Tag Archives: FOM

McLaren’s Martin Whitmarsh on F1 in America and the Sport’s Future

It’s rare to hear team bosses speak out candidly on a range of issues in regards to the need for change in F1, and in this series of ongoing interviews with McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh, SPEED journalist Peter Windsor has recorded multi part videos in which he and Martin talk about topics from the state of Formula 1 to it’s arrival back to the United States in 2012.

As McLaren prepares to launch an automotive brand here in the US, their need for success in this important market is understandable. While not all teams will be leveraging F1 as a platform for their own brand in such a direct way, each faces similar challenges in creating and innovating value for their sponsors and partners who will be paying for the exposure F1 brings here and across the world.

In part 1 of this interview, Whitmarsh expresses his enthusiasm for the race in Austin, and touches on a need for change in the sport in order for it’s continued success in America:

Martin Whitmarsh – part 1

As the global championship is shifting from Europe to new markets, so is the way in which F1 is experienced around the world by its 600 million fans. In this segment, the evolution of the sport’s audience in a new age of technology opportunity highlights the need for FOM and teams to address a new approach to F1’s exposure.

Martin Whitmarsh – part 2

Fans and the ‘F1 show’ are discussed in the first half of this segment, and the need to keep pushing to make the sport more accessible for fans. Purists and new fans to the sport may disagree, but DRS, KERS and Pirelli’s tires have each played a part in adding to the show.

Martin Whitmarsh – part 3

Finally, Whitmarsh reflects on the 2011 season and talks about team changes – included here to round out the series.

Martin Whitmarsh – part 4

Thanks to Peter Windsor for the timely interview, looking forward to seeing how McLaren and the rest of the F1 field continues in 2012.

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Filed under American F1 Fans, brand strategy in F1, Circuit of the Americas, F1 and branding, F1 and business, F1 and Social Media, F1 broadcasters, F1 broadcasting in America, Uncategorized, United States Grand Prix in Austin

Circuit of the Americas: Racing for 2012

 

The run up to tomorrow’s deadline for an agreement between Formula 1 and Circuit of the Americas (COTA) has been full of twists and turns, and American F1 fans have been waiting by the finish line this week for news that the 2012 race in Austin will go ahead as announced. The American Statesman has been keeping a close eye on events last month surrounding the story in Austin, and for many it’s time for a recap.

A win tomorrow for COTA means a win for Austin and American fans with a race in November 2012, but it wasn’t long after construction was interrupted earlier this year that observers noted it was going to be it’s own race to complete. The project was underfunded and delayed, and with a complete stoppage of work at the site due to a reshuffle at the top, all eyes are now waiting and watching for COTA to take the last corner on the last lap and finish what they’ve set out to do.

Americans love an underdog, and since the announcement of the Grand Prix of America, a new F1 race in New Jersey overlooking the Manhattan skyline in June of 2013, it’s been positioned to steal COTA’s thunder as the first F1 race in the US in more than half a decade if COTA is dropped from the calendar next year. FOM’s rightsholder, Bernie Ecclestone, has been a lightning rod for much of the ire around the Austin race delays, and the announcement tomorrow is expected to either put COTA ahead of their well-financed contenders from New Jersey, or make them the second Formula 1 race in the US in over half a decade.

A second place finish to the New Jersey race won’t take COTA out of the running for 2013, and regardless of outcome tomorrow it’s critical for everyone involved with this project, and especially the fans, to address the expectations set for F1’s return to Austin and match the passion and enthusiasm American fans have for the sport here.

The picture is much bigger than a one-off event or launch, and is about the ten year plan to create a new American home for F1 – one that is going to be supported by hundreds of millions and hopefully billions of reasons fans and business bring with them to ensure its longevity in Austin.

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Filed under American F1 circuits, American F1 history, Americans working in F1, Circuit of the Americas, F1 in America, Formula 1 New Jersey, Uncategorized, United States Grand Prix, United States Grand Prix in Austin

Thanksgiving Day Press Release: Circuit of the Americas Replies to FOM’s Request

From Circuit of The Americas:

Circuit of The Americas™ Ready to Pay Sanctioning Fee and Offering More

Proposal Satisfies 2012 Request, Accelerates Payments for Subsequent Years

AUSTIN, Texas – November 24, 2011 – Circuit of The Americas has responded to Formula One Management’s contract requirements by agreeing to an immediate cash payment of the sanctioning fee for the 2012 United States Grand Prix (USGP). In addition, Circuit of The Americas has offered to establish an advance payment schedule for USGP races beyond 2012.

The offer comes after several weeks of talks, and once accepted, will secure the USGP on the Formula 1 race calendar.

“We have been ready to send Mr. Ecclestone a sanctioning fee check for some time now,” said Bobby Epstein, founding partner of Circuit of The Americas. “He hasn’t received it yet because the new contract presented to us two weeks ago contained unrealistic and unfeasible demands. We have signed and returned a contract similar to what we anticipated receiving. This race should be a reality, but if we are going to make the 2012 race date, we must receive a countersignature in the coming few days. We believe the teams, fans, sponsors and local business share our enthusiasm and hope that their voices will be heard.”

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Filed under American F1 circuits, American F1 Events, Circuit of the Americas, Uncategorized, United States Grand Prix, United States Grand Prix in Austin