Inside the broadcast production of the Monaco Grand Prix 2017
Formula One Management (FOM) produces the world feed for all the Grand Prix championships with one exception – the Monaco Grand Prix, where the international TV feed is overseen by the Automobile Club of Monaco. Euromedia, the production facilities provider, has been chosen by the Automobile Club to produce the international signal this year and every year up to and including 2021.
Gaël Tanguy, Euromedia’s Technical Director, commented ahead of the 2017 event, which took place on 28 May: “The Monaco Grand Prix set-up is quite exceptional considering not only the prestige of the race itself, but also its street circuit running through the heart of the city with 51cameras installed all around it. This Grand Prix will be shot in 4K for the first time.”
On the day, the Sony brand was omnipresent with a majority of HDC-4300 cameras in use, but also some HDC-P43 compact cameras. There were also four Super Loupe systems by DVS (a Euromedia subsidiary) that captured 500 frames per second. Two remote cameras were equipped with Livetools technology for the filming of the grandstands. In addition, there were onboard cameras managed directly by FOM and also recording in 50p mode.
“In order to connect the cameras to our trucks we used close to 200 fibre connections supplied by Monaco Telecom. There were 13 fibre site boxes across the network that we equipped with mini-nodes to provide the SMPTE fibre connectivity for all the cameras and also to guarantee secure power supply with inverters,” said Tanguy.
The inverters were equipped with an alarm so that in the event of a malfunction, there could be a rapid response. The cameras were connected well in advance as they were also used for the latest Formula E championship. The rest of the equipment was set up on the Monday before the race, ready to start rolling from the Wednesday for the various practice sessions and qualifying laps that precede the Grand Prix.
OB truck configuration
“This year we used two production trucks. There was the A21 with François Lanaud at the helm to produce the international signal, and the B40 which is sort of the A21’s ‘twin brother’ with Jérôme Ramos in charge. The B40 provided coverage of the grandstands and this was the first time it was used for 4K production,” said Tanguy.
The two vehicles were parked side by side in the TV compound (located close to the Rascasse Corner) and use the same tools for improved compatibility (Grass Valley Kayenne K-Frame switcher, SAM matrix etc). A total of 11 LSM HD servers were up-converted to 4K (50p). Using the LSM servers in native UHD would have required too many units in view of the limited number of entry points currently available on these units.
Shortly after the closing ceremony, the A21 journeyed to Sochi in Russia in order to cover the Football Federations Cup, whilst the B40’s next commitments were the finals of the French Open at Roland Garros.