Chase Carey, Circuit de Catalunya, 2018

F1’s latest audience drop is ‘down to pay-TV move’

2018 F1 season

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A drop in the number of people watching live Formula 1 races has been blamed on the sport’s move towards pay television deals by CEO Chase Carey.

In a Liberty Media corporation earnings conference call this week Carey admitted the average viewership of F1 races had fallen by 4% compared to last year.

“That is largely due to our move from free to pay television in Italy,” he said. “Excluding Italy our television viewership is up 3% year-on-year and our Saturday viewership for qualifying is up even more.”

Italian pay television broadcaster Sky Italia took over the exclusive live broadcasting rights for the championship in a three-year deal beginning this season. F1 is moving increasingly towards pay television deals in other markets, such as the UK, where Sky will also have exclusive live broadcasting rights from next season.

Carey said F1’s viewership has increased elsewhere, including the USA and China, “where viewing figures are showing particularly strong uplifts.”

“Fans reacted positively to our enhancements in cameras, sounds, graphics, and other elements in our broadcast and we have more to come,” he added. “69% of our fans say F1 TV coverage has improved while just 13% say it’s worse.”

He admitted there had been some problems with the launch of the sport’s over-the-top direct streaming service F1 TV, the introduction of which was postponed from the Australian Grand Prix to the Spanish round. “This year’s priority is get the product to where we want it to at this point in time to really give it a proper commercial launch next season,” he said.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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92 comments on “F1’s latest audience drop is ‘down to pay-TV move’”

  1. I fear for F1 coverage in the UK. Many people either not renewing or not buying a Sky subscription “just for F1” next year, myself included. It’s like Rugby League, when the challenge cup is on BBC viewing figures eclipse those of Super League on Sky. When the contract in the UK is next up for renewal, that will be the test to see if Chase has seen what a disaster it has been.

    1. I’m the same – I can’t justify the cost, they need to wake up. They are not attracting new generations of viewers through sky, no-one consumes TV this way anymore.

      They need to give the UK full access to the F1 TV app at a reasonable cost (i.e. on a par with Netflix or Amazon Prime). They need to put full replays on services like youtube etc after the events (surely advertisers would love the additional views?). Take some notes from Formula-E before they go the way of the dinosaurs.

      I go to watch the BTCC at Brands/Silverstone/Thruxton all the time and there are loads of young people there and the stands are full, why? Because it’s £30 for the whole day and you can walk down the pitlane and see the drivers and the cars. That’s how you stay fresh and attract new generations – I don’t see why this is lost on F1, they understood this in the past?

      1. I completely agree with your BTCC assessment, I am off to Rockingham this weekend and Scotland in 2 weeks. And the cost of both full weekend tickets is cheaper than Thursday Practice in Monanco, where I saw no drivers and was penned into a small grandstand.

      2. Duncan Snowden
        10th August 2018, 14:25

        They need to come up with a decent FTA highlights deal. Streaming them would be ideal – I’ve been saying for years that they should put the world feed up live without commentary for years; sponsors get eyeballs, and viewers can pay for added value such as commentary, driver interviews, multiple angles, etc. – but honestly, if there’s something like C4’s current non-live package next year, either on C4 or one of Sky’s own Freeview channels, I’ll be reasonably happy. And I’m sure I won’t be alone.

        But there’s no indication there will be, so Carey had better prepare himself for an even bigger kick in the pants. I’ve missed precisely two races since the mid-’80s, but the 2019 BTCC’s looking very tempting…

      3. An approximately equivalent situation is also why Hungary keeps “borrowing” audience from other central European events – it’s much cheaper to attend Hungary on a standard ticket than any other European venue. If it explains such effects within F1, imagine how much more powerful comparing touring car/endurance car prices is to F1 costs.

  2. Most things that Chase Carey says I can find logic in them, I may not agree with everything, but that is perfectly fine as long as they have results to show after they implement changes.

    However sentences like this:

    This year’s priority is get the product to where we want it to at this point in time to really give it a proper commercial launch next season

    This is, for the lack of a better word occurring to me at the moment, stupid. Those who have been paying the service what are they? Paying guinea pigs?

    1. @johnmilk In a word, yes…

      They made it quite clear that it’s effectively a beta and early adopters generally have to pay for it.

      1. that sounds like the worst trade deal in the history of trade deals

        1. @johnmilk Liberty didn’t expect the technical hurdles to be as high so I read Carey’s comments as an admission that this year they need to make sure they can provide a better quality product for next year and basically “re-launch” it. I also read it as an expansion of the service is expected as soon as they can guarantee they can deliver the service reliably.

          As far as, “paying guinea pigs” goes – that’s quite common in a lot of startups and is the best way to validate your business idea. Not to mention if they have the service away for free it would both devalue their brand but also tick off all the pay television providers which Liberty is working hard to bring on (much like Bernie did.)

          1. GtisBetter (@)
            10th August 2018, 16:30

            Actually it’s not that common, cause it will cause bad press, bad reviews and people not coming back. F1 is hardly a startup. It’s a multibillion business who have the resources to get this right. It’s clearly they wanted something too fast, without proper testing. They choose to rush it. I don’t know if people have gotten refund, but that is usually what i get if a service doesn’t deliver.

    2. The plan was for the product to work before the actual launch. Liberty now realises the product has to be fixed – on-the-fly – before pushing it further. It’s the degree to which this has happened, rather than the fact we have “gamma testers” on a digital service, that is unusual.

    3. Kenny Schachat
      10th August 2018, 21:24

      Yes, and a lawyer Inoiw said that Carey’ statement about the F1 TV Pro service would make a class action lawsuit a slam dunk.

  3. I pay exorbitant amounts for pay TV in Australia only for F1, when the season is over I’ll cancel the subscription and order again when F1 is on. Fortunately I have enough income to pay for it, I imagine many don’t. Pay TV is killing the support base.

    1. I am one of those who doesn’t.

      Until such time a reasonably priced offering is available, I watch races live via alternative methods.

      1. Mary S Grantges
        10th August 2018, 17:03

        Please share which alternative methods.
        I leave in Dallas, Tx but I spend a lot of time at our home in Zihuatanejo, Mex. I hv to pay for 2 ways to watch F1. In Mex I stream but still hv to pay. Help please

    2. Yep, I’m in exactly that position too. Foxtel programming is dire and would not be worth a cent without F1. In fact it’s so bad I joined my local public library this year, something I haven’t done since my teens.

    3. NZ is also behind paywall. The only way I get away with it is because my flatmate loves sport so I can split costs. When he leaves, so will the sky subscription. The choice then becomes getting creative or abandoning F1. Neither are ideal.

    4. I’m likewise in Australia, and the $55/month that it costs to get Fox Sports just isn’t justifiable in my case. I used to watch basically every race (having half of them broadcast on FTA meant that I was interested in watching the highlights packages for the other half), but with all of the FTA coverage now in the form of highlights packages, I just don’t bother any more. I keep tabs on the championship, but my viewing has shifted almost entirely to MotoGP now, which has far better racing anyway.

      1. Pedro Guilherme De Almeida Carvalho
        14th August 2018, 14:02

        IPTV services are cheap and have alot of channels where you can see f1. It’s not legal but I don’t really care

  4. In addition to the pay TV issue, I wonder how many Australia’s have found it difficult watching F1 live because of the later race start times… Personally I can’t stay up as I’ve got work early the next morning and staying away from results the whole day before being able to watch it at night isn’t always practical. It’s definitely had a negative impact on my interest in the sport.

    1. That’s just the problem here with any European or American live shows. I’m going to have to get up at 5am tomorrow morning just to watch a Premier League game.

    2. @AP It’s been much harder with the later races. Some races I’ve tried to nap on the couch beforehand to get some sleep (doesn’t really work though); unless the race is particularly exciting I find myself struggling to stay awake and tend to fall asleep after all the pit stops.

      Depending on the race, I usually try to make a call as to whether it’s going to be worth staying up for, and if not, avoid ALL media (easier said than done) until I’m able to download a replay and watch it.

    3. The only way to watch F1 races live from here is get my lazy butt out of bed and turn the TV/computer/and laptop on.
      Proud live watcher since 1988. I can’t even get one of my pups to get up and watch with me.
      Fans get up, internet trolls stay in bed.

    4. I’m in NZ so most races are overnight. By 8am NZ time they’re normally available for download, so on Monday mornings I take the kids to school, come back and watch the race. But I work from home, self employed, so I can fit work around F1.

      1. The late start in Australia has made this year much harder to watch being 1 hour later. To be honest I hope Liberty realise the US market hasn’t picked up F1 like they thought and change it back.

        As far as Foxtel I pay $65 per month to view in HD, its only for F1 but I enjoy Moto GP, some UFC and re-runs of Seinfeld ( @ajpennypacker ) – its a big cost to watch F1. I love Formula 1 (but admit getting a little frustrated at the moment) but many people cant afford that.

        The F1 TV Access seems the future if they can provide a good product (any feedback F1F’s??) or Sky need to provide an F1 only access subscription to keep themselves competitive.

  5. The plan is to make as much money as possible, even if it means only a handful of millionaires watch. The flaw is that popularity drops and the product becomes irrelevant. If nobody knows about your offerings, how can you grow? I thought that was business 101: Grow your audience by being accessible. Instead the new method is to squeeze cash out of fans until they leave. Sure profits rise in the short term but long term it’s death.

    1. @anon-e moss
      If one isn’t…. um… smart enough to find an f1 feed, or have enough money to pay for cable …. does f1 really want them as fans? Some one who can’t figure basic stuff like that in 2018 is gonna have trouble fallowing f1.


      1. F1 sure as hell doesn’t want fans that find feeds of the race. They want to monetize your views, and they likely consider anybody that isn’t paying for the privilege of watching the race to be thieves.

    2. Feels a little like the blinders that Eccelstone put on, particularly in the later years, were handed over as part of the sale to Liberty. Disappointing to see.

  6. Just stream it lol 😂

  7. I’m in the lucky position that I’m not having to pay extra for Sky F1 in the UK because I have had an unbroken HD subscription since the first year. Lucky for me because – as much as I love F1 – I wouldn’t pay the going rate for it. I’m also not interested in the terrestrial offerings which show ‘some races’. Formula 1 is not ‘some races’ it’s a World Championship. If I can’t follow the WC properly then it’s not worth my free time.
    What I want to know is this: How has this sport arrived at a business model where the teams have sponsors, the circuits have sponsors and F1 itself has sponsors who are paying for the benefit of the eyeballs on the sport but which still depends on ME paying to put my eyeballs on it? Ha ha…no! The day Sky pulls my freebie is the day I’m done with F1.

    1. You can always sail the seven seas. I’m sure Liberty is aware of the rather robust buccaneer bivouacs. In fact, I enjoyed years as a corsair and I only recently hung up my cutlass and big floppy hat when the legitimate streaming services were offered, which I’m sure was their plan. Accept the king’s amnesty and all that.

      Now, why is the rum gone?

      1. Paul F. You are obviously not in the UK, where that service is NOT available.

        1. True, I’m not. But that deal may not last forever, especially if Liberty doesn’t want to see more flags hoisted above the decks of privateers and freebooters. Besides, there’s ways to sail under false colors. VPNs and whatnot. This is nearly the third decade of the 21st century, and such things are child’s play. As are streaming services (or at least they should be, and if LIberty makes some basic improvements….)


          1. @zapski In Australia the local “Sky” known as “Foxtel” has the rights for many, many years to come.

            I still watch the Sky broadcast through my eye patch though.

        2. @lotus49 I believe @zapski was implying the corsair option might be viable, rather than the king’s amnesty (though I could not possibly condone the corsair life personally).

  8. I’ve not been picked for comment of the day for a while but here goes…


  9. Been watching since 1996, this will be my last season. Even if I could afford it I refuse to pay the amount Sky ask for F1

    1. I won’t pay Sky out of principle, not cost…. hacked any dead children’s phones lately Rup?


    2. As with any service in a competitive environment you don’t need to pay the Sky subscription ‘ticket price’. You can achieve a significant reduction in subscription fee by talking to them, then just indicate you’ll cancel every time the price reverts back. The call centre team have approved discount levels they can give.

  10. It looks very much like I will not be watching formula one after this year. I do not watch highlights, particularly with the jingoistic, biased commentary on Channel Four ( there is more than one driver, Ben). I do not have, and will never pay Sky to watch advertising.
    I cannot, for the life of me, understand why the BBC radio commentary is more than thirty seconds behind the actual race. (BBC says ‘Vettel is coming in to the pits’ when Seb is already halfway around his next lap). I think that, from the start of next season, I will just simply wait until Monday morning and get all the timings and results from the web or, God forbid, buy a newspaper or specialist magazine.

    1. Peppermint-Lemon (@)
      10th August 2018, 12:51

      I’d consider just not bothering and enjoying Le Mans, Formula E, MotoGP, and Touring car (various) next year. That’s where my priorities will be. F1 is rapidly slipping down the priority order.

    2. C4’s Ben ultimate HAM fanboy, they also like Danny Ric, Merc and really highlight it when Ferrari make an error.

  11. Peppermint-Lemon (@)
    10th August 2018, 12:48

    What have the other 18% said? “No improvement”?

    If thats the case then it can be grouped with the 13% that said “worse”, totalling 31% which is near as dammit 1/3 of those surveyted saying its not better.

    I’ve a Sky sub, and yet I have not watched a single race live from start to finish. I have only watched one race from start to finish – on demand – and that was the British GP (which was not as good as it should have been due to Hamilton’s car advantage).

    To make matters worse, I watched one qualifying where the visual notification that it was to be an “Audio lap” or something and we had to turn our volume up to hear the engine – sorry – power unit. That this is needed is absurd. That David Croft talked all the way through the Audio Lap about a load of rubbish made it even more farcical. At that point I switched off the TV and attended to some paint that was drying. Had the paint been in the same room as the F1 on TV the paint would’ve got bored!

    I have no idea how the sport can come back from the dead end it has gone down. Those employed by Liberty will achieve little I fear. Unless almost all aspects are up for immediate review then actioned immediately there will not be a sport left to care about.

  12. he has a good point, indeed. I can’t pay the extra for F1, (and even if i could, with the current broadcaster we have in Argentina/latinoamerica, i would never pay a penny anyway), so i have to stream it with AceStream. Surely i’ll pay if i could for the F1 streaming service, but there’s no acceptable options in latin-spanish broadcast. And that’s me, a hardcore fan. How can you engage some new fan if you had your product under a paywall? free air broadcast is clearly the best way to broaden your fanbase and renew it, but i can’t see that happening in short time…

  13. As someone who refuses to give the Murdoch empire any of my money, i’ll not be watching F1 next season.

    1. @emu55 Or you could just, I don’t know, live stream for free?

      1. I could, but its a criminal offense. I shouldn’t have to risk myself to watch F1.

        1. @emu55 Illegal broadcasting, meaning setting up a stream in this situation, is illegal. Watching the stream however isn’t illegal. It’s the people who put up a stream who break the law, not the users. And cheers to them for their great work in last few years!

          1. @huhhii Watching illegal streams is illegal in the UK (though not in all territories) and can (though usually doesn’t) lead to criminal sanctions, including having one’s internet connection blocked by the court.

          2. @huhhi @alianora-la-canta @emu55 @mashiat It’s very very rare for people to be prosecuted for watching streams. It’s only ever happened in extreme cases. While it is illegal, the authorities acknowledge that the responsibility ultimately lies with the hosts (or whoever is behind the stream). Especially when streams are top results on a basic google search (I’m surprised google doesn’t get into more trouble for allowing this).

    2. @emu55 Amen.

      I do pay for a VPN though.

  14. First year in over 30 years not watching F1. I only had TV subscription for F1 so cancelled and was planning to go with F1 Live. It was late and here in Canada F1 Live is on a one week delay….how do I avoid knowing what happened for a whole week. Good bye F1 it was a great time but the product overall is not as good as it once was (You know they once actually raced and passed each other, touched without penalties) . MotoGP is real racing with all the exciting elements a race series should have, a great online service to boot.

  15. I could afford Sky, but I chose not to as there is little apart from F1 I would like to watch on it.

    I am fortunate that my local shows F1 on one of the big screens so instead of spending my money on Sky TV, I spend it in my local community (OK, the pub), catch up with friends and get to watch the race too – Win Win as far as I am concerned.

    1. A lot of football has gone behind paywalls knowing people will go to the pub to watch. And of course the biggest sponsor of almost every football tournament is beer – this is no coincidence.

      I cannot say for sure, but it wouldn’t surprise me if this is one of the reasons Heineken was so willing to sponsor F1

  16. Well, reading through the comments, I consider myself very lucky living in Belgium. In 2015 they also moved the Dutch part of F1 in Belgium to pay-tv, but I’m not paying for that just to watch F1.
    Luckily, in Belgium you also have the French part of F1 and they are still on a free channel. It’s even on one of the national tv channels.
    So if anyone is a bit familiar with French and they have a VPN, you can just set it to Belgium and watch on “la une” or “la deux”.
    I am really disappointed that the FOM decided to take the pay-tv route. Hope I can keep watching for frrmee but I fear that it won’t take long anymore.

  17. Some people blame the fall off in interest on the Hamilton/Mercedes domination, but we have always had periods of 1 team domination. Mclaren, Ferrari, Williams and more recently red bull haven’t affected viewing figures. Surely it has to be down to the cost of viewing that is the problem.

  18. I’ll probably be another irrelevant -1 on the UK audience figures at the end of this season. Not missed a competitive session since 1997 (apart from that French GP where they messed up the qualifying TV rights) but my work and life situation has changed. I can still afford Sky, but I’d rather spend the money on other, more important things.

    The sad thing is, if I drop Sky, I’ll almost certainly stop being an F1 fan. I don’t think it’s a sport anyone can properly follow just through highlights/reading news. So I won’t just be a -1 on their audience figures next year, but for the next 40 years. And the friends I push into watching F1 will never watch it, my kids (if I have any) won’t watch it, future partners won’t have to watch it. All the knock on effects that short-term cash-grabbing policies fail to take into account…

  19. I think it would be interesting to see in which country you pay wich amount per month so we can all compare. I’ll start the list…
    Netherlands 15.5 euro/month

    1. In the UK, theres a few of options

      1: via sky package (£20.00 for “basic” package PLUS £18.99 for 1 sky sport channel (if, like me youre not interested in football or cricket)
      = £38.99 per month (and you’re tied in for 18 months)

      2: NOW TV (a subsidiary of SKY)
      1 day pass – £7.99 (qualy or race) only 1 day otherwise you need to get a weekly pass at £12.99, plus if there’s 2 or 3 races that month, multiply by 2 or 3 times

      3: F1TV, not sure if this is an option in the UK or not yet….

      4: Stream it elswhere

      i choose the latter.

      1. @x-f1-x 3) is not an option until at least 2024 because Sky has exclusive rights to internet-based content in the UK.

        Due to a lack of TV license on my part and a total distaste for Sky’s product on my parents’ part (plus none of us are made of money), none of the legal options @x-f1-x listed is an option for me. I make do with Channel 4 and Twitter (which I’ve found is better live commentary than BBC Radio). I suspect in 2019, it’ll be almost entirely Twitter – which itself will be much impoverished because many of its biggest contributors rely on Channel 4. (Witness the change in quality in English-language contribution between “live” Twitter content on the #f1 hash when C4 is broadcasting and when it’s not).

        1. What about option 4? @alianora-la-canta

          1. @x-f1-x That would be an illegal option in the UK, and I don’t condone illegal options. (My parents couldn’t do it anyway because it is physically impossible for them to get fast enough internet).

      2. Sky did a Now TV streaming “Season Pass” prior to the start of the F1 season; 9 months of Sports for £150 upfront. So approx £7.15 per F1 race weekend. It was a reasonable deal for anyone willing to take it.

        1. Still costlier than the entire licence fee just to follow one sport and the major issue with NowTV is that only gives you live coverage. No on-demand race researches if you couldn’t see it live. So for someone working shifts like me and working during at least half the races that would be money wasted.

    2. In France you have three options:

      1: subscribe to Canal+ (those producing the popular 30mn onboard after each race)
      PC / tablet / phone only(i.e. digital): 19.90€ per month, no commitment
      TV + digital: 24.90€ per month, 12 month commitment
      TV + digital: 19.90 per month, 24 month commitment

      2: subscribe to F1 TV pro. Due to undisclosed reasons, the service is more expansive in France than in other countries. You cannot take the monthly subscription. You have to pay 189.99€ upfront for one year of service.

  20. Fans reacted positively to our enhancements in cameras, sounds, graphics, and other elements in our broadcast

    Meh, I think the camera work has been rather poor and it’s been going downhill for a while now…

  21. For an example in Estonia this is the first year for 10-15 years there is NO legal way to watch F1. Viasat dropped it (used to be pay-TV + delayed pay-less-TV) and official F1 TV Pro is not allowed here either.

    Good luck with the audience number in the future too, when things continue like it’s been for the past 5-10 years. Sky F1 in UK shows that going to payTV has no gains for fans. Costs a lot and BBC/C4 had/has better weekend coverage imho.

  22. I’m done after this season too. Sad but as I’m a pensioner I don’t have spare cash for paying to view! I’ve been watching since the Graham Hill etc era. Probably won’t even follow at all if I can’t see it for free even as highlights.

  23. Refreshing change from Bernie who would use viewer drops to fit whatever was his agenda at the time, regardless of what were behind the lower figures..

  24. And nothing whatsoever to do with the rival attraction of watching paint dry…

    1. @gnosticbrian In fairness, Liberty can do something directly about the TV deals (although some patience and/or careful negotiation is required in some nations). Making F1 more entertaining is something much more difficult to do, and has rather more diffuse responsibility.

  25. That is largely due to our move from free to pay television in Italy…

    So … one more country where F1 is now irrelevant.

  26. I currently reside in Spain. It would be nice be able to legally watch F1 in English,but the only legal and reliable option is to watch it on the local pay tv. €10 a month but only as an add in for an outrageously expensive €35 tv package!

  27. Seriously? Due to pay TV?!?! lol

    The cars look like flip-flops and sound like a vacuum. Why on earth would I pay money for that? For me, 12 consecutive years of seeing an F1 race somewhere in the world over.


  28. Carey is a Murdoch man and Murdoch has a plan. Murdoch absolutely believes in user pays, so is no fan of free anything. So do not expect F1 to become more accessible, in fact expect to see limitations on other media outlets reporting on F1 increasing in the future.

    1. @johnrkh Guess what stuff costs time & money to make! Some one somewhere has to Pay. For free-to-air it’s the Advertisers and the viewer pays with their ‘time and attention’ for Ad viewing, if it’s a nationalised broadcaster it’s tax-payers (someone still has to pay), and if it’s a subscription service, guess what the user pays.

      1. After studying your post and giving it much thought, I can only reply thus…OMG.

  29. “69% of our fans say F1 TV coverage has improved while just 13% say it’s worse.”

    And as we all know, 63% of statistics are made up

  30. Been watching since the best you could hope for during the year was a one off tape delay on Wide World of Sports of Sir Jackie and company at Monaco. That was it till next year. 25 years ago a new full time sports network (TSN) showed up in the cable package and showed the races live, as they still do. Would I pay for F1 if they changed the way it is now? Of course not. I have a little box hooked up to my TV that’s got a Cat5 cable from my router running into it. If there was no other option? I’d pay for Moto GP before ponying up for F1. There’s more passing on the last lap than entire F1 race. Fix the product. I grew up watching men race each other flat out in cars. Paying to watch leaf blowers that can’t go near each other without falling flat is losing it’s lustre.

    And I couldn’t help but chuckle at the “flip-flop” comment above. I’ll never be able to look at a F1 car again without thinking about my Oakley flip-flops and laughing.

    1. Flip-flops? Still sounds better than racing behind a Todt Thong in dirty air.

  31. In my country, we get the races free to air and pay to air. I have both options since local channels are free and have satellite tv also.

  32. Jonathan Teague
    11th August 2018, 6:36

    I had Sky but its too expensive and I was only watching F1 and the occasional Sky Cinema movie so I canceled it. The good thing was that all races in the season were available to download on demand which is good if you miss one due to family commitments. I’ve been trialing Now TV and it works ok but without the ability to pause and no on demand option (which is a shame as its on their servers!) I wonder if its really worth the money I’m paying for it and have already considered not watching free practice and qualifying and just watching the 10 min highlights of those on F1 TV Access to cut down the cost.

    Full F1 TV Pro access would be worth it for me but until then Sky need to up their game and make on demand viewing with live pause available on Now TV to make it good value for money for a streamer. I could do it with world cup matches on the BBC iPlayer as they were in 1080p with live pause, play from beginning option if already started and instantly available on demand. Now TV only has 720p and watch it live only and costs significantly more than my TV Licence does.

    I’ll see how I feel after this season but I’m strongly considering boycotting F1 until I get the service I deserve for the money I’m paying. I could always go back and watch some classic seasons until then as I’m sure F1 TV Pro will be available in the UK after the Sky deal has concluded and I do like Formula E with FP and quali on YouTube and the race on a UK FTA broadcaster all is good but obviously its not F1 but still entertaining.

  33. Bernie was a SCROTE for killing off free to air F1 on TV.
    Yes he was an extremely greedy bugger too.
    But this new shower?
    American GREED in it’s usual corporate disguise.
    Free to air wasn’t costing F1 anything in reality.
    That exposure to F1, however was PRICELESS.
    Reducing the viewing audience of F1, will & is the beginning of the end of modern, current F1.
    The recent statement of rejigging the teams financial rewards is a another screw tightened in F1’s coffin lid.
    Hopefully the almost “quiet” announcement that top teams were considering a breakaway will gather pace now!
    Good scarper now! Listen to the true fans. Free to air & the spin off will be way better than the current GREED status quo.

  34. It’s a bit strange, but a lot of people here in the good ole USA don’t seem to realize that they are watching F1 on a pay tv service because they seem to regard a $200 monthly cable bill as a necessity of life like running water or heat. About 90% of what’s available when you reach the tier where F1 is included is garbage. I recently dropped my cable tv service entirely. I get a handful of over-the-air broadcast stations, Amazon Prime video, and an Android TV box. Even with this, we seldom watch tv anymore. The various free pirated streams for live F1 races are completely unreliable since they regularly disappear from the net and often have intermittent feeds due (I suppose) to excessive traffic. I was all set to sign up for F1’s streaming service until I heard what a fiasco that has been. Right now, it’s a new adventure every race to find a source for the feed, and someone must be leaning on Google because recent searches don’t seem to show the usual pirate feeds anymore. So, right now, I’m up in the air, and I suppose I will try the official F1 feed and see if it’s functioning yet. Of course, it’s that time of year where F1 shuts down for siesta right in the middle of the season. That’s an oddly European concept. I remember working for a Dutch supplier of medical imaging equipment, and the U.S. corporate offices would shut down for two weeks around the Christmas holiday. That was all very nice for them, but it was a bit rough on the patients who could not be treated due to the unavailability of replacement parts. As far as I know, F1 is the only sport that completely shuts down and stops competing for a month in the middle of the season. Yes, I know this is a bit off-topic, but everyone deserves a rant every once in a while!

  35. Pay per view is not needed to decrease the rating of F1, Between the halo ,the drs, the v6’s and 4 year in a row of mercedes boring dominance is enough to never watch it again for some people…

  36. Yeah pay TV is killing the sport. It hardly requires any boffins to understand why.

    I for one won’t be watching many, if any, full races next year at all since it seems there’s nothing on terrestrial TV (are there highlights even?).

    I guess I’ll just go and watch the 7 minute long race highlights videos they’ve been putting up on YouTube. While I can’t see them ever posting full races like Indycar does (I think) that would be amazing if they could.

    I hope to god they do NOT renew with Sky in future and just let us use the F1 Pro app, hopefully with casting to TVs etc included.

    Even going the Now TV route with Sky isn’t ideal because they still don’t offer on demand race replays. If you can’t watch it live then you’re screwed. It’s terrible for the cost just to watch one race (£7) or a weekend of action (£12).


  37. Most of all Latinamerica F1 fans are upset about how Sky an Fox Action manage all the Show. We do not get full tv intervius… the chart of positipns in unreadable… and Sky is obviously anti-some pilots… so you will loose more and more viewers every month. Plus the extra payment on DirecTv… think business gentlemen!

  38. Also I think Liberty needs to fill the grandstands each week as well as adding to TV viewers. Low end tickets I think are well priced but Hospitality has gone way too far in price.

    1. I though they wanted more support and fans full stop. They have turned down SKY New Zealand bid to continue showing F1 races in 2018 so now fans here cannot see any races. Also F1 TV isn’t showing live races here!!!

  39. Liberty Media is killing F-1 in the U.S. market. F-1 has had a slow but steady growth gaining in the U.S. market in the past 20 years. The building of COTA was a milestone. A big contributor to this growth was obviously television coverage. Before COTA it was hard to imagine F-1 as a U.S. sport. Coverage included those very close to the sport, Hobbs and Matchett with Varsha providing an “American” feel. This group provided an atmosphere that this was a worldwide sport that the U.S. was part of. This continued even when NBCSN brought in Diffey and Buxton. It still had a feel that the U.S. was a part of the sport.
    When Liberty Media bought F-1 they flushed all that progress right down the toilet. Sky Sports is not the right fit to continue this progress. F-1 has now been pushed back into the past as seen as a series that is not part of the U.S. market. The feel that the U.S was a participant is gone. It’s like watching a British sporting event totally void of U.S. interest. Sky Sports presents a good program if you are a citizen of Britain and have grown up around F-1
    being the premiere auto racing series. Brits are more knowledgeable regarding F-1 the way Americans are more knowledgeable about NASCAR. Sky Sports is ideal for the British fan, but not the type of programming to attract new F-1 fans in the U.S. The broadcasts feel foreign because they are. They are perfect for their intended target audience, the British fan.
    Liberty Media is devaluating their own product which shows they have no concept of the product they own. To them F-1 is a product to own and from which to make a profit. They probably think they know what they are doing, but they don’t have a clue.

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