F1 calls upon Briatore to help boost popularity

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Former Team Principal Flavio Briatore will be part of a new panel designed to focus on ways to improve Formula 1’s popularity.


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Ex-F1 team boss Flavio Briatore to sit on popularity working group (Autosport)

“Former Formula 1 team boss Flavio Briatore is to be involved in a new working group being set up by Bernie Ecclestone to looks at ways of making the sport more popular. Ecclestone met with team principals at the Hungarian Grand Prix on Saturday morning and informed them that he plans to host a summit meeting over the next few weeks with a few outfits, plus Briatore, to consider ideas.”

Lewis Hamilton will start the Hungarian GP from the pitlane after qualifying fire (Sky)

“Lewis Hamilton will start the Hungarian GP from the pitlane after his Mercedes car suffered catastrophic damage when it was engulfed in flames at the start of qualifying. In another blow to his faltering title prospects, Hamilton’s Mercedes team have announced that, in addition to a change of gearbox and engine, Hamilton will use a new chassis for Sunday’s race – triggering a pitlane start alongside McLaren’s Kevin Magnussen.”

Rosberg plans to play it safe in race (Racer)

Rosberg: “It makes it easier, of course, because he is my competitor. It’s a free opportunity tomorrow. I need to play it safe and avoid any unnecessary things happening and get as many points as possible. Also I would prefer to be out there battling with Lewis, that would give me the maximum adrenaline rush. It won’t be a gloves-off battle with Lewis but I am still very, very happy.”

Bottas confident of beating Alonso and Ricciardo in championship (ESPN)

Bottas: “I think personally, in the drivers’ points, I think it would be good to aim to be third. I think it is possible this year with the car we have and if we keep improving like we’ve done so far, so that should be the aim.”

Alonso: P5 much better than what we expect (NBC)

Alonso: “I always think it’s a fantastic result, P5. I don’t think that we could beat the guys in front. Probably if we go a little bit later with the track a little bit drier, we could do something, we could recover one-tenth or two-tenths – position four is six-tenths in front of me, so it doesn’t change too much.”


Comment of the day

After Lewis Hamilton suffered a mechanical failure in qualifying for the second weekend in succession, @DaveF1 echoes the thoughts of many who want to see the two championship contenders duelling it out on track…

As someone who’d prefer Nico to win the championship, these failures are really robbing the fans of better battles for the lead and even a better championship battle. Sure Lewis charging up the field in Germany was fun to watch but I’d much prefer more Bahrain-esque racing from the two Mercs and Rosberg winning the title through beating Hamilton on track rather than it being threw mechanical failures. However those constantly attacking Mercedes and Rosberg based on Hamilton’s failures really need to read what they type before the send it. Every driver has rotten luck, I don’t see people shouting conspiracy when it’s Maldonado or Vergne getting all the failures.

From the forum

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Happy birthday to former F1 driver Philippe Alliot who turns 60 today. Alliot’s best result came in the 1993 San Marino Grand Prix, where he finished fifth for Larrousse.

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Will Wood
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70 comments on “F1 calls upon Briatore to help boost popularity”

  1. So are they just going to ask Flavio exactly what NOT to do?

    1. @david-a. :) He is a petson with a lot of spicy ideas !!!! Didn’t he boost the popularity of 2008 SGP GP for years to come !!!!

      Jokes apart who knows he might be able to do something about it !!!!!

    2. JP (@jonathanproc)
      27th July 2014, 0:19

      @david-a) No, they will ask Flavio what to do and then do the exact opposite. Hopefully. Then everything will be great.

    3. Indeed !!!!!!!

      what the… are they thinking?! A guy that was the mind behind one of the most embarrasing chapters of this sport is brought by F1 ITSELF ! to think of better ways to improve the popularity of a championship which he tried to bury 6 years ago?!

      1. Nascar has “competition yellow flags”, F1 will have “competition red flags”… BRILLIANT!!!

    4. I could go on a 3 pages rant with this guy/crook. He represents pretty much all that’s wrong with F1 – old dudes, who have no idea how to connect with fans, are dreaming up new gimmicks to make F1 “better”.
      While in reality, the solutions would be much simpler if they actually wouldn’t have to compensate for a complete lack of social marketing.

      1. I fully concur regarding Mr. Briatore. I don’t even want to spend time writing/thinking about him. How come the sport can come back to him? Miserable view… In addition, what is all this noise about ‘improving the show’, while this seasons sees some of the most exciting races we’ve had in the recent years? (Even if I’m still not convinced by some of the changes (DRS? engines etc., and even if I had a lot of fun all the recent years too, I must say that the races this year turn out to be very good, for a whole lot of reasons).

    5. Absolutely beyond satire, beyond parody. The governance of this sport is an absolute joke. It’s tiresome, it really is.

      I hate to think ill of another human, but the only hope for the future of the sport is that Bernie is either locked up or pops his clogs in the next year or two.

      Briatore was calling for shorter races a few years ago, so look out for that at the top of the agenda.

    6. Well, to be fair to the man he did attract a lot of interest with his Singapore shenanigans @david-a ;)

    7. @david-a Perhaps Bernie needed the ultimate crook friend.

      1. Just so corrupt. And they just don’t care.

    8. Hmmm the bigwigs that run the sport might think this is a bit crazy, but to improve F1’s popularity, how about leave things as they are for a while?

      We have amazing racing all the way down the field, promote that and stop giving the teams a new moving target every two minutes, and maybe that will attract people to the sport perhaps?

    9. LOL… fantastic choice… what advice exactly has Briatore any credibility to offer F1 on any subject whatever ?

  2. It is quite sad to see Alonso quoting “P5 is a fantastic result “. Ferrari must do something here. This is Alonso’s 33rd P5 and I am sure at least 3/4 of that would have come through a Scuderia Ferrari !!!!!

    1. At this point, there looking bad in almost all aspects. Imagine where they would be without Alonso…

      1. There is no need to imagine… look at Raikkonen…

    2. The situation is fractionally better than you fear, but not by much – it is “only” 70% of his 5th place starts have come whilst at Ferrari (which still speaks volumes about the cars that he has had to drive).

  3. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    27th July 2014, 0:16

    Briatore will make some cars crash in order to raise the thrill.
    Maldonado is a volunteer.

      1. You can laugh after Massa takes out Rosberg at the 1st. corner today.

    1. Maybe Briatore has secretly been behind Maldonado’s entire career. He learnt his lesson with Piquet Jr. – if someone who doesn’t normally crash, crashes in a strange place, people will ask questions. If you get someone who crashes all the times, no one ever asks any questions when he crashes and it impacts the outcome of the race.

      1. Michael Brown (@)
        27th July 2014, 4:59

        It’s a better theory than the Hamilton or Webber sabotaging conspiracy theories, at least.

  4. That genuinely reads like a headline from The Onion.

    1. @matt90 – Bingo, that! I read it three times before it sunk in and I still think it’s a bad joke.

      Christian Horner can get mad all he wants about the media asking questions that don’t relate directly to racing. Reading a headline like this may provide some clues as to why people are asking such questions.

  5. Fishingelbow
    27th July 2014, 0:20

    Isn’t Bernie bringing Flavio back in F1 “bringing the sport into disrepute”?

    1. Bingo!

      Utterly shambolic that this character Briatore be INVITED back into F1!

      But on the other hand, it provides irrefutable proof that F1’s commercial management has no concern for long term sustainability of the sport.

  6. Ok so Mercedes will break the parc ferme rule from 21st on the grid. As the stewards obviously didn’t think a pitlane start was enough for Caterham breaking the same rule from 22nd on the grid in Hockenheim, can we expect Hamilton to get a 10 second stop and go penalty in addition to starting from the pitlane tomorrow?

    1. I thought that problem with Caterham was that they broke the curfew, i.e. worked longer than allowed.

      1. Maybe you’re right, I’ve struggled to find information about it, all I find here on F1Fanatic is “The Caterham driver has been penalised because his team neglected to fix a covering to his car while it was in parc ferme.”

        But anyway, isn’t there a number of “jokers” teams are allowed to use for breaking the curfew during the season? Does that mean Caterham have already used up all of theirs?

        These F1 rules have finally gotten me more confused than ever!

  7. So Bernies real successor is being eased back into the business, should cheer up the shareholders, Flav has all the qualities that have made Bernie the man he is.

    1. @hohum – Too true. Bernie is probably trying to pit Briatore against Horner to see who comes out on top. Or would that be on the bottom? Bleh…

      1. Or would that be on the bottom?

        Haha, great one. :)
        Those two are definitely right there with Bernie when it comes to crookedness.

    2. Good point.

      1. How is Horner anywhere near as croocked as Bernie or Flavio? I believe that your statement is unfounded.

  8. Isn’t this like asking Lance Armstrong how to improve the TdF?

    Briatore is a proven cheat, and worse someone who thinks nothing of risking people’s lives (marshals included) for his own benefit.

    Every time I think F1 can’t sink any lower they find a way to prove me wrong.

    1. Well, to be fair, Lance made cycling incredibly popular in the USA and throughout the world, doing nothing that wasn’t being done w/r/t doping by the top contenders who came immediately before him and immediately after (and who raced concurrently).

      Armstrong was made a scapegoat for cycling’s endemic doping problem – Briatore is a genuine villain.

  9. Great that’s all Formula 1 needs is an emphasis on cheating.

  10. I seem to recall a few years back Briatore suggesting that Formula 1 should adopt a GP2-style feature race/reverse-grid sprint race format. Hopefully he’s forgotten about that.

    For me the solution is pretty simple. Formula 1 could be the world’s greatest show – but that won’t matter if nobody can watch it. Put Formula 1 back on free-to-air TV. Formula 1 never struggled with ratings when everyone was able to watch it. But now, in the UK at least, it costs £500 to follow a sport that anyone could once have seen for free. And they wonder why less people are tuning in?

    Also, for Christ’s sake Bernie, get F1 on social media.

    1. you can still watch f1 for free in the uk as every race is still shown for free on the bbc be it live or highlights.

      and lets not forget that it was the bbc who went to sky with the deal, sky were not actively going after f1 at the time.

      and with the bbc trying to ditch it what were the free to air alternatives?
      itv, no thanks there coverage was awful before before there constant commercial breaks, dull presenters & hamilton bias coverage.
      channel 4 & channel 5 would have been no better with there commercial breaks & smaller budgets.

      you may have to pay for the sky coverage but at least they actually make it worth the cost by providing a ton of extra content, several ways to watch & a lot of other programming including classic races & other archive programming (1971 season review was on earlier).

      i watched the bbc & itv coverage going back to the 80s & think sky are providing the best f1 coverage i’ve ever watched, long may there brilliant coverage of f1 (and the gp2/gp3 support categories) continue :)

  11. Bottas has a very realistic chance for #3 in the WDC standings. In the Williams with his steady driving he should be right there. Of course, Ricciardo, Alonso and Vettel will be giving a good fight for that spot too. If not Bottas, I would say Ricciardo, but my money is on Bottas.

  12. Briatore must be off double secret probation.

    1. Michael Brown (@)
      27th July 2014, 5:01

      In Abu Dhabi, of course

  13. BTW one of the things discussed in the meeting between Bernie & the teams yesterday was success ballast.

    Worryingly it was an idea which went down well with the teams so if it gets voted on it actually stands a chance to be voted through.

    1. @gt-racer – Wonderful. That, exhaust megaphones and triple points will solve everything.

    2. Well if the art of building the best car is no longer important beyond the first few races, budgets might reduce as they realise that spending more is pointless- 1 worse race with a marginally cheaper/slower car and the competition will get hobbled back to a similar level anyway.

      Finding a positive in that was one of the hardest things I’ve done, and I’m 99% that my scenario wouldn’t play out anyway. Success ballast seems like more of a necessary evil in production-based series, particularly as everything about the cars can be so disparate that without it a lot of teams might not bother entering as they wouldn’t have a car which would be advantageous- who’d have thought the Bentley Continental GT would become an actual GT racer? Also, some of those categories are more about fast thrills and close racing, like BTCC. That’s fine. But F1 is more of an engineering competition and is supposed to be (looking at double points and grid starts, not to mention DRS, 2 tyre rule) more of a true sporting competition- it should be as it stands at the top of the ladder.

  14. Calling Briatore to do anything F1 related is like Lance Armstrong giving advice for Tour de France.

    1. @kaiie, I can see why you say that from a moral perspective, but actually, logically .. Armstrong is the right man for the job if they need advice. He know’s his sport inside-out. Besides, it’s just advice. Not decision making. I think the same regards to Briatore. If F1 asks him for advice, sure, why not. Maybe he has some good ideas. That doesn’t mean they have to agree to all of his ideas, or even to like him as a person. Good advice should never be disregarded because of emotional matters.

      1. @me4me Sorry, but it’s not a question of morals, it’s a question of breaking the rules and cheating. Both Briatore and Armstrong knowingly cheated, impacting their fellow competitors and their fans. While I don’t believe that “sentencing” for such cheating should be indefinite (David Millar springs to mind, as he is now an anti-doping ambassador for cycling) I certainly think it’s too early to think about rehabilitation of either A or B into the role of advisors in their respective sports. What sort of message does that send out? You only have to read this forum to understand that F1 fans tend to admire fairness and sportsmanship.

        In any case, we have seen that Briatore has bobbins ideas for improving the show, so not sure how his leading this group will help anyone.

  15. how to get f1 to be more popular with younger people? It’s easy and bernie doesn’t even need to do hard work.
    He just needs to pull his laywer goons off of youtube and other social media. Yes, he may loose some TV rights money in the short term but long term he gains a large fanbase, who will do all distribution for free.

    because in the end, isnt exposure of global marketing brands to as many people as possible what F1 is really about? (or is it to just to fill bernies pockets?)

  16. Oh God, the horror.

  17. “Drivers being followed by a DRS enabled car shall deploy turtle shells and banana peels.”

  18. Hahahahahahahaha

    F1 is really intent on digging itself an early grave.


  19. “Popularity Working Group” !! Honestly the way all this is going it’s soon going to be comparable to the likes of WWF – totally scripted, completely un-natural and no longer a ‘sport’.

  20. No, no reverse grid Flavio!

    Oh dear, I hope I didn’t jinx it yesterday by talking on F1F Live about how I don’t want reverse grids!

  21. I have the best idea Berrnie, how about we have qualifying and then flip a coin, heads means normal grid, tails means reverse. That will really spice up the show!

  22. Do the teams, FiA and FOM ever ever read any of these comments on these fan forums?

    Briatore, the man who wanted to half the race distance? Talk of Success ballast?Stop continually ruining the only sport I’m passionate about!! Just stop, we’re running out of energy here trying to cling on.

    1. Of course they don’t. Listening to the fans directly would be a recipe for disaster.

      The sport needs new blood in management, not the same old corrupt rich people!

  23. Hmmmm, sales are down with new media ignorance, double points fakery, pay TV, huge ticket prices and brazen cheating whitewash.

    So…let’s bring in an ageing T-shirt salesman with all kinds of skulduggery in his CV – fuel nozzle fix, traction control, spygate hypocrisy, crashgate – and before you know it we’lll have The Show all sorted with cunning mid-season rule changes, selective safety car decisions….oh wait…

  24. It’s another Not Working Group. The same old F1 insiders, team principals, bickering and vested interests. I wish the German court would reschedule its trial so Bernie can spend more of his time there.

    Why don’t they talk to other motorsport bosses who are making a go of their series: WEC, Dubai 24h and other GT races, IMSA, DTM. They may have some silly rules too, but they’ll all have ideas about what to do with F1.

  25. Fixing Formula one would be the easiest thing in the world.
    1. Give the teams a larger and much more equal share of the money so they can all compete.
    2. Make it more accessible.
    However. this is like a hot potato for those who runs the sport because it goes against their financial interest which they put above the sport. Hence they think about all other stupid solutions to try to make it popular without sacrificing their own interests.

  26. I really hope the end comes quick.

  27. It is true what Lauda said the other day about the team principals being more recognizable than the drivers. I actually know who Toto Wolff is yet there was a driver being interviewed yesterday that I had no idea who he was. It is a real problem when the only driver with any real personality is one that constantly pouts when he is losing and spouts off about his teammates silver spoon when he is winning. Do we really need to see another picture of Wolff in his fake cast? F1 needs to take a serious look at what NASCAR is doing and not continue to head down their path. Maybe doing nothing is the real way to get F1 to be popular again. Let the fans get used to all the changes that have been made recently and just see what happens. I seriously think ending the refueling was the answer and it has been clouded by all the DRS, crap tires, double points nonsense. Like when making set-up changes on a car you change one thing and see what happens.

    1. Lol, Toto’s cast is fake? The driver who is probably the best there has ever been in F1 at taking responsibility ‘pouts when he’s losing’? None of the others has any real personality? It’s somebody’s fault you don’t know all the drivers?

      Okay, fair enough, perhaps only Flav can meet your needs :))

  28. Calling Briatore is really ironic, sarcastic and shocking!!

  29. From March:

    “Obliging them to drive slowly is contrary to common sense. It’s like introducing a rule that means Ronaldo can only touch the ball ten times in a match.

    “Now we have the stars (drivers) forced to behave on the track like accountants.

    “If Formula One does not change again in the near future, then the audience will be lost. Look at the comments on the internet, in blogs, on Twitter — they did not like the Australian Grand Prix.”


    What was it that you guys wanted again?

  30. The best way to boost the popularity of F1 would be to set up a working group with the power to enforce change.

    And then exclude the FIA, CVC, any team representative, any sponsors, Tilke and Bernie from being part of it. And Briatore too of course.

    Problem solved.

  31. They are testing out one way to make F1 more popular now every single week. By finding a way to demote Lewis Hamilton to the back of the grid so that he provide the excitement.

  32. How to boost F1? Simple.

    Bring back the SPORT in first plan ! Sport, real pure racing, drivers competing each other. No more gimmicks or artificial rules (DRS, double points). No more penalties (seems like it’s on its way, good thing). No more ingeneers telling drivers how to drive. No more Tilke ‘straight-hairpin-slow corner’ tracks.

    In a word: sport.

  33. Success ballast – let the winning driver eat like a normal human being for the two weeks after his win… should fix that one easily

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