Power from the tower for the ATS Formula 3 Cup

Power from the tower for the ATS Formula 3 Cup

06.01.2014: The new voice of the 2014 season of the ATS Formula 3 Cup is well-known.

The new voice of the 2014 season of the ATS Formula 3 Cup is well-known. Swen Wauer will be the permanent commentator from the start of the new season of Germany’s fastest single-seater series, following the footsteps of our young talents in their career in Formula racing.

The 41-year old from Wuppertal had been the permanent commentator of the former ADAC Formula BMW Championship since 2005 and has continued in the successor series, ADAC Formula Masters, since 2008. For decades, numerous race drivers have progressed from the high-speed ADAC school of Formula racing to the ATS Formula 3 Cup.

Next season the ADAC Formula Masters commentator will also be in charge of the speakers during the races of our series. We asked Swen Wauer what it means to be the commentator at the track.

Are there any specific things you do in preparation for a season?

Sure. You have to consider possible new or amended regulations before the start of a season. I do not memorise the whole starting grid. However, certain key data of the drivers are part of the preparation, even before the first racing weekend of the season kicks off. Later on the personal relationships, which are established automatically, result in information that are completely different from what you can read everywhere.

 It goes without saying that those information are sometimes off the record. As a matter of fact, personal relationships are essential to avoid that the relevant reports at a weekend become boring or repetitive during the course of the season.

What can the spectators expect?

I hope you do not mean what I have to say?! (laughs) Racing, action, that is overtaking manoeuvres, tactics and things like that. This is the core of a series and the races. And this is what the boys and girls fight and battle for on the track.

It is exactly what they are doing the sports for. We as commentators have two essential tasks: On the one hand, we want to make the drivers more accessible for the spectators and show them that they are normal human beings with a variety of characters and attitudes. That is why I often focus on that during the practice sessions. During the races it is all about the action on the track.

Then I am basically in the car myself and drive along. And as a result there is not a lot of room for additional information about the drivers, the cars or the series during the battle for positions. It is all about the race itself! It is a fact however, that the new season will be extremely exciting. If one team or one driver will be able to dominate the championship so clearly again remains to be seen. This will be a big element of suspense and one that we all can look forward to.

What does it mean for you personally to be the commentator of the German Formula 3?

I am both proud and honoured! I have fond memories of 1993, when Burkhard Bechtel was the commentator of the German Formula 3 Championship. He allowed me to go and get a few statements from the drivers on the starting grid before the start of the race. Claudia Hürtgen was the first driver I did an interview with.

I was 21 back then and told myself: “Commentator - that is what I would like to do at some point in the future.” And that series, the German Formula 3, has a vacancy for me 20 years later, so that I get a chance to work for it as a permanent commentator. It makes me incredibly proud and it is an honour to be able to do this job.

Added to this is the fact that, when my friend and colleague Peter Theisen died at the end of 2004, I took over "his boys and girls". It is my pleasure and honour to see the young talents, who switch from karting to Formula racing, celebrate their first successes, make progress and in some cases become real stars.

Schumacher, Götz, Vettel, Hülkenberg, Perez, Wehrlein and more recently – and I am quite certain about that – the current German ATS Formula 3 Cup champion Marvin Kirchhöfer. It feels like a journey through time since the early 1990s. All of them have accomplished a lot. In the future there will be more names on our lists, which will come to enjoy a truly successful career a few years later.

What makes the job of a commentator on the track more difficult than that of a commentator on the radio or TV?

I had almost said, the right mixture is the essence. Imagine you are in the car and the radio is on. When you commentate live it is your duty as a commentator to convey the action in a visual way so that the audience is transported into the situation. If you have the same style as a TV commentator, the audience will turn you off, because they can see what is going on.

They want to get completely different information. We commentators at the track have to find a perfect balance, because the spectators and fans see the action in some sectors. However, if they cannot see the cars, they still want to know what is happening. Therefore, our job is a lot more difficult than that of a commentator on the radio or TV.

Your voice is omnipresent in the ADAC GT Masters. Is that not too much of a  good thing?

You know, I love and live auto racing. That is why I have no problem switching between the racing series of the ADAC GT Masters, ADAC Formula Masters, ATS Formula 3 Cup, Mini Trophy and ADAC Procar – the two of which will be combined in 2014. There is only one point that can be problematic and I try my best to limit that. Every commentator has their own style, their very individual expressions and phrases.

I want to avoid at all costs that the fans and spectators on the stands get bored or say: “I cannot stand him anymore.” That would be the worst thing, and that is why I always try to basically find new words during a weekend. I am glad to be facing this challenge again. You see, I used to work in karting for a few years where you would usually be in the commentator's booth for two whole days, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

And in all these years nobody complained. For me personally it is very important to be in contact with the fans and for them to tell me what was good and also what was bad. That is the only way to ensure that commentating is exciting and interesting for everybody throughout the weekend.

Well, since I will work at full capacity at a GT Masters weekend, I will not get a chance to visit the stands. But there will be opportunities in the afternoon and evenings to have contact with the fans.

Bettina Eichhammer- photo Formel 3 Vereinigung -

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/ats-formula3-cup-new-voice-swen-wauer---118443.html

06.01.2014 / MaP

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