Sky have appointed Scott Young as their new Head of Formula 1, succeeding Martin Turner in the role. Market intelligence site Sportcal revealed the news before Christmas, and I have independently confirmed the story with various sources during the past week.
The name will be unfamiliar to most readers as Young’s career, until this point, has largely been associated with Australian motor sports. Young’s broadcasting career spans well over three decades, concentrating on motor sport television production from the late 1990’s onwards with Network Ten.
In 2011, he became Head of Television with V8 Supercars, bringing in what is known as the “hamburger cam” and high-definition coverage to the sport. He left the role at the end of 2015, with V8 Supercars undergoing a behind the scenes overhaul affecting more than just Young.
A little over two years later, and Young is now heading to the UK, to work on Sky’s Formula 1 coverage. Speaking about Young to this site, Sky’s F1 lead commentator David Croft said “I’m really excited by Scott coming in. He’s got a wealth of experience in motor sport coverage, working over in Australia with the V8s and Formula 1 quite a long time ago. He’s very well connected, knows people in the paddock, and has some great ideas for 2018.”
“Martin [Turner] was a brilliant boss, and I think Scott will be a brilliant boss as well. Sky have taken their time to choose the right man to come into what is a very important job, as the Head of F1. He’ll get everyone’s support and backing and I think he’ll do a bloody good job,” Croft continued.
Young arrives at Sky during an interesting period, as Sky look to produce their F1 output from their Osterley base instead of on-site at the race track, a technique known in the industry as ‘remote production‘.
Croft praises outgoing Head of F1
Sky’s outgoing Formula 1 chief Martin Turner held the reins from inception at the end of 2011, through to the middle of last season. And speaking to me during the Autosport Show, Croft believes that Turner’s initial moves to bring the squad together helped immensely in the long-term.
“Martin put together the team in a genius way, of very different people, all of whom I think are very good at what they’re doing, none of whom actually want to do what anyone else is doing. All of whom get along with each other like friends, almost like a family. I hope that comes out on-air, if we’re mucking about on-air, or cracking gags at each other, that’s what we do off-air as well.”
“There’s no pretence, we’re just a happy bunch of people travelling the world doing something we really love. Martin and the producers brought together creative people, hard-working people, talented people,” Croft added.
“It’s the best team I’ve ever worked with. Things have changed a bit since the first race, some staff have left, some have come in. There’s no conflict or friction behind the scenes, and I think that’s really important for the show.”