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My photo diary from the European Grand Prix

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Jake Humphrey | 16:04 UK time, Tuesday, 25 August 2009

This was my home for the Valencia GP. I took this photo at 6.30am on race day after I'd packed my bags. We were lucky as, at times, the journey to the track can be long. But we were just minutes from the harbour this weekend, which was cool. It might not look particularly glamorous, but the room becomes my home for the weekend as I squirrel myself away each evening to get my script written and research done... My hotel room in Valencia - and autograph-hunters gather early on race-day

It was then off to the track, past the fans gathering outside waiting for drivers to sign autographs...

...and we ended up parking near to Jenson's personal parking spot. I know he's driving for a new team - but you'd think, 10 races into the season, the organisers would have got the leading teams name right!The race organisers in Valencia mistake a rare error

Team BBC make their way towards the broadcasters area: the long shadows show you it was pretty early. We are usually at the track around 8am on race day...and we need to be. The mornings just fly by.

During a race weekend we try and get around the track if we can. It really helps myself and commentator Jonathan Legard - Ledgie - do a better job, particularly me, as I've never been to the circuits before. I'm always amazed by how the tracks are so much more extreme than they look on TV. They are often tighter, steeper and more dramatic than you'd expect...not great when we decide to run them! Do you like the caps? We were lent them as the sun was so punishing... I felt like I should have been a driver on the podium!My BBC F1 colleagues head to the gate - Jonathan Legard and I - The F1 crew mingles

Here's the team gathering outside our production office before starting work. I'm not sure why they aren't heading up the steps... perhaps they're not too keen to get working!! This is actually a portable office and Pete drives it for us, sets it up and stocks it up with good food for lunch over a race weekend. Pete's an important guy.

Richard is the director for our coverage. I think at this point he was making his way up the stairs and back into the office while I was telling him we were all off to the gallery to watch the VT parts of the show with all the on-air team.

You see the two clocks on the wall here in the gallery. One was at local time (at 11.20), the other telling us UK time. It's important for me to watch the VTs so I can make sure my introductions are correct and work out what to say off the back of them. This room is where the producer, director, PA and the rest of the team spend the weekend talking down my ear. If you haven't listened to my race weekend talkback then click here.Producer Richard heads into the fray - The gallery itself

By midday we're usually in the paddock getting our gear on. It's at this point that the adrenaline starts to pump. The viewing figures this year are the highest for 10 years and when you know that five or six million people will be watching it can be really daunting... Mind you, I can always rely on EJ to remind me not to take things too seriously!

Once we've done the pre-race show we head to one of the teams motorhomes to watch the race. This is such an interesting time for me. To be with David and Eddie as we discuss the goings on teaches me a huge amount about racing.David Coulthard, Eddie Jordan and Martin Brundle prepare - EJ raises a laugh!

Then, once the race is over, hopefully you are one of the one million people that decides to press red and joins us for the F1 Forum. You can see my race notes and PDA receiving your emails whilst DC checks his phone and Mart and Eddie catch up.

Post race, we usually get out of the circuit and head home as soon as possible... but not this weekend. A late flight meant we could all enjoy the English guys winning the Ashes. At this point I usually chat to the bosses about how the show went. Remember I haven't seen them for about five hours.My bosses and the F1 production team wind down watching England clinch the Ashes

It always amazes me how quickly things move on in life. On Sunday Rubens [Barrichello] is racing towards glory, a few days later the circuit is empty and returns to being a normal road. The same on the TV side. After lots of set-up and prep, it's a case of clearing up as quickly as possibly. Particularly this weekend, as the same stuff will be waiting for us when we arrive in Spa for the Belgian Grand Prix in a few days time.The packing up process begins - My flight ticket back home to London

So, team BBC gather at the airport. Sunil, in the front of shot, has a rolled up Jenson Button poster that he got signed for a friend, Ledgie is in the background talking to a McLaren employee... perhaps about their pitstop incident!Just slightly jaded after a long weekend, the BBC F1 crew awaits their flight back to London

Finally it's time to board the plane - and I have a chat with the man who masterminded the race win. Amazingly, Ross Brawn was talking to us about cricket. He even actually texted this very site after the race to wish Straussy and the guys all the best!Ross Brawn's email to the BBC Sport website's live text commentary of the final Ashes TestMyself and F1 editor Mark chat to Ross Brawn - The somewhat cramped plane back to London!

Here is Jock Clear, race engineer for Rubens with some very special cargo indeed... the trophy for winning.Producer Sunil considers the content of Brawn GP engineer Jock Clear's hefty luggage

Mind you, I'm surprised he managed to fit it into the plane. It was quite a tight fit, but I'm not surprised they didn't want the trophy in the hold.

We eventually landed at Luton and I quietly opened the front door before getting into bed next to my wife at about 1.30am on Monday morning. Race day is a long day, but a rewarding one. And I can't wait to do it all over again this weekend at Spa...see you then.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Jake you do a brilliant job both here and on TV coverage -- keep it up!

  • Comment number 2.

    Hi Jake
    I have to say a great read as always! Great to see how it all works behind the camera. I dont know how you cope with all that information in you ear?
    It was a fab show this weekend cant wait until next week!

  • Comment number 3.

    Team Brown GP!!!

    HaHa!

    Must be the colour of Button's pants as he stumbles towards a WDC!

  • Comment number 4.

    Excellent as always! Just wondering exactly how many people do the BBC have out there and on the flyaway races what do you do for a production office?

  • Comment number 5.

    Great blog as always Jake. Looking forward to Belgium - hopefully some rain to accompany it!

  • Comment number 6.

    Cool Blog Jake,

    The pics look amazingly cool. Spa looks like it is going to be another great race and im so glad im not working sunday now so I am able to see it.

    Keep Up Fantastic Work and cant wait until sunday...Roll On Spa!

  • Comment number 7.

    So Martin doesn't fly home with the Riff Raff then?? Or does he bike to all the Euro races?

  • Comment number 8.

    These photo diaries are really interesting. I like seeing behind-the-scenes.

    Thanks Jake. Enjoy Spa.

  • Comment number 9.

    Guys, Easyjet on the BBC dollar is about right... but was Ross on Easy jet, probably means the Virgin deal has fallen through for definite then :-) Hard work but worth the growing viewing figures I am sure.

    Thanks for sharing this journey with us, immensely enjoyable.

    Steve

  • Comment number 10.

    Great blog Jake.

    Not sure about the cap though.

  • Comment number 11.

    More good stuff Jake, thanks for sharing. You're in for a treat at Spa, the place is stunning

  • Comment number 12.

    yet again i find myself wondering why? keep to the F1 that is what we want to see and hear about not Jakey boy bigging himself up. Who really gives a jott about all this back slapping. BBC need to get the race coverage and commentary sorted and stop all the fluff.

  • Comment number 13.

    Nice blog as per usual Jake. Good to hear the F1 Forum is doing so well on the viewing figures front, it's the best part of the BBC's coverage!

    Is there any chance of the BBC doing a feature on 'F1 Communications', the broadcasting arm of FOM? You could show what goes into transporting and setting up all the equipment at a GP, then show what goes into producing the weekends coverage.

    It'd be pretty cheap to do too, I imagine. Good for when your on a tight budget. ;)

  • Comment number 14.

    Like the behind the scenes stuff. Very interesting reading. Interesting to see Ross Brawn fly on economy class. I stupidly thought he would have is own private jet or something.

  • Comment number 15.

    Jake you are so lucky to have a job like that! Pictures look great.

    Love reading your blogs, just keep it up!
    Hope Spa's a good race

  • Comment number 16.

    I'm loving the behind the scenes stuff, Jake. I'm enjoying the coverage more and more and the blog and your tweets just complement the TV coverage spot on !

    Good to see Brawn back on top again wasn't it. Even better news with the sponsorship deals for next year confirmed, plus a possible fortune for winning the constructor's title.

    Enjoy Spa, one of my favourite venues, but I can't make it this year, gutted!

  • Comment number 17.

    Quite simply another great blog. I feel less a watcher and more involved all the time. I am not a "techie" just a lover of F1 and you manage to bring it to me and make me feel part of it, not just an observer. I just wish I was with you (even on easy jet) as you go to Spa. One place I would put on my map for a great race. Relying on you to tell us all about it. Just to say if you did make a gaff on air, I think all of us would understand as you have shown us so clearly what happens behind the scenes. Hope we all have a great GP. And hope Valencia is dropped!

  • Comment number 18.

    Another great blog/Sunday broadcast from you and the team Jake. Looking forward to this weekend, let's hope we get a bit of rain to spice things up in the race!

  • Comment number 19.

    Liking these blogs Jake, nice room, looks BBC-ish.
    But its nice to see what you do off the camera and also what we dont see.
    I would also like to see how FOM actually get the production done just like someone mentioned above.
    Im sure that FOM would allow someone to look around and show how its done and must be different from years ago when the Host Broadcaster would do it.
    Keep these blogs up Jake...they are fantastic.

  • Comment number 20.

    Great piccies and I don't believe that you're packed up in the same time it takes the main staff of the F1 tams to finish ahead of you. I stiill can't find the shot of all the teams cheering Rubens to his tenth win (same amount as Hammy and only a race after)

  • Comment number 21.

    Jake, you're doing an absolutely fantastic job by bringing the "behind the scenes" aspects of the sport/coverage to us fans.

    Easily the best man for the job. Hooray for Jake!

  • Comment number 22.

    Great blog once again, after another weekend of top notch coverage. Also thank EJ for keeping up the BBC F1 tradition of pink shirts.

  • Comment number 23.

    Also, if you get a chance,have a word with Bernie about getting the coverage in HD!....Or ask Martin to ask him before speaking to the prime minister for social affairs for Belgian government!

  • Comment number 24.

    love the blog, just watched the race then the forum.

    The behind the scences pic's were inspired so who ever asked you to them on twitter, well done. I love the fact you do stuff like this, it makes us feel part of the team and when you occasionly comment on the main show or the red button something that someone has brought up on this comments section of the blog, makes me laugh and glad to know that you read these pages after you have posted your blog. (and liked the pink shirt as well)

    Amanda
    x

  • Comment number 25.

    #12 whred5

    Jake isn't 'biggin himself up'. Jake asks us what we want him to blog about and this is what we ask him to do.
    If you you even bothered to read the bit on the top right hand side of every blog of Jake's, this what he has written down. This is what his blogs are about

    'Some of you may know who I am from CBBC, others from The Olympics, Sports Personality or my other BBC Sport presenting work. Now I'm presenting the BBC's F1 coverage and I'll be using this blog to share my experiences of life on the circuit.'

    And this is exactly what he does, and the people who follow him really enjoy these blog's.
    Just read them before you pass your judgement. Jake is a normal bloke, who has the wonderful oppertunity to do something we would all love to do (and we are all extremely jealous and a quite a bit in awe as well). Not only does he get to talk to all thoses amazing drivers and teams and fly all around the world. He has to listen to about 6 or so people in his ear all talking, remember what he is saying, listen to the people he is interviewing and come up with intellgent questions, juggle between DC and EJ, miss getting run over by Toyatas and he gets to fly on Easy Jet/Iberia Airlines. This is not an easy job.

    Fair enough if you do not like this blog, but please check what this site is about before you make a 'pop' at the person wriiting it. As you are complaining that he writting about stuff that he clearly says he is going to write about.

  • Comment number 26.

    Great blog, Jake..

    I always watch the red button coverage..

    From 9am on a Friday, Saturday practice, and then the forum after race... all the red button stuff is info-packed and interesting..

    Thanks for your time in the forum!

    J

  • Comment number 27.

    Have to admit ITV made a huge effort in presenting F1 in a detailed and interesting manner. BBC have learnt from this and exceeded what they did, and they dont have adverts!

    I hope that the BBC keep this up as it is rekindling the enthusiasm i had for the sport

  • Comment number 28.

    great blog jake, like most of the others commenting i love the behind the scenes stuff, and to whred5 you are wrong the blog is meant to be about jake thats what a blogs for you "insert expletive"!!!!! keep the pics comming, shows us an area we never get to see even if we go to a race as we are penned out the padock.

  • Comment number 29.

    Jake, good coverage, and may i say, u do look rather like Kimi with ur cap on

  • Comment number 30.

    the best thing about the coverage of sport on the BBC are the blogs, and the best things about the blogs are you Jake, so well done n keep up the good work

  • Comment number 31.

    Thanks for the photos, a pleasure to share them for us.

    Evidence on the point you made in the F1 Racing interview, the irony how F1 can be out of touch with the fans and yet are open to the media and the other way round with football.

    Can't imagine Sir Alex sharing a bottle with a BBC producer...



    PS. As a license fee payer I'm happy to see that we have photographic proof of BBC employees not abusing their expenses on lavish hotels :)


  • Comment number 32.

    great job this past weekend jake, was superb to watch, and you presented it well..

    love your blogs mate, go out of my way to read them :)

    keep up the good work

  • Comment number 33.

    Brilliant coverage again from the BBC.

    Jake - Fantastic job! I must admit I've only just started reading your blogs but I'll be sure to keep up-to-date with them from now on. I like the way you manage to give the readers an insiders view of what goes on before, during and after each race.

    F1 in HD next year maybe?

  • Comment number 34.

    Go Team Brown!! Love it!! Always enjoy your blogs Jake, I really do like behind-the-scene photos and you letting us know what goes on. Keep up the good work.

  • Comment number 35.

    Absolutely love the BBC's coverage this year! much better than ITV, Keep up the good work Jake!

  • Comment number 36.

    It's all been said above - great coverage by yourself and the BBC. Have to say that the post-race interviews and banter make it so much better than anything that's gone before!

    I've been to Spa, I wouldn't like to run around the track I can tell you. If you do run / walk it ;o) I think it would be worth taking a film crew with you to show just how steep and undulating the track is. You just don't get a grasp of this when you watch it on TV.

    Cheers and keep up the good work!

    Rob

  • Comment number 37.

    I thought that Ross Brawn text on Test Match Special was a wind-up but it now turns out that it isn't! Excellent blog, love the photos! Please get more from Spa!

    Sean

  • Comment number 38.

    Hey Jake - great blog as per usual. I was wondering what happens to DC, EJ and MB after the GP (I can't see any of them on any of your airport photos)? It would be great as a future feature to see what happens during a race weekend from a driver's perspective, but I guess they're far to busy for that. Anyway, keep up the fantastic work and have a good 'un in Spa.

  • Comment number 39.

    Jake great blog as always.

    Do you guys charter a jet to get out to the races or join the F1 teams on their chartered jets? My reason for asking is that you always fly into/out of Luton but there are no flights between Luton and Valencia.

  • Comment number 40.

    GOOd stuff this humphrey we never got this on ITV and it gives the fans more insight and that i think the bbc effort on the f1 website is first class this year

    You must be over the moon this year youve got one of the best jobs in the world and you've done alright this year, though youve gotta get walker back in that commentary box if you cant then get ben edwards barry nutall or get john watson invloved at some point as those dudes know their stuff, legard could do qualifying and then get one of the others to do the race commentary

  • Comment number 41.

    Great blog and good to see a different perspective of a race weekend. Your obviously someone who's enjoying the racing and that comes through on your commentary, as you have a good rapport with DC and EJ who are also doing a top job. Hope F1 stays on the BBC for a long time!

  • Comment number 42.

    Great coverage of the race, i always enjoy how your studio is the pitlane instead of an office a mile from the racing, it gives a sense of passion invested into this sport even if you occasionally can't hear what some people are saying over engine noise (schumacher) but that you got to expect. The last two races have been a touch boring, but that's circuit layout. The belgium grand prix always offers a lot of excitement so i'm looking forward to it.

    Any chance you can explain how someone can go from being an average cameraman to one working in F1?

    Once again great coverage, and great blog, it always interesting to know what goes on behind the scenes.

    Go Rubens! Been waiting for him to win for a while.

  • Comment number 43.

    Great job Jake

    I always wanted your job thinking it was easy. to be honest i was unsure about your appontment to the position but i like being proved wrong and you have done that.
    Oh well i shall sit back and do the watching and leave the good work to you guys.

    bring on spa

  • Comment number 44.

    Jake

    You've certainly carved a place for yourself in the F1 world. Loving your blogs and your coverage has been great. Great piece in F1 racing too by the way.

    Off the Spa myself tomorrow with a friend and our sons ... Flying out from heathrow, nice. Cannot wait, only 2 sleeps left :-)

    Glenn Lovell

  • Comment number 45.

    Fantastic blog Jake, I wish other TV presenters were like this.

    On the next gridwalk when Martin meets Bernie could he pleeeeeease ask about HD feeds? It would be a relevant question as the BBC has an HD channel and I'm sure many of your viewers would want to know why he said there would be HD when the BBC's deal was announced about this time last year yet nothing's happened.

    One question though - could you make sure EJ finds the light switch at his Spa hotel room so he doesn't get dressed in the dark again? :)

  • Comment number 46.

    Good blog. Almost felt part of it. The shows are great and something I look forward to.

    But my main gripe is the Jonathan Legards commentary. Tried my best to warm up to him, but it sticks out odd in the whole program. So, please...please do something about it.

    Oh...and I'm not the usual complaining sorts....I so strongly feel about this.

    Thanks for the rest of BBC team for their great work.

  • Comment number 47.

    Jake, your behind the scenes blogs make it much easier for us mortals to relate to the goings on of the F1 circus.

    When reading the part about you catching the plane back with the Brawn and McLaren technicians back to the UK, I thought about the members of the teams who have to drive from location to location on the motorhomes.

    I was wondering whether as part of the Monza coverage if you could get it arranged so you and a film crew could travel down to the circuit with one of the UK based teams (ideally McLaren because of just how much stuff they have to transport) so we can see that part of the process.

    Of course, I would not just want to see the road trip itself, but the preparation/loading and the unloading/deployment at each end of the journey. I would love to see them deploying the McLaren and Ferrari motorhomes.

    Would this be possible to arrange? Monza is the last European race so it would be the last opportunity to get this done.

    Thanks again for all the blogs - keep them up, they are by far and away the best part of the BBC online coverage.

  • Comment number 48.

    What is wrong with everyone?
    This blog is so dull it almost made me cry, the pictures alone are essentially pointless. Oh look! My bed where I sleep. Oh look! A blurred photo of my boarding card. Great stuff Jacob. I can't wait to smirk at your next blog.
    Stop humouring him, so he can then learn to write something interesting and INFORMATIVE.
    Mark Easton and Tim Vickery write the best blogs on the BBC.

  • Comment number 49.

    Great job Jake and looks like you have lots of fun. I think that you should introduce a new feature whereby a member of the general viewing public (pick me please!!) should get to join you and the team for the weekend and then take part in the F1 forum after the race. That would be cool :)

  • Comment number 50.

    Hi Jake

    Great blog for Valencia, but the next race is the "daddy" of them all Spa. This will be the 20th time my brother and I have been to this epic venue, and we now go with our teenage sons. If you want some real atmosphere sights and sounds the main campsite in Francorchamp is the place to go, particularly at night. A few shots in this area would be great for your race day opening sequence, would love to show you the ropes.

  • Comment number 51.

    JAKE!!! JAKE!!!!! OI!!!YOU LISTENING????????

    Great, I know you read these responses so may as well try my luck!!!

    My missus is never gonna let me watch the race in Singapore (it just so happens it's our 5th wedding anniversary that weekend). So, I thought, maybe, just maybe, a quick mention on the box about my lovely wife Zoe would do the trick. What d'ya say mate, can I count on ya?

    I suppose all I can do in return is keep complimenting you and the Beeb on producing some really good TV. I think the relaxed nature of the production really lets the viewer cross some boundaries in feeling part of the action.

    Oh, one more favour, will ya let me know through a response as to when you'll make the mention? Just so I can prime my wife......

    I'd buy you a beer, but not sure where to send it to...

    Cheers Jake (thanks for listening if nothing else).

    Yours waiting hopefully, not wanting to miss the Singapore grand prix....

    The other F1 Mole.

  • Comment number 52.

    Not sure if this is the best place but here goes anyway. I have a couple of questions I would love to hear the answers to, ideally from your DC, EJ and you good self!
    1. When was the last time there was actually an overtake for first position on the track, and not in the first corner as that doesn’t count!
    2. Is there any kind of advantage to having the first and last pit garages what with the little bit of extra fuel you need or tyre wear etc?

    Am heading off to Spa tonight for the weekend, if you see four guys in St Georges costumes then give us a wave!

    cheers.

  • Comment number 53.

    @NickOfAvon

    Jake is not a pundit, he is the interface between the viewers and the pundits. Unlike previous anchors, and the anchors of other sports, he has a genuine enthusiasm not just for the sport but the whole experience of just being there.

    The reason he doesn't try to give in depth insight to the technical aspects of the sport, the politics or other aspects of F1 news is because he knows it would be pointless - it would be like any other fan voicing their opinion and there is enough opinion already floating around the news.

    What his blog provides is almost like the special features on a DVD, the behind the scenes look at what goes on. He brings a sense of reality to the whole affair and makes us realise that it is tangiable and not all millionaires on yachts - he makes it much more accessible.

    If you want in depth analysis, then read the pundits' blogs. Jake's blog is that of a genuine fan giving a 'fans-eye-view' of the F1 experience. The fact that is done like a regular blog, with photos of the hotel room and boarding ticket, is all the better as it makes it something we can all relate to.

  • Comment number 54.

    Thanks for more of the behind the scenes action Jake. I would agree with a couple of posts above about seeing what goes into transporting the F1 team kit to European races, and the set up for the FOM television production.

    I certainly enjoy reading your blog. I would suggest that those who dont enjoy it not to read it in future. For more F1 insight read the blogs by Andrew Benson or F1 mole, which regularly features Ted Kravitz. But please keep blogging.

  • Comment number 55.

    Great insight once again Jake, really enjoyed reading it. After a hot, sweaty and busy weekend like that you may not think so but you are a very lucky man! Most of us here reading your blog would do anything to be able to get that close to the F1 drivers, cars (not too close though, specially if it's a Toyota) and legendary racing tracks. Nice that your blogs reflect the fact you do enjoy it.

    When you get to Spa are you guys planning another jog around the track? :-)

    If you do can you take one picture from the bottom and then one picture from the top of Eau Rouge for us please? Assuming you can still think straight and remember this request when you get to the top of course... (you will know what I mean if/when you get there). ;-)

    Keep up the excellent work and enjoy the legendary Spa Francorchamps.

  • Comment number 56.

    Only just discovered these blogs Jake and they are great! It's great your as much of a fan as we are and your insight is brilliant! I was at the Hungarian Grand Prix this year and I could see you from our pit straight stand pacing up and down constantly talking to yourself? Haha you always do a perfect job though! I'm lucky enough to be going to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this year too! Cannot wait to see all your behind the scenes photos of that! It's going to be stunning! Also can I suggest you sneak into some of the motor homes (if you can work out how to use sliding doors....) and take some photos? I doubt anyone would be allowed but it's worth a try. It would be great to see inside those places!

    Keep up the good work!
    Henry x

  • Comment number 57.

    Hi Jake

    I enjoyed your Valencia diary and I guess you must struggle to condense the whole day into a few paragraphs but the pics do help. My feeling re Rubens winning is the same a Martin's if the tyres had been ready Lewis would have been able to defend his position however it would have been close and therefore were robbed of some much needed drama.

    I'm still not a Ledgie fan however he is growing on me slowly and is kind of in the same mould of Murrey Walker in terms of constantly getting drivers/cars confused.

    My one moan and this is directed at the bbc web team is that why the morning after the race were the championship standings not updated to represent the points scored by the drivers? Especially when itv had theirs updated minutes after the race... It's frustrating because there have been numerous instances where data like full practice listins and fuel corrected grids haven't been quickly available so I keep finding myself going back to the itv web page when I would rather not.

    On a positive note I am looking forward to Spa and who is going to be the most competative out of Red Bull, Brawn and McLaren with maybe Kimi being the dark horse.

  • Comment number 58.

    jake go to donnington and review and drive some really old qwuality f1 cars like mansells williams in 85 and 92

    that would send my respect for you through the startisphere

  • Comment number 59.

    Good behind the scenes stuff there Jake sons. Proper.com that like.

  • Comment number 60.

    Nice one Jake! Great photos, I can't believe you have people talking in your ear throughout the show...how do you not manage to falter? Great work!
    I'm travelling down to Spa tomorrow for the race. Perhaps see you there!
    I look forward to watching the forum on the internet when I get home on monday morning at around 2am...same time as you!
    Jeff.

  • Comment number 61.

    Jake, this, like your other blogs on the subject, is not in the slightest bit interesting or entertaining. Moreover, your writing style seems like it is directed at viewers of Newsround - to wit "Do you like the caps?". You will need to adapt your written style in order to entertain anyone other than children with this blog, I find it a frankly poor standard of journalism for a national website with such a large readership.

    Appreciate as some have pointed out that the purpose of the blog is not to discuss the thrills and spills of F1 per se, but rather to share your experiences on the F1 circuit. Unfortunately i'd have to conclude from the chronological fact-listing that constitutes this excuse for a blog that your job is somewhat less interesting than most of us would expect.

    As Alan Partridge was once told, 'To be honest, I don't think anecdotes are your forte'.

  • Comment number 62.

    Another great blog Jake, thanks for sharing your experiences. This blog is one of the major highlights of the generally high-quality BBC Formula 1 coverage this year. Keep up the good work and enjoy Spa!

  • Comment number 63.

    @turbo_humphrey

    If you are not trolling (which is my primary diagnosis given you have no previous posts and are posting something designed to provoke and antagonize) then you are a hypocrite; you complain about poor standards of writing yet the few sentences you have written are littered with grammatical errors.

    As for aiming this blog at children - I think you will find that the blog is aimed for all ages, including children. Given you have accepted my previous post where I argued this blog gives us a behind the scenes look at what goes on then I question what it is you expect from the blog? This is a quick overview of the events that went on at a relatively uneventful weekend. It is not the first hand account of the rise and fall of an empire.

    When is comes to written critiques people are more likely to complain than to compliment. The response to Jake's entries has been overwhelmingly positive. I would argue that proves it is you, not Jake, who lacks competency in the field of judging anecdotes.

  • Comment number 64.

    OK Jake if you want to tell all your fans about your living conditions and mates during a Grand Prix who the hell out of you lot got burnt in Valencia.Suncream is a touchy subject with me having had two small bottles confiscated during security checks at Gatwick even saying hello to Eddie Jordan on Easy Jet didn't really calm me down.I need a high factor because i am fair skinned Jake you look fair skinned also and if Eddie was he definitely wouldn't be wearing a pink shirt suits you sir! Yes it was bloody hot in Valencia and one good thing about the place their was plenty of swimmimg pools and those old fashioned drinking fountains in a shape of a lions head nice.What a gift of the gab Team Principle Martin Whitmarsh portrayed when questioned about Hamilton's pit stop and i never once saw the join? A better response came from Hamilton in the press conference it was a mistake but the team have done brilliant in the past maybe making a couple of clangers all told.The look on Hamilton's father face said it all Martin you can't hide the cracks.Whitmarsh is under pressure following Ron Dennis is no easy job but being economical with the truth is a trait McLaren find easy to manouevre.As for Jenson not only has he got Red Bull breathing down his neck but team partner Rubens want some of the action I wouldn't like to say to Rubens I am afraid we have got to concentrate on Jenson now.Can there ever be a more popular No2 driver on the grid!

  • Comment number 65.

    @Alienturnedhuman

    Indeed it was my first post, I guess I was 'trolling' (not familiar with that concept) as I do seem have come back to see if my post annoyed people like yourself- you've got my number here- this was of course one of my primary motivations in posting. My favourite riposte offered by yourself was your conclusion that it was I "who lacks competency in the field of judging anecdotes."

    As I said, no problem with the premise of the blog- enough commentators discuss F1 goings-on, and yes it might be nice to understand what Jake's job entails. My point is that regardless of whether the blog achieves factual accuracy and imparting new information, it is poorly written, uninteresting (both in terms of substance and style), and that many blog writers manage to turn their day to day activities, often far more mundane, into a far more interesting, entertaining and less patronising read.

    I believe that the sanitised production and presenting values that the BBC (perhaps understandably) feels are part of its mandate as state-funded broadcaster should be challenged. This blog and Jake's coverage are a prime example of the cotton-wool nonsense that characterises a lot of the BBC's sports coverage.

  • Comment number 66.

    humphrey what do you think about the in fighting here over your name worse than prost senna hill schumacher aint it, funny though you should do a bit on it at the weekend,

    by the way get yeself down to exeter and go to mansells golf club and do a massive feautre on the boy why is it we havent heard from Nigel he was on moto gp with Suzi but you F1 boys havent got him yet. Proper working class f1 hero was mansell if you interview him I'll buy you a tv licence

  • Comment number 67.

    @turbo_humphrey

    We are all children at heart.

  • Comment number 68.

    Abluegeez wrote:

    1. When was the last time there was actually an overtake for first position on the track, and not in the first corner as that doesn’t count!

    Well try that wet race at Spa and those final few laps between Lewis and Kimi, although neither actually finished 1st of course, but there was certainly overtaking on and off the track when one of them was in 1st place

  • Comment number 69.

    @Abluegeez and allsoj

    Bar passes at the first corner, Hamiton taking Kimi at Spa 2008 is the last pass for the lead I can remember. Before that it was Hamilton taking Piquet at Germany 2008, Hamilton taking Heikki at Silverstone 2008 and Hamilton taking Massa at Turkey 2008. Notice a pattern?

  • Comment number 70.

    Great blog as usual, looking forward to Spa like most people and yourself. I also love watching the F1 forum and can't wait for Sunday, plus was DC deliberatley drinking Red Bull (last week in Valencia) to for his promotional purposes or was he just thirsty?

    Oh and I also found that you look like Kimi in that red cap!

    Take it easy Jake

    JP

  • Comment number 71.

    @turbo_humphrey

    I think you're missing the point of an informal blog, this isn't an English PhD dissertation.

    If I was Jake sitting in the paddock at Spa I'd quote Partridge straight back at you, "Needless to say I had the last laugh!".

    "I believe that the sanitised production ... should be challenged."

    Well I am glad they are washing their hands with Swine Flu about, don't want Button getting ill! :)

  • Comment number 72.

    Hi Jake,

    Just want to add my thanks for the great behind the scenes that you provide. Been reading since the word go and will continue to do so - wish I'd known you were at St John's in Cambridge that time!

    Enjoy Spa, looking forward to hearing all about it :o)

  • Comment number 73.

    Excellent work jake great presenting best ive ever seen

  • Comment number 74.

    Great pictures Jake - thanks for posting!

    You talk a lot about your script in these blogs, would be interested to see what you write and then how much you keep to it / change it as you react to whats going on around you! Do EJ and DC make notes? I seem to remember them having notebooks and clipboards at the beginning of the season but not any longer...?

    More pics from Spa please:))

    Naomi

  • Comment number 75.

    Abluegeez, allsoj and alienturnedhuman

    I thought that Jenson Button passed Vettel in Turkey aerlier this season. It was on 1st lap but not at the first corner though!

  • Comment number 76.

    StaffsSteve,

    You are right, it might even have been lap 2 - however if I recall correctly, Vettel had gone off the track so it could be argued it was not a true on track pass. With the exception of Spa, the Hamilton moves were all genuine overtakes as opposed to capitalising on an unforced error.

  • Comment number 77.

    I've only just discovered these blogs and they are great, Jake you're going a great job.

    I was really skeptical about BBC taking over from ITV but in fact the coverage is much better and more informative, and without adverts.

    Can't wait for the rest of the season.

  • Comment number 78.

    Jake just a quick thing you could ask the forum at asome point during the remainder of Season. would be interesting hear the thoughs of Yourself, EJ, DC & Martin on this one.

    what enginer suppliers will be supplying what teams next year. So far as I understand it an Engine Suppliercan only supply the Factory team and 1 other however with Brawn being in at the last minute it was agreed Mercedes could supply them also giving them 3.

    Next year Obviously the factory team McLaren will be suplied by them but could force India have to change supplier as I wouldn;t imagine Mercedes will want to drop Brawn.
    If this is the case who do you thing force India will switch too and do you see any other teams channging to a different supplier for next year ?

  • Comment number 79.

    Alienturnedhuman and Jake please note.

    When it comes to grammatical errors Jake is also pretty poor. I get so fed up with the lack of understanding for the rules for using "I" "myself" etc. Jake it is not "myself and so and so" it is "so and so and I" it's not "it really helps myself and Jonathan Legard" it's "it really helps me and Jonathan Legard". You are constantly mixing up your "Is", "mes", "myselfs" etc.
    Unless you want to take over the much missed mantle of geezer Martin Blundell please treat yourself to a short course on English and how it is constructed. Who knows you might even start a revolution in schools as well. However I think that's already a lost cause.

  • Comment number 80.

    Whoops, of course I meant Mark Blundell not Martin.

  • Comment number 81.

    @alfiebengal

    I don't really want to be drawn back into this again, however I never said that Jake's article has perfect grammar. This is because I had not given it any more than a quick flick through because it is an informal, light-hearted blog entry.

    Unlike the other on-air pundits - such as Brundle and Coulthard - Jake writes these entries on his own because they are just a quick blog update. Brundle and Coulthard speak to reporters who then write their articles for them; as a result they have much better grammar and structure - but that is because they are meant to be giving analytical insight into the sport specific events.

    I really don't understand why one or two people on this website are making such personal attacks on Jake regarding his blog; whilst his grammar may not be perfect, it is certainly not below-average. The particular fault you pick up upon - the misuse of 'myself' and 'yourself' instead of me/I and you - is a common error and I have witnessed its misuse by highly educated senior executives.

    Whilst I am not saying that this makes it alright, the fact its misuse is so widespread makes it totally ridiculous that Jake should be vilified the way he been.

  • Comment number 82.

    HiYa Jake.

    Excellent blogs and good commentary. I am still hooked on the incident of last weekend regrading the pitstop 'error' and 'would he' or 'would he not have won' arguments at the office. I have a suggestion to make:
    I have noticed that during the practice session and qualis sometimes on the telly we are able to see a comparison between 2 cars at the same time.. I think it would be good if you could carryout a similar animated comparison assuming that Lewis had made a normal stop and see where he would have come out versus RB. You could make it more dramatic still considering both their actual race pace (for the remainder of the race), how they would have ended....!! It would make good TV... All I want is 12.333% return for my very good idea.

  • Comment number 83.

    i have to mention EJ's shirt/trouser combination (i think in quali), i mean come on pink and green ? surely eddie got ribbed over that one jake?

  • Comment number 84.

    Great blog Jake, but please ask DC to take his hand out of his pocket!

  • Comment number 85.

    Jake, you are fantastic.
    The flow of information and conversation is seamless and natural, unbiased and informative. You are doing a brilliant job, thank you.



 

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