Formula 1 must be open to change says Chase Carey


Formula 1 should continue to look at new concepts to improve the racing according to Chase Carey

Chase Carey, AustralianGP 2020

Formula 1 must continue to evolve according to Chase Carey

Speed Media/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Formula 1 cannot afford to close itself off from changing in order to improve the show according to CEO, Chase Carey.

F1 has recently looked at the possibility of implementing a reverse-grid qualifying race on Saturday’s as a way of spicing up the on-track action, however the concept was shot down by multiple teams and shelved for the time being.

The American, who will leave the role of F1 CEO at the end of this year to be replaced by ex-Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali, warned that the series should continue to look at ways it can improve in the future.

Speaking on the official F1 podcast Beyond the Grid, Carey said it was important for the sport to not be restricted in its thinking on how to improve the product.

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“Most sports when they’ve talked about changes, the hardcore fans resist change,” he said.

“Major League Baseball wanted a designated hitter and everybody didn’t like it. The NBA put in a three-point line and the hardcores didn’t like it.

“They added teams to play-offs, so you used to have two league champions playing in the World Series, now this year they have 16 teams.

“In most of those cases, not all, those changes have ended up being viewed as positive, bringing fresh energy, bringing fresh perspective.

“I think you have to be careful that you don’t gimmick up the sport and recognise the history and what has made this sport special but not let that become a straightjacket that doesn’t enable you to consider changes that may truly enhance the sport for fans.”

According to Carey, F1’s most recent attempts at freshening up the race weekend with a qualifying race and subsequent push back from teams would not alter the process for creating and approving changes, despite the leaders of the series pushing for its implementation.

“A decision like the one with a qualifying race, I think it’s a group decision. From my position, we’re not going to dictate that.

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“We’ll tee it up, talk about the pros and cons and the appropriate homework, what we think are the benefits and issues with it and we’ll have discussions.

“That’s where it’s important to have the spirit of partnership and not just look at it as ‘is this good or bad for me as a team?’ as opposed to ‘is this good or bad for the sport?’.

“We’ll make an informed judgment about whether it is a decision that we feel is respectful to the sport, maybe not part of its history, but that will engage and create greater races for fans because, at the end of the day, that’s what this is all about.

“You race and compete in sports for fans. Yes, the individuals in it get great rewards out of their success, but the purpose is to create a memorable and great experience for fans, and not every fan is going to like it so you’re never going to get to 100 per cent. So it is why we have to make the judgement we think, on balance, will improve the sport.”