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Wolff warns against "diluting" F1 despite "reality show" success

Wolff warns against "diluting" F1 despite "reality show" success

F1 News

Wolff warns against "diluting" F1 despite "reality show" success

Wolff warns against "diluting" F1 despite "reality show" success

Toto Wolff believes the "reality show" Drive to Survive has "put an emphasis" on the star drivers in F1 but has warned it 'should not dilute' the core DNA of the sport.

The Netflix documentary series has been widely credited as a factor in F1's rapid increase in viewership in recent years, especially in the United States.

As well as the US market increase, there have also been upticks in audience numbers within younger demographics and female demographics, proving the steps taken by Liberty Media since acquiring the sport in 2017 have been a success.

Asked about the impact of Netflix and younger drivers being 'more open' than previous generations, Wolff said: "I think at the core is the DNA of the sport, we are credible and around that, we've built an ecosystem.

"The interesting part is that with that fix coming in it put an emphasis on the personalities that maybe weren't so much in the spotlight before; obviously Lewis and the top guys out there, but people got interested in the people that participate in the sport, and this is how you can relate to them.

"I think the stories in the first few episodes around the drivers, they weren't as known, got many people hooked and, interestingly, that got them watching the Grand Prix well because they could relate to the personality, they knew who Esteban Ocon was and how his background was.

"So I think, how is reality TV working? That's our own little reality show around the core DNA of the sport, and that's motor racing. That shouldn't be diluted."

Netflix showing "human side" to F1

The Netflix series provides an insight into the F1 paddock by following the personalities up close, with interviews and fly-on-the-wall-style segments giving the audience a more authentic view of those involved.

"Netflix helped because it showed a different side of the sport, like the more human side of it, not just the drivers who are younger and closer to the audience obviously, but also the team members, mostly the team principals," explained Alpine CEO, Laurent Rossi.

"I have to say, it's not just that, I mean it's also the show on track, the effort that has been made for the competition to be more intense because you can have the audience if nothing is happening, they will still not be that interested.

"So it's nice work done on all fronts. Obviously, we need to be careful with the editing licence that one can take when given pictures, footage and recordings.

"So far, so good but I think this is indeed good for the sport."

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