Here’s What the First F1 Race in 1950 Would Look Like if it Was on TV Today
Grab the popcorn.
Formula 1's streaming service F1 TV is gradually populating its archives with digitized broadcasts of old races, though as anyone who has tried to watch them would know, some most of them are, sadly, snore-fests. Having so few camera angles relative to modern racing broadcasts limits even the commentators' ability to follow what's going on. Having someone re-cut and re-commentate some historic Grands Prix would make them far easier to follow and a heck of a lot more enjoyable—as demonstrated by this fan-made cut of F1's first championship race at Silverstone.
In a video recently uploaded to YouTube, Virgin Formula E's team videographer Matt Amys combined archival footage of the 1950 British Grand Prix (officially known as the 1950 European Grand Prix) with the broadcast graphics introduced in 2018 by F1's then-new owners, Liberty Media. Amys also adds in the current pre-race buildup format including an overview of Silverstone Circuit, which many racing fans won't recognize due to the many changes made to the track over the years. (The 1950 race would've been held on the track's second, 1949-dated layout, which ran around the perimeter roads of the then recently abandoned bomber base RAF Silverstone.)
FIA Formula 2 commentator Alex Jacques volunteers the video's finishing touch with a narration that establishes dramatic stakes, transforming the improved, but still hard-to-follow production into a constantly evolving sporting event.
Though the video doesn't manage to be as complete a retelling of this race as any official 2019 race recap, that's more the fault of incomplete video archives than it is production shortcomings. Even so, it's still markedly easier to watch than the archival footage would be on its own, and F1 TV could do worse than hiring Matt Amys and Alex Jacques to give other early Grands Prix a similar treatment.
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