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Final reflections on a memorable weekend

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Jake Humphrey | 15:28 UK time, Monday, 30 March 2009

Well, well, well... welcome back to the BBC Formula 1. I've missed you!

I am writing this on a flight between Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur where we're flying for the next Grand Prix. It is round two of what has started as a knockout season, and we're expecting more fun and games this coming weekend - rain is predicted.

I am not sure what your perspective was of the Melbourne race but I thought you might like to hear mine.

It started with total disbelief that it could possibly be time to get out of bed.

The night before the entire team decided that after qualifying we should go out for a bonding meal, as for many of us this is the first time working together.

It was delicious. Well, the few sips of a well-needed pint were, until word filtered through that there may be an issue with Toyota's rear wing.

Cue a dash all the way back to the circuit in the dark to track down the Toyota boss John Howett, get the full sp and then re-record the closing link for the re-run of qualifying that was transmitting minutes later.

I love this type of skin of your teeth, reactive broadcasting and the teams were very understanding of our extra-late shift, so kept us happy with coffee and rather odd apricot pastry things.

We piled in the car at about 12.45am local time, back to the hotel 1.15am, into bed 1.45am.

As I was drifting off, all my brain kept asking me was "when are you going to write the script for the race show then". Blasted conscience!

So, as I'm sure you can appreciate 6.30am was a little uncomfortable, but there was little option so I had a cool shower and got to work writing, stopping for a coffee about 10am and for a live interview on the phone (whilst ironing my shirt for the show - the glamour) with Steven Nolan of Five Live.

I arrived at the circuit via cab with Eddie Jordan and Lee McKenzie at about 11.30am. I chatted through the show with Mark the boss - we'd totally rewritten the running order to reflect qualifying. I then got changed in the back of the edit suite whilst the guys put the finishing touches to the Jenson/Lewis VT... they kept their eyes firmly on the screens!

Jake alongside David Coulthard and Eddie Jordan

I then met up with the boys (David Coulthard & Eddie Jordan) who had texts from various celebrities. Whilst Eddie's best wishes came from the likes of Mick Hucknall I was quite happy and rather impressed to get my dad's message to say that in Upper Stoke they'd let the dogs out and were nervously eating toast.

Then it was time to get mic'd up and host my first ever live F1 race. Totally surreal.

Two minutes to on-air and into the pit lane. The first thing you aren't expecting is the number of people. DC took us through the Red Bull garage as the team put the finishing touches to Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel's cars and we emerged into a pit lane that resembled Wembley Way five minutes after the final whistle.

We walked down to the Brawn garage, where we opened the show from. Rather surreally DC was played a tune on a bagpipe by a random guy wearing a kilt standing on four-foot stilts... that's my overriding memory as The Chain introduced our first race on the Beeb in 12 years.

After that most of the following couple of hours were a blur. We had a couple of hairy moments. When the jets were screaming a few hundred feet overhead and simultaneously the cars were leaving the garages, for example, I couldn't hear EJ or DC talk, the gallery issuing me instructions, or myself think. Puts into perspective just what a talented pro my predecessor Steve Rider is.

Relieved Sir Richard Branson kept it clean. Happy with how Eddie and David slipped into their new roles, seriously impressed by Martin Brundle's gridwalk and quite happy when I was able to hand over the reins to commentator Jonathan Legard.

It was then a case of watching the race unfold in the Red Bull area with the guys, I'll blog another time about how incredible it is watching the race alongside proper experts... a unique insight.

Before we knew it though the race was coming to an end and it was back to the mayhem, standing just under Jenson, Rubens and Jarno enjoying their champagne moment. The pit lane was now full of cars, mechanics, celebrating Brawn GP guys and what seemed like a million TV crews.

Now, the team off-camera all wear our uniform of blue tops with the yellow BBC Sport logo and as I've just learned, that is almost the most important element of the whole weekend.

Here's why. Take the press conference for example, there's no way of us knowing how long it will last, but whilst it is being transmitted we have to get from pit lane to paddock.

Not easy when dodging crowds and equipment everywhere, especially when it's your first time in that environment. I kept my eye on the blue shirt of my right-hand man Steve Aldous's shirt as we jogged, sidestepped, doubled back and finally found our pre-determined paddock spot.

I recall hearing Norma the PA say down my ear, "10 seconds left on VT we believe". I breathed out, turned to my left... NO PUNDITS!

Cue sheer panic as I tried to pick out the distinctive figure of DC and the diminutive Eddie amongst the crowds. At the last minute I saw them, did my best face of panic, they got the message and with moments to spare they were in position.

Then I just had to get us off air to the second and I managed it, just, which no doubt pleased Norma.

We then did the interactive F1 Forum live via the red button. By the way I'm keen to make it much more of an interactive experience so after the Malaysian GP do press red and also send us your questions/thoughts about the race to f1@bbc.co.uk.

I know many of you enjoyed Martin joining us, and hearing from the Force India boss Vijay Mallya. The general consensus if you didn't manage to join us was that the day belonged to Brawn, and Jenson in particular.

It was also agreed that overtaking did seem more prevalent under the new regulations, that Lewis Hamilton proved, like a true racer, that he doesn't just drive great cars, and that this could shape up to be some season.

Then, finally, the words we all enjoy after a long day: "That's a wrap".

Well, I hope you found my little tale interesting, it's just that I'm often asked what actually goes on during a show. So I hope I shed a little light on it for you. And as for the show, well it was basically an on-air pilot, our first crack at it. A totally new experience for many of us and a good starting point but all we've done is set the minimum standard in my opinion - and now we do it all again in six day's time and for the next seven months.

By the way, the day ended with me ducking out of a nightclub at about 2am with very droopy eyelids, and still no text from Mr Hucknall!

See you all in Malaysia and thanks for the lovely comments you left on the blog. It meant a lot.

Comments

Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    Very interesting read Jake, thanks. Suddenly the job looks much harder than I realised.

    I thought the coverage all weekend was excellent. Steve Rider is a hard act to follow, as you say, but I think you did a great job. Hopefully it will only get better too.

    Only thing is, I didn't realise how tall you were! Might need the cameraman stood on a box next time..

  • Comment number 2.

    Why is the first comment moderated?


    The race was full of action and was a really interesting watch - especially in the last half which is usually when F1 races can be predicted quite easily.

    Not so with Kubica-Vettel incident, Hamilton's luck and Barrichello's good fortune.

    One question - if appeals are turned away, will the rest of the competitors catch up if the diffusers are changed and cars are once again using the same/similar techology/equipment?

  • Comment number 3.

    Great blog Jake, and well done for getting the job done. I didn't think anyone could replace Steve but I thought you were a master. I expect you'll be on our screens for a long time and that's a good thing if you ask me.
    Jenson was immense - I wonder how him and Lewis would do in similar cars?

  • Comment number 4.

    Great blog Jake, really it is. Great to get an insight into your day, as I'm sure many people don't regard getting to cover the Grand Prix as a job, but more of a privelege, so it's nice to know you're earning your crust!!!

    I didn't watch the live shows, but I managed to stay news-free until the repeats at 1pm UK time each day, so as I sat down with anticipation for The Chain on Saturday qualifying, it was a delight to hear it kick in and it made the hairs on my neck stand up. This is what F1 is meant to be like. No adverts, great evocative music and one thing I will thank ITV for: Martin Brundle. The man is brilliant.

    Looking forward to the Malaysia race.

  • Comment number 5.

    Excellent blog Jake, very interesting to see just how hectic a Formula 1 weekend is for the presenters. We hear all about the drivers but rarely about the people who bring us the coverage.

    Congratulations on a very successful weekend, for a trial run you guys did a fantastic job. I'm seriously looking forward to Malaysia next weekend!

    Also, see if you can nab Vijay again. As a Force India fan myself, it was great to hear from him,

  • Comment number 6.

    Great stuff Jake.

    I have to admit - I am very pleasantly surprised with the way you and DC are handling this presenting malarkey! You seem to be quite relaxed, while keeping enthusiastic along the way.

    I wish I could say the same for your colleague Jonathan Legard. He was very disappointing during the race, so much so I had to switch over to Croft + Davidson on the red button. They were terrific during practice ; they were just as much during the race.

    I was also wondering - the FIA publishes a full press conference via it's website in text-form - why can't you show the full Press Conference, or indeed speak to more of the drivers? A lot of them had strong opinions on the rule changes this year (most of them negative) after the race and it was only through scouring the internet for them that I found out what they had said.

    Anyway, best of luck to yourself! Have a great Malaysian GP - looks like it should be very wet!

  • Comment number 7.

    Brilliant Jake

    Very inspiring to young reporters.

  • Comment number 8.

    Good blog again Jake!

    Really enjoyed the coverage, thought it was very professional and great commentary from Jonathan Legard, seems he is really into it and comes over really enthusiatic. All the incident certainly didn't leave you lacking material for the post-race stuff and forum, I had to watch the re-run it was so good.
    Also I'm very glad the coverage is far more balanced between British/Non-British drivers, all last years talk surrounded Lewis, it was like the other 19 drivers didn't exist, so I'm glad that bias is out.
    Keep up the good work in Kuala Lumpur, now you know what to expect, and best to stay clear of the rain if the monsoon sets in.....

  • Comment number 9.

    Great read, Jake.

    I was very impressed with the BBC's coverage over all and I particularily enjoyed your very apparent enthusiasm for F1. That's your trump card over Steve Ryder who was smooth-as-you-like but a bit dull really.

    Retaining Mr Brundle was also a master stroke on the BBCs part.

    Can't wait for Malaysia!





  • Comment number 10.

    Jake, and the BBC guys in particular, I think you all did an immense job. I'd like to point out that, although you may want seamless transitions, I realyl think us the viewers don't care. We know that's it's live and I think the bits with the guy diving behind Jake after the race on the forum and Jake's face was a classic moment and gives us the sense that "anything can happen". Just like in F1 to quote the legendary Murray.

    On that note, the forum was indeed brilliant, and I do recall Mr Branson swearing! But so what! It was x amount in the morning, live and fantastic.... and the best thing? No add breaks!!!

    You all did well, hopefully If I do email more than once this season on the forum, it will get read out! - I'm here for the long haul as usual, let hope BBC keeps their excellent work up and they are too.

    Regards.

  • Comment number 11.

    I'm looking forward to Malaysia, you were/are the consummate professional Jake. Glad you think you've only set a minimum standard - bodes well.



  • Comment number 12.

    This was a brilliant insight, and really interesting. I didn't realise that you write your own script.

    I thought that you, DC and EJ were fantastic - you seem like you've worked together for years (but EJ says "alluded to" a lot, doesn't he!?) Great to see MB's gridwalk, and it was as entertaining as ever. The coverage all week was spot on. These blog postings really make the whole thing seem more like an interactive, community experience rather than a traditional "TV show" - please keep them coming throughout the season.

  • Comment number 13.

    Hi Jake,

    Thanks for the behind the scenes insight, I look forward to hearing more of the same from you.

    I thought the whole coverage package provided by the BBC, yourself and your colleagues was excellent - there can never been too much!

    The only niggle I have is that not enough was made of the fuel loads being published in the pre-race show. Might be worth explaining to the non-hardcore fans what that is, what its supposed to achieve and what it means.

    Keep up the good work and I look forward to seeing you on my screen next weekend.

  • Comment number 14.

    Great blog and good to hear from behind the scenes. All the coverage over the weekend was fantastic and so nice, after 12 years, to see the whole race live and not miss vital bits when some company is trying to sell us something in an advert.

    Can't wait until next weekend!

  • Comment number 15.

    A very good blog Jake. I thought the coverage was terrific apart from one slip of the tongue from Mr. Branson! You,DC & Eddie were amazing and it was only your first show together! I think Martin Brundle is one of the best sports commentators around and it's always a pleasure listening to him and Johnathon Legard is a fantastic commentator too having listened to him on Radio 5 live quite a few times. All in all it was a great start and the best thing about it was that there are no advertisements!

  • Comment number 16.

    Hi Jake, just gotta say you all did a great job. I wasn't sure about you presenting the F1, I did find it hard to stop seeing you as 'just' one of the presenters of CBBC in the extreme latter years of my childhood. Your coverage of the Super Bowl really started to convince me, but you've made presenting the F1 your own and you didn't look out of place at all. Really pleased it went well for you despite all the panic!

    It really was vital that the BBC also got Martin to jump ship as Murray did in 97, the man is a legend. DC and Eddie are great choices too – massively enjoyed the analysis before, during (nod for getting Ted Kravitz too) and after the race and, of course, the uninterrupted coverage!

  • Comment number 17.

    Hi Jake,

    Well done on Saturday and Sunday. All the BBC Team were very impressive.
    I don't really have any complaints about anything the BBC did on Sunday. Presentation great, commentary great. And it was only the first race!

    I really enjoyed the Interactive Forum after the race. Would be nice if Jonathan Legard could join this week. I'll certainly be emailing in.

    Well done again. Good luck for Malaysia.

  • Comment number 18.

    great job jake, u and the boys (not forgetting lee obviously) did a truly great job. can't wait for malaysia, its worth having no sleep for.

  • Comment number 19.

    Great Blog Jake

    Loved the coverage it was absolutely brilliant sounds like you had a fun but hectic time in places in melbourne, and I managed to hear you perfectly even when the cars and the f-18 went past you in the pre-race build-up

    I do hope there is rain in Malaysia because that will cause even more thrills and spills like Austrailia and it is now building up to another great weekend

    Keep up the fantastic work Jake

  • Comment number 20.

    Loved the coverage, and great to read your behind the scenes blogs.
    Hearing Ted Kravitz during the coverage, I kept thinking the adverts would be on soon so I could get another cofee, but it was great to see the race without any interruptions, and what a race!

    DC and Eddie came across like they'd been doing the pundit lark for years, very good. Is Eddie Jordan planning on trademarking his 'confusers'

    Can't wait for the next race!

  • Comment number 21.

    Hi Jake

    Was good to see F1 back on the BBC, and Martin was right, it did seem like you DC and EJ had been doing it for a while. You all brought across your enthusiasm for the sport and I'm really looking forward to the next race!

    N

  • Comment number 22.

    Good blog Jake as always.

    Makes me wonder: Will we see the debut of the "BBC F1 umbrella" this weekend? Although I'd guess that if it is raining that you three will hide undercover for pre-race.

  • Comment number 23.

    You guys did a great job this weekend the build up was good and I really enjoyed the red button forum after the race.

    Keep up the good work.

  • Comment number 24.

    Congrats Jake, a job well done. The coverage was excellent and you made it through the jets overhead very nicely!

    A few thoughts:

    Please tell Eddie Jordan to stop banging on about the past and to let DC get a word in now and again!

    More Ted "Lenny" Kravitz and Lee "Moneypenny" McKenzie please. Lee didn't do many interviews after the race, and I'd have liked to have heard more reaction from the drivers, as well as seen more of Lee in the flesh if you get my drift!

    I was suprised there was no feature in the race build-up to explain the fact that the FIA now publish the weights of the cars after Qualifying. Would have been a nice little job for Ted Kravitz to explain the weights of the cars, tell us when they're stopping, and analyze the real raw pace of the drivers.


    Good luck for Sepang and I'd take your waterproofs if I were you. Bring on the rain!!

  • Comment number 25.

    You did a great job Jake - was very impressed. Great blog as well - I don't think many people appreciate quite what carnage it is down there!

  • Comment number 26.

    Hi Jake,
    Rain in Sepang huh.... that should make it even harder to miss the excellent coverage you guys are giving us. I have always been a slightly fanatical F1 fan (since I was about 10) but the amount and the quality of the beeb's service so far has increased my interest further, if that were possible! Please keep it up throughout the season and beyond, I seem to remember ITV's coverage being cut back a little from how it started. I am sure this won't happen with the BBC. By the way we like those chaotic moments when sound guys suddenly have to fall at your feet to plug in an extra mic because another guest has shown up - it just adds to the atmosphere. The "other side" was far too wooden and stiff most of the time!

  • Comment number 27.

    Nice blog Jake, nice to hear about what goes on during your F1 weekend. Keep up the good work with the blog and the impeccable TV coverage.

  • Comment number 28.

    Great blog Jake!

  • Comment number 29.

    just fantastic to watch a gp without adverts, great coverage, DC was great (never liked him as a driver but as a man...fantastic, great knowledge) Loved eddie jordan as a man dont like the commentator. Please tell Eddie to look at DC when he talks and show some interest in what he is saying. To sum up thought an ex kids presenter would be poor but was sublime, Legard is a junior murray - wow, brundell is a god, wanna go to the pub with DC, get rid of Eddie...Great job

  • Comment number 30.

    Great effort by everyone. F1 back on the beeb is a good thing. Jonathan Leggard just needs to work out he is commentating on TV not radio

  • Comment number 31.

    Hi Jake,

    Great blog, this was definately the most interesting and a great insight into how the program is put together. I hope all your post race blogs are as good as this.
    As for the show I was quite impressed. I was one of the people who really enjoyed the ITV show (until they clearly started whinding down last year) bar the adverts of course but I think this was a great start and I thought you probably did your best presenting yet! I think the questions that were asked of Ross Brawn on Saturday were excellent. The only thing I think was missing really was a sort of meet the BBC team feature so that everyone knowns who everyone is.
    Also much like everyone else, it cant be understated how important having Martin Brundle was, the way he is able to describe potentially complicated information in such a simple and unpatronising and of course interesting way is excellent. And of course don't forget the mighty grid walks! All I'm looking forward to now is the even mightier Murray Walker on the website later this week.
    The only major problem I have is not with the show but with the BBC. Why was it decided that the rerun of both qualifying and the race had the complete 1st hour taken away? I would have thought that people watching the re runs (i.e. probably the less hardcore) would prefer things being described to them especially in a race with so much new stuff being introduced like KERS etc). Instead it was straight into the action. Lets be honest BBC, was it really that important to have a repeat of Keeping Up Appearances on instead?
    Great work though; looking forward to Malaysia!

  • Comment number 32.

    Thanks for giving us a wider perspective of a race weekend with your blogs Jake. It made such a difference to have DC and EJ on board as well (although can someone tell EJ he holds the microphone like a singer - I keep waiting for him to burst into song).

    I'm looking forward to Legard and Brundle gelling a bit more in the future. They seemed to be treading on each others' toes a bit, but they'll soon sort that out and become a winning combination.

    Can't wait for the next race. If you've started this well, I can only imagine how great it's going to get throughout the season!

  • Comment number 33.

    Absolutely brilliant race and absolutely brilliant coverage all weekend. It was weird at first hearing Martin and Ted on the Beeb but you all did a great job and I'm really excited for the rest of the season, especially when I don't have to get up at the crack of dawn two days running (and go to sleep at 3am the morning before) for the race!

  • Comment number 34.

    Great work Jake, and everyone else.

    Such great coverage. And the site has really come alive, lots of breaking news and interesting videos. Seems the Beeb are setting the agenda for everyone, great stuff.

    And I also loved that F1 forum on the red button, great to see DC vs. Eddie and Martin about Vettel apologising. I wish it was two hours instead of just one. (You may not agree with that!)

    Good luck with the next race, I can't wait!

  • Comment number 35.

    Great blog, Jake!

    Thanks for the insight... really interesting.

    It was a great weekend. After all that waiting it was finally here and despite the fact that baby bubz (14 months) had Croup we both managed to enjoy it immensely. You wouldn't believe how hooked he is on it!

    The coverage was great. I thought you were fantastic. DC was so much better than I thought he could ever be! I was so impressed by him. Not so sure about EJ....I'll reserve judgment. Similarly with Legard... not convinced. We'll see! But nonetheless a fantastic weekend.

    Can't wait for Sepang.

    Keep the photos and the posts coming, Jake.

  • Comment number 36.

    Well done Jake

    The coverage was great and I thought you took over the presenting reigns very well. Its a long way away from CBBC. Jonathon Legard was a brilliant commentator and Martin Brundle was a good captue by the BBC. It was great to have no adverts so it was better to get filled in with the action instead. Keep up the good work, you have one of the best jobs at the BBC.

  • Comment number 37.

    Jake,

    I for one am really jealous of your new lifestyle.Aswell as being in V.I.P positions during the weekend,you have just completed leg one of your tour around the world,following what for me is the greatest sport on earth.Have you now realised what Sir Richard Branson also felt this weekend when interviewed that you are too a lucky _____ hahaha
    Anyways enjoyed reading your blog and its nice to see things in reality away from the track and between races.My dream is to save enough money to follow f1 around the world for a season:-)

  • Comment number 38.

    Great weekend of coverage (didn't miss the adverts!) and insightful blog. You sound like you can multitask very well. Looking forward to seeing if the Mclaren boys can sort their car problems...

  • Comment number 39.

    Oh just one more thing I really enjoyed the coverage all week but I can't understand why the fuel loads weren't discussed before the race now the fia has made them available.I know theres alot of maths involved but estimations would be nice,
    cheers Jake

  • Comment number 40.

    Another great blog Jake.
    As well as the fantastic main stream coverage I am greatly impressed by your Red Button and website coverage. If this was a pilot show I can't wait for main editions. Anticipating some great coverage from Malaysia.

    P.S.
    Hope Rex remembered to fetch the dogs in. (he's at a funny age)

  • Comment number 41.

    Title Seqence - Brilliant
    Music - The original & best!
    Jake - Smooth & professional
    DC - Would have liked to have heard more from him
    EJ - Waffled a bit - needs reeling in to let others have their say
    Branson - Swearing woke me up at whatever time in the morning it was!
    JL - OK commentry but hoping for some more insightful comments
    MB - An absolute star! He was he best thing about ITV's coverage and delighted he has joined the BBC
    Forum - superb. Rally enjoyed the more casual discussion. Ever thought of having one before the race?

    Thank you BBC and SKY+ - at least with Pause I can go and get a cup of tea! How I miss the adverts - NOT!!!

  • Comment number 42.

    Great blog Jake, as with the others very interesting.

    And well done to the whole BBC team the coverage was excellent. Great on-air team and The Chain back - mint!

  • Comment number 43.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 44.

    Hi Jake,
    Great blog. I think you all did an excellent job, well done. Loving all the 'extra' bit's the BBC are giving us, such as the interactive show after the main programme has finished, practice sessions etc. It's been really great. Can't wait for the next one.
    Congrat's again
    Caroline, Bournemouth

  • Comment number 45.

    Hello Jake,

    Fascinating insights as always. Loving the blog. All I can say is that if all of that was going on then it is a tribute to you for being so calm on screen and belying (if that's a word) the mayhem that was going on off it.

    Great start team.

  • Comment number 46.

    Hi Jake,

    First of all congratulations to you and the entire BBC team covering Formula 1. I have been following F1 avidly for the last 20 years, and the show you guys put together takes some beating!
    It is hard to believe this is the first you hosted an F1 show! The insight given by Eddy Jordan and David Coulthard is excellent, and Martin Brundle as usual was exceptional with his grid walk and commentary during the race. This was the first time I had the pleasure of hearing Jonathan Leggard commentating on a race and I thought he was exceptional as well. His enthusiasm for the sport was very evident, and he brought the race to life.
    Great to havve the Grand Prix show back on the BBC and see a British team and driver doing so well!
    I wish you guys all the best for the remainder of the season and look forward to watching your show for the rest of the season!

    My best wishes to all of the team!



    Luke

  • Comment number 47.

    I've been watching F1 for around 25 years and for me this is the best i have seen it in terms of coverage.
    Enjoying your Blogs Jake and i also thought you held the show together very well. It must be challenging and your blog confirms that.

    Never been a massive DC fan, but i have to say the guy has won me over. His insight into the sport and the comments he gives are a breath of fresh air compared to the 'sit on the fence / state the obvious' stuff we were used to hearing from the pit lane on the 'other' channel.

    As for EJ, i love the fact he is not as polished in front of the camera as you and DC. Its great to see as it makes the coverage a bit more edgy and i like the way he comes across as being quite opionated. You'll do well to keep him under control, but i think we need a contrast of personalities. I don't care whether i agree with everything he says, or DC for that matter - the important thing is they HAVE opinions.

    I also like the way you didn't over do it on the lewis side. ITV's coverage of him was over the top, ignored the other drivers on the grid and gave the impression the audience were a load of ill informed morans who would switch off if Lewis wasn't mentioned 24/7. I'm sure this isn't the case. Thats not a dig at Lewis, the guy proved he is a top quality driver in this race, let alone last year - and i'm not a massive Lewis fan either.

    As for J.Legard, i thought he did Ok. I've seen some negative comments which i'm sure have merit, but i think he'll be Ok with practice. Yeah he went off on one every now and again and missed things, but for a first attempt on TV it wasn't that bad and i was pleasantly surprised. Brundle was faultless as usual.

    Anyway, keep up the good work and well done on a polished and professional show that was entertaining and informative.

  • Comment number 48.

    Hi jake, great blog.
    For a first attempt at F1 presenting I must say I was very impressed, especially by the amount of coverage too. I watched the forum at the end of the coverage and thought you kept DC and jordan in good check. I also loved the comedy value of the guy crawling by your feet.
    I too hail from "upper stoke" and its nice to get a mention in the blog, i challenge you to get it into next weeks live broadcast and really put us on the map!
    Good luck to you and Brawn GP next week

  • Comment number 49.

    Hi Jake

    Another very interesting blog Jake am really enjoying them. Such a great insight to what is going on.

    Loved having F1 back the BBC. You all did a really good job like the BBC always does.

    Really enjoyed the interactive F1 forum after the main event a great idea whoever thought it up.

    And the thought of rain at the weekend. That will do nicely will mix things up nicely.

  • Comment number 50.

    Hello Jake,
    (and all behind the scenes at the beeb)

    Great blog. But I've got something else to add...

    I'd just like to say well done to you, DC, Eddie, John, Martin, Ted & Lee and everyone else we didn't see for a fantastic weekend of F1 broadcasting! Your hour long F1 forum was a particular treat - there was a feeling that anyone and everyone - either in the pits or at home with a phone could join in. Great stuff, keep up the good work!

    Brilliant!

  • Comment number 51.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 52.

    Really good stuff Jake, enjoyed the reality of it all> Still need an editor for grammatical mistakes. Looks bad!

  • Comment number 53.

    Well done Jake. I have to admit that I was not sure you would be able to pull it off, but you were excellent. Nice one.

    (Big thumbs up for the Forum too)

  • Comment number 54.

    Fantastic to see F1 back were it belongs. Jake did a great job, I thought Eddie and DC did a great job at putting some enthusiasm into the punditry. Jonathan Legard did a good job, and Martin Brundle was excellent as ever. One slight complaint was the presenting from the pit lane as the teams were driving the cars out, made it impossible to hear. Dunno were else you could do that bit from, but I think the informal style of presenting rather than in a studio worked well.

    One comment Jake, you might have to make an effort to balance how much talking DC and Eddie get to make, as Eddie was dominating a bit.

  • Comment number 55.

    Great blog, great programme. Well done jake, loving your work!

  • Comment number 56.

    Jake - just a simple 'well done' from me - you all did very well. Looking forward to developments and a massive argument arupting from your pundits (good luck controlling that one)

  • Comment number 57.

    You all did very well - it was very enjoyable coverage and the forum at the end, I was hoping it would never end. From us here at twitter.com/f1_updates , well done!

  • Comment number 58.

    Nice one Jake- agree with earlier comments that it's very insightful and interesting to read about what goes on behind the scenes, for the most part- you don't notice the calamity going on off camera!

    Really great to have Martin Brundle doing what he does best (ie. all the various parts he has to play - all executed well!)
    Liking Ted Kravitz- quite a talent to know whats going on in the Pitlane bedlam quite as quickly as he does, knows his stuff and seems to extract good information.
    Not much to see of Lee Mckenzie so far but seems fine!

    I found Jonathan Legards commentary of the Qualifying very much like he was still on radio, narrating every turn the cars went through and such like which just wasn't necessary. He also didn't seem to have a great deal of rapport with Martin on quali day.
    Pleasingly, much improved on race day- I guess it was to be expected that adjustments would need to be made. As with driving itself practice makes perfect! Sure he'll settle in and we'll become used to hearing him.

    Jake and DC- great, had reservations and was really pleased to find I enjoyed them very much, wasn't so keen on Eddie Jordan. I liked the fact he was keen on certain opinions, but you could see him trying to take over at certain points, and rambling on unnecessarily. Like Legard, much better on race day- but I think he needs some reigning in, it just wasn't very enjoyable watching him and DC disagreeing on every point almost for the sake of it.

    All in all very enjoyable! You pick holes because you can, which is the key point- you couldn't do so with ITV! Well done Jake and the Beeb!

  • Comment number 59.

    I nearly missed the GP myself!
    Woke up at 6:50am...the TV was on and I thought...NEARLY MISSED IT
    Still you lot did a fantasic job, keep it up.
    I liked the F1 Forum on the red button but I felt that with not just e-mails but comments from the 606 forums would have made it even more ineractive.
    But hey, not bad for the return of F1 to the BBC and to hear the Chain was brilliant and shows the BBC has not 'jazzed' it up like they did to the Snooker.

  • Comment number 60.

    Excellent blog, very good insight, not all as glamorous as people think! Absolutely loving the new season, new cars, new channel and new presenting team. Was delighted with the whole show from start to finish and really pleased for Jensen Button, his face told the whole story. You cant fake just what it meant to him winning that race. Truly was one of the best races ive viewed in years. Keep up the good work!

  • Comment number 61.

    Jake

    Well done, realy enjoyed you fronting the F1 show. Not too sure on the some of the lineup though.

    DC brilliant addition, but EJ does not seem to offer anything.

    Martin as professional as ever and I leave my judgement of Jonathan Legard for another couple of races. Personally I found the commetary from Anthony Davidson and David Croft to be far better.

    Ted Kravitz and Lee Mckenzie have the pit lane sown up.

    Looking forward to next weekend......

  • Comment number 62.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 63.


    Great Coverage of the weekend overall - can't wait for Malaysia. As Jake says this was effectively a rehersal which is fair enough.

    Hopefully you BBC folk will take on board viewers constructive feedback. So much of it was so very good - just a few niggles...

    *Practice Re-Runs on Red Button - please make the captions show Practice 1 or 2 on Friday so we can tell which session we're watching. (I think the live version did show Practice 2 ?)
    *On the Red Button, a caption to show when loops re-start would be useful so we can arrange to watch from the start (or even record with Freeview on 301 or 302).
    *Please show the full 1st 2nd 3rd place interviews. There's time, given that you're not tied by adverts. They don't have to be live (ITV often recorded them to show after the ads) just shown in full ASAP after the flag.
    *Please show the full hours build up (and updated follow up) on the Qualifying and Race re runs for those of us that aren't nocturnal - ITV did mostly. (Not sure if you did on the Red Button re run ?)
    *More post race interviews in the highlights show please.

    And The Chain.......Bliss.




  • Comment number 64.

    Great start Jake.

    I loved the whole bit right at the start before the Chain kicked in, the Beeb do those kind of emotive soundbits very well.

    JL seemed to come into his own during the first lap when it was all go, go, go but clearly is adapting to life with MB.

    MB was a star as always. The best addition without any doubt from ITV.

    Couple of requests:
    - Can we have Ted or Lee doing more commentaries on the pitstop from the pitlane (a bit like ITV used to do).
    - Can MB please pick a driver of the day (he may have done on Sunday morning I cant quite remember)
    - Can we please have a bit of the pre race build up talking about a special feature of the F1 car. Maybe viewers email in with questions etc (I know you have this at the end on the red button but a bit before hand could be good)
    - Can we watch the pole position lap again on the Sunday morning with MB doing a commentary on the key corners etc. I know he went out with DC to stand on the corners which was great but I felt a full run through of a lap after this would give people a clear idea (or use the excellent map on the website).

    I enjoyed the format and am looking forward to seeing what you replace the "meet the drivers" segment with for KL next week.

    Excellent start Jake. I thought you were very professional and clearly have a great passion for the sport. Your skills,for me, as a presenter and the Beebs excellence in big sport events, were further highlighted when watching the cringe worthy attempt at coverage ITV gave the boat race later on Sunday (thank god its back on the Beeb next year).

  • Comment number 65.

    Jake, can I extend a great well done to you and all the team for a great GP weekend. I enjoyed it as much as you obviously did. I enjoyed all the coverage, watched it all live, enjoyed watching the rerun later with the alternative audio stream. Anthony is good too.

    The Forum was fabulous and I really enjoy the use of the technology available to you. My son enjoyed the continuous running highlights too, even to the extent where even I was almost getting fed up of watching them again!! I had to laugh when you found a member of the crew under your chair fettling the wiring!! I also enjoyed the frankness of the discussions, none of this keeping it all just so and all agreeing with each other, apparent true debate and disagreement without falling out, therefore still being professional.

    Let me know if you need anyone to help out!

    Keep the blogging coming as this is taking it to the next level that your predecessors would never have thought of...

    Looking forward to Sepang. Will be there live for practice 1.

    GW

  • Comment number 66.

    Hi mate..
    as i said in your last blog..well done..it was a very refreshing presentation from yourself and again you should be very proud and you deserved your nite on the tiles afterwards.
    the one thing i was waiting for in the 1st hour of the show was martin's grid walk..one of THE highlights of the early presentation...and also i was waiting on how you would announce "the chain" and i noticed you did it a slightly different way on the afternoon presentation.

    again well done..cant wait till this weekend!

    connors-75

  • Comment number 67.

    Hi Jake

    Fantastic job done by everyone on the team. I thoroughly enjoyed the live coverage. I really liked the forum on the red button too. Admittedly though I fell asleep half way through the forum but that's not a reflection on you guys, it's just cos I've been ill for a few days and didn't have the energy to stay awake after 2 very early mornings in a row. I look forward to being able to see a full forum this weekend.

    Malaysia sounds like it's going to be an even better race if that's possible...love the rain, it makes the races unpredictable.

    To all at the BBC F1 Team, keep up the good work and thanks for a brilliant job done so far.

  • Comment number 68.

    Great work Jake, loving the blog and website, packed full of info and videos it is fantastic! Would love to see the red button post race forum you do on the iplayer so we can watch it online. Sounds like you are having a ball too, got any jobs going?!!

  • Comment number 69.

    Well done to all at the BBC. Superb job. For of those of us not lucky enough to be trackside it was a very involving broadcast and can't wait to see the rest of the season played out. Just think, when we get to Silverstone it could be the Battle of Britain, Button V Hamilton, Brawn V McLaren!!!
    Only a small suggestion, when the retiring drivers get interviewed in the pits whilst the race is ongoing I have often thought it would be good to have a small screen pop up in the corner so you can see their reaction as well as here it.
    Jake you must have been nervous at kick off time but you came across like you have been doing it for years!! The great thing was that the hustle and bustle going on behind you guys built up the atmosphere, just like it would be if us the viewers were there which is rare to get that translated on screen.

  • Comment number 70.

    Hi Jake,

    I am really enjoying the blog. I also thought the coverage was great yesterday, especially the forum.

    One question though, was it only me that felt that the sound wasn't quite right? The microphones looked awkward and the sound was not always clear - in addition, you guys sounded slightly disconnected form the environment in which you were sitting.

    This is a ninor gripe on what was a great opening weekend. Even the techies were laying down before you, DC and EJ.

    Great job.

  • Comment number 71.

    Jake,

    An excellent broadcast pal, you and the whole team nailed it. Talking to my mates at work today we all agreed that the red button interative stuff was ace too.

    I thought that Martin and Jonathan did a brilliant job of commentating and as always Mr Brundle's legendary grid walk was upto its usual high standard. I actually know Martin's brother, Robin, well my wife Victoria does, as he sold us a car from their VW dealership a couple of years ago, and Martin was also flying his helicopter from RAF Marham whilst I was busy trying to instruct new trainees on the art of refuelling a Tornado GR4 with engines running. From what I saw he needs to work on his landings a little.

    Looking forward to Malaysia next and your next blog as well, they are providing a revealing insight into life in the F1 fast lane.

    Good work fella!

  • Comment number 72.

    For your first F1 weekend I thought the you and the rest of the F1 team did a brilliant job. I love the interactivity with the BBC coverage, it's great to get involved, something that was missed on ITV. I'm enjoying reading the Blogs on the site, but do think we could have a bit more from Ted and Lee, I do agree that maybe Ted could explain the weights of the cars on the grid and maybe Lee could profile the team bosses etc for pre race section? Other than that excellent job.

  • Comment number 73.

    Another awesome blog post Jake.

    Big congrats to yourself and the whole BBC team for pulling off a great show at the weekend. Makes a nice, refreshing change from what ITV offered. The interactive forum is a GREAT idea from the BBC, I really enjoyed it and also found it amusing when that guy was crawling in from the left!

    Only gripe is that the interactive forum is not available on iPlayer. I may not be around to see all the forums and therefore it would be good to see them on the website. Other than that, a superb job by yourself and the rest of the crew. I really cannot wait for the next race in just a few days time!

    Ben

  • Comment number 74.

    good job jake. thought the coverage was fantastic .. even a little breathless at times and thanks to the blog now I know why! some great options on the red button, nice to have the different commentaries. Maybe the team could add a timing screen as one of the options (with an inset main feed)
    looking forward to malaysia

  • Comment number 75.

    Waking up to hear The Chain with an absolutely brilliant intro.. I knew then that the Formula 1 was truly back! You guys did such a great job! First thing i am happy about is the fact that i can now watch the Practice Sessions, something i havent been able to do before, so its truly amazing us viewers are able to do that now!

    The new cars look absolutely stunning and it was great to see them, without the advert breaks which with me being used to them, it being pleasant to just continue watching knowing there is no interruption.

    A bit more info on the Weights and potential strategy for drivers would be interesting to know on the build up i think too. The Interactive Features are truly brilliant, and i know that this years Formula 1 season is going to be one of the most Memorable thanks to the BBC.

    Keep it up Jake and the rest of the team!

    Luke.C

  • Comment number 76.

    Hi Jake,

    Thanks to you and all of the BBC team for a great weekend of TV!

    The interactivity with the forum, blogs and red button options was fantastic.

    My thoughts on the people in front of the camera/with the mikes;

    You presented really enthusiastically and fluidly; some parts of the program seemed genuinely and visibly done on the fly which made it that bit more exciting. You seemed to react to changing situations quickly.
    DC - never liked so much as a driver, but always liked as a person; he speaks well and is quite opinionated which is good. Would love to see him do some demonstrating features in the car...
    EJ - A little dissapointed ot be honest. He ran my fav F1 team and seems to be a really genuine guy with strong opinions, however he buts in too much and does like to waffle; he needs to be more to the point. He did look like he was going to give us a bit of Val Doonican the way he holds the mike too! Reel him in a little - DC and yourself were very patient with him imo...
    TK - Took me a number of years to get used to him, thought he bumbled his way through things and made too many mistakes with ITV, however he sounded more confident and assured with his role this weekend.
    LMcK - Really suprised we didn't see more of her. I thought (and hoped) she was doing most of the additonal features and bits along with Martin, but her absence was notable. What I did see was good though. Lovely voice and she is far prettier than you boys! I think JB already has a soft spot for her! :)
    MB - As good as ever. Will take time to gel with JL. Great to see him in the forum. Would be great to hear his driver of the day. Hope to see him do features similar to the ones he did for ITV with various cars.
    JL - Impressed. Good for Martin to have someone who knows what he talking about along side him. Detailed commentary I thought, which I guess comes from describing F1 to 5 Live listeners for many years. Must be a bit rusty after a few years off from F1 and i'm not sure if he has done TV before, so it bodes well. Would like to see him in the forum as well.
    I really appreciate the time and effort you guys are putting in and I am starting to understand that your life may not be as easy and glamourous as many would like to think it is...or if it is glamourous you have to work very hard for it! I would give everything to be in your shoes!
    I also appreciate the extra time many of you are taking to do the blogs - it gives us a great insight behind the scenes and makes you feel a bit more included when the cameras switch off.
    I think you can chalk race one up as a victory for yourself - wicked! :)
    Cheers, Alan.

  • Comment number 77.

    From a female perspective and an avid F1 fan - I thought Jake did a great job on his first F1 Grand Prix - it was one of the best races for overtaking I have seen in a long time - I was fed up with Ferrari getting their own way for so long.
    Great to see Jensen on the podium again - long time in coming - Honda must be eating their hats.
    Looking forward alreay to Malaysia.

  • Comment number 78.

    Yes, more boring praise!!
    A really tremendous first weekend for me. I rather lost interest in F1 after the BBC lost it to ITV but have been lured back again this year. Compared to 12 years ago the coverage is on a different planet! Jake, there was loads of ill informed negativity on the blogs about you, so I was really pleased you made such a great fist of it. At this rate there will be awards galore heading the team's way. It was a consummate first attempt given that so many behind the scenes were either new to tv F1 and no doubt some were still at school the lat time the Beeb had F1 rights! I hope Mr Mosey has been in touch to add his praise too... lol

  • Comment number 79.

    I didn't like Eddie Jordan's contribution - rude and attention-seeking, with a whiney voice sounding like a child. Keep him in check!

  • Comment number 80.

    Enjoyable and thoroughly professional. Welcome back the beeb! Nice work, Jake!

  • Comment number 81.

    Great blog Jake, I am really enjoying reading it.

    Congrats to you and the rest of the BBC Sport team for your coverage of the opening race.

    It's great to have F1 back on the BBC, the place I first watched it and became hooked. Also fantastic to hear "The Chain" again on the opening titles. I know they've had a mixed reception, although I quite like them, even if it's taken some getting used to.

    I felt ITV did a great job when they got the F1 coverage, back in 1997. It was particularly great when Steve Rider joined the team. Jim Rosenthal was great (I met him at Silverstone in 2003) but you can tell that Steve is a genuine fan.

    Considering this was your first race I thought you did an outstanding job and you looked like you have presented F1 all of your life.

    ITV did raise the bar with their coverage, but I have to say that your coverage of Australia has raised it even higher. It was fantastic to watch the race in it's entirety without adverts and I particularly enjoyed the F1 Forum after the main event. I am pleased that so much time was given to analyse the fantastic opening race (despite both Ferrari's retiring)!

    Looking forward to equally great coverage for Round 2 in Malaysia!

  • Comment number 82.

    How much do the contributors making the comments above (and below) get paid by the BBC?

  • Comment number 83.

    Hey Jake, great blog and congrats to the BBC on a successful return to F1! I'm over in KL just now with work so will catch the race this weekend live. Due to be raining so will make for an exciting race!

  • Comment number 84.

    Welcome back BBC !! The weekend coverage was excellent both on the tv and the internet, I can't tell you how pleased I am that we have the professional (ad free) coverage back where it belongs....

    My only criticism would be for Jonathan Legard, sorry but he just didn't cut it for me, Martin Brundle was excellent as always but I found Jonathan grating and wished that Martin spoke more !

    Other than that not a bad word to say - can't wait for this weekends race now, I suspect another strong Brawn performance but will be looking forward to the other teams closing the gap when the races come to Europe.

  • Comment number 85.

    Great blog, nice to see some of what goes on behind the scenes, and I must say, exceptional BBC coverage over the weekend. Good to see F1's presence on tv is in safe hands - greatly enjoyed both the qualifying and race shows. Wishing I wasn't the last man in the country to get digital tv so I could participate more in the interactive stuff!

  • Comment number 86.

    Could DC & EJ look any more fed up? Maybe these millionaires are unhappy with having to work through the recession? It would be interesting to see their expenses claims!

  • Comment number 87.

    Hi Jake

    good start - better than expected - keep up the good work and am sure you will improve during the season and be a worthy successor to SR - like your blog and will come back to read more in future

    Thought DC was excellent - EJ needs to be reined in a bit - but liked the slight edginess between them - fantastic to hear different points of view from their past experiences as an exF1driver and exF1owner

    Martin Brundle - well what can one say - pure genius as ever - congrats to the BBC for ensuring his transfer to the new team - just can we have more of him - eg the whole lap and not just certain corners - great he joined the forum

    Not impressed with Jonathan Legard though - has to realise that he is no longer the Radio5live commentator and does not need to describe what we can all see happening - needs to be more sparing with his talking, so MB the master can give us his insights (which were far more illuminating), and actually inform us about the ramifications of what is on the screen rather than just telling us the obvious

    Kravitz and McKenzie - perhaps a little more contributions re background info needed from both of them

    I did watch the race live and turned over to red button - excellent - however my son did not manage to get up in the morning to see it live and was disappointed that the BBC did not show a complete re-run of the show but just the race

    Bad mistake BBC - please rectify for future grand prix - know you are still learning after all the ITV years but to show Hyacinth Bucket again instead of the before and after race action was I'm sure a real disappointment to many fans who missed out earlier because of the timing of races in Oz - also to have more live reflections a few hours after the race would be good - more interviews with all the drivers as mentioned above perhaps

    However loved the fact we didn't miss any of the action - and managed to use the safety car periods for cups of tea and brekkie lol - that was all I ever used the ad breaks for in the past and this way don't miss any of the vital action - yippee

    Keep up the good work and think the majority will find it has been a very positive move for F1

  • Comment number 88.

    I wasn't actually sure the BBC coverage was going to work that well, you have to admit ITV did a great job. Couple this with the fact that I have to watch it on the net (I am in Switzerland) and it could have been a crappy start to the season.

    As it turns out, I thought you guys did a great job. DC and Eddie are give a great insight but bobxmerrison was right, they did look a little miserable.

    Fantastic day for Brawn GP.. made up for them... keep up the good work...

  • Comment number 89.

    Thanks for the behind-the-scenes insight. Thoroughly enjoyed the coverage. The live-on-car red-button channel was great - had that showing on laptop with live FIA timing from formula1.com, with main race showing on the TV - Ross Brawn couldn't have had more info!

    Some constructive comments for the team:

    1) After show analysis is a great idea - but after 3 hours, the Mrs is not pleased with another hour devoted to F1. How about making it available on iplayer so that we can catch up later?
    2) Just occasionally Ledgie forgot it was TV and the words and pics were mismatched.

    All in all a great first show. Looking forward to a great summer...

  • Comment number 90.

    Really impressed with your hosting. Just right. The whole team did great - JL and MB were fine in the commentary box but I am sure will gel better in the next race or two. DC insight was detailed and bang up-to-date.

    The only real downside for me was Eddie Jordan. I had to fast-forward through his bits at the end as he was embarrassing, very rude in hogging the microphone and obsequious around Richard Branson (although it is great to see him getting involved in F1). I hope the producer/director tackles this head on and addresses the issue with Eddie directly as he did make some good observations (as well as some irrelevant ones) , otherwise it could ruin the pre and post race chat for many people.

  • Comment number 91.

    Congratulations on surviving your first F1 broadcast!

    There were, as you'll know, a few rough edges; but for the first time the team's worked together on such a demanding project it was one heck of a baseline from which to start.

    As others have said, please get EJ to reign it in a bit: he's a great guy and carries a phenomenal amount of knowledge, but there's a thin line between having the "gift of the gab" and full-blown verbal diarrhea!

    The interactive forum after the show was a welcome addition, it's a brilliant way of imparting more information and analysis without alienating casual viewers. You could do with having a similar show after qualifying too.

    Good luck for Malaysia, having been there a few years ago I know how much the humidity and temperature can take it out of you.

  • Comment number 92.

    Hello,

    Fantastic. Had tears in my eyes when The Chain started playing! Watched F1 since 1976 and this was by far the most balanced and professional broadcast I've seen - not bad after 12 years!
    Jake is a star - so professional, DC and MB also. Eddie is a bit gobby, but entertaining. JL seems very capable and his rapport with MB will no doubt improve, though it wasn't bad by any stretch of the imagination.
    Great coverage, loved the race (well done the Brawn GP team), found the red button stuff brilliant. Keep it up - and well done to all!

  • Comment number 93.

    Why was Vettel fined for driving a damaged car? I've watched countless numbers of drivers limping around with damaged cars, no front wings etc.

    Also, FIA is trying to encourage overtaking and exciting races, yet penalise Vettel again for fighting for position and having, what is in my opinion a racing accident.

    I hope the stewards don't ruin a promising season with bizzare rule decisions (like they handed out last season)

  • Comment number 94.

    Working as a runner on Roy & HG's Planet Norwich must seem a lifetime away now, eh, Jake?

    Missed the race itself but loved having the abridged highlights on the red-button loop...

  • Comment number 95.

    Excellent coverage, wonderful lack of ad breaks, great theme music, great presenters...

    only one problem...

    I am so glad i am not the only one to find EJ somewhat enjoying the sound of his own voice. I really hope the beeb take our views on board, reign him in and encourage him to share fairly the broadcasting time with DC, just because EJ may not want to hear his views, we do!!

    Great blog, lovely to hear what happens in your day, keep it coming x

  • Comment number 96.

    Good to See F1 back where it belongs and with the proper theme tune :-)

    Hard to see anyone catching Button in the Brawn whatever the final diffuser ruling and whatever the scoring system Button could sow the championship up by the end of the Hungarian GP :-)

    I wonder if Honda will be wanting to supply Brawn with free engines next year ?

    As Murray used to say anything can happen and it probably will :-)

    I won't even contemplate what James Hunt was thinking at the time :-)

  • Comment number 97.

    Jake, another good blog!

    I thought you did an exceptional job over the weekend managing to balance all of the various demands of the different constituencies within the F1 viewing audience. A few people have been saying that Eddie Jordan needs reigning-in a little, I'm not sure I agree. I enjoyed his candid and enthusiastic, straight talking approach. Yes he did talk a bit too much, but I'd be a lot more disappointed if he was straight jacketed into towing a line that might lead to him making comments based on viewership figures rather than opinion. I'm sure EJ will settle over time and the problem will self moderate. So don't change anything (except maybe DC's white trousers)!!!

    Martin Brundle was excellent (do we expect anything else?) and Ted Kravitz put-in another very competent performance. I actually thought that Ted would have made for a very strong lead presenter before they announced you. BBC people need not be surprised by his abilities, most motorsport fans will suggest that he was almost sublime while presenting the BTCC in 2008.

    As for commentators, I'm sure I'll get used to Jonathan Legard and he'll improve as he gets used to the job. I guess that it just didn't help him when David Croft was absolutely brilliant during Friday practice. JL is knowledgeable, enthusiastic and experienced, he has all the ingredients to succeed but David Croft has something more and I can't put my finger on it.

    Anyway, well done and good luck for Malaysia!

  • Comment number 98.

    Great blog Jake.

    I too didn't realise you were 7' 5" tall.

    Great coverage from the BBC - especially the red button stuff - and nice to be able to see Friday practice on the TV with commentary.

    Not sure about JL, I much preferred James Allen's enthusiasm. However, the David Croft / Anthony Davidson partership is great. Anthony's insights as a driver are particularly interesting to hear.

  • Comment number 99.

    Excellent coverage - but can the interactive forum go on to iplayer or be repeated later on the red button. I missed it as I overslept for the start of the race so I couldnt watch the forum without finding out who had won.

  • Comment number 100.

    It wasn’t Sir Richard Branson’s use of the b-word on air that surprised me so much as how tubby he is. He looked like a performing seal! I hope he continues to bring good luck to Brawn, Jenson and Rubens though.

 

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