The Fourth Biennial Bow James Bow Election Pool - RESULTS


Well, that was interesting…

It gives me great pleasure at this time to announce the results of the Bow. James Bow 2011 Election Pool. After much deliberation and calculation, I can now say that the winner is:

EKOS Research!!!

As part of their final projections for the 2011 election, Frank Graves of Ekos released the following numbers for each of the parties: Conservatives: 138, New Democrats: 113, Liberals: 41, Bloc: 15, Green 1. As you can see, he got it mostly right. All of the parties are in their predicted place, and he correctly predicted the Green Party’s seat. This gave him a seat penalty of zero points. He was also very close to the final seat totals, only slightly underestimating the Conservative numbers, and slightly over-estimating the numbers of the NDP, the Liberals and the Bloc. As a result, his seat penalty was a measly 58 points. By not participating in the first round, he swallowed the 100 point penalty, giving him an overall score of 342.

But, of course, his entry doesn’t count. He wasn’t an official entrant in the contest, and was included mostly to see how the professionals fared. The real winner placed a very respectable second, and that winner is:


At around 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 1st, Twitter user @keenanwire tweeted the following:

OK, the Keenan Wire crystal ball says: NDP wins popular vote. Seats: CPC 143 / NDP 117 / LIB 36 / BQ 10 / GREEN 1 / IND 1 (chaos ensues)

He was, by far, the closest of the players to pick. Again, he had all the parties placed correctly, and he predicted the Green Party seat. He only loses 25 points for having predicted an Independent MP when none materialized. His numbers were actually closer to the final results than Frank Graves’, giving him a seat penalty of 48 points and a placement penalty of 25 points. After swallowing his 100 point penalty for not participating in the first round, his final score is 327 points. Had he predicted that no independents would be elected, he would have won overall.

Placement penalties were a big factor in this contest, and the election results revealed what might have been a flaw in my score card. Every last one of the top five winners were late entrants who did not participate in the first round. This meant that they received a penalty of 100 points — 50 seat penalty points and 50 placement penalty points. Almost nobody in the first round came close to predicting the results of this election. Many could not fathom that the Liberals would be third, the NDP would be second, or the Bloc fourth, which automatically gave them a place penalty of 75 points. Their guess of the numbers of seats were also way off, significantly underestimating the NDP and Conservative take and significantly overestimating the Liberal and BQ take. So these poor entrants had 100 point place penalties to start with, and seat penalties of 100 points or more. Had they held off on their predictions to the second round, and made the same predictions, they would have significantly improved their final scores.

By the time people started making their predictions for the second round, their guesses got closer to the mark. Even so, many still could not fathom the NDP being in second, or having more than 70 seats. Many could not fathom the complete collapse of the Bloc. Those that did reaped benefits.

The second place finisher in this race is Darwin O’Connor who, on April 29, made the following prediction:

Conservatives: 132, Liberals: 54, Bloc Quebecois: 20, New Democrats: 100, Greens: 1, Independents: 1

He gets the placement correct, anticipates the NDP numbers pretty closely, and only mildly overestimates the Liberal and BQ numbers while only mildly underestimating the Conservative ones. His pick of an independent costs him just 25 points; add that to his seat penalty of 74 and swallowing his 100 point late entry penalty, and he comes away with a respectable 301 points.

He is followed by Damien Penny who, on election day itself, predicted:

CPC 145, #NDP 98, #LPC 45, #BQ 19, #IND 1

He loses 50 points for incorrectly predicting an independent MP and not a Green MP, but his other placements are correct, and even closer to the final numbers than Darwin, giving him just a 54 seat penalty. Between this and his late entry penalty, he comes away with a respectable 296. If he’d switched his independent prediction for the Green, he would have won overall.

In fourth place we have Dr. Dawg, who predicted the following:

Conservatives 137, NDP 97, Liberals 48, BQ 25, Ind. 1

Like Damien, he loses 50 points for predicting a seat for the independents and no seats for the Greens. His other placements are correct, and he only loses 72 seat points. After swallowing the 100 point late-entry penalty, his total score is 278.

The blog comes next, after having projected Conservatives: 143, New Democrats: 78, Liberals: 60, Bloc Quebecois: 27, Greens/Ind: 0, but they are not eligible for prizes. The fifth prize-winning spot goes to Drpickem who, on election day, predicted the following:

Conservatives: 155, Liberals: 54, Bloc Quebecois: 34, New Democrats: 64, Greens: 0, Independents: 1

His placements are basically correct, though he loses 50 points for swapping the Greens for the Independents. He significantly underestimates the NDP’s take, however, and overestimates the take of the Liberals and the Bloc.

Finally, a special bonus prize is offered to Whalemusic, who, on March 27, made the following prediction:

CPC — 130 (4 seats in Quebec - Bernier, Blackburn, Paradis & Petit)
LPC — 89 (11 seats in Quebec)
NDP — 71 (44 seats in Quebec)
BQ — 15
Greens — 1
Independents — 2 (Arthur/Geurgis)

He loses 75 points for swapping the Liberals with the NDP and for predicting Independent seats, but he correctly places the BQ in fourth place, and overestimates their take by just 11 seats. He also correctly predicts the Green Party’s seat, although by placing them behind the Independents, he does lose another 25 points. This gives him a placement penalty of just 100 points and a seat penalty of 136 points, and a final score of 28. That’s still good enough to net him the bragging rights of being the closest in predicting the results during the first round.

The turnout guess was a tie between myself, Milton Howe and Don Macfarlane. These did not have an impact on the final results.

A full summary of the final results can be found here. If you want to check mu calculations, you can find them here. You are welcome to look these over; if you catch a mistake between now and midnight, I’ll happily make the changes. Otherwise, I’ll be contacting the winners tomorrow to arrange for them to collect their prizes.

Thank you all for participating in this contest, and we’ll see you again in 2015.

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