The Growth Potential of Formula 1: Racing Towards a Thriving Future

Formula 1, often referred to as F1, is the pinnacle of motorsport and has captivated millions of fans worldwide for decades. With its unique blend of cutting-edge technology, high-speed racing, and global appeal through charismatic figures both on and off the track, the sport possesses immense growth potential.

This potential has been accelerated by F1 assuming something of a digital surge through the massively popular Netflix series ‘Drive To Survive’, expanding the sport’s reach into entirely new demographics.

So what are the key drivers behind the sport’s success?

The racing

At the heart of Formula 1’s popularity lies its exhilarating and awe-inspiring racing. The combination of powerful engines, expertly designed aerodynamics, and skilled drivers navigating challenging circuits creates a spectacle that leaves audiences on the edge of their seats.

Furthermore, F1 has been perhaps one of the sports that has benefited the most behind the ‘gamification’ of data in sports that draws and sustains fans’ interest.

Top speeds of over 200mph, hair-raising crashes with potentially fatal consequences, hair-pin bends bringing space-shuttle-level G-force; all in some of the most glamorous and visually spectacular locations across the globe – it’s easy to see how the racing product can draw in and keep fan interest.

Human Drama and Sporting Icons

Formula 1 is not only about cars and technology; it is also a showcase of human drama and sporting icons; a fact that only became obvious to many when Netflix first commissioned the yearly ‘behind the scenes’ documentary series, ‘Drive To Survive’ back in 2018.

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The intense rivalries, personal stories, and emotional triumphs and setbacks of drivers add an extra layer of intrigue to the sport. Fans become emotionally invested in the journeys of their favorite drivers, creating a bond that transcends mere racing. The charisma and skill displayed by these athletes captivate fans, turning them into loyal followers who support and celebrate their sporting heroes.

English driver Lewis Hamilton is widely regarded as one of, if not the, greatest F1 racing driver in history, with a joint-record seven world championships. Sporting achievements aside, Hamilton has emerged as one of the more popular British sports stars with a significant influence and fan base across the worlds of fashion, social commentary and philanthropy.

In years gone by, Hamilton and his Mercedes team turned the sport into something of a one-team sport, dominating the win column through their superior car performance coupled with the world’s greatest driver.

In the last two four years, however, team Red Bull and its darling driver Max Verstappen have taken two championships in a row and look on course to win a third this year. Indeed, new betting sites are still appearing that show Verstappen as the overwhelming favourite to win the Drivers Championship for the third straight time.

Should he achieve this, he will only further establish himself as one of the most popular but divisive drivers and begin to eye Hamilton’s legacy as an achievable target.

Global Reach and Accessibility:

Formula 1 has successfully established a strong presence in numerous countries across the globe, hosting races in iconic locations. This global reach enables fans from different cultures and backgrounds to connect with the sport. Moreover, the availability of television coverage, live streaming services, and digital platforms has made Formula 1 more accessible than ever before. Fans can follow races, access exclusive content, and engage with the sport through social media, creating a sense of community and fostering a dedicated fan base.

This surge in popularity has perhaps been most obvious in the previously unenamoured market of the US, where Nascar ruled the roost.

According to a poll by Morning Consult in March 2022 of 1,900 self-identified adult U.S. F1 fans showed that 53% credited “Drive to Survive” as a reason they watched F1 races.

This popularity has driven average per-race viewership of F1 races in the US up from 538,000 in 2017 to 1.2 million last year. F1 has recognised this popularity and fed the US accordingly, upping the number of races in the US to three as of last year and moving forward.

Asia, too, has become an immensely popular base for F1. Newly-introduced races in Abu Dhabi and Dubai have forged strong interest in the Middle East, while further afield Japan has a driver leading an F1 team in Scuderia AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda.

Technological Innovation and Engineering Excellence:

Formula 1 serves as a breeding ground for technological innovation and engineering excellence. The sport constantly pushes the boundaries of what is possible in automotive design, aerodynamics, and engine performance.

Fans are captivated by the relentless pursuit of advancements, witnessing the evolution of cutting-edge technology that eventually finds its way into consumer vehicles. This connection between motorsport and everyday transportation resonates with enthusiasts, creating a sense of fascination and inspiring loyalty towards Formula 1.

The 2022 season saw some new rules introduced by the F1 governing body relating to the cars’ body shape and performance metrics which the ten teams had to adhere to. These measures not only showcase the engineering excellence but also add to the human drama of the sport as fans frequently witness technological difficulties faced by the drivers while trying to push these multi-million pound vehicles to their limits in the pursuit of victory.

Evolving Fan Engagement Strategies

Formula 1 has adapted to the changing landscape of fan engagement, recognizing the importance of connecting with its audience in innovative ways. The sport has embraced social media platforms, interactive experiences, and digital content to provide fans with behind-the-scenes access, exclusive interviews, and immersive storytelling. This shift in approach has attracted younger demographics and enabled fans to interact with the sport on a more personal level, further fueling its popularity.


The rising popularity of Formula 1 can be attributed to its thrilling racing, global reach, accessibility, technological innovation, human drama, and evolving fan engagement strategies. The sport’s ability to captivate and inspire audiences on a global scale has solidified its position as one of the most popular and revered motorsport events. As Formula 1 continues to evolve, adapt, and embrace new trends, its popularity is expected to grow further, captivating fans and ensuring its enduring status as a global phenomenon.