McLaren driver Carlos Sainz was “the invisible man” during the recent Hungarian Grand Prix in which the FOM director and his crew on duty for the race were not on point on an incident-packed afternoon at Hungaroring.
In fact, well-known Spanish journalist Antonio Lobato claims that the Formula 1 broadcaster often fails to show the McLaren driver’s exploits during grands prix.
“No matter what he does, you never see him,” he told El Mundo newspaper.
Indeed, in Hungary, Sainz finished fifth, having successfully fended off constant race-long pressure from Red Bull’s Pierre Gasly. The pair were locked in battle all afternoon, the blue car constantly in DRS range of the orange one.
After the chequered flag on Sunday, reporters had to ask Sainz to describe his tough race against Gasly, who often failed to pass the Spaniard even with DRS.
“It wasn’t on TV? How strange,” said the 24-year-old sarcastically, claiming that he is rarely featured during the grand prix broadcasts.
At any rate, McLaren boss Andreas Seidl is happy with the British team’s progress and told AS, “I really did not expect us to have the fourth fastest car in Hungary.”
In retrospect, the FOM director on duty for the race in Hungary was not in top form as too often he was found following Bottas’ shenanigans and charge through the field when the battle at the front was far more intriguing.
Even the Ferrari duo were hardly in the frame while the bigger picture of the enthralling game of cat-and-mous, Lewis Hamilton at his best and Max Verstappen at his cheekiest, unfolded but apparently, the director and his assistants were oblivious to it.
On the other hand, the tussle between Toro Rosso duo Alex Albon and Daniil Kvyat was well captured, timeously but a look at the re-run on F1TV shows evidence of not quite catching the plot on the global feed.
In general, the entire F1 media machine has been revitalised beyond recognition from the Bernie Ecclestone days, with TV coverage vastly improved in all aspects.
Big Question: How good is FOM F1 race weekend coverage these days?