Supercars trials new 'start your engines' procedure

Supercars trialled a new 'start your engines' procedure at Bathurst last weekend as part of a push to better capture moments unique to motor racing.

Supercars trials new 'start your engines' procedure

The tweak to the pre-race routine saw race director Tim Schenken deliver a 'start your engines' directive on the open teams radio channel before the commencement of the warm-up lap.

That message was broadcast live on TV before a near-simultaneous fire-up of the 24 cars sitting on the grid.

According to Supercars TV boss Nathan Prendergast, the idea came from discussions with returning free-to-air broadcaster the Seven Network about better capturing "unique" elements of the sport.

But it won't become a regular feature of race weekend, instead something that will be used sparingly as part of the broadcast package.

"It was born from a discussion with Seven from them looking at moments in our sport that are unique," Prendergast told Motorsport.com.

"We're just trying to take an internal look at the sport and see if there are cool moments that we just dismiss because we're all very familiar to it. Start your engines is very old school, but there's something about that moment when the drivers all fire up on the grid.

"We need to refine it. Tim calls it on race management, and then the [engineers] relay it [to the drivers]. It improved from Saturday to Sunday. We need to work on capturing the true audio better too.

"It's going to get tiresome if we do it all the time, so we'll only be rolling it out at selected events. I don't think we'll see it back until Townsville. But we're just trying to capture some of the cool things that are part of our sport."

 

Seven's return as the Supercars FTA partner, part of the new TV deal, yielded impressive boost in numbers, with and average audience up 28 per cent compared to the first round in 2020.

"Seven are very engaged and they are happy with the numbers they received," added Prendergast. "Everyone is please. He have a huge amount of belief in the sport and the product, and for it to work for them is very exciting."

The Fox Sports numbers were reportedly slightly down, but the race coverage was still the most watched show on Foxtel across both days.

The figures also don't take into account streaming and the impact of Foxtel's subscription service Kayo, which showed the races for free.

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