As the now previous racing year for Formula 1 started, many hadn't the slightest clue as to what would happen before them. For the racing would be unpredictable; the result of that was a perfect concoction full of drama and suspense. Being from the United States, one doesn't have particularly many options to view live Formula 1 racing on their television sets. Sure, the overlays are provided by Formula One Management, but what a broadcast team brings to the table only enhances the entertainment, information, and harmony that pure racing fans enjoy. Without a broadcast team, would Formula 1 be the same?
Some swear by other broadcast companies... and sure there are ways for us out in the States to acquire these feeds; short of shelling out an arm and two legs, Speed TV remained the home for many F1 viewers for years. Sure they had their quirks and their problems...but most of that can be acquainted to the network. What we had over 16 years with F1 on Speed was a sense of community and family. Like any other broadcast's team, there was a balanced mix of announcer, with first hand expert F1 knowledge and professionalism. But what broke the sole United States broadcaster out from the rest of the group was an extra edge one sometimes feels lacking in present days. These guys actually had fun!!! How often do you feel valuable as a viewer, and enthralled in something as routine as a Friday practice session?
Not often enough, in my book. But with all good, evil is there to counter the aerodynamics of a broadcast. In my opinion, the network of Speed missed the mark a bit with their untimely commercial breaks. I understand that when it comes down to lets say, a 3 hour race, there has to be a percentage of commercial air space that needs to be sold to -break even- on a specific program, let alone make a profit. Unfortunately not everyone has an unlimited budget to spend, and there must be a compromise. That alone usually turns people away from Speed TV, and sometimes away from F1 as a whole...while other broadcasts show more of the race than commercials it seems at certain points... But business is business... Let this be known to the new USA's crew of broadcasters... try to find a happy medium of both business and pleasure... don't forget who your audience is. Us.
From nearly 300 races, to iconic moments like Ferrari winning their first championship in years, to Massa seemingly having to give up a position just to keep his job, 17 years of excitement has been brought to our doorsteps from colleges and friends that have grown with the sport just like us fans have. And that’s the most important part: the broadcast was for fans, by fans. As our favorite sport gets acutely jimmied over to a different production company, many of us are wary. And within reason. We here in the States have had some interesting relationships with F1... both on the track and on the air. Now out of our control... our destiny lay before us as unwritten as a clean slate. So what do we look forward to going in the future? Well, a lot. Following us fans to NBC are some of the old Speed crew. What everyone is most worried about is if the new broadcast will have that homey feeling. Chemistry is something that often just works. With the right ingredients and the correct ratios, something stronger than the sum of their parts is forged.
Will F1 in America see the perfectly organized molecules that comprise a broadcast team arise at our new home? It surely will be big shoes to fill. But let something be learned by those before you, new team. The recipe for a good broadcast is quite simple. A basic trio will suffice us fans fine. Quality, passion, and sport. To each broadcast it's the same. But the one that gets those dimensions juuuust right will always be the one F1 fans flock to.
Edited by Deluxx, 25 November 2012 - 20:20.