N News & Results

We’re back for 2021 – Tv Listings, Calendar, Fact Files, and more

Oakville, On, Jan 12/21 (GRW): After much dithering, I have decided to continue with this website project for at least one more season. As I get older each year, I wrestle with the question of when I should call it a day and settle down into my dotage. But, encouraged by response from some of my readers, I will keep on going for another year yet.

I’ve been a race fan for a long time. The first race I ever attended in person was at Edenvale, ON, in 1956 – some 55 years ago. Since then I have attended 73 F1 Grands Prix and visited over 80 different race venues in three continents. Of course, last year I added nothing to either count. I have made a number of hotel reservations in anticipation of the 2020 season but I was unable to use any of them. Thanks to Expedia, my cancellations were forgiven and I was refunded my guaranteed payments. This year, I have made no reservations – and I’m waiting to see how things work out. Let’s hope that things get back to some semblance of normalcy later this year when we can all get back to actually attending race events again,

In reviewing our website project, the publisher, Tim Rutledge, commented that websites should feature the things that are unique to it and try to avoid duplicating the things other websites are doing already. When I thought about that I came up my plan for the three things that I plan to make the focus of my efforts this season:

1. ‘George’s Race Fan TV Listings’ (prnmag.com/tv-listings): I have been compiling these listing in one form or another since the late 1990s. For a number of years, I had a stand-alone website which included TV listings for both Canadian and US residents. For a number of reasons, including the fact that another person in the US decided to copy my style of TV listings, I stopped compiling the US TV listings and now I only compile listings for English-language Canadians (i.e. no French language broadcasts are included).

As those of you who rely on my TV listings must know, there is no other source of this Canada-specific TV information which is as complete, as accurate and as up-to-date as Race Fan TV. I will continue to strive to meet this standard.

I normally post the listings on the Wednesday evening of each week. Sometimes, the broadcast plans change at the last minute (e.g. a rain delay) and I try to keep updating the listings with this late-changing info right up into the weekend. It is a good idea to double-check the listings in case such updates have been posted. Of course, last year (and again this year, I’m afraid) the COVID circumstances led to innumerable changes to the race, and hence to the TV, schedules and I had to make more last-minute updates that normal.

2. Race Events Calendar sorted by date and by series (prnmag.com/calendar): I have compiled all the events in al the major series into a master calendar which is posted on this website.

For my part, I find it helpful to have available such a master calendar which lets me check out the dates of events or the list of events on a given weekend without having to search all around the worldwide web to piece this information together. I have already done this for you with my master calendar.

Last year, with the many changes in dates, replacement events and outright cancellations, I was kept busy updating the master calendar. By season’s end, I had done more that six different versions of the calendar. So far this year, it looks like many events and dates will change as the season goes on. I will try to stay on top of these changes and update the master calendar as needed.

3. ‘Fact File’ for each major race: Most race reports are a prose narrative-style that tells the story of the race. Thanks to the internet, these narratives are available online from a number of different writers. I have been writing these narrative reports for almost every major race during the season whether I was in attendance at the race or not. On review, I have decided that I am not providing a very unique service with my narratives.

Race reporters write their reports based on their own notes about the race and the fact sheets handed out in the press room or distributed online. NASCAR, for one. is trying to replace completely the handed-out sheets with online distribution via email.

These press room handouts include such things as entry lists, qualifying results, starting lineups, lap charts, pit stop reports, race results and point standings.

If you look at the F1 annual ‘Autocourse’ you will see that they devote two full pages to this kind of official information. I believe that any serious race fan would appreciate being given these fact sheets in their original form as distributed to the media members. My observation is that ordinary race fans are seldom provided with this information in its original official form; instead, if they get it at all, it is in a form edited by the race reporter and presented in a different format. Why not give you the original, official document rather than some edited, condensed version? And in a form which you can print out if you want to?

This year, I will feature race reports which are basically just a collection of links to these relevant information files. I will post each of these race reports under the heading of ‘Fact File’. Some of these documents are available to everyone online, others are available in ‘media only’ sites. My ‘Fact File’ reports will make all the reports I have selected available in a single one-stop location.

In addition, the ‘Fact File’ will include most of the factual components that my Race Preview postings contained last year, as such, I will drop the Race Preview reports as such.

I will post these fact files early in the race weekend and then update them as more pages of ‘facts’ become available. I expect that I will update each Fact File three times: first when the entry list is available to me, second when the grid/starting lineup is posted and third when the race has been completed and the race results, etc. are available. This means that you may want to come back to a given Fact File report a number of times to see the data that has been posted as the weekend went on. I will try to post updated photos as the race weekend goes on to give you a hint that the particular Race File has been updated.

OTHER REGULAR FEATURES: In addition to the above, I plan to post narrative stories from time to time that relate to the world of racing. If I, or another one of the PRN staff, attend an actual race event in person we will provide a narrative race report in addition to the Fact File report. If one of the PRN staff members attends an event and takes lots of photos, we will post a ‘photo gallery’ from that event.

So, that is the plan for the PRN website this 2021 season – a season which promises to be a bit rocky – but, hopefully, things will start getting back to normal as the season goes on.

We welcome you to our website and hope that you find it informative. I am always happy to receive feedback via email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

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