The past three seasons of Formula 1 coverage by the BBC had made me forget just how bloody irritating advert breaks are in the middle of practice sessions and qualifying. Sky Sports F1 seemed to feature rather a lot of them during its broadcasting including, ironically, a lot for its own F1 channel. But, in between watching advertisements, did Sky manage to live up to the hype? Yes-ish.
Producing and directing any new show can’t be easy, especially one with so many parts which need to coordinate together. There were a few blank stares and missed links over the weekend, but the Murdoch money-machine will iron them out over time I’m sure.
Overall it worked; the F1 Show on Friday was a notable success, I generally felt well informed and the HD pictures looked deep and glossy. Everyone’s favourite Dutch-sounding Englishman, Christian Horner, made a number of appearances, we got many pictures of a (more) miserable looking Alonso and there was no Anchorman style confrontation with the BBC.
With Sky having such a disparate roster of individuals working across the weekend, it’s perhaps easier to assess them individually. Here we go then:
Possibly the man with the biggest weight to carry, replacing Jake Humphrey in the eyes of former BBC viewers. It might have just been first race nerves, but from what I saw he could have been presenting anything, anywhere on any channel. Came across bored, soulless and disinterested; check out this from the post-race interview with Eric Boullier for example:
Simon, try looking at the person you’re meant to be interviewing; apparently it’s polite.
Kept forgetting things like his iPad or to take the microphone off the person he’d just interviewed. Brundle and Hill looked awkward in his presence. Who knows, he might grow into the role as the season progresses but for now he looks out of his depth.
Rating: 1.5/10 Continue reading