Every so often – and if we’re honest it’s too regular for comfort – a story comes along where even we go ‘yeah, I’ll believe it when I see it’. Whether it’s a videogame being given the virtual reality (VR) treatment, which is highly unlikely or a new piece of hardware where the given statistics are a little too dubious while we report the news that it has been announced that doesn’t mean our own opinions don’t sometimes echo your own doubt.
On Life In 360° we’ve often show off 360 degree videos of Formula One cars in action, in fact we did so as recently as the end of March. Where got on board with Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport and Lewis Hamilton for some highlights from this year’s pre-season testing in Barcelona. Rewind slightly further to November and you might recall the news that 360 degree cameras were going to become mandatory on all F1 cars.
Now F1 has been pretty open about its desire to embrace new technology, especially since Liberty Media made its takeover of the sport from Bernie Ecclestone. However, I honestly thought the chances of a big spherical 360 camera being stuffed on the front of the cars (like the above) would be vetoed by someone or the other. After all, it doesn’t really lend itself to aerodynamics and it’d be the sort of thing that someone from the teams would complain about. So colour me pleasantly surprised that it appears to have indeed gone through; and after several action packed races, the official Formula 1 YouTube channel has put out a number of 360 degree highlight videos over the last month. Some of which you can find below.
F1 Testing 2018 – Vettel’s (Unofficial) Lap Record
“Sebastian Vettel tore through the unofficial lap record on the penultimate day of Pre-Season testing, putting down a 1:17.182 on the hypersoft tyres. Here it is, with 360 glorious angles to choose from.”
Australian Grand Prix 2018 – Magnussen’s Surging Start
“Making up positions at the first corner is always risky – especially when you have to get past Max Verstappen. Ride onboard in 360 as Kevin Magnussen makes an excellent getaway at Albert Park.”
Bahrain Grand Prix 2018 – Verstrappen Crashes In Qualifying
“Whichever angle you look at it from, not a happy evening for Max Verstappen in Bahrain…”
Bahrain Grand Prix 2018 – Verstrappen & Hamilton
“A whole new angle on the collision between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton that ended the Red Bull driver’s race at the 2018 Bahrain Grand Prix.”
Chinese Grand Prix 2018 – Verstrappen Tangles With Vettel
“Every angle of the infamous tangle… watch as Max Verstappen makes contact with Sebastian Vettel at the Chinese Grand Prix, in 360 degrees.”
Nothing through from the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku at the time of writing, but that just means we can come back again to the land of Formula 1 later in the year. VRFocus meanwhile will be back with some more Li360 in a couple of days time.