Buffer Rumbles in Austin

By Marc Livitz on October 23, 2017
Buffer Rumbles in Austin
Whether in the premium stands or on the side of a grassy hill, Buffer was a knockout.

Michael Buffer wasn’t done there because he finished the introductions with “gentleman, start your engines and let’s get ready to rumble!” 

As boxing fans, we’ve become more than just accustomed to the familiar voice of ring announcer Michael Buffer declaring that the time is at hand for a main event to get rolling. His legendary presence as well as trademark phrase “Let’s get ready to rumble” seems to go hand in hand with fight night around the world. On Sunday afternoon in Austin, Texas, Buffer was on hand to lend his talents to a different type of combat. In this case, the fight lasts twenty rounds and Sunday at the Circuit of the Americas race track, round seventeen was underway. This was the Grand Prix of the United States and the world’s second most popular spectator sport behind only soccer, Formula 1. Celebrity guests in pit lane are really nothing new and just about anyone seems to be able to get an impeccable view of the action, provided they have the money or connections to do so. Olympic legend Usain Bolt was on hand to wave the ceremonial green flag.

While the post-race stage of triumph known as the ‘Winner’s Circle” is usually empty until the competition’s top three finishers are standing upon it, Sunday was different. Michael Buffer announced all twenty competitors and he did so in his usual, complimentary fashion. He talked up their respective accomplishments in addition to that of their automotive constructors. The biggest applause and roar from the crowd was of course for the two men occupying first and second on the starting grid, three-time world champion Lewis Hamilton and four-time champion Sebastian Vettel.

The 56-lap race then began with a Texas sized bang as Buffer said his usual tag lines, yet this time with a slight twist. Instead of declaring “for the thousands in attendance,” he replaced it “hundreds of thousands in attendance.” Additionally, he didn’t mention “the millions watching around the world.” Rather, it was “for the hundreds of millions.” He wasn’t done there because he finished the introductions with “gentleman, start your engines and let’s get ready to rumble!”  Although the majority of the crowd saw this on video screens, whether in the premium stands or on the side of a grassy hill, Michael Buffer’s presence was a knockout. For the fifth time in six Formula 1 races in Austin, Lewis Hamilton was victorious, followed by Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen.

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  1. Terry Malloy 07:16pm, 11/30/2017

    I turn off the volume too. He is not in the tradition of the great boxing announcers. Far from it. But he’s the perfect announcer for the circus the sport is today. Check out the old YouTubes to see how it’s done. Chuck Hull was fine and a genuine throwback, as is Jimmy Lennon Jr. (just like his great dad). Best of all was of course the legendary Joe Humphries. But this guy is just a loud poseur. His long drawn out “Let’s get ready to rumble” is an idiotic trademark for an idiotic sport.

  2. Lucas McCain 01:58pm, 10/28/2017

    I’m fine with Buffer.  He’s a musical memory of the “crooner” generation of singers—Dean Martin, Bob Erberle—but he’s made it into a style of his own, like it or not.  Room for many styles up there under the lights.  I grew up loving the flat, New Yawk accents of Johnny Addie, as well as the nasal harmonies of Jimmy Lennon, Senior.  JL, Jr. is perhaps too much his daddy’s imitator, but I dig him, too.  All right fight fannnns, herre we go!

  3. harvey 03:11am, 10/24/2017

    I turn off the volume on my TV when Buffer goes into his schtick.

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