Who are your favourite motor sport commentators?

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    Keith Collantine

    I saw this thread and was inspired to write a more positive and less F1-centric version:

    Which are your favourite commentators in the different forms of motor racing you watch at the moment? What do you particularly like about them – and what do you think makes a good motor sport commentators?

    Over to you…

    Ben Needham

    What makes a good commentator? For me, somebody who improves what you are watching (subjective of course); whether that comes through knowledge or genuine excitement is irrelevant. I always felt that Murray Walker and Martin Brundle were the best commentary team I’ve heard; Walker bringing his famous “pants on fire” approach, excited by everything the fans are excited by and Brundle complementing with a sense of calm intelligence. Murray’s voice blended seamlessly with the sound of the engine. If you want to see what I mean watch this clip from the 1998 Italian Grand Prix with the sound off, then again with it on; classic Murray which gives me chills even now:

    In my opinion it’s not quite been the same since. Ben Edwards is good with David Coulthard and I still like Brundle, but I think it’s a problem when I feel I’m enjoying the race more than the people paid to talk about it. I certainly get that sense with David Croft and did with Jonathan Legard in 2009-2010. Others seem a little too “self important” for my liking, which may be unfair without knowing them, but people like James Allen and Will Buxton.

    Personally, I’ll always miss Murray, he was my childhood; the only person in my world who relished a Sunday afternoon of Formula One as much as me. Maybe due to a splash of rose-tint, but unfortunately everyone else will come up short.

    James Brickles

    I actually quite liked the Toby Moody and Julian Ryder duo when they commentated on MotoGP together.


    Agree, the Moody & Ryder pair is the best I’ve ever heard

    Euro Brun

    Got to agree with Ben. I think one of the best bits about Ch4 pairing is Coulthard. He always seems more positive and less sarcastic than his mate Brundle.

    I went through a love hate love with Ben Edwards. I loved him when he did Ch5s IndyCar coverage in the late 90s, then really enjoyed his BTCC commentary. Again, a true motor sport fan with genuine passion. I was really pleased when he got the F1 job, but for the 1st year or so, he came across as out of his depth and I was disappointed. He’s definitely turned that round again and he is miles better than Croft.

    Croft is another enigma. Again I actually used to like him when he did the BBC radio 5 live coverage, but he simply does not translate to TV. I think that’s a key point to Ben’s statement:

    “somebody who improves what you are watching”.

    Radio is more descriptive as you have no pictures, but TV commentary only needs to compliment the pictures.
    Croft does not. He overrides the pictures, opten with conflicting (often wrong) information. Very frustrating.

    Slightly diverging from the topic, but i think the lead presenter also make a massive impact on the overall package.
    I was dupious about Steve Jones when he was chosen for Ch4, but he is great in the anchor role, essentially continuing on where Jake Humphreys left off. Not from an F1 background, but genuinely nice person with a solid interest who wants to know more.
    On the flip side I can’t stand Simon Lazenby. He seems so 1 dimensional and it comes across as a really awkward lads club.

    Biggest coup for Sky F1 this season is getting Karun on board.


    Unless I’m mistaken……and I’m very much mistaken……… its Murray :)

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