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BBC Formula 1's greatest drivers


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#1 Phil Rainford

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 20:18

As the McLaren list seems to have become stuck at Number 9........... the BBC have started their own list

http://www.bbc.co.uk...rmula1/17319968



PAR

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#2 Barry Boor

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 20:39

Bet I won't agree with that one, either.

#3 arttidesco

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 20:50

At best a thankless task one wonders why anyone bothers :confused:

#4 D-Type

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 21:00

If it sparks off an interest in the history of the sport in any readers, then it's justified.

#5 arttidesco

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 21:10

If it sparks off an interest in the history of the sport in any readers, then it's justified.


Fair enough if there are some strict criteria laid down for everyone to understand, for example excluding anyone who ever deliberately crashed into a team mate or fellow competitor in an attempt to settle a championship in their favor, that would eliminate two popular WDC's who have disgraced the Championship particular and motorsport in general for a start :smoking:

#6 rallen

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 21:27

Any list that includes Schummacher is invalid!

#7 rallen

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 21:32

seriously though I can't see how anyone post 1990 can be considered.

These lists crop up all the time and despite the fact I find them very interesting (and never agree with them) people do tend to 'need' to put things in lists of best of.

I bet the top three of this list will be Fangio/Moss/Clark - it always is.

If you had to pick just one as the best of all time, would any TNF be brave enough to say there's? all will it be all ' you can't compare era's'! ;)

Sorry spirit of devilment took me there - but I think this is going to be more accurate than most, that McLaren one was horrific

#8 ryan86

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 22:16

I'm going to perhaps play devils advocate here rallen and ask why? The names I mention here probably wouldn't all make the top 20, but I don't see any reason why Alonso, Hakkinen, Hamilton, Raikkonen and Vettel are not worthy of consideration. Maybe they didn't tear around the Nurburgring's tree-lined roads, slipstreamed around Monza or raced around Monte Carlo with the obstacles being park benches, lampposts rather than a tyre barrier and they may not get to go rallying or go over to America, but it's also worth nothing that the list will eventually include the likes of Ascari, Clark, Senna, perhaps Villeneuve and a great deal of the restraints the current crop come across are because of the mishaps of the above, but these current drivers above, when measured against their peers consistently come up on top in the majority of match-ups they've been involved in.

I'm not saying that the above drivers from the current crop are without their failings. Schumacher has probably pushed the envelope too far on occasion, Alonso showed weakness in his season at McLaren, Hamilton showed last year that there may well be mental weaknesses in his psyche, Button I believe lacks the pace of the rest of the group, but shows great skill in the wet and sensing out that overtaking move and Raikkonen perhaps can't lead a team as one may wish, but I'm sure that those who know more about 50-89 will be able to point out their weaknesses. I can't imagine that they were all 100% autobots.

Sometimes I think the weaknesses of the list may be in giving them each an actual position within the top 20, rather than saying than saying these 20 drivers the group we perceive to be the greatest.

Oh, and they better hope all the races go ahead otherwise they've got a problem!

Edited by ryan86, 13 March 2012 - 23:46.


#9 midgrid

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 22:41

Any list that includes Schummacher is invalid!


Indeed, there's no way that Ralf should be in that list at all. ;)


#10 D-Type

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 23:07

To find a top twenty, we've now had 62 World Championships, so simply taking every third champion and ignoring repeats you get:

Ascari
Fangio
Brabham
Graham Hill
Clark
Stewart
Emerson Fittipaldi
Lauda
Jones
Piquet
Prost
Mansell
Michael Schumacher
Hakkinen
Raikkonen
Vettel

And that almost random selection covers nearly all candidates leaving four more to choose. So, how about:

Mario Andretti (as much for his racing outside F1 as any other reason)
Jacques Villeneuve (number of wins)
Damon Hill (number of wins)
and
Stirling Moss (the only non champion in the list)

I don't think any obvious candidates have been missed so all that's left is to rank them. The difficult bit




#11 jj2728

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 00:44

Too bad it's only from 1950 onwards 'cause Bernd Rosemeyer is the one German who'd be very near the top of my list.


#12 john aston

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 07:26

seriously though I can't see how anyone post 1990 can be considered.

These lists crop up all the time and despite the fact I find them very interesting (and never agree with them) people do tend to 'need' to put things in lists of best of.

I bet the top three of this list will be Fangio/Moss/Clark - it always is.

If you had to pick just one as the best of all time, would any TNF be brave enough to say there's? all will it be all ' you can't compare era's'! ;)

Sorry spirit of devilment took me there - but I think this is going to be more accurate than most, that McLaren one was horrific


Lost me on that one. So ...anybody who raced in GPs post (random date ?) 1990 is out? Which makes such luminaries as Hector Rebaque , Richard Robarts and Mike Beuttler better GP drivers than Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel - well obviously...

#13 Stephen W

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:08

Bet I won't agree with that one, either.


At best a thankless task one wonders why anyone bothers :confused:


Couldn't agree more!

I tend to look at these sort of threads just the once as continued exposure makes me more grumpy than usual!

:well:

#14 Geoff E

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:34

I don't think any obvious candidates have been missed so all that's left is to rank them. The difficult bit


Perhaps one beginning with S ... :)


#15 jcbc3

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:05

I think you missed this part:

This year, BBC Sport is profiling 20 of the greatest Formula 1 drivers of all time....


So they are NOT claiming the list to be THE 20 best drivers. The selection criteria is:

...The BBC F1 team were asked to provide their own personal top 20s, which were combined to produce a BBC list...


Assuming there are 10 people in the BBC team, I am sure we can safely assume that there is a gross list of between 30 and 40 drivers being mentioned by the correspondents. Since the criteria for each contributor is completely individual I don't think BBC claims that the final top twenty are the best ever but just the 20 most popular with their team.

IMHO, of course

#16 Phil Rainford

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:13

If it sparks off an interest in the history of the sport in any readers, then it's justified.


I have to agree with these sentiments

This list is on the main BBC Sport Website ........so if some younger GP fans read about Jochen Rindt and become enthused to find about more him ( And the other drivers listed ) this can only be good for the Sport :confused:

PAR

Edited by Phil Rainford, 14 March 2012 - 10:13.


#17 Barry Boor

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:33

Can't argue with that, Phil.

Still, I bet Dan isn't in the list. :cry:

#18 Pullman99

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 11:00

The Mail on Sunday (not bought by me!) produced a similar "all time greats" feature entitled "And There Goes Juan Manuel Fangio" placing him in 1st with a race win score of 47% and 5 World Champiuonship titles.

Fair enough, but they also seemed to think that Jochen Rindt - in 24th place with an average of just under 10% - had not been World Champion at all. Really? Nice graphics, though...

#19 D-Type

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 11:04

Perhaps one beginning with S ... :)

:o Whoops! I didn't realise the random approach missed him.
:confused: Who to delete - Jacques or Damon?
:well: Wriggle out of a corner mode: Suzuka 1990 disqualifies him from any list with the word "Great" in it.

Edited by D-Type, 14 March 2012 - 11:07.


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#20 arttidesco

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 11:19

:confused: Who to delete - Jacques or Damon?


You do not have to chose between Jaques or Damon if you take M Schumacher out of the equation :up:

#21 Barry Boor

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:22

No matter what you may think of M. Schumacher, he was really rather good.

#22 Glengavel

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:25

No matter what you may think of M. Schumacher, he was really rather good.


But was he 'great'? (I've just realised we're using the past tense...)

#23 rallen

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:33

No matter what you may think of M. Schumacher, he was really rather good.


Yes but he was also a massive cheat - I bet his stats would be differnt if Bennetton had not cheated in 1994 or he didn't have the political might of Ferrari influencing the government body during his years there. Also his was lucky in the time he was racing when the quality of the opposition wasn't as strong as in it's previous years.

#24 rallen

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:39

Lost me on that one. So ...anybody who raced in GPs post (random date ?) 1990 is out? Which makes such luminaries as Hector Rebaque , Richard Robarts and Mike Beuttler better GP drivers than Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel - well obviously...



I was slightly tongue in cheek with my orignal statement - of course I don't think Hector Rebaque , Richard Robarts and Mike Beuttler are better than champions of today - they were not champions then were they? you can only compare the top link drivers.

My point actually had a serious element to it though - I think the past involved more skill - yes there was the danger but the cars and the circuits were more challenging. Nowadays you have large run off areas where they can carry on racing if there's a mistake, the cars are very reliable, I really do think it is a whole new sport in many ways - and nowhere near as good.

When Schummacher tested the 1983 Ferrari, he was terrified in it - would he have been as fast in that as he was in the early 2000's in a modern car? Skill and speed are vital, but so is bravey and the element of pushing yourself.

#25 john aston

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:58

Quick drivers are quick- end of story. Jim Clark would have been mighty in a 79 or a Red Bull and Alonso and Button would have been sublime in an M23. or Lotus 25 One big difference is that if JC had been Vettel's age now he would have a damn good chance of collecting his pension - nothing glamorous about being killed in my book.Bet Roger Williamson's parents wish he'd been racing now...And yes the cars back then were very different- but you can only drive what is around at the time. Hope nobody is going to accuse turbo era drivers of being wusses..

#26 jj2728

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 13:05

Quick drivers are quick- end of story. Jim Clark would have been mighty in a 79 or a Red Bull and Alonso and Button would have been sublime in an M23.


I wonder how sublime Button or Alonso would be at the Indy 500.

#27 rallen

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 13:13

Quick drivers are quick- end of story. Jim Clark would have been mighty in a 79 or a Red Bull and Alonso and Button would have been sublime in an M23. or Lotus 25 One big difference is that if JC had been Vettel's age now he would have a damn good chance of collecting his pension - nothing glamorous about being killed in my book.Bet Roger Williamson's parents wish he'd been racing now...And yes the cars back then were very different- but you can only drive what is around at the time. Hope nobody is going to accuse turbo era drivers of being wusses..


I doubt doubt that modern drivers are quick - I just don't think they are as skillful or brave - though I agree nothing is glamourous about being killed. As for turbo era drivers, very brave indeed!

Would love to have seen Clark in a Lotus 72, 78 and 79! this keeps me awake at night!

Let me point my point a different way, I think the drivers of today are very quick and good but I couldn't see any of them post 1990 breaking into the top 25 F1 drivers of all time can you?

#28 jj2728

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 13:23

Let me point my point a different way, I think the drivers of today are very quick and good but I couldn't see any of them post 1990 breaking into the top 25 F1 drivers of all time can you?


Kimi!

#29 arttidesco

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 13:25

But was he 'great'? (I've just realised we're using the past tense...)


One criteria for being 'great' would have to be the gold standard example set by Stirling Moss when he successfully interceded on behalf of a disqualified 'Mick' Hawthorn at the 1958 Portuguese GP. That impeccable call is the standard by which all other drivers should be judged, it is what makes Moss 'great' and separates the remaining 'greats' from the merely highly skilled drivers :smoking:

#30 longhorn

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 14:06

One criteria for being 'great' would have to be the gold standard example set by Stirling Moss when he successfully interceded on behalf of a disqualified 'Mick' Hawthorn at the 1958 Portuguese GP. That impeccable call is the standard by which all other drivers should be judged, it is what makes Moss 'great' and separates the remaining 'greats' from the merely highly skilled drivers :smoking:



Agreed, Moss was a 'great' in my book too & the benchmark in most races he competed in, but he wasn't under the huge commercial pressure to win which is prevalent with today's top drivers.

As regards Schumacher M, whatever faults he has, & he has a few, he was able to win races in the 1996 -1999 period in a car which was clearly not as good as those of his rivals, a point overlooked by the many who criticise.

Edited by longhorn, 14 March 2012 - 14:56.


#31 rallen

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 14:41

Agreed, Moss was a 'great' in my book too & the benchmark in most races he competed in, but he wasn't under the huge commercial pressure to win which is prevalent with today's top drivers.


Doesn't that make him even better - to win for the sheer joy of it, the glory, passion and the desire rather than becasue of money?

#32 longhorn

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 14:53

Doesn't that make him even better - to win for the sheer joy of it, the glory, passion and the desire rather than becasue of money?



My point was that he was able to make the gesture because there was little of the commercial pressures we see today. So, no team pressure (300+ employees back at the factory), pressure from team partners (sponsors) seeking exposure, personal sponsors, FOM payments etc to consider. However, the mark of the man was that because he could, he did make the gesture.

Edited by longhorn, 14 March 2012 - 15:05.


#33 john aston

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 16:31

I doubt doubt that modern drivers are quick - I just don't think they are as skillful or brave - though I agree nothing is glamourous about being killed. As for turbo era drivers, very brave indeed!

Would love to have seen Clark in a Lotus 72, 78 and 79! this keeps me awake at night!

Let me point my point a different way, I think the drivers of today are very quick and good but I couldn't see any of them post 1990 breaking into the top 25 F1 drivers of all time can you?



Sorry but cannot agree- each generation produces some terrific drivers and some mediocre ones. You might need a different skillset to get pole at Monaco in a Lotus 49 than pole at Silverstone in a 21st Century McLaren but you could say exactly the same about post war and pre war drivers. I suspect most mortals could actually drive a Lotus 25 with more ease than a Red Bull- at least I could understand the bloody controls ! And I can see several post 90 drivers being in top 25- for what daft lists are worth. If Senna - presumably -is in why should Alonso be out ? And bravery - well very subjective and not really a criterion for being rated in top 25 or not. Bravery doesnt always mean speed does it ? Having watched GP since the early 70s I can't say that I think any the less of modern drivers -and past eras included plenty of plodders

#34 David McKinney

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 16:32

Note to jcbc3 and arttidesco -

'criteria' is the plural form of 'criterion' :)

#35 jcbc3

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 17:16

Note to jcbc3 and arttidesco -

'criteria' is the plural form of 'criterion' :)


Thank you ever so much.

#36 cpbell

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 17:42

To put my own two-pence worth in...
Whilst I am all too aware of the shortcomings of Senna and Schumacher (M), I do feel that to exclude them is a touch churlish. You only need watch footage of Donington 1993 or Barcelona 1996, for example, to see why each deserves their place, even if one subtracts from their overall "score" the negative aspects of their personalities.
FWIW, my personal list would be:

Ascari
Fangio
Moss
Brabham
Clark
Hill (G)
Rindt
Stewart
Fittipaldi
Peterson
Lauda
Villeneuve (G)
Prost
Piquet
Senna
Schmacher (M)
Hakkinen
Alonso
Hamilton
Vettel


#37 kayemod

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 18:05

We've had all these discussions many times over the years, and enjoyable though it will undoubtedly be for some, nothing new is going to be decided, no new conclusions will be reached, and almost inevitably, we're going to end up with lists almost identical to those that will have appeared in the last thread on this subject. The discussion isn't going to change anyone's mind, everyone on TNF will have their own favourites, and very little will have altered when this thread gives up its last gasp, orTW closes it on the grounds that an increasingly heated argument is getting out of hand. If any final list doesn't have Sir Stirling and Juan Manuel in the first two places with Jim Clark close behind, it will all be rubbish anyway...

#38 Roger Clark

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 21:31

:o Whoops! I didn't realise the random approach missed him.
:confused: Who to delete - Jacques or Damon?
:well: Wriggle out of a corner mode: Suzuka 1990 disqualifies him from any list with the word "Great" in it.

I thought the missing 'S' was John Surtees.

#39 D-Type

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 22:01

I thought the missing 'S' was John Surtees.

No, the "1 of 3" missed him.

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#40 Barry Boor

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 06:53

I know it could be said that I have a degree of vested interest but given that most on this Forum would put Jim Clark in their top three or four and accepting the fact that Jim claimed he was the only driver he feared (I could never quite accept that Jim would have actually used the word feared) where in the pecking order would that put Dan Gurney?

A great deal higher than any of these lists put him, I'll be bound!

#41 stuartbrs

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 11:52

Not that I`m a Schumacher fan but for those that think he faced an inferior grid his whole career, you`d have to say that pre 1994 he did alright against Senna, Prost, Alesi, Berger, Mansell, Piquet etc, in a car that wasnt the class of the field.

I was at the Australian Grand Prix in 1998, when the McLarens were 2 seconds faster than the rest, and vividly remember the first few laps as they cruised passed in first and second. Then you would see Schumacher chasing hard, crashing over the curbs and you could tell he was giving it everything trying to keep up just by the body language of the car, then another gap, and the rest of the field came trundling past... The lap before he retired I remember seeing his car banging into the curbs and thinking "ouch".. I wasnt suprised the car let him down, he certainly wasnt being easy on it. Couldnt help but admire the determination and fight against a hopeless cause. The rest of the field just seemed to accept that they were beaten, not so Schumacher.

#42 Andretti Fan

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 16:14

I know it could be said that I have a degree of vested interest but given that most on this Forum would put Jim Clark in their top three or four and accepting the fact that Jim claimed he was the only driver he feared (I could never quite accept that Jim would have actually used the word feared) where in the pecking order would that put Dan Gurney?

A great deal higher than any of these lists put him, I'll be bound!


These lists are very subjective, and usually represent one persons opinion. Even looking at cold hard facts, I don't believe you can get a complete picture of one persons ability compared to another, especially drivers from different eras. Button is a world champion, Peterson wasn't. I know who I think is the better racer.

Barry, where Mr. Gurney is concerned, I think we're of the same opinion. :)

#43 fatbaldbloke

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 13:18

Whenever these discussions go on there seems to be one name overlooked time and time again who twice finished as runner up in the championship, won in pretty much everything else he raced, be it on or off road and with two or four wheels and has survived to pensionable age.

#44 LittleChris

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 13:40

Jacky Ickx I presume ?

Though his early F1 career (68 - 72 ) featured 5 top 5 WDC finishes, I think the following 6 years took the gloss off this especially his inability to win at Lotus in 1974 at a time when Ronnie Peterson managed to pull 3 wins out of the bag in the still competitive 72.

No doubting his overall ability though especially in sportscars and offroad

#45 GrumpyOldMan

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 10:41

This list is on the main BBC Sport Website ........so if some younger GP fans read about Jochen Rindt and become enthused to find about more him ( And the other drivers listed ) this can only be good for the Sport :confused:

PAR


Normally I’d agree, but this is the BBC’s coverage of F1 and in particular, their “Chief F1 Writer” Andrew Benson, who bears as much resemblance to a serious journalist as a group of Sunday afternoon kite fliers do to NASA…

Predictably, his "profile" (I use the word in its loosest possible sense) is riddled with sloppy, slapdash inaccuracies and sweeping generalisations. The "video highlights" of Rindt's career consist of 1 1/2 mins of Murray Walker taking over some dull still shots of Rindt.

Absolutely pathetic, and certainly won't inspire anyone to delve into F1's glorious past.

#46 PCC

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 12:51

Absolutely pathetic, and certainly won't inspire anyone to delve into F1's glorious past.

I'm not sure the sport's present is in such great hands either. I tuned in online to listen to the season preview on The Chequered Flag. In the past, this has featured some good analysis from the likes of Maurice Hamilton and more recently Anthony Davidson, plus lots of interviews with drivers and team principles. This year, the show boasted a new crew (best left unnamed in the interests of politeness), and started with an identification of Massa as one of the six world champions on the grid, and continued with a discussion of which driver smelled the best from close up. At which point I gave up.

#47 GrumpyOldMan

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 18:56

I'm not sure the sport's present is in such great hands either. I tuned in online to listen to the season preview on The Chequered Flag. In the past, this has featured some good analysis from the likes of Maurice Hamilton and more recently Anthony Davidson, plus lots of interviews with drivers and team principles. This year, the show boasted a new crew (best left unnamed in the interests of politeness), and started with an identification of Massa as one of the six world champions on the grid, and continued with a discussion of which driver smelled the best from close up. At which point I gave up.


Oh, good grief! Which driver SMELLED the best???

Just when I think BBC Sports coverage couldn't dumb down any further...

Monkey Tennis here we come!

#48 Barry Boor

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 19:02

You aren't actually serious about that, are you, surely?


#49 PCC

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 19:14

You aren't actually serious about that, are you, surely?

I'm sorry to say I am. I'd suggest you give it a listen yourself, but I don't want to encourage them with too many hits.

They clearly thought it was hilarious and witty. I thought it was a waste of bandwidth and time.

Edited by PCC, 19 March 2012 - 19:17.


#50 Barry Boor

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 19:21

Ah, Peter, you missed the chance to repeat the "Don't call me Shirley" joke.