You will have noticed that there have been some changes to your issue of Motor Sport this month. As a reader I know that any change to a much-loved magazine can be concerning, so I want to take this opportunity to explain the thinking behind the new- look Motor Sport and take you through the issue.
The first thing to say is that I hope the revised magazine is easier to read. We have increased the type size in order to improve legibility and also changed the font to a more user-friendly version. For aficionados the previous font was called Delirium and new one is Proxima. The difference between them is not huge, but I feel that the switch makes the great content we produce clearer and more accessible.
We have also ‘justified’ the text – given each column a straight edge – rather than using the ragged-edge layout from before. Although not particularly fashionable these days, justifying the text offers a clarity and sense of order to the magazine (which by its very nature can be an unruly beast). Of course, that unpredictability is crucial but I think providing clear boundaries amplifies rather than dulls its impact. On a more practical note it also allows us to pack more words onto the page, which means that, despite increasing the print size, the word counts remain virtually unchanged.
One of the great strengths of the magazine, and an area about which I know readers feel particularly passionate, is our columnists. So I am very pleased to welcome two new voices. Readers will of course know Andrew Frankel from his incisive and wry road car reviews; he joins us with a brilliant new diary column casting a knowledgeable eye over the automotive industry as well as following his own historic racing exploits. Andrew is one of the of the most connected, trusted, specialist journalists in the country and I am delighted that he has agreed to contribute his thoughts and insights exclusively to Motor Sport.
I am also incredibly excited to welcome Jennie Gow. Jennie might be familiar to F1 fans from the radio, where she reports for BBC Radio 5 Live. That role gives her money-can’t-buy access to the paddock and pitlane and, as a trained journalist, her eye for a story means her columns will be packed with behind-the-scenes snippets you won’t read anywhere else.
Andrew and Jennie join our strong roster of columnists: Mark Hughes continues to offer his technically brilliant insights into the world of F1; Mat Oxley remains the best motorcycling writer working today; and Doug Nye will continue offering his unique perspective on the world of motor racing – always with one eye on the past.
There are some changes to the content, too. We have expanded and reorganised the reviews section, gathering all review elements into one easy-to-navigate area. As part of this move, the book review section has been expanded from one page to three in order to make more of the wonderful variety of literature published every month. Previously, we could do little more than pay it lip service. Road car reviews and our expanded products pages will also be in this section, allowing you to browse everything from a new Porsche 911 to a Lego version of the McLaren Senna.
I have also moved what I regard as one of the centrepieces of our magazine to a permanent mooring nearer the front. Lunch with… is probably the greatest in-depth sports interview published anywhere in the world and we wanted it to have its own slot right at the heart of the magazine, where readers can find it every month.
It is preceded by a new, regular feature called Racing Lives, which comprises interviews with family members who share a motor racing link. In this issue we speak to David Brabham and his son Sam, who give fascinating insights into the differences between how they started racing and what it is like living with the Brabham name.
Together, Racing Lives and Lunch with… point to a renewed emphasis on hearing the voices of our sport’s great names who can tell human stories behind the landmark events. The magazine will continue to give readers unique access to such stories by tracking down those who have participated in making history.
Of course, not everything has changed. Our features will continue to surprise and delight with an eclectic, effervescent range of topics. And these will continue to be curated and written by our terrific in-house writing team – Gordon Cruickshank, Simon Arron and Robert Ladbrook, ably assisted by special correspondents Gary Watkins and Paul Fearnley. And finally, the eagle-eyed among you will have noticed another significant difference: the title of this column. But before you worry about the loss of our famous Matters of Moment, I urge you to turn to page 14…
Enjoy the magazine. I hope you find the changes are respectful of our great history while improving the reading experience. As ever we welcome your feedback, so please email me ([email protected]) or write in with your comments.
Joe Dunn, editor
Follow Joe on Twitter @joedunn90