Money talks in sport in all sorts of ways and sometimes it goes a little something like this:

Jetstar’s gamble: A new entry for Crikey’s “Fantastic Gratuitous Ashes Promotional Tie-Ins!” competition, and with the potential to go horribly, horribly wrong, is Jetstar’s Ashes campaign. The budget airline has recently added business seats to its international offering and has decided to price the seats according to Australia’s First Innings score in the First Test, which started today. Hmm, what could go wrong there? Jetstar (did its sums on the fact Australia averaged 277 runs per innings during the last Ashes campaign, but if Steve Harmison happened to bowl first on a Gabba greentop … the airline has covered its bet by also declaring it will also only sell as many seats at this price as the number of Australia’s First innings total.

Real Madrid’s small screen bonanza: Spain’s biggest soccer team has cashed in on its popularity by doing what is believed to be the richest TV deal ever by a sports club. Bloomberg reports that production company Grupo Mediapro has bought the rights to screen Real Madrid games until 2013 for a lazy 1.1 billion euros. That word again – BILLION. The deal more than doubles Real Madrid’s existing TV income. Collingwood president and Nine CEO Eddie McGuire must be looking on in awe.

Sydney and Melbourne got off lightly: With the 2000 Olympics safely banked, and the Victorian Government glad the final budget for this year’s Commonwealth Games didn’t become an election issue, London Olympic officials are now under the gun financially. They’re blaming rising steel prices and the ever-safe “security concerns” for a $US 1.7 billion blow-out already in the costs of building Games venues and transport. The total bill to ready London for the 2012 Games is now shaping as $US 6.25 billion, although other estimates drift up to $US 15 billion, and reports that nobody is sure who’s picking up the extra costs. That’s a lot of novelty mascot sales.