Jan.11 (GMM) F1’s marketing chief says the sport is considering reforming rather than axing its traditional ‘grid girls’.
Recently, F1 sporting boss Ross Brawn said the concept of grid girls was now outdated and under serious review.
His comments sparked controversy, but Murray Barnett, Liberty’s sponsorship and marketing chief, said the actual idea is to simply reform grid girls.
“We’re 100 per cent committed to looking into grid girls and making them a more relevant part of the competition rather than just holding a board and standing next to a car,” he told Marketing Week.
“We haven’t quite cracked what this will look like, but we’ve recognised we need to become more progressive there.”
Barnett said F1 wants to become more “progressive” in other areas as well.
“We’re looking at things like carbon offsetting, but it’s also one of the best kept secrets that F1 is actually an incredibly lean engine,” he said.
“We have 50pc engine recovery, 1.6 litre hybrid engines, 1000 brake horsepower — people tell me this is astonishing.
“I don’t want to talk negatively about Formula E, but the power of their batteries has to come from somewhere. F1 as a sport can be sustainable and good for the environment so we need to tell that story more often,” he added.
Curiously, Barnett’s role in charge of marketing is a brand new one, with Bernie Ecclestone previously going it alone in many areas.
Barnett said: “I don’t want to talk too much about Ecclestone’s time, but our view now is to try to approach sponsors with a ‘yes, why not?’ attitude as opposed to a ‘no, I don’t understand the question’ kind of attitude.
“It is going to take a long time for brands to change their perception of what F1 is and actually give us consideration, I know that,” he added.
“But we need to have patience and recognise that if we keep offering compelling experiences for brands then others will start to take notice sooner rather than later.”
15/12/2017 Grid girls must stay in F1 – Verstappen Dec.15 (GMM) F1 drivers hope 'grid girls' remain a part of formula one in the future.
In an increasingly progressive world and under the new Liberty Media regime, F1 sporting director […]
12/02/2018 German GP boss says grid kids ‘a nice idea’ Feb.12 (GMM) A German grand prix boss says he is not opposed to the 'grid kids' idea.
Controversially, new F1 owner Liberty Media has banned grid girls, replacing them with children for […]
22/03/2017 Todt agrees V10 return ‘unthinkable’ Mar.22 (GMM) Jean Todt has joined fellow F1 boss Ross Brawn in saying a return of loud, normally-aspirated engines in the sport is "unthinkable".
The volume, complexity and expense of […]
23/02/2018 Wolff worried about Liberty Media changes Feb.23 (GMM) Toto Wolff has admitted he is worried about some of the most recent changes in formula one.
Recently, Mercedes and Ferrari have clashed with Liberty Media over reported […]
02/02/2018 Series boss says Formula E will overtake F1 Feb.2 (GMM) The boss of Formula E says he thinks the all-electric series will eventually overtake F1.
Series chief Alejandro Agag took a swipe at F1 after Liberty Media announced this […]
30/01/2017 Liberty must reduce F1 ticket prices – Prost Jan.30 (GMM) Alain Prost says cheaper tickets should be new F1 owner Liberty Media's first priority.
Asked what he would do if he had just taken over, the F1 legend told the Italian […]
21/12/2017 Team bosses defend F1 ‘grid girls’ Dec.21 (GMM) Team bosses have now come out to defend the concept of 'grid girls' in formula one.
F1 sporting boss Ross Brawn has said the practice of having attractive women fulfil the […]
20/03/2017 21 races ‘the maximum’ for F1 – Brawn Mar.20 (GMM) Ross Brawn says there are enough races on the F1 calendar already.
When Liberty Media took over the sport, reports circulated that new chief executive Chase Carey saw […]