The silhouette of a formula 1 race car in a dark garage

Formula 1 Title Sequence

Speed, glamour, the thrill of the track: the broadcast of the 2016 Formula 1® Rolex Australian Grand Prix on Channel 4 marked the introduction of a brand new fast-paced title sequence, created for the channel in its entirety by the Design Studio at Framestore and Whisper Films.

Concept Design
a graphic formula 1 race car driver in the centre of the image. there are two race cars on each side of the racer

The coverage of the Melbourne Grand Prix was the first broadcast within Channel 4’s three-year deal with Formula One World Championship Limited, which will include live coverage of ten Grand Prix across the globe as well as extensive highlights of all 21 races each season. The new title sequence will introduce each broadcast, and has been designed to celebrate the new terrestrial home of the sport on Channel 4.

For the Design Studio at Framestore, the brief was an opportunity to create an entirely refreshed look and feel for Formula 1® coverage, capturing the speed, thrill, dedication and glamour of F1®.

close up graphic of the eyes of a formula 1 race car driver in a helmet

Co-Directors Sharon Lock and Ian Spendloff worked with Whisper Films Producer Tim Hampel and Executive Producer Sunil Patel to create the piece, looking beyond the world of sports for inspiration and seeking out the finest examples of title sequence design across film, drama and television.

Eager to push the genre beyond a traditional edit of archive material, Framestore’s artists used mirrored and multi-layered elements to create highly stylised designs. Footage was combined with more detailed graphic overlays to create a string of small vignettes, which transition seamlessly to make up the full 50-second title sequence. Carefully crafted glitches convey the intense speed and energy of the sport, with strong, bold typography introducing the location of each race.

The titles takes a purposeful step away from the precedents set by existing sports programming, marking an exciting new era for both the sport and broadcaster Channel 4.

an enmeshed graphic image of formula 1 race car driver with a helmet and race cars in the background

Our vision was to create a high impact opening that felt far removed from what has been previously produced in this genre; Framestore have absolutely delivered for us.
Sunil Patel
Executive Producer, Whisper Films

Framestore have significant heritage working on title sequence design across both their Film and Integrated Advertising divisions, having created the opening sequences to six James Bond films, including 2015’s Spectre. The Design Studio concepted and executed the titles for celebrated documentary ‘We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks’, directed by Alex Gibney, in 2013. Formula 1®/Channel 4 and Whisper Films presented a new and exciting challenge for the talented team of directors and designers, who were able to exercise their artistic license on the project.

Said Sharon Lock and Ian Spendloff, Co-Directors of the work, ‘This was an incredible opportunity for the Design Studio at Framestore to showcase our collective skillset across a full title sequence. Our greatest challenge came in knowing where to start — with decades of archive footage available to us [from Whisper Films], we really had every creative freedom. The resulting film is something entirely new for Formula 1®, and our creative success is testament to both the team’s talents and a strong working relationship with Whisper Films’.

‘We chose to work with Framestore because of their credentials in producing award-winning cinematic title sequences’, said Sunil Patel, Executive Producer, Whisper Films. ‘Our vision was to create a high impact opening that felt far removed from what has been previously produced in this genre, and Framestore have absolutely delivered for us’.

Whisper Films will produce Channel 4’s Formula 1® coverage under the 2016-2018 deal, drawing on the wealth of F1® experience held by partners Sunil Patel, Jake Humphrey and David Coulthard.

a mirrored graphic image of a formula 1 race car driver wearing a suit and helmet


Production Company
Whisper Films
Production Company Producer
Tim Hampell
Director (Framestore)
Richard Gort
Executive Producer
Sunil Patel
Producer (Framestore)
Niamh O'Donohoe
Designer (Framestore)
Dan Herlihy, Steven Kelly
Share this case study