Chan­nel 4 firm up F1 broad­cast team

F1 Racing (UK) - - INSIDER -

Susie Wolff joins C4, along­side Coulthard and Ed­wards, at F1’s new ter­res­trial UK TV home

Ben Ed­wards is to re­main as Bri­tain’s ter­res­trial tele­vi­sion For­mula 1 com­men­ta­tor and will be joined by Susie Wolff as a co-host

Ed­wards, who joined the BBC’S cov­er­age team in 2012 af­ter the cor­po­ra­tion split the rights with Sky, has now signed to move to Chan­nel 4, al­though no of­fi­cial an­nounce­ment had been made as F1 Rac­ing went to press.

He will con­tinue his widely praised part­ner­ship in the com­men­tary box with David Coulthard, whose Whis­per Films com­pany won the con­tract to pro­duce the cov­er­age. How­ever, BBC F1 pre­sen­ter Suzi Perry will not be in­volved.

Perry’s re­place­ment is tipped to be Steve Jones, who has worked on Chan­nel 4’s youth shows T4 and The X Fac­tor USA and is a favourite of Jay Hunt, Chan­nel 4’s chief cre­ative of­fi­cer. Susie Wolff will co-host the F1 broad­casts.

Chan­nel 4, who are promis­ing in­no­va­tion, look set to em­ploy many of the same peo­ple who pro­duced the award-win­ning BBC cov­er­age.

Re­cently re­tired Wil­liams test driver Susie Wolff will co-host Chan­nel 4’s For­mula 1 cov­er­age For­mer BBC F1 editor Mark Wilkin has been con­firmed in the same role, and for­mer BBC F1 pro­ducer Su­nil Pa­tel will be ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer for F1 on Chan­nel 4.

The chan­nel were in talks with Ed­die Jor­dan, but his de­ci­sion to sign up to the BBC’S re­vamped Top Gear may stop him work­ing for C4: the chan­nel have al­ready in­sisted Coulthard could not do both.

Pit­lane reporter Lee Mcken­zie is ex­pected to re­main part of the team, while ex-f1 driver Karun Chand­hok is tipped to fill the se­cond reporter’s role. Tom Clark­son will stay with the BBC to work on Ra­dio 5 Live and it is un­der­stood that Jack Ni­cholls will now an­chor the ra­dio sta­tion’s cov­er­age full-time.

Be­hind the scenes, Steve Al­dous, who worked for both ITV and BBC as as­sis­tant editor, is stay­ing on, as is di­rec­tor Richard Carr, while Chan­nel 4’s new head of F1, Stephen Lyle, is also a for­mer BBC di­rec­tor.

Chan­nel 4 will also re­tain the team of tech­ni­cians who worked be­hind the scenes for the BBC and, be­fore that, ITV.

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