When you look at other racing series such as NASCAR, Indy Car or even if you want to be more international, the World Endurance Championship, they seem to have no trouble in how they run their race weekends, no matter how many fans show up for the event.
However, lately, a lot has been troubling the formula 1 world, even if the sport is the highest watched sporting event, of course next to football.
For 2022, there have been some weakening on what the most important topic on f1 is, and that is the fans. Despite the “Drive to Survive” series has raised eyebrows in the United States on how the sport is close up, others around the world have also seen the series and are following the same result.
But despite all this, the popularity of f1 has made it now into a money grabber, and with more money comes more courses, more interest and of course, what we return to, more fan interest.
However, if the sport is growing, why are the prices of tickets rising and more disorganization is happening among some of the circuits?
You cannot blame the fans that want to attend, even with the world having an inflationary period, it is obvious that things will increase, but if profitability is happening, raising prices certainly will not make more fans attend. But they do. A good case in point is the Netherlands. This country had no real interest much in F1, until Max Verstappen came along and became one of the best F1 drivers in the world, which made more fans from that country attend events. A clad of Orange is regularly seen at every grand prix, and with some circuits selling alcohol, it began to get messy at events like the Austrian Grand Prix, where flares were thrown onto the track, one of them at Lewis Hamilton’s car, along with the smoke, which to some drivers, interrupted their vision on some sectors of the circuit.
At the Italian Grand Prix, some Red Bull fans were told to leave by the home Tifosi groups from Ferrari, who were racing on their home track. It was obvious that considering some were there supporting Verstappen, the orange army that would have been there in huge amounts were not, realizing that it could cause a problem if they attended there.
But what caused all this to begin with? Let us take an example where two circuits, according to British F1 site, WTF1, took a survey about what facility is the most difficult to attend. That was Monza, In Italy. It seems that the 350,000 plus that came to this year’s race complained mainly about how to get the track, the long hours of waiting to get in line for food and drinks, and of course, the high prices of tickets. The race at the Circuit de Catalunya for the Spanish Grand Prix was another example of how people were lost trying to find their way to the circuit, along with other items that were seen at Monza.
The conclusion here is that some circuits can find good ways to make the fans happy. After all, it is them which make the sport grow as it does. But more organization to schedule grands prix, which includes organizing how cleanly to get many fans to where they want to go, putting in more vendors to serve the fans for buying souvenirs and food, along with lowering ticket prices to include maybe a better package for a decent price.
If the sport continues to grow, it could get overwhelming and could face a collapse. If this happens, certain items will have to be looked over again and revaluated to make things better. But hopefully this can and will be looked after right away and make the fans who attend grand prix events, return home knowing that they have received every bit of their currency that they paid for.
By Mark Gero