Why TV gives old F1 laps an illusion of speed

But despite the likelihood of lap records being broken, and drivers raving about the flat-out challenges of some of the greatest corners in grand prix racing, it will not stop those who think F1 is missing something.

Indeed, Carlos Sainz recently sparked some debate on social media about whether TV images were not doing a good enough job in showing just how great current F1 cars are.

Having tweeted an eye-opening video of Ayrton Senna qualifying for the 1991 British Grand Prix, he voiced some intrigue about why a car that was several seconds slower than what we have now looks so quick.

Reflecting on the matter a few days later, Sainz asked: “The cars are amazing, but then you watch TV and they don’t seem faster than they were back then. And that’s what makes me nervous.

Is there something we are doing wrong with the cameras, with the camera angles, or with high definition? Most people on Twitter agreed that cars, being longer and bigger, give the impression that they are slower.”

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There were a multitude of theories put forward as to why that Senna lap appeared to be so fast.

So Motorsport.com spoke to Dean Locke, F1’s Director of Broadcast and Media, for his verdict on why that Senna lap looked so quick.

A television camera

Photo by: Hazrin Yeob Men Shah

Violent cars

As well…

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