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GP Week : Issue 1
T HINK about the last 12 months in Formula One. The great drivers; the great circuits; the great battles. And then think about how you remember them – from seeing the action in the flesh, or from the comfort of your armchair? Chances are, it’ll be the latter. And if you’re anything like the majority of the 597 million viewers that tuned in to watch an F1 race in 2007, you’d probably agree that it was one of the most exciting seasons in years. But why was it so memorable? Sure the races were good and the championship battle was fierce, but was the racing really all that much better than the last few seasons? Seasoned (read cynical) hacks would argue that in reality, probably not. But, thanks to FOM’s ever evolving coverage of the sport, the armchair fan would likely disagree. Last season nearly 600 million people watched 11,183 hours of Formula One, in one of the 188 territories around the world which shows the sport. With those kind of numbers, it’s little wonder that movements behind the scenes at FOM’s broadcast department are as great as in any area of Formula One. FOM’s 2007 aim was to provide consistent TV coverage, direction and enhanced production and with this in mind it took it upon itself to originate the International live feed at 14 of the 17 events. For this, it employed the services of the brand new 'F1 Communications' centre, which brought all elements of the international broadcast under one roof. The number of staff that work for FOM on the TV broadcast at any one race is not an exact science. It depends on the number of track-side cameras, the number of corners, the number of on-board cameras, the facilities at the circuit and its technical foundation. Keep your eyes peeled over the course of a race weekend, and look out for their two tone khaki and olive uniforms. You can’t miss them. They’re everywhere, working some of the longest hours in the paddock to bring you what From Track to Screen The pictures that are beamed to your television screen are the product of a lot of hard work from a lot of hard working people. WILL BUXTON looks at the process in detail 34