Kip Wightman leaves Nova 106.9 Breakfast show

Former Editor & Content Director

Nova 106.9 in Brisbane is losing one of its Breakfast co-hosts, Radio Today can reveal.

Kip Wightman has been with the program for 15 years, but said now is the time for him to look for new opportunities.

He would not confirm to Radio Today where those opportunities might be.

In an official statement to Radio Today, he said it had been a privilege to hang out with the people of Brisbane over Breakfast for the past 15 years.

“Living in these strange times have made many of us reassess things, and while I’ve got a lot of love for radio and broadcasting, my priorities have shifted,” he said. “I’ve had a lot going on, some of which hasn’t been easy, and Breakfast radio hours aren’t the best for a single dad of a young son, so it feels right to call time on being part of this dream team.

“I won’t miss the early starts, but I will miss everyone involved with the show, and everyone across the network who has made my years at Nova a great experience. I thank everyone for their support and apologise to my neighbours for being around far more than they are used to.”

The ‘dream team’ to which Wightman refers includes his co-hosts Ash Bradnam, David ‘Luttsy’ Lutteral and Susie O’Neill.

They said it would be weird not to have Kip driving the desk after all these years.

“We selfishly thought we would be broadcasting together forever, so breaking up the band was never going to be easy,” they said.

“We know that all good things must come to an end, but we look forward to calling Kip in the early hours to remind him of what he is missing.”

NOVA Entertainment’s group program operations director, Brendan Taylor, reflected on Kip’s contribution and career, which has included ‘countless special moments’ including the midlife crisis musical Ash Bradnam: The Musical, listener trips to Hawaii, NZ, Melbourne and Sydney, and sending Bobbleheads 31 kilometres into space.

“It’s hard to put into words the impact Kip has had on our loyal listeners and the entire team,” he said. “He’s been an important and influential part of Nova Brisbane from the very beginning. From all of us at Nova, I would like to thank Kip and wish him all the very best for the future,” he said.

The Brisbane Breakfast market has been tight in recent surveys, with various programs including B105’s Stav, Abby & Matt, and Nova’s Ash, Kip, Luttsy & Susie O’Neill taking the #1 position at various points.

When Nova regained the Breakfast lead in Survey 3Radio Today flagged with NOVA Entertainment’s chief programming & marketing officer, Paul Jackson, that there aren’t many Breakfast shows with four named participants.

“Can you continue along with four big names when other stations would likely have lower talent fees?,” he was asked.

His response was “absolutely” and “that’s not what it’s about”.

“In any Breakfast show, some have one person leading the show, their name above the door. Sometimes it is four or more. It’s whatever works, I guess. You’re looking to bring chemistry and different dynamics together. It’s just the way it’s evolved over the years… Everyone in that show… has well-defined characters. They all bring something different to the table. It works.

“So I guess from the outside looking in, you might think ‘Gosh, that many voices, don’t they all get on top of each other and talk over each other or whatever?’ But it’s an easy show to listen to. Obviously very local, fun and engaging, and the audience love it.

“Certainly when you’re as successful as we are lucky enough to be in Brisbane at the moment, we wouldn’t be looking to change anything.”

Jackson noted it’s nice to be at #1, but conceded there are good stations around the city giving Nova a run for its money, so there would be many factors at play to retain the top spot – including good music, marketing, the Breakfast’s shows performance  and having everything in alignment.

In the most recent radio ratings, Survey 6, Nova had a leading 13.1% share in Breakfast, ahead of ARN’s 4KQ on 12.0% and its stablemate 97.3FM’s 9.5%. SCA’s B105, the leader in Survey #2, slipped to 9.0% and fellow SCA station Triple M was down to 7.9%.

Nova said Ash, Lutty & Susie O’Neill will continue to entertain and engage listeners on Nova 106.9.

ARN’s 97.3FM was approached for comment on the off chance Wightman might now be employed there, however they did not respond in time for publication.

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Recent comments (12)
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I don't work for Nova
20 Oct 2021 - 10:57 am

Other stations in Brisbane might be high-fiving but hold your horses. This won’t affect the show’s ratings. Kip probably speaks the least amount on the show.

Nova is still the best breakfast show in the market by far.

Danfan
20 Oct 2021 - 8:50 pm

Bring back Stand In Dan!!

Lutz
21 Oct 2021 - 6:54 am

Dan Anstey is my pick.

JASON ANDREW TOPPIN
21 Oct 2021 - 7:22 am

KIP I CA;LED SEN SWTCH IN MELBOURNE Y YESTERDAY AFTERNOON AND TOLD THEM YOU ARE QUITTNG NOVA 106.9 AND ADVUSE SEN GROUP CEO ABD MD CRAIG HUTCHISON TO SIGB YOU TI SEN TRACIK BRISBANE 1053AM AS SPORTS BREAKFAST HOST FROM 6.30AM TIL 8.30AM WITH IAN HEALY ANDF PAT WE4LSH YIU WILL START AT SEN TRAK BRISBANE VERY SOON AND IN SO DOING YOU WIILL BRING EVERY SINGLE LUSTENER AND ALL REVEUE FROM NNIVA 1-6.9 TO SEN TRACK 1053AM REPLACING NOVA 106.9 AS NUMBER 1 RADIO STATION IN BRISBANE SOON AFTER YOU START THERE

Rhonda Gartrell
21 Oct 2021 - 10:16 am

Isn’t the same without Kip

Dean
21 Oct 2021 - 11:03 am

Mitch should take over from Kip.

radionerd
21 Oct 2021 - 12:39 pm

Honestly it won’t make a scrap of difference to the ratings. Brisbane radio is so devoid of personalities no listener will even notice.

Mick
22 Oct 2021 - 8:59 am

Will it be called “ Susie, Ash and Lutsy “
Should be. The womans name should always come first.

Anon
23 Oct 2021 - 10:31 pm

Wonder how long it’ll take one of the AM shows to pick up the phone and start discussing terms. No show has matched the profile of Spencer since he left…

Mike
24 Oct 2021 - 6:57 am

Nova isn’t the same since Murdoch’s bought nova entertainment. White radio at its worst. No multiculturalism. All white male announcers. Hardly any female announcers and if there is there white. It’s all syndicated programming made out that there in Brisbane. So many ads. I can’t stand there breakfast show it’s just horrible. Just wish they would dump it and have more music. Nova was great when they first started. Dj mixes at night and hardly any ads. Now it’s a computer.

Chuck Tuna
25 Oct 2021 - 11:07 am

Get Hutsy in to take the role , that way , they can call themselves “Hutsy and Lutsy”

Dan Fan
16 Nov 2021 - 8:50 am

Get Dan Anstey back from SCA!

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