Suzi Perry has been chosen as the new face of the BBC’s Grand Prix coverage and becomes the first female presenter to permanently front Formula One on British television.
Perry replaces Jake Humphrey, who quit his post after four years to anchor Premier League coverage on a new sports channel.
Perry’s appointment will doubtless be seen in some quarters as a snub for the BBC’s other female face of Formula One, pit-lane reporter Lee McKenzie.
McKenzie had previously stood in for Humphrey to widespread acclaim and is a popular figure in the Formula One paddock.
Other names under consideration were 5 Live Sport presenter Mark Pougatch and even Radio Two disc jockey and One Show presenter Chris Evans.
It seems, however, the gruelling 20-race calendar has proved too difficult to marry with Evans’ other commitments, prompting the BBC to opt for some glamour in front of the camera.
Perry is a committed petrolhead, having spent 10 years covering MotoGP for the BBC. Other sporting roles have included the 2004 Olympics in Athens and horseracing while, until recently, she was also a regular member of Channel Five’s Gadget Show team.
She will certainly need to draw on all of her experience to keep commentator David Coulthard and outspoken expert analyst Eddie Jordan on a tight rein.
Perry said: ‘Motor sport is my life and I’ve really missed being away from the grid. I am so excited to be joining the BBC. Working alongside such an eminent team in the Formula One world is a huge honour and I can’t wait to get started.’
However, she’ll have to wait until the third race, in China, to present full live coverage of a Grand Prix weekend following the BBC’s decision to relinquish rights to the full 20 races.
The BBC will not be screening the glamorous Monaco Grand Prix or the US Grand Prix in Austin. Sky will screen every Grand Prix weekend live once again. - Daily Mail