They seemed to have forgotten about production classes? They had a couple token shots of grp N, grp 2, and grp 5, but no PGT (I don't think there were any Prod "ProRally" registered finishers anyway) Surprisingly, there was a large PGT field there as well. I guess the writing is on the wall...
Come on guys The only good thing about the show was that it was one hour long.
I am a rallyist, and to be honest, I was almost tempted to switch to the Lakers game after about 20 minutes or so, and I am not a Laker fan.
The footage was bad, the position of the cameras was bad, and I don't know why US TV is obsessed with showing stupid spins on 20 mph corners over and over and over. Is there anyone on this list that would have not preferred to see a shot of the 1st place P or PGT car rather than that dumb corner where everybody made a mistake 500 times?. It is a rally championship, not a bloopers show.
Bottom line, in my opinion, the company/studio contracted to produce the shows is not experienced enough to present and translate rallying from life to film properly. I have seen footage and bits produced by amateurs and spectators which are ten times better than what Speed is putting on TV, and they do it for free. A comentator can say as many times as he wants that "these guys are driving at over 100mph" but if you don't know how to translate that on to film, well then you get what was on TV last night. And the commentary....no comment.
Maybe I am wrong, or my perspective is somewaht twisted, but if there is anyone who spectated at sno-drift that can tell me the cars looked relatively fast on TV, compared to what they did live, please let me know.
I couldn't disagree with you more Jose. You should come drive Sno*Drift. See how much you feel like going fast then.
I think that the program was the best I've seen so far. Good job to all those invloved. We have one of our own, Russ Rosendale in the booth, he ran the club rallies. And the production was much better.
Speaking of production...
Poor John Bottoms. Subaru doesn't really love you. You did really well in a pretty much stock RS. 1st in PGT and a top 10 finish. You should have been a part of the program. I feel for you man. They totally left you out of the picture. I suggest you shack up with a company that doesn't even make the smallest effort to try and convince you that they give one little crap about your rally effort. It works for me.
I didn't think the coverage was too bad, but then again I'm a bit biased. They showed a number of shots of my car!
I was a bit dissapointed in the lack of coverage in other classes though. Sure, a 2wd production car going through a 90deg corner isn't very exciting, but neither is 4wd open car.... But in the end we need to remember who footed the bill the for the TV show. When the P-class teams start paying for the show, they'll get more coverage.
Some better camera placement could have really brought the event alive. Not as easy as it sounds though. I think Jeff Burmeister had a post on the old special stage about the logistics of covering a rally. Basically I think he said that Replica Productions uses the same amount of cameras per rally as the WRC guys use per stage. The in car from Lovells car was awesome, and they should have showed more.
Oh, and for the record, I was 7th overall, not 5th like the show implied. Shane Mitchell and Mark Utecht deserve much credit for excellent drives in their GrN cars that netted them 6th and 5th respectively. Overall I was very dissapointed in the lack of GrN coverage. Kurt had made is sound like the class was going to get much more than they did. The class will never grow significantly without sponsors, and sponsors won't show without coverage.
All in all, for their first attempt at an hour long show, with limited cameras, in some nasty conditions, not a bad show.
Didn't mean to give the wrong impression. The show was better than we are used to, but again, in my opinion, still not on par with what we should expect for a so called "PRO" sport.
I've only spectated snow drift, never driven it, but I've done Tall Pines and Maine Winter in it's good old days. I believe Pines is slippier and with no snow banks to help drivers are more cautious, and this provides more of a challenge for camera work. Yet, the Canadian TV coverage is more true to actual speed than the Speed show, and I doubt our Canadian friends are playing with the same level of production budget, but I don't know. Regardless, it not so much about how many cameras you have but where you put them. We've all seen them, they walk in far enough to get their shot wherever they can stand and that's it.
Last year at STPR we walked by one of the film crews before the start of a stage and suggested they walk in another 1/8 of a mile to a spot we thought might be good (we had the stage note on us and where still wearing our driving suits). They said no, this is a good spot and they stayed there. That lame shot made it on the show. Anyone who knows anything about rallying would have never considered spectating from where they where. We walked the extra 1/8 of a mile and ended up at one of the safest best viewing spots I've ever seen in STPR. My friend was filming with borrowed palm corder and aside from actual video quality his footage was much better than anything they aired on that specific show. Where's David Richards when you need him? }>
And Dennis, you are 100% correct. Everything around the sport has grown inmensly, exept sponsors, they don't seem to be jumping on the rally band wagon just yet.
>Maybe I am wrong, or my perspective is somewaht twisted, but
>if there is anyone who spectated at sno-drift that can tell
>me the cars looked relatively fast on TV, compared to what
>they did live, please let me know.
I was on a good corner on stage 9 at the very end. It was a LONG straight into a 90° right over the finish. Lots of open space. We had the Speed camera guy there. That corner was better than many that they showed on TV. Only footage they showed of that is as a background to the sponsor pages when they came back from commercial and they showed a ¼ of a second clip of one of the Evo 8's.
I think it could have been better. They did have a lot of footage, it just wasn't good footage. I'll wait and see what happens after the Rim footage. Granted the cars weren't going super fast on the snow, maybe gravel will give a better perspective on how the coverage is.
I watched Ramada on Tuesday and then Ice*Slide on Thursday... in general, I preferred OLN's video, but that announcer put me to sleep... that and the BS about the "Top international drivers from around the world" made the Ramada show nice to watch but pathetic to listen to... oh, and they had way too much helecopter footage of DNF'ed teams standing around looking depressed.
The WRC shows are still the best of the 3... their coverage looks faster and more spectacular.
Someone on here surely knows more about all this than I do, but here's what I was told:
If you have comments on the show, call the producers, Marty Reid Enterprises in Indy, (Avon, IN), or Martin Brinkerhoff Productions in Irvine, CA who supposedly are responsible for the video production itself. [email protected]
Ramada Express was done by Done. Right, Ray?
(Oh, by the way, one of Martin Brinkerhoff's corporate clients is Mitsubishi...)
...and other silly Slow*Drift...thanks to stupid "no studs" rule...
- So called factory drivers and PROs slipping and sliding off at 30 MPH...
- Give boys STUDS!! (Girls already have them....)
PS. Cars going "125 MPH" BS was too much to take, too. Incar shots were useless as well. Don't they check before shooting? Or after? Hard to believe this is Marty Reid stuff - he was the best ProRally announcer ever and does excellent "Off-Road Truck Series" filming.
Cars do exceed 100 mph at Sno*Drift. 125 on some of the long straights would not suprise me. Average speeds range between 45 and 65 mph depending on stage and conditions (last years conditions were much faster, but not as pretty, or fun). Conditions dramatically effect speeds. I have been on those roads when you literally could barely drive up hill with AWD on water covered ice. And when traction was fantastically impressive on all terrian tires: speeds that would have beat most of the field could be easily managed in a pick-up truck.
And if you want studs you'll have to find another venue. Michigan Laws do not allow studs. With studs I'd imagine our speeds would be in excess of STPR speeds. I think very few of our roads would make good summer time (gravel speeds) stages. All of our stages have great sections for anytime of year. The roads are a constant mix of fast and slow - but the fast sections would likely be too fast for studs.
Camera Angels: I was stuck on the tarmac in NY and only caught the last 10 minutes of the show (and the VCR really hates me).
From what I read, the TV could be better if better camera angels and locations could be used.
Is this a priority? We could easily schedule the event to allow the camera crew to set up a stage run the stage twice and then move to the next stage. It would take roughly three hours to run each stage. With 16 stages that would be a 48 hour event, but hey we might have a great TV show.
I am hoping for more cameras.
I agree with the comments above, about not being well versed at capturing the speed and drama of the event through the lense. It seems a difficult challenge. It further hampered by easy access to low speed corners, and difficuly access to the higher speed sweeping corners and sections of yumps.
More cameras that could be operated from "locked-in" positions would really enhance the coverage. A helicopter would go a long way to displaying the higher speed sections.
There are lots of solutions, they only take money or time.
I think we should be happy that we have seen a continued improvement in Drivers, Cars, Competition, Event Organization, TV coverage, and public awareness. If the SCCA could step up to the plate with better management, organizational structure, and marketing "Pro" rally might make it to the big-time.
- No, never been there. Nor are 99.999999% of SpeedTV viewers. We just call what we see.
- Never been to Swedish WRC neither and they "only" do 100 MPH there but it looks like 1000 times faster...and is!
- I agree rest with you
PS. Michigan laws won't allow 99% of cars if inspected for EPA and DOT regulations. Stages are closed roads - aren't they? Studs should be ok.
Regarding JB Niday's critique of the Ramada Rally program
My wife and I just returned from working this weekend at the Rim of the world rally all weekend to read your posting.
You referred to a line I wrote from our show that says, "the event attracts top international drivers from around the world". I would argue that current and former Canadian, U.S., New Zealand, and Japanese national champions, and a top Italian WRC group N competitor qualify as top international drivers.
If you don't like the show fine but being in your position as staff member of Rally America, I'm sad to see you taking cheap shots at the best efforts of fellow U.S. rally organizers.
I agree, the WRC coverage is the best rally footage going. It's amazing what a million dollar production budget and 20, three-quarter of million dollar cars driven by full time professional drivers can do for exciting TV.
Kudos to the producers for coming up with a high-quality product. It was interesting to me to not see a lot of footage from camerapeople that I saw in the woods. I wonder if the change in production companies left some camerapeople out in the cold.
I welcome some of the changes, though - longer duration, energetic announcing, unified graphics package. It looked very slick. I still would like to see more coverage of the "other cars", but if wishes were fishes...
I'd be glad to burn copies of the show on VCD or CD-ROM for people who are willing to come pick them up at my house. I'll even throw in the Lurch footage from Hi-Rev tuners and any other rally stuff that I can find on my hard drive.
>PS. Cars going "125 MPH" BS was too much to take, too. Incar
>shots were useless as well. Don't they check before
>shooting? Or after? Hard to believe this is Marty Reid stuff
>- he was the best ProRally announcer ever and does excellent
>"Off-Road Truck Series" filming.
We got her over 100 a few times, with one confirmed (the codriver switched terratrip displays) 106 mph romp. Oh yeah, that was with the right rear wheel falling off! I could imagine the leaders hitting close to 125. BTW, doing 100mph on a single lane rutted snow covered road without studs is friggin' hard.