James Allen back in commentary


Podium Finisher
What do you guys think of James Allen being back in F1 commentary in the BBC 5 Live F1 role?

I am personally very happy - i think they could have done a lot worse and I think James has grown a lot since his commentary on ITV (which lets face it wasn't that bad anyway). He now runs a very successful website and has run the F1 fan forums, and seems to have much more technical know how and inside contacts than Crofty could ever wish for. I will miss Mr. Davidson, but I often enjoyed 5 Live practice sessions when other random people joined the crew and gave their insight. John Watson a good example! Hopefully they'll get Karun Chandhok permanently as an analyst!

Who will you guys listen to then in the races which are live on BBC TV - James Allen or Ben Edwards?
I only started watching F1 in 2009, so I missed the James Allen era of commentating, but from watching past replays I don't see what was wrong with him. He got as excited as Legard when someone crashed, but unlike Legard, he did actually know who had crashed.

Any news on who will be alongside him?
*makes mental note not to listen to F1 5 Live Commentary*

I'm sorry but Crofty splats all over James Allen. I can do my own poor impersonation of Murray Walker if I wanted to hear one.

The problem I have with James is the same problem I have with Ted Kravitz they find little tit bits of information out and cling on to them for dear life despite the fact that everything else in the race is telling them its not relevent. How many times in commentary did we hear James continue to get excited over a pitstop he thought was going to happen or wasn't going to happen despite Martin and the rest of the world pointing out it wasn't going to happen?


JA - "The boys at Mclaren told me that they were only doing 2 stops today so that means Lewis is in a great position to win the race as he doesn't have to stop again"
MB - "I don't think that can be true James as there is still 3 quarters of the race left and he didn't long fill at his last stop"
JA - "But the mclaren boys told me so it must be true"
MB - "But its obviously not - in fact the Mclaren mechanics are out in the pit lane"
JA - "Well Mclaren are only planning 2 stops so does Lewis have a problem! Did he hit anything!"
MB - "Just looks like a standard pit stop to me James"
JA - "Well Mclaren told me they were only planning 2 stops so has something gone wrong with the fuel hose?"
MB - "James it was a standard stop"
JA - "Well my contacts at Mclaren...."

I find his column's follow the same sort of pattern - someone's told him something and he clings to it for dear life despite the fact other things are happening that just show he's wrong. I don't doubt his passion for the sport just don't like his style.

Crofty on the overhand seems a lot more laid back and is happy to listen to his co-commentator but questions him when he thinks its wrong. I used to love his line of questioning to Davidson when Anthony used to suggest a certain driver was rubbish - he basically would make Davidson say he thought he could out drive most people.

Also Crofty is a Clip The Apex member and even if he did just log on to get the stats it shows he knows quality when he reads it. ;)
No, please god no not James Allen. His muffled, edgeless voice, the sound of which I can forget as I'm hearing it....his gushing, "love me" praise of anything vaguely British ("There he goes, the British bulldog Jenson Button!") and everything else about him turns me right off.

Edwards or Allen? Edwards.
Lemmy from motorhead singing opera through an amplifier turned up to 11 directly into my ear or Allen? Lemmy.
I won't be listening to his commentary - the real kick in the balls for me will be that he will start turning up on all the other F1 shows do on 5Live spouting his insufferable nonsense. All we need now is Louise Allen and I might just withhold my licence fee next year in protest.
The Sky line-up's looking better & better, isn't it? :snigger:

Actually, I didn't find JA as tiresome as most people - you have to remember he had possibly the hardest job ever, trying to inject some excitement into the Red Rampage of the early noughties, so perhaps it's no wonder he frothed at the mouth over Jenson's debut win and the Coming Of Hamilton :thinking:

Owt's better than the Horror That Was Legard, frankly...
Actually, I didn't find JA as tiresome as most people - you have to remember he had possibly the hardest job ever, trying to inject some excitement into the Red Rampage of the early noughties, so perhaps it's no wonder he frothed at the mouth

His first full season was 2002 which along with 2004 is probably one of the dullest F1 seasons - however 2003 was in my opinion one of the most enjoyable F1 seasons to watch for a long time - 05, 06, 07 and 08 will all be season described as above average so lets not make too many excuses for the chap because 2 dull season out of 7 is pretty good going and I listened to Murray and James Hunt throughout the entire of 1992 the dullest F1 season ever (tm) and never got bored or annoyed with them once!
If we're rating commentators I would say, in order of preference:

James Allen
Murray Walker
Crawling across broken glass
Removing my own eyeballs with a rusty fork and then inserting them in another bodily orifice with a jackhammer
Spending a night in a cell with 10 huge blokes called Bubba.
Slow agonising death
Jonathan Legard (but only because I won't be around to hear him - on a charge, up the hill, round the bend, etc.)
I thought James Allen was ok....then I noticed how much he loved Jenson Button in 2006. Then came along Lewis Hamilton, who I have to say I liked until Monaco '07.

But if you watch the 2007 and 2008 seasons, it's non-stop about Hamilton with occasional Button talk and bad-mouthing the Ferrari drivers and Alonso.

I can see why not many people like Lewis Hamilton back in the ITV days, as it was just the "Lewis Hamilton show" to the ITV crew, I actually just noticed how bad it was when I just re-watched the 2008 season, all they did was show his interviews, and only him in the press conference.(Nothing against Hamilton here, not his fault is it?) With an occasional interview of the forgotten man Button.

Further on, I am not surprised there are many who dislike James Allen, who seemed to be the main cause of it.

He was not bad in the 2005 season, or 2006. Those were probably his peak years. But before and after that :rolleyes:
James Allen on Five Live? Brilliant, it's great news because I've never listened to a race on the wireless and never intend to do so, which in turn means that I will be two steps removed from him this season - not listening to F1 on the wireless and not watching it on the BBC.
Oh for goodness sake! SOD OFF BBC!!!!!! so if i cannot find a place online i have to put up with him on radio!?

James Allen makes Legard look like murray Walker. and i hope Jenson Button absolutely sucks next season so i don't have to put up with this.....

Not him, anyone but him! I'm so glad we've got sky here and can't wait for the season to get started :).

No but was expecting this news actually. Johnathan Legard has said that he was offered the job before Allen, but turned it down to focus on Football commentating.
Am fairly indifferent to Mr Allen, but am amused to find that he (or his colleagues) are following me on Twitter - I don't "tweet" (well, just once), so perhaps he is interested in the opinions of the silent majority :D
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