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Alguersuari confirmed for BBC Radio 5 Live
Posted By: James Allen  |  06 Mar 2012   |  8:11 pm GMT  |  99 comments

Jaime Alguersuari was unveiled today as the final member of the BBC Radio 5 Live presentation team for 2012.

The 21 year old from Barcelona will be my co-commentator, with Jennie Gow the pitlane reporter.

Today in London the BBC teams from TV and Radio did a press day, meeting with journalists from web and newspapers.

Alguersuari comes to broadcasting after two and a half years as a driver with Toro Rosso; last year he had a strong second half of the season, as he took the improved Toro Rosso and made some bold strategies work for him. The key was his strong pace on worn soft tyres, which he pushed for long middle stints.

From Canada onwards he was in the points 7 times in 13 races, with outstanding drives in Italy and Korea and strong runs in Canada, Valencia and India. He scored 26 points last season, one less than Paul di Resta and 63% of Toro Rosso’s total points.

Among broadcasters he is therefore by far the driver with the most current experience of this generation of F1 cars, the only one who has raced with new generation Pirelli tyres, KERS and DRS wings. This experience will be invaluable to our broadcasts,

This afternoon we had a practice together in a studio, using last year’s Chinese Grand Prix and the results were terrific; he’ll hit the ground running in Melbourne and I think it’s going to be a great year.

“It’s great to be part of the BBC’s F1 commentary team on Radio 5 live,” he said. “It will be interesting to look at the action from a different angle and bring that excitement and insight to listeners. Given that I’m still only 21, this agreement permits me to return to F1. It promises to be another exciting season and I can’t wait for it to start.”

He should be in an F1 car and no doubt will be again; he was caught out only by being told in mid December by Red Bull that he wouldn’t be retained for 2012, when it was too late to secure another drive.

So he’s doing the radio for the right reasons; he wants to be in F1, close to the action and get himself back in the game and it’s to our great benefit.

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Happy to know that Jaime is back in the circus, even as a commentator. At least, he’s gonna have a lot of exposure. Just for the record, I’d like to remind you that Jaime Alguersuari belongs to a family of motorsport journalists, being his father the founder of a very popular motorcycle’s magazine in Spain and his grandfather was a very respected and renowned photo journalist, so he is not alien to this world in the slightest. And his english is quite good, not like mine. I apologise for my poor english. Anyway, I feel happy for him and look forward to read some Jaime’s entries at James Allen’s blog during the season, I think he’s a good fit for that, too.


It’s a massive shame he isn’t racing, but like Hulkenberg, Grosjean, he can comeback better and ready for the next season because he is good enough for a good drive with a team like Mercedes and he is still young. Will be interesting though to hear him on the radio.


I dono about Alguersuari as a commentator, but i suppose Chandhok would have been a better bet….


Great to have an up-to-date driver on your team James. I really hope he can chip in here too, that will bring a whole new dimension to the comments.

As an aside – will the Sky situation be changed if Ofcom find that BskyB is not a “fit and proper person” ?

Links – but I’m sure you have better info 😉



It’s a coup for 5 Live: he’ll be able to provide fantastic insight into exactly what it’s like to be an F1 driver in current machinery.

It’s a travesty that he doesn’t have a drive for this year, though. Whether Toro Rosso thought he was destined for the top or not, leaving it ’til the last minute and then dropping him when the merry-go-round had all but stopped was not only cold, but also rather unprofessional. It could have killed the career of an older driver stone dead, but I’m hopeful Alguersuari can get back into F1 or maybe at least try GP2 next season.


Sounds like a pretty formidable partership, especially from a technical point of view. The one unknown is if the two of you will build up any chemistry in your partnership, and there’s absolutely no way of knowing that beforehand, time will tell.

One thing no-one has mentioned is that it takes balls to do a live commentary job that’s not in your native language, so if Jaime pulls it off I will be extra impressed.

I very much look forward to listening to you both, and good luck for the coming season.


Congrats to Jamie – I think it’ll be a good team.

Looking forward to the 5Live team this year as I’m doing the RTL/5Live thing – as I’m sure are many others.

The only slight challenge I face is getting the video and audio in sync – James, any chance you can count the lights at the start of the race?

That way I could pause the audio when you say “1 light” and resume it when the video shows 1 light.

A lot to ask I know – but I’m sure that it would be greatly appreciated by everyone with the same set-up as me


Is he going to be the DJ for the Jingle’s as well??

Is the 5Live commentary going to be from the races or from the UK? I thought the latter previously, but that would presumably mean no third driver role for Jaime…


From the races. I’m sure we’ll hear Jaime’s music. Album is called Organic Life


I’m from Australia so won’t get to hear your coverage, but I’m positive Jaime will do great, very smart and speaks very well. However I’m very sad to not see him on the grid…



Can you tell me if JA will be be racing in any championships next year?

I’d assume so as he’d want to stay on top of his game as much as possible.



No, he’s doing some kart events but decided not to go down the road of other motorsport categories


And very wise not to too at his age and stage in career.


Sorry, I mean this year.


Is it possible to listen to BBC 5live commentary in Australia? How?


You can listen via the BBC website but I’m not sure if it would work in Australia. I recall that it worked for me for a while when I was in New Zealand but it stopped working once my laptop detected that it was no longer in UK!


Look further up the comment 20 reply by Mike J.

Need to subscribe to a VPN service, relatively small cost


Which Sirius channel will you be on?


Respect for Jamie – only 21 and able to commentate in a second language.

Sounds like a good team.

Sky has poached most of the big names (appart from EJ of course!) but the BBC has put together two very promising comentry teams for TV and radio…. Don’t write off the beeb just yet 😉




Sad but true.

John Ferdinand

Good riddance! And take Alonso and HRT with you. 


Ouch! That’s very direct…


James sorry if someone else has already asked this: I’m curious about the ‘this might help him back into a car next year’ angle. Would it really be beneficial to Jaime for getting back into an F1 car after ‘moving’ to the media/radio? Wouldn’t team bosses feel it’s a career move, ‘away from the action’ (Yes I know the action is right there, through your window, but maybe it’s the wrong side of the fence?). Still it’s FAR better than ‘nothing’ and he deserves that at least!


No, if you look at how F1 works, it’s a good bet I reckon


I agree with James. Alguersuari is now guaranteed to be present at every race this year, and you can bet he will take every opportunity when not commentating to show his face in the paddock.

I would guess this puts him in a stronger position to get a future drive than the other drivers let go recently.


JA + JA ‘thinks’ umm seen that somewhere before.

Got It!

‘So, the race is about to start, time to hand you over to the cometary Binks.


I know this sounds weird but I was immediately struck by Jamie’s first broadcast I saw – He was just totally Natural …. an immediate feeling of just ” relaxation and knowledge ” …. like Jenson but with a bit of a foreign accent ……. and it was obvious he had a flair / skill for interviews or broadcasts.

James, Jamie and Jennie …. the 3 J’s ……..and actually this shows how good the Beeb are at picking people. Good Luck for the season … have a gas that’s all we want.

( Shame the Beeb didn’t drop DC and his nervous style )

Adrian Newey Jnr

James – when will the podcasts begin?


Friday in Melbourne


It’s good to have Jaime on board and I wish him well. I think he was quite good when he took part to Peter Windsor’s The Flying Lap.

However, he’ll be measuring up against Anthony Davidson and Karun Chandhok who have both been outstanding as far as radio commentary is concerned.

The one person of your team I am also looking forward to is Jennie Gow. If she can be as good as she was last year when standing in for Natalie Pinkham, she will be fantastic. Great, great voice.


Re the photo, which one is Alguersuari?


Are you inferring that James Allen looks like he’s still 21?


Quite right too…


mmm James Alguersuari is on the left and Jaime Allen is in the center!


Your best looking co-commentator to date! You should get a scarf like that.

I remember the BBC showed an interview with JA back to with Hamilton. If you had never heard of either of them you would have said JA was the Brit. He is an excellent orator.

Friday’s on the 5live Xtra were one of the highlights of my season last year. Looking forward to more quality stuff.

Mike from Medellin, Colombia

James, will live BBC Radio commentary be available for every race this season or for just those broadcast live on BBC TV?


Every race live


Except Valencia. I haven’t seen a live race there yet.




Good news on the New BBC Radio 5 Live team.

Noticed all 3 of you have your 1st name starting with J! James, Jennie and Jaime!

I hope we get the old You James, the one who gets excited, the one we remember on ITV (Hopefully you dont do what other radio commentators do, talk about things we cant see).

Jennie showed during the Canadian GP last season how well she can hope with F1 Broadcasting and great to see her back in Sports Broadcasting after her shock drop from MotoGP.

and Jaime is a shock choice, he is young but as you mentioned he has the experience of DRS, KERS and such.

Look at the old BBC Radio 5 Live Team – Croft, Ant and Natalie, they were good and I hope they do a good Job on Sky Sports but BBC has found some quality replacements and all 3 of you have got some pressure in replacing the trio mentioned but you are all well known professional broadcasters so BBC 5 Live have pulled some strings in a top quality team.

Going to be a good F1 Season coming up! and to hear the Chequred Flag Podcast is still happening alongside your regular podcast James, this will keep all F1 enthuaists busy!


I know it’s only radio James, but please take him shopping for some new clothes.

Best oflukc for the seaon.


I’m sure he wont have many kind words when commentating on Toro Rosso…!

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