Ryan Cobb

My first memory of watching the Eurovision Song Contest was back in 2001 and, over the years, my passion and enthusiasm for the contest has very much turned into an obsession. I adore music and I love geography, so this contest is a natural fit for me. If la la loving Eurovision was a crime, I'd certainly be a criminal!

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