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More fan participation in Formula 1: A good or bad idea?

More fan participation in Formula 1: A good or bad idea?

23-09-2021 07:20 Last update: 08:59


Since the Bernie Ecclestone era came to an end and Liberty Media took over Formula 1, the sport has done a lot in terms of marketing and promotion to put F1 on the map with new fans. For example, it got its own series on Netflix in Drive to Survive, its presence on social media was intensified and new schedules in race weekends are being tested, as is happening with the sprint races as of the current season.

Listening to the fans

In any case, the team bosses of the F1 teams agree that more fan participation is a good thing for the sport. "We have to listen to the fans," says Aston Martin team boss Otmar Szafnauer. "That's what we're all about. Without the fans, the sport would look different. We have to listen to them, they are our audience - and we have to satisfy them. We have to understand the intricacies of what the fans want first - and then we have to give it to them."

Mattia Binotto, Ferrari team boss, strongly agrees with his colleague: "Surveys are always important because you get feedback," he says. "But it's even more important to analyse the feedback and the results carefully to draw the right conclusions and take action if necessary." Alfa Romeo's Fred Vasseur also thinks it's a good thing: "Sometimes our focus is very much on racing because we might be too busy with our daily business. But it makes sense to talk about their feelings and then we'll see what we can do to meet expectations," Vasseur told Motorsport-total.com.

Helmet camera and pitfalls

Williams director Jost Capito even has a good suggestion already. The helmet camera we saw on George Russell's helmet at Monza: "Something like this needs to be tried, and then it needs to be in everyone's car," he says. "Anything that improves the conversation and gives more information is good." Alpine's Marcin Budkowski also places a critical note: "We have to be careful, because sometimes there are wrong good ideas. There was a lot of talk about new tyre rules or reintroducing refuelling," says Budkowski. "But if you look at it closely with strategists, they are wrong good ideas because they don't improve the show at all."

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