US sees number of F1 viewers rise steeply


F1 is seeing a huge boom in viewership in the US ahead of the inaugural 2022 Miami GP.

The country is showing great enthusiasm for the sport, which has been primarily successful in Europe throughout its history.

American fans have always looked to NASCAR and IndyCar Racing for their fill of motorsport action, largely ignoring Europe’s premier class single-seater racing league.

However, that has now changed thanks to Netflix’s hugely popular Drive to Survive docuseries. Last year, nearly 400,000 fans filled the stands at the US GP in Texas, a number surpassing that of most European venues.

The 2022 F1 Miami GP is no exception, with the newly-built venue completely sold out months prior to the event.

TV numbers are also increasing along with on-site figures, with an average of 1.3 million people having tuned in on ESPN to watch Bahrain’s season opener. In comparison, 2021 had an average of 900,000 US fans watching throughout the season.

Former F1 driver Gerhard Berger had this to say about the sport’s recent boom in the US:

“It is clear to see that there is a new Formula 1 boom. And this time it comes from America. One has always known that if one gains a foothold in America, Formula 1 will take on a new dimension. It just never worked. But this time it’s different. And the key to that was the Netflix series. “


Lewis Hamilton acknowledges F1’s boom in the US

Lewis Hamilton feels F1 is finally penetrating the American market. The Miami GP this weekend will be one of two races to be held in the United States this year. Next season, the sport will have as many as three races in the US, with the inclusion of Las Vegas.

The Briton said he had always wondered why the sport had not taken off in America and attributed its recent popularity in the country to Netflix’s Drive to Survive. He said:

“I think so, yeah. I’ve been coming out here for a long, long time, but I never quite understood why people weren’t into Formula 1. Everyone knew NASCAR and, obviously, you’ve got such huge sports fans out here. But, the Netflix show, particularly through the pandemic, has just brought massive awareness to the sport, and now it’s booming. ”

The seven-time world champion is hoping American soil will give him good luck in his fight against not only rival teams but also teammate George Russell.

Russell is currently 21 points ahead of Hamilton in the drivers’ standings.


Edited by Rachel Syiemlieh





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