So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

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the incubus
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So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

Not sure if anyone else felt a lump in their throats after yesterday's final broadcast of F1 on Speed, but I sure as hell did.

While Hobbo and Matchett were obviously sad to go, they are merely relocating to NBC and will remain together calling the action for us here in the states, led by Diffey. Bob on the other hand is contractually obligated to SPEED (lord knows why since FOX is literally killing off SPEED Channel for good) and they want to keep him there for the duration of the contract, and it broke my heart to hear his final sign-off as he fought through choking up and held back the welling of his eyes to finish every last word and I felt every same emotion as he. Just a sad, sad day for me aside from the great race and season that ended just minutes before.

Bob was very helpful to me when, like millions of Americans I found myself out of a Job with a 4 year old son and 3 month old twins and forced to provide for them with little more than unemployment and the odd freelancing gigs. Back then I had a facebook account and Bob was one of my friends and when he saw a wall post I made regarding the situation I found myself in, he reached out and offered words of encouragement and inspiration and assured me things will get better and it was enough to allow me to remain more positive than I already am. The fact that he did that for someone he didn't even know raised my already high opinion of him to astronomical heights. He is a Gentleman through and through and my heart aches knowing his warm voice will not be greeting me for any gran prix for years to come.

No disrespect to Diffey but his voice is a bit squeaky and doesn't offer the same ying to Hobbs' and Matchett's yangs, and I do hope Diffey respects the way Bob would allow us to hear the start of every grand prix rather than talk over them.


THANK YOU Bob, David, Steve, Peter, and Will for all the wonderful memories you've shared with us over the last 17 years.



P.S. Will Buxton was also choked up on his last commentary when he expressed his sincere gratitude to the team and the producers for taking a chance on him. He got me all choked up as well. Damn Manly salty discharge from the eyes!!! LOL



P.P.S. The few articles I've read about F1 on NBC are all positive and it seems they are investing quite a bit of resources to F1 and their goal is to cement F1's future in this country. It's still not certain but Hobbo talked up Will Buxton a great deal in the hopes NBC hires him to continue as Pit Reporter but last word was that NBC isn't quite 100% sure just yet. I think the other person they might be interested in is Peter Windsor but that is mere speculation on my part.
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RaggedMan
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by RaggedMan »

:thumbup: Great post.

Bob did a great job holding back the lump in his throat as he signed off, but you tell it was there.

I was wasn't expecting Buxton to be as emotional as he was, but he was obviously very effected by the moment. Seems as if he had to work hard to get the gig, and was very appreciative of having got the chance. I hope NBC picks him up.

I'm glad that Hobbs & Matchett will still be together next year, and while Diffey has done well filling in for Varsha in the past the chemistry wasn't quite there. He seems a little too stiff to me, even when working with his regular partners on the ALMS coverage. Hopefully he'll grow into the job.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by xECKSx58 »

I didn't watch the last 5 or so races on SPEED because I cancelled by Directv descrption, but hats off to them for being the sole F1 provider in the US for many, many years.
I hope NBC can get Buxton. Then they would've done the best job they could getting the commentators anyway.
And for the record, I prefer Diffey over Varsha any day.
But I understand where you're coming from with your liking of Bob.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by fooshnazzy »

Yeah, I have been watching the SPEED coverage for the last couple years along with BBC and SKY. BBC is still my favorite and think they nailed it with Jake, EJ and DC. Speed is a close second and brought a good American perspective to the sport. There was also good chemistry between Varsha, Hobbs & Matchett (though it seemed like the two just made fun of Varsha most of the time).

I really liked Will Buxton and his enthusiasm for the sport, being at the race, etc. and had some good insights. I do hope NBC hires him, not sure who they would hire instead.

As far as Diffey over Varsha, I'm open to giving him a shot. Didn't have a problem with him whenever he stepped in for Varsha. "Incubus", I'm sure Bob is great individual, but strictly from a commentating stand point he has too often blurted out the wrong and the obvious. On the other hand, he did seem to take more effort on educating new fans of F1 about the different quirks of the sport.
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the incubus
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

In regards to mistakes made, you have to realize how ridiculously minuscule the staff for Speed's F1 team is to understand how much work the commentators are actually doing. they are watching live timing and scoring whilst simultaneously keeping an eye on the race feed where as in comparison the BBC and Sky crews have full staffs helping with everything. Diffey and Hobbo have made mistakes equally and Matchett has the keenest of eyes and is BETTER THAN ANYONE anywhere calling out what the pictures/feeds show in a fraction of a second.

Either way, they all make their fair share of mistakes and in case anyone has forgotten, this should add a little perspective on things:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njlyJnEVxM8

They're human and none of them are perfect. It's the body of work and the professionalism with which they do their job that should be used when evaluating their talent and ability to do the best job possible. I really don't know of anyone who would do a better job than Bob and truthfully the only 2 that come to mind that would be on par with him are Paul Page (the Murray Walker of American Open Wheel racing) and Derek Daily.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by bballr4567 »

Buxton has to be kept on. He adds a lot of knowledge and humor to the commentating and quite honestly, he is awesome. He doesnt say the wrong stuff, says just what he needs to and is a genuine good guy.

I hope that NBC will allow for a much better telecast due to a much larger amount of funds. Gonna be interesting to see what they have planned.
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ashley313
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ashley313 »

By Speed, thanks for nothing. (I blame Speed for the relatively small following of the sport in this country, they are terrible)
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by SnakeSVT2003 »

Varsha, for us, was the voice of F1 so of course I will miss him. That said, IMO Diffey is better than Varsha so I will be happy to see Diffey take the reigns.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by bballr4567 »

ashley313 wrote:By Speed, thanks for nothing. (I blame Speed for the relatively small following of the sport in this country, they are terrible)


The worst part of the NBC deal is that it wont even be on NBC! Its going to be on the NBC Sports Network (4 on actual NBC) which has a much smaller viewership than Speed.
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ashley313
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ashley313 »

Yep I don't expect NBC to be any better. Based on their Indy coverage I think it will be worse actually.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by SnakeSVT2003 »

bballr4567 wrote:
ashley313 wrote:By Speed, thanks for nothing. (I blame Speed for the relatively small following of the sport in this country, they are terrible)


The worst part of the NBC deal is that it wont even be on NBC! Its going to be on the NBC Sports Network (4 on actual NBC) which has a much smaller viewership than Speed.



There will be more viewers once F1 is on there. IIRC NBC is not a pay channel like SPEED is.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by bballr4567 »

SnakeSVT2003 wrote:There will be more viewers once F1 is on there. IIRC NBC is not a pay channel like SPEED is.

NBC isnt but NBC Sports Network is a different channel that has to be added to our lineup here. Although you can stream it just like you could through Speed.
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Iowa'sOnlyF1Viewer
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Iowa'sOnlyF1Viewer »

Love the team! Got the finale on DVR and intend never to erase it! No matter what mistakes were made by SPEED, you could tell that the people involved were passionate about F1. I am not a critical person by nature and I found much to enjoy in each one of them. Here's wishing them all rhe best, always!

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by SnakeSVT2003 »

bballr4567 wrote:
SnakeSVT2003 wrote:There will be more viewers once F1 is on there. IIRC NBC is not a pay channel like SPEED is.

NBC isnt but NBC Sports Network is a different channel that has to be added to our lineup here. Although you can stream it just like you could through Speed.


I meant NBCSN (sorry :) ). I guess it depends on the provider.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by xECKSx58 »

the incubus wrote:In regards to mistakes made, you have to realize how ridiculously minuscule the staff for Speed's F1 team is to understand how much work the commentators are actually doing. they are watching live timing and scoring whilst simultaneously keeping an eye on the race feed where as in comparison the BBC and Sky crews have full staffs helping with everything. Diffey and Hobbo have made mistakes equally and Matchett has the keenest of eyes and is BETTER THAN ANYONE anywhere calling out what the pictures/feeds show in a fraction of a second.

Either way, they all make their fair share of mistakes and in case anyone has forgotten, this should add a little perspective on things:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njlyJnEVxM8

They're human and none of them are perfect. It's the body of work and the professionalism with which they do their job that should be used when evaluating their talent and ability to do the best job possible. I really don't know of anyone who would do a better job than Bob and truthfully the only 2 that come to mind that would be on par with him are Paul Page (the Murray Walker of American Open Wheel racing) and Derek Daily.

Oh god.
Derek Daily? Between listening to him and Sam Posey is enough to make me want to make my head implode on itself.

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the incubus
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

Derek Daily similarly to the guys on Speed had to do dumb things down for the casual observer. Put either of them in Europe and the UK where the sport is mainstream and I think many people would be surprised at how good they do. I will agree with you however that Sam Posey is god awful no matter how you slice it. Even his little intro pieces for Speed give you stomach cramps. [PUKE] LOL
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Khazrak134 »

For those of you who hvnt seen the Tribute they made to F1, heres the video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FN3UqoG7xw

i thot it was really good

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ynot22 »

the incubus wrote:Not sure if anyone else felt a lump in their throats after yesterday's final broadcast of F1 on Speed, but I sure as hell did.

While Hobbo and Matchett were obviously sad to go, they are merely relocating to NBC and will remain together calling the action for us here in the states, led by Diffey. Bob on the other hand is contractually obligated to SPEED (lord knows why since FOX is literally killing off SPEED Channel for good) and they want to keep him there for the duration of the contract, and it broke my heart to hear his final sign-off as he fought through choking up and held back the welling of his eyes to finish every last word and I felt every same emotion as he. Just a sad, sad day for me aside from the great race and season that ended just minutes before.

Bob was very helpful to me when, like millions of Americans I found myself out of a Job with a 4 year old son and 3 month old twins and forced to provide for them with little more than unemployment and the odd freelancing gigs. Back then I had a facebook account and Bob was one of my friends and when he saw a wall post I made regarding the situation I found myself in, he reached out and offered words of encouragement and inspiration and assured me things will get better and it was enough to allow me to remain more positive than I already am. The fact that he did that for someone he didn't even know raised my already high opinion of him to astronomical heights. He is a Gentleman through and through and my heart aches knowing his warm voice will not be greeting me for any gran prix for years to come.

No disrespect to Diffey but his voice is a bit squeaky and doesn't offer the same ying to Hobbs' and Matchett's yangs, and I do hope Diffey respects the way Bob would allow us to hear the start of every grand prix rather than talk over them.


THANK YOU Bob, David, Steve, Peter, and Will for all the wonderful memories you've shared with us over the last 17 years.



P.S. Will Buxton was also choked up on his last commentary when he expressed his sincere gratitude to the team and the producers for taking a chance on him. He got me all choked up as well. Damn Manly salty discharge from the eyes!!! LOL



P.P.S. The few articles I've read about F1 on NBC are all positive and it seems they are investing quite a bit of resources to F1 and their goal is to cement F1's future in this country. It's still not certain but Hobbo talked up Will Buxton a great deal in the hopes NBC hires him to continue as Pit Reporter but last word was that NBC isn't quite 100% sure just yet. I think the other person they might be interested in is Peter Windsor but that is mere speculation on my part.


I can assure you you were not the only one who had a lump in his throat and a sniffle or two. Thank you for your post Incubus. It expressed my sentiments exactly. To me it is the end of a classic era. Like you, I only hope they have the same respect for the voiceless lap at Fox and dont stifle Hobbs's colorful (large attachments) commentary. His queen of england interpretation talking to Lewis literally had me lol today.

I would encourage everyone to visit speed today and let them know how much they were appreciated.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ynot22 »

the incubus wrote:Derek Daily similarly to the guys on Speed had to do dumb things down for the casual observer. Put either of them in Europe and the UK where the sport is mainstream and I think many people would be surprised at how good they do. I will agree with you however that Sam Posey is god awful no matter how you slice it. Even his little intro pieces for Speed give you stomach cramps. [PUKE] LOL


I also skip his intro pieces and have never been a fan either. However, I noticed the tremors today in his left arm and, after some research, learned what I'd suspected for some time. Not sure if it's commonly known but he is suffering from Parkinson's disease.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Hakkattack »

Khazrak134 wrote:For those of you who hvnt seen the Tribute they made to F1, heres the video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FN3UqoG7xw

i thot it was really good



the flashback part of this was great...

this Saturday is the final show from them....

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by pc27b »

the money crunchers at fox are to blame for the lack of money spent on production. to the on air guys and few behind the scenes guys...i say thank you very much.
sam posey intros are great, brought back memories of listening to him broadcast on the radio when i was a kid. before indy car was live on tv.

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Placid
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Placid »

It was very sad to see Bob not being part of the team for 2013. Especially when Bob was shaking his right hand. For Buxton - I like to see him with a co-commentator for GP2 races. I do not know if GP2 races will ever be televised. I am vey anxious to see Alex Rossi make his GP2 debut if he gets the Caterham GP2 seat.

At least they should get either Danny Sullivan, Derek Daly or Robby Gordon in every F1 paddock during F1 coverage.

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the incubus
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

I would get the GP2 races on Speed but their season is considerably shorter. Not sure why you wouldn't get them.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by DaveStebbins »

I don't know if they were wonderful or awful, but I always enjoyed listening to them. What I liked best was when a driver would make a questionable move or when someone's rear end would start to step out and all three of them would be shouting, "Oh!" at the same time I was. It always seemed to me that they were genuine fans of the sport, truly enjoying what they did, and not just experts doing a job.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by racer_nobu »

Final Formula 1 Debrief is on tomorrow at 10PM Eastern. Many guides have not been updated yet it seems. Searching on DirecTV didn't work for me, but I was able to find it by scrolling through all the programs on Speed on my DTV Android app until I found it.

No matter what anybody says, they carried the torch for all these years and F1 in the US won't be the same without them. Don't hate the players, hate the game.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Formula1Fan. »

I watched an F1 GP on Speed once and only once. It was the Abu Dhabi GP this year, and it was a great race, but its a real step down on the BBC and Sky.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Vettel Fan »

Formula1Fan. wrote:I watched an F1 GP on Speed once and only once. It was the Abu Dhabi GP this year, and it was a great race, but its a real step down on the BBC and Sky.

Really? I've never seen the BBC or Sky broadcasts. What do they do differently? Just curious

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ashley313 »

BBC and Sky give you over an hour of pre and post race coverage with broadcasters IN the paddock. So you get many driver/team personnel interviews, high tech analysis of on track action versus the Speed guys drawing on the screen, and the commentators themselves are more "relevant" as they are actually AT the track, and have worked in the sport more recently. THey also tend to be right more often. The Speed guys guess, and are wrong, a lot. Overall the biggest difference for me is that BBC and Sky put you IN the paddock, and keep you informed on all the backstories that make the racing more interesting than simply what happens on the circuit.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Bakerking31 »

Thank god SPEED channel is done with F1, maybe we will get some real reporting in the US.

They were the HRT of the F1 broadcasting world ... it couldn't get much worse.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Z3RoadstarTXF1 »

ashley313 wrote:BBC and Sky give you over an hour of pre and post race coverage with broadcasters IN the paddock. So you get many driver/team personnel interviews, high tech analysis of on track action versus the Speed guys drawing on the screen, and the commentators themselves are more "relevant" as they are actually AT the track, and have worked in the sport more recently. THey also tend to be right more often. The Speed guys guess, and are wrong, a lot. Overall the biggest difference for me is that BBC and Sky put you IN the paddock, and keep you informed on all the backstories that make the racing more interesting than simply what happens on the circuit.


That's really where the issue of support or lack of it, was the over-riding negative with Speed.

I applaud the increased coverage Speed gave over prior F1 carriers in the US, but there was very little air time given beyond race coverage. Outside of Debrief there was virtually no F1 on the network between races. I know a lot is giving viewers what they are most interested in, hence Nascar overload, but there's a good bit of other programming I'm not sure where the big interest would come from.

So they basically plop 3 guys in a room, give them a monitor to watch and have them comment on it as any 3 guys watching the race at home might. I did love their enthusiasm and love of F1, but am sure they could have offered much more depth and technical comment. But that's the way Speed choose to go based on their limited commitment to F1. Unfortunately, I think its always going to be the Catch-22 of the chicken or the egg issue... Small, but devoted core of US F1 fans equals small commitment from the network carrying F1 in the US... small commitment from network carrying F1 in the US equals small but devoted core of US F1 fans that has little chance for growth.

I think F1's greater chance for growing the market might be something more like the GP2 Americas Series idea that has been floated around, giving greater exposure to the type of racing, and maybe supplying some drivers to F1 that fans here have followed before they show up on the F1 grid. Unfortunately, it seems like few of those ideas floated ever make it to actuality. But then again I looked at COTA that way at one time. It also would make a nice property for one of the cable networks here to pick up, especially one that hasn't made huge commitments of time already to the Nascar umbrella of series. (Then again, I don't really get the cable network industry any more, when reality shows are on food channels, extreme eating shows are on travel networks, animal shows are on Velocity, and paranormal ghost programs are on an animal network.)

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Mike500
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Mike500 »

Vettel Fan wrote:
Formula1Fan. wrote:I watched an F1 GP on Speed once and only once. It was the Abu Dhabi GP this year, and it was a great race, but its a real step down on the BBC and Sky.

Really? I've never seen the BBC or Sky broadcasts. What do they do differently? Just curious



See my commentary comparison.

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the incubus
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

ashley313 wrote:BBC and Sky give you over an hour of pre and post race coverage with broadcasters IN the paddock. So you get many driver/team personnel interviews, high tech analysis of on track action versus the Speed guys drawing on the screen, and the commentators themselves are more "relevant" as they are actually AT the track, and have worked in the sport more recently. THey also tend to be right more often. The Speed guys guess, and are wrong, a lot. Overall the biggest difference for me is that BBC and Sky put you IN the paddock, and keep you informed on all the backstories that make the racing more interesting than simply what happens on the circuit.

To a certain degree I can agree with this. however, the guys on Speed have more than a single monitor to view and whilst Bob and Hobbo sometimes get things wrong, Matchett is better than anyone on BBC or Sky that I've seen. I am a production manager and have been so for about 20 years because of my extremely keen eye, but Steve sees things in detail that flashes on the feed for literally fractions of a second and is spot on 98% of the time. I think that if anyone should lead the US Broadcast team for NBC outside of Bob it should be Steve Matchett (not Diffey, though he's not bad). I find his commentary almost as enthusiastically infectious and colorful as Murray Walker, though there will never be anything like the old dog's high pitched tone that was everything F1 all the time. Steve's signature catch phrases like "Kablamo", "Go on", "it's game over boys" and others are fantastic and he communicates a level of excitement similarly to Murray.

However, BBC & SKY both offer MUCH more coverage of all phases of F1 so they are both superior to Speed's coverage tenfold. I think if NBC plays their cards right they can grow the US Formula 1 fan base considerably and in turn NBC can offer more extended coverage similar to SKY and BBC but it is a tall order considering the competition they get from NASCAR and INDY who's fans believe car's can (and probably should) only turn left. LOL :P
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ashley313
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by ashley313 »

I don't mean wrong about whats on the television screen that we can all see - they are wrong about strategies, their predictions don't make any sense, and they never get "past the headline" when trying to explain a storyline.
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Smus »

Well I've enjoyed it...it was hard to watch at the end. One hell of a ride.

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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by Z3RoadstarTXF1 »

The real loss will be for fans of all those other series except Nascar which will still receive lots of air time elsewhere, when Speed disappears altogether next year. I don't expect the Aussie V8s and other series will migrate to Fox sports channel that replaces it (and IMO seemingly duplicates coverage available elsewhere on its networks if you already have a sports package or the MLB pass). The F1 relationship simply came to an end earlier than some others. The coverage could have been better but the end of the network is a loss for gearheads who will no longer have a network in the US (unless Velocity counts, but that's more about cars than racing).

The final Debrief show had some great highlights from the 17 years as well as some interesting choices by the hosts for most memorable moments.

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the incubus
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Re: So Long SPEED Channel and Thanks for the memories!!!

Post by the incubus »

ashley313 wrote:I don't mean wrong about whats on the television screen that we can all see - they are wrong about strategies, their predictions don't make any sense, and they never get "past the headline" when trying to explain a storyline.


I don't think that's right. often they have done the same as the BBC and Sky guys on strategy and guesstimate at what the teams are likely doing with each of their drivers and usually those guesstimates are correct and sometimes they aren't. As for the headline aspect, I disagree. The 3 Amigo's might not be in the paddock but they have Will Buxton there and brings a wealth of inside info for the broadcast team and as far as I know, Will Buxton is one of the best young reporters covering the sport. There's also Peter Windsor who still has many friends in the sport who feed him plenty of info, so the guys on Speed are usually pretty much up to speed (no pun intended) on the goings on of F1. I've watched just about every race they've ever broadcast and the the fuel and tire strategy calls were consistently concise most of the time which is the same thing I could say about the BBC.

Team strategies are always kept secret so it's always an educated guess as to what the teams is thinking of with each of its drivers and qualifying speeds are usually indicative of what teams are thinking for each of their drivers. When we had refueling Driver A could post a lap time over a second quicker than his teammate which indicated the strategy for Driver A was light fuel early one to lap quickly to pull away as quickly as possible whereas his teammate was heavy on fuel to allow him to stay out on track longer to pull up to within or even pass the leaders when they pit. Sometimes Driver B simply makes a mistake and the normally educated guess is ultimately wrong. Nothing anyone can do about that and to point that out on the Speed crew is a bit unfair. I've heard Brundle, Jordan and Coulthard make mistakes as well. Perhaps less frequently but they still make them.
Second place is the first loser!

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