The BBC F1 coverage thread (Legard out. Brundle and DC in.)

Discussion in 'Motorsport' started by jammyozzy, Mar 20, 2008.

  1. TheCracker

    TheCracker Premium

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    I don't think Legard has been bad in particular but do think it's a difficult job to do. Legard is the race commentator, Brundle is really just the 'expert on hand' to add an insiders opinion on what's unfolding. Two hours of solid commentry i should think is hard to do, which is why the likes of Murray Walker, James Allen and perhaps to a lesser extent Jonathan Legard often come across as bumbling fools. It's a damn sight easier to be a James Hunt or Martin Brundle and add to what the commentator is saying, but to fill two hours of airtime is a different kettle of ball games.
     
  2. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Premium

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    Totally agree. If Crofty and Davidson weren't so entertaining, I would've given up on the Japanese GP FP1 within a few minutes.
     
  3. Ardius

    Ardius

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    Brundle and Davidson wouldn't work at all. You need one expert and one neutral commentator to fill the action with stuff.
    Two experts wouldn't work at all, for example, this is commentating at its best - emotional, understated and listenable:


    Compare this to the annoying and unlistenable, James Allen screaming in orgasm:


    Man, I forgot how much I hate James Allen's commentating. And I can't believe people are calling for him back on other forums? At the very least you can ignore Legard if you want, but Allen got so annoying at times I seriously considered stopping watching if it wasn't for the racing being so good recently.

    Anyway, you need a proper commentator like Murray to inject the enthusiasm and then an expert to add in technical thoughts and explanations when needed. Rarely will you find a driver who can do the main commentators job well and the commentator+expert combo has been so successful why change it?

    Potential replacements for Legard would be Ben Edwards (though apparently the BBC tried to get him but he refused to drop his BTCC commitments) or Martin Haven (does most of the motorsport on Eurosport). But I think the BBC are happy with Leggie.
     
  4. maximumattack

    maximumattack

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    I kind of see what you're saying about the expert-commentator thing, but what I like about Brundle & Davidson is that they can explain the technical details that only someone who has been on the "inside" would know.

    For example why a driver maybe losing time in a specific sector or exactly how different settings can make a difference to the car without making it too difficult for us to understand.

    As for James Allen, I'm sure its been discussed many times how bad he was, sometimes I wasn't sure he was even commentating on the race being shown. When we went to Le Mans a few years ago for a friends stag do we all got T-Shirts made up with this logo & on the back it had our names in the gulf logo stylee, they were well received by pretty much everyone we met.
     

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  5. Ardius

    Ardius

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    Yes, thats what makes all the technical commentators great - starting from James Hunt all the way to today with Brundle, Gascoyne, Stewart, Davidson, even Damon Hill all have great insight.
    However, they should not be the focus of the coverage, because although interesting and useful for explaining the technical side, they usually aren't professional commentators and cannot fill in the boring gaps as well as the likes of Murray did. Martin is quite good at it from time to time admittedly, but he shouldn't need to do it, if it wasn't for Legard being fairly rubbish at it.
     
  6. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Part of Legard's problem might be the job itself.

    James Allen was absolutely intolerable when he was calling the races, but I've since started following his blog and I actually think he's really quite insightful. Certainly moreso than when he was alongside Martin Brundle. He's probably one of the best out there, along with Jon Noble and Keith Collantine.

    I'm supposing the reason for this sudden change in form is that Allen has time to think about what he's saying when he's writing. He also seems to be the man who runs the press conferences most of the time, and he does a pretty good job of it. It's when the other journalists take to the floor that we get idiocy, like people think it's okay to as Jenson Button about his private life, or a Q&A session with Rosberg after he announced he was leaving Williams where the reporters kept asking him where he is going and why he didn't want to talk about it even though he'd just told them he wasn't going to talk about it or tell them where he is going.

    My point is that when you're in the commentary box, someone has to be talking almost all the time. You'll occasionally get something like the Bathurst 1000, where the commentators will shut up for a lap simply so the audience can enjoy the ride, but you don't really get that with Formula One. And at the same time, Legard has to keep some exposition going - especially in the early stages of the race - for people who may have missed the start. So he's got to balance it all out, but the biggest problem is people either saying he's rubbish and has got to go, or should be better without actually describing what better commentary is like. As someone pointed out, you can't have two experts: you need an everyman commentating, every sport has one. While Brundle offers a lot of insight and is very intelligent about it all, I think that if he was commentating on his own, he'd simply degenerate into a Legard-esque style, or the telecast would have large periods of silence when he didn't have anything to say.

    We don't really fell the full weight of it here in Australia. We generally tune in just as the cars take to the circuit for the warmup lap, so we don't get anything like the gridwalk. And we have to put up with our own commentators offering their own thoughts and opinions on the matter. And unlike Legard, they have no idea what they're talking about. Greg Rust should be hooked up to a machine hat causes increasing amounts of pain every time he mentions "Australia's Mark Webber" and often ignores the more-interesting goings-on to talk about him. Cameron McConville seems to think that there's no difference between a two-tonne V8 Supercar and a superlight open-wheeler, and his attitude always seems to be "I could do that better than them". And Darryl Beattie isn't even a racing driver - he was in superbikes of MotoGP. (That said, Greg Rust wasn't around for Suzuka, leaving McConville and Beattie with commentary duties, and the quality of it instantly improved ... they were still rubbish, just not as bad as they had been).

    So really, you guys have nothing to complain about.
     
  7. 725

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    Agree with Ardius. I wasn't so convinced by the hype around bbc coverage but credit where credits due it has been awesome mostly due to the iplayer. Catching up with races and qualifying when you don't have time to watch them has been great and the red button forum was a great idea too.

    I don't like Legard I've watched every race and for me he hasn't improved much. The constant 'Well thats not going to help him' comments amd reading out the times does begin to grate. Is there news of a possible replacement?

    Besides that the coverage has been great the 5Live team has been excellent especially with free practice and Crofty and Davidson make a great team.
     
  8. Tired Tyres

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    I've always listened to the Croft/Davidson commentary when available. It's easily the best combination.
     
  9. Ardius

    Ardius

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    Apparently so, I've heard similar comments about other commentaries. Still, I miss the enthusiasm of Murray, its seems hes irreplacable.
     
  10. prisonermonkeys

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    I do to, but by the end of it, I think he started to lose his mind a little. Whereas to begin with his screwups - like "Let's stop the startwatch!" - were a product of his enthusiasm and the heat of the moment, but in the twilight of his career I think he just started forgetting things, as is the case with many people in older age.
     
  11. Ardius

    Ardius

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    BBC F1 film wins prestigious award:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/andrewbenson/2009/11/award_for_bbc_f1_tv_coverage.html

    Well deserved award :tup:

    My only ask is that they encorporate some of the live footage they've collected from 2009 into their 2010 theme in a similar vein to the classic BBC intro's:



    There are plenty of spins, overtakes, pit accidents and so on to put a decent intro theme together like that.
     
  12. 725

    725

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    A well deserved award, agree with the more real racing footage in the intro
     
  13. F1 fan

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    I don't think Legard has been that bad... He could be better, but it's a very hard job to do. What annoyed me was the way he constantly bigged up the british drivers. For example, lewis could have been driving down in 17th and having a completely unremarkable race and Legard would have went "And here comes Lewis Hamilton. What can he do from here?". Also, during the race in brazil he said something along the lines of "the hopes of every F1 fan in Britain are with Jenson Button".

    Now, I'm 22, I'm British (scottish actually), but have never understood the whole "you must support whoever was born nearest to you" thing. As a matter of fact, I was a lifelong Schumacher fan, and now have my hopes pinned on Vettel. If he can't win the championship, then i'd like Massa to win it.

    Then again, If i had the chance, I'd be off to America or Canada in a shot. Failing that, Australia (i have relatives there) if I can overcome my Arachnophobia.

    The bbc coverage has been great this year. Free practice sessions, uninterrupted races, the f1 forum... A real highlight for me was the classic F1 program they showed on most race weekends. The only problem with this is that is was always on at different times and on different days. Not to mention it wasn't advertised, but it was a real gem of a program and took me back to my childhood, and even before I was born.

    Jake Humphrey did a great job as well. Another highlight was DC and EJ's constant bickering.

    Ditto. Crofty has been great. Davidson will probably get a drive next season though. Who will crofty's new sparring partner be? I think the reason Crofty and Davidson's commentary has been so great is because not only do they know their F1 inside out (particulary Anthony), but they're clearly friends. It's to do with chemistry.

    Also, I miss Murray Walker, but as stated in this thread, he had gotten too forgetful. He was one in a million.

    I think the real blunder of the year was during qualifying for the brazilian grand prix when it ran past the time limit and got moved to bbc2. Eddie Jordan said something along the lines of "It'll give the bbc2 viewers a chance to see how exciting qualifying has been this year"... Does anyone else remember this?

    Now I don't know about Eddie, but I don't just pick a random channel and watch whatever rubbish is on it... Likewise, I didn't stay on bbc1 after qualifying was moved to bbc2. I would've stayed up all night if i had to, to see the qualifying. Even if it got delayed until 5AM GMT and got moved to bbc4... Even if the footage was still running and JH, DC and EJ sat and discussed the session over and over on a constant loop, while eating a three course meal... Even if JH and DC were standing in a bathroom having a discussion with EJ while he was in the cubicle, i would have still watched it as I didn't want to miss a thing.

    Anyway, I know i've exaggerated this a bit, but Eddie, 99% of the viewers were probably hardcore fans and would have watched it no matter what channel it was on.
     
  14. PeterJB

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    Well said! I'm exactly the same. I think it's stupid to support somebody simply for being British, it seems like everyone thinks that because Button is World Champion then that makes Britain better than all the other countries. no, it only makes Button better (although I would say he's the best driver). So I do tend to argue with my friends a lot because they only care about Button and Hamilton!

    Have I found my long-lost twin?! :)
     
  15. Ardius

    Ardius

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    ^^Maurice Hamilton will probably partner Croft for 5 live if Ant finds a drive.

    And I think thats a little OTT on that Eddie comment, he's a pundit and expected to say something, be fair to the man, he does talk a lot of rubbish but he is thinking on the spot and had to talk for an extra hour while qualifying was delayed. You tend to run out of clever things to say.

    Eddie has been a funny one really, I went from liking him as a teamboss, to hating him and his utter rubbish at the start of the year to finally loving him for being such a rubbish-talker and he full well knows it. In the end it makes great TV, he ends up having a good relationship with almost all the pitlane and usually he comes off well in the end. Sometimes he needs DC's logic to drag him to the point or point out his insanity but again, it all adds to the experience in my opinion.

    And occasionally, so very occasionally, he does say something interesting and valuable from his experience as a team boss.
    He's certainly a personality and one that I would miss.

    As for the patriotism thing, each to their own. I don't really mind a bit and I personally think its perfectly fine when moderated. The problem is not many people seem to know how to moderate their support.
    I don't see it as any different from supporting your next door neighbour in a sporting event - you support them because you know more about them than the other opponents and you have a closer connection with them. In the same sense, as a nation we relate more with local heroes than foreign. I don't think it should be the sole reason to support someone, but I don't see the harm as long as it does not start to affect your opinion of other nations.
    If it was Earth versus Mars would you be as open-minded? I think there's something to be said for group mentality, but like I said, it can get nasty so it has to be moderated.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2009
  16. 725

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    I've always been more of a team supporter then a driver supporter, of course I like some drivers more than others and question teams choices of drivers, but overall I support the teams
     
  17. F1 fan

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    Possibly... And I was going to steal your avatar at one point. :lol:

    Good point... I never really thought of it like that. In future, maybe the bbc could turn it into a (sort of) f1 forum and answer viewer texts/emails. Maybe even show some clips of classic f1... Having said that, they probably wouldn't in case they had to cut it off midway through the clip to get back to qualifying... Can you imagine watching Jos Verstappen V Eddie Irvine at brazil when martin brundle was innocently taken out (and almost killed).

    "Verstappen's in the air and"... [Cut to Jake Humphreys]

    JAKE: " We apologise for the delays"

    Anyway, to summarise, I now realise that sometimes, people (including myself, obviously) forget that it is live tv and sometimes (rarely) they'll just have to fill time.

    His connections in F1 are invaluable. Particularly after Massa's accident. Everyone was in the dark about his condition and Eddie found out and told us... I can remember how worried I was until we heard he would be ok. Just a week after Henry Surtees' death. Remember the cliche, bad things come in two's.

    No real way of knowing that :sly:

    I don't have any ill will towards the drivers. At the end of the day, Jenson is a deserving champion, as is lewis. Keke Rosberg was a deserving champion, despite only winning one race in his championship winning year.

    Fact of the matter is, finish with the most points and you are a deserving champion. Even if you don't win a single race. It's about consistency. And while I was hoping vettel could've won the title (just think what would have happened if he hadn't lost those 8 points in Australia or had the engine problems. He was only 11 points down at the end), when Jenson crossed the line, I was happy for him.

    I can understand that but what happens if your favourite team signs a driver that you hate? A friend of mine hates Alonso. He know's how good a driver fernando is, but just seem's to hate the guy. He also refuses to believe that fernando was in the dark about singapore 08 (I mean, come on... The guy has so many achievements in his (still early) career. Why on earth would he want to cheat to win a race when he can look back at his honest achievements?).

    The same friend of mine is a die hard ferrari fan. I'm looking forward to seeing if he starts to support fernando (then pretend that he always did).

    As for me, I'd love to see vettel at Ferrari in the future, so we can hear the same combination of national anthems that Michael Schumacher pretty much made into the theme tune of F1.
     
  18. 725

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    lol I can imagine that would happen a lot. I agree with the singapore incident he must have been aware of the plan he seems like a driver that gets heavily involved in the team. I'm still looking forward to see what the partnership can produce.

    Agreed
     
  19. F1 fan

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    By the way, does anyone know what that piece of classical music they use for the podium celebration. The champagne music?

    Just want it for when i inevitably beat my mates at GT5... I'm a bad winner.
     
  20. GilesGuthrie

    GilesGuthrie Staff Emeritus

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    I did see this written authoritatively somewhere, but I can't find it now.

    Consensus seems to be "Carmen Overture" by Bizet.
     
  21. Peterram430

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  22. Ardius

    Ardius

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    A simple visit to youtube to confirm:
     
  23. Alex.

    Alex. Premium

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    Go on Jake :irked:
    [​IMG]
     
  24. F1 fan

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    Thanks everyone.
     
  25. frossmelic

    frossmelic

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    I know that Jonathan Lenard reminds me of a horse racing commentator at times, hope I get used to it. Great to hear Brundle on the beeb.I was hoping he wouldn't get lost in the shake up this season.I want to know the exact points of phrases process at that time.
     
  26. Ardius

    Ardius

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    Some fantastic news:
    http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/2010/07/bbc-to-introduce-driver-tracker-to-live-online-f1-coverage/
    [​IMG]

    :tup:
     
  27. Seismica

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  28. Peterram430

    Peterram430

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    Last edited: Dec 17, 2010
  29. PeterJB

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    So who is replacing DC's position as presenter? Davidson?
     
  30. Tired Tyres

    Tired Tyres

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    They must have got that wrong. DC is not a commentator. I think the DC referred to is really David Croft. That would make me happy.