@peteleeuk Agreed, unfortunately! I think a lot of people want Sky to be good and keep telling themselves it is when really, they’re getting a more serious version of the BBC that just looks like they’re trying way, way too hard.
I’ve always liked Edwards, but now you’ve ruined him for me! :-D I think he’s better than Croft, however. Brundle and DC really worked together. DC annoyed me at times with his thinly veiled bias, but I think he got better as the season went on. Although I’m not sold on the idea of Brundle doing the lead commentary, looking back, we had consistently good commentary last year from the pair of them.
In the pits, Sky wins by virtues of having bought Ted from the BBC, but I think they’re going a bit overboard with him by including him in the coverage so much. Gary Anderson is, as you say, difficult to listen to! He doesn’t have the right voice for it and to be honest, I can’t understand half of what he says (no idea what that accent is but it’s kind of muffled and monotonous).
It’s funny, but the more I think about it, the more I realise how good (apart from the ads!) ITV had it. Allen was the best co-commentator for Brundle, and his enthusiasm wasn’t irritating, it was infectious. Ted in the pits, Louise in the paddock, and some decent (not as good as the BBC though!) pre/post-race stuff. People didn’t seem to like James, but I’ve never understood that. He and Brundle also seemed to get along very well.
As for pre/post-race fun, the BBC wins hands down. Georgie Thompson isn’t particularly bad I don’t think, but her presence is entirely pointless. She stands there next to Anthony Davidson and asks him a very boring question that I can’t even be bothered hearing the answer to, and then Anthony awkwardly swipes away at the pointless interactive wall while delivering his usual uninteresting insight and opinions. Hill is a smart guy that I enjoy hearing from occasionally, but he’s certainly not the man for this job. He just looks out of place and like he doesn’t know what to do. Lazenby is OK, I have to admit, but that’s also his problem — he’s a bit “professional”, or as I’d call it, bland. Humphrey is like EJ’s condescending father, while DC tends to take sides with him, so it’s got that fun Top Gear-esque feel to it. I enjoy seeing it because it’s not always smooth, but it’s never dull, which is more that can be said of Sky!
So basically, I’d ideally have Allen and Brundle in the box, Ted in the pits, Pinkham in the paddock (I was disappointed when Holly Samos went, but she’s surprised me and been quite a decent replacement) DC doing his mid-race comments (like in 2010) with Jake, Eddie and DC presenting the coverage — of course joined by Brundle for the forum. So basically, I want the 2011 BBC team with added James Allen! :-P
But if Sky continues as they are, this is going to be a disaster.
Also, this is well worth a watch. Seriously, stick with it.