Formula 1 announces TV, race attendance and digital audience figures for 2021

Formula 1 announces TV, race attendance and digital audience figures for 2021

Formula 1 has released annual audience figures following the 2021 World Championship season, which included the new Sprint events at three races, and a title battle that went down to the wire between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.

TV audience

The season finale in Abu Dhabi drew 108.7m viewers, +29% higher than the same race in 2020 – and the highest viewing figures for a race during the season.

The cumulative TV audience for 2021 was 1.55bn, up 4% from the 2020 season. F1 also saw strong audiences for the season opener in Bahrain (84.5m), and for the three Sprint weekend events at Silverstone (79.5m), Monza (80.4m) and Sao Paulo (82.1m).

There were significant rises in season cumulative audience in several markets, including many of F1’s biggest markets. The Netherlands stood out with an increase of +81% Year on Year, but there were also significant gains in the USA (+58% YoY), France (+48% YoY), Italy (+40% YoY) and the UK (+39% YoY).

TV unique viewers (the number of individuals that tune into at least one race during the season) for 2021 stood at 445m (+3% YoY). The biggest market on this metric was China (70.8m unique viewers in 2021, +13% vs 2020), but there were also significant YoY gains in Spain (+272%), Russia (+129%), and the USA (+53%).

Globally, the average audience per Grand Prix in 2021 was 70.3m. Looking only at markets where like-for-like broadcasting arrangements were maintained across 2020 and 2021, the figure was 60.3m, up +13% YoY, and the highest figure since 2013.

The like-for-like comparison excludes Brazil and Germany, where new broadcast arrangements were in place for 2021. Although numbers were lower in those markets in 2021, there have been very positive results and experience in other markets shows that audiences on pay channels will continue to grow over time.

In Brazil, F1 is enjoying far more in-depth coverage and more hours of F1 being broadcast than 2020. In Germany, Sky’s cumulative audiences in 2021 have seen significant growth with +55% YoY.

Social and digital platforms

Once again Formula 1 was the fastest-growing major sports league on the planet in terms of follower growth in 2021. F1 has 49.1m total followers and have seen the highest engagement rate with social posts compared to other major sports in 2021.

In 2021, followers (across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Tiktok, Snapchat, Twitch and Chinese social platforms) were up 40% to 49.1m, video views up 50% to 7bn and total engagement up 74% to 1.5bn.

Additionally, total video views across F1.com, the F1 app and social media were up 44% vs 2020 to 7.04bn, unique users were up 63% to 113m and page views were up +23% to 1.6bn. In China F1 saw very strong digital growth with followers on Chinese platforms (Weibo, WeChat, Toutiao and Douyin) up 39% to 2.7m.

The results mean that Formula 1 is outperforming other major sports in the digital arena. The digital share of total minutes consumed (across broadcast and digital) has grown from 10% in 2020 to 16% in 2021.

Race attendance

In 2021 F1 welcomed 2.69 million fans back to its events – after closed doors in 2020 – even though many races had limited capacities, and some could not welcome fans at all due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Although lower than pre-COVID figures of 4.16 million, this shows that there is huge demand for Formula 1 races, and F1 expects that demand will return to normal levels once the pandemic subsides.

Three Grands Prix had an attendance of more than 300,000 spectators over the race weekend: USA (400,000), Mexico (371,000) and Great Britain (356,000).

The USA, Mexico and Great Britain welcomed more fans than in 2019, the last time full capacities were possible, with previous attendances being 268,000, 348,000 and 351,000 people, respectively.

A total of 11 events attracted crowds of over 100,000 including: Belgium (213,000), the Netherlands (195,000), Turkey (190,000), Brazil (181,000), Abu Dhabi (153,000), Saudi Arabia (143,000), Austria (132,000) and Hungary (130,000).

Stefano Domenicali, President and CEO, Formula 1, said: “The 2021 season was something very special. We had a championship battle that went to the last race with huge excitement throughout the whole championship.

“We began to welcome back our fans who are the heart and soul of our sport and although we were limited in our capacities due to Covid, it was fantastic to see 2.6 million fans in the grandstands around the world. We have also seen some very strong figures across broadcast and our digital platforms, showing once again the momentum, excitement and interest that is all around Formula 1.

“We are looking forward to our record-breaking 23-race season this year, with new cars, new regulations, and a new challenge for all the teams and drivers. I know all of our fans can’t wait to get the season started.”

Dave Prater Named Vice President of Supercross for Feld Entertainment

Dave Prater Named Vice President of Supercross for Feld Entertainment

ELLENTON, Fla., (February 17, 2022) Feld Entertainment, Inc. today announced the promotion of Dave Prater to Vice President of Supercross, where he will oversee the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship. In his new role, Prater will be responsible for the supervision and growth of the global brand.

Since joining Supercross in 2000, Prater has contributed tremendously to the operation and expansion of the industry. In particular, he has demonstrated excellent leadership over the last two years as Supercross was the first sport to complete its season through the unprecedented circumstances of the pandemic. Prater’s expertise and understanding of the sport, along with his strong relationships in the two-wheel motorcycle industry will assist Feld Entertainment in continuing to grow the sport.

Feld Entertainment purchased Supercross in 2008 and Prater has been instrumental in several changes over the years including a revamped points structure, the introduction of the Triple Crown race format, the expansion of the Dave Coombs, Sr. East/West Showdown events, Supercross Futures, the Monster Energy Cup, and the move to NBC Sports.

The 2022 Monster Energy Supercross season is experiencing pre-pandemic fandom with live event ticket sales, FanFest attendance, and both domestic and international streaming. The first six rounds have produced four different winners in the premiere class and a tight points chase with the leaders.

Round 7 of the 17-round championship takes place this Saturday, February 19 at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minn. The event will also play host to the first round of the Eastern Regional 250SX Class championship.

PRI ANNOUNCES NEW INITIATIVES, RETURN OF IN-PERSON TRADE SHOW IN 2021

PRI ANNOUNCES NEW INITIATIVES, RETURN OF IN-PERSON TRADE SHOW IN 2021

Hopefully we’ll be able to join all of our friends in the racing community at PRI in December. I always liked visiting Indy and taking part in the show.

A press release from PRI

A return to Indianapolis for the annual PRI Trade Show, an all-new membership drive launching next week, and a 2.0 version of the renowned PRI Road Tour are all part of Performance Racing Industry’s plans for an unprecedented year.

With its mission to build, promote, and protect the racing community, PRI is focused on uniting motorsports professionals and enthusiasts in 2021 through both traditional platforms and newly introduced initiatives and services. Atop the list is this year’s return of the world’s premier event for motorsports professionals—the PRI Trade Show—which takes place December 9-11 at the Indiana Convention Center in downtown Indianapolis.

“The racing industry is resilient and continues to push forward, and PRI very much reflects that spirit,” said PRI President Dr. Jamie Meyer. “Racing businesses have demonstrated remarkable passion and perseverance over the last 12 months. Many have even reported record sales and month-over-month revenue growth. 
 
“Our job is to help the entire community thrive, and No. 1 on that list is bringing the industry together under one roof for an in-person PRI Show to get back to the business of racing and discover all the latest parts, equipment, technology, and solutions.”   PRI Membership logo, NHRA Drag Racer Antron Brown crossing his arms


As planning for the Show continues, PRI will introduce a groundbreaking membership program for motorsports professionals designed to unite the industry on a number of important efforts—legislative advocacy, business resources, career development, educational opportunities, cost savings, and more. Exhibitors at this year’s PRI Trade Show, for example, can take advantage of a comprehensive list of benefits that includes discounted booth space, which in most cases covers the cost of membership.    

“PRI is laser-focused on supporting the motorsports industry,” said Meyer. “The PRI Show is a critical component of what we do. Membership will complement what takes place at the event by providing year-round legal support, advocacy, educational seminars, and more.”

Shortly after Meyer’s arrival at PRI in late spring 2020, the company launched a series of targeted programs to assist racing businesses and operations impacted by the pandemic. One was PRI’s Ambassador Program, an aggressive campaign aimed at helping race track operators navigate local, state, and federal rules required to reopen safely. PRI Road Tour logo, Ford Mustange


Then, in October, PRI announced the launch of its Road Tour—an unprecedented, two-and-a-half-month cross-country journey that took a van-load of content creators to the doorsteps of nearly 100 racing and performance shops, teams, tracks, and more. The result was an all-out media blitz that allowed dozens of motorsports companies large and small to tell their stories, reveal new products, share never-before-seen treasures, and ultimately bring the industry closer together.       

“It was like PRI came to Magnuson and gave us all a big hug,” said Kim Pendergast, president of Magnuson Superchargers, about the PRI Road Tour, which will focus on major race events when it returns for 2021. “I don’t think we knew how much we needed that touch until it arrived.”

Exhibitor booth space applications for the 2021 PRI Trade Show, which include a sign-up option for PRI Business Membership, are available beginning March 15. Details for Trade Show attendee registration, PRI Individual Membership, and the PRI Road Tour will be announced at a later date. 

To learn more, visit performanceracing.com.

PRI Trade Show: performanceracing.com/tradeshow

PRI Membership: performanceracing.com/membership

PRI Road Tour: performanceracing.com/roadtour 

The Business of Racing – No PRI for 2020

The Business of Racing – No PRI for 2020

Well, the news dropped yesterday that the 2020 PRI show was not going to happen. With everything canceled in 2020, I wondered how the PRI would go on and now we know, it won’t. Originally scheduled for this December in Indianapolis, IN, uncertainty about the future and the state of the pandemic forced the organizers to pull the plug.

Below is their press announcement.

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. (Sept. 14, 2020) – Performance Racing Industry (PRI) announced today that the 2020 PRI Trade Show will not be taking place as scheduled in December.

The announcement comes after months of working closely with the Visit Indy team, the Indiana Convention Center staff, and other Indianapolis officials to develop a plan for a safe and productive PRI Trade Show. Despite health and safety guidelines that would have been in place, mounting uncertainty related to the Coronavirus resulted in an environment that would not be conducive to a productive trade show.

“It is with great disappointment that we announce that the 2020 PRI Trade Show will not take place,” said PRI President Dr. Jamie Meyer. “Our goal is to always do what is best for the motorsports industry, and PRI will continue to lead with business solutions for an ever-changing future.”

The organization is committed to supporting motorsports parts manufacturers, resellers, racetracks, race teams, sanctioning bodies, media, and racers themselves, through legislative advocacy, training, and more.

Full refunds for PRI Trade Show exhibitor booth deposits will be issued.

Updates will be posted to performanceracing.com.

About Performance Racing Industry
Since its inception in 1986, Performance Racing Industry (PRI) has served as the motorsports industry’s key source for trends, merchandising ideas, new products, business strategies, and more. Through its monthly business magazine, Performance Racing Industry, and the world’s premier auto racing trade show, the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show in Indianapolis, IN, motorsports industry members from all over the world remain in tune with the worldwide racing marketplace. For more information, visit performanceracing.com.

AAPEX 2020 To Be Virtual Experience

AAPEX 2020 To Be Virtual Experience

Just after the news broke that SEMA would not go on as planned in 2020, the AAPEX show that also runs in Las Vegas at the same time as SEMA, announced that it would be a virtual show in 2020.

Many companies and attendees take part in both shows during their time in Las Vegas so with one canceled it wasn’t difficult to see that the other would suffer a change as well.

Here is the complete release from AAPEX.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Aug. 5, 2020 – AAPEX 2020, scheduled for Nov. 3-5, 2020 at the Sands Expo and Caesars Forum Conference Center in Las Vegas, will not be held as an in-person tradeshow event this year due to the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic and related governmental prohibitions and restrictions on gatherings, businesses, and travel. Instead, AAPEX will provide a virtual/digital experience with many of the show’s same elements presented digitally. Given the State of Nevada’s recently announced long-term mitigation strategy for the COVID-19 pandemic, which has indefinitely prohibited events with more than 50 participants, and the severe limitations on international and domestic travel imposed in connection with the pandemic, unfortunately, the traditional in-person event cannot proceed.

AAPEX will refocus its efforts on the virtual 2020 event to bring together the more than $1 trillion global automotive aftermarket community and enable exhibitors to introduce new products to their customers and additional domestic and international target buyers. The virtual event will be held the week of Nov. 3, the same week as the originally planned event, and additional details will be available Aug. 19.

“AAPEX attendees and exhibitors are essential to keeping the motoring public on the road, even during times of crisis. We work in a dynamic industry and change has always been embraced by our predecessors and the 4.7 million men and women who now currently work to keep our industry at the forefront of the economy. AAPEX didn’t become the extraordinary event it is today by thinking small and not evolving to changing times and circumstances,” said Bill Hanvey, president and CEO of the Auto Care Association. “While we had hoped to meet in person, we are excited to use technology to bring together the supply chain of essential services to conduct business.”

“This was a difficult decision but circumstances on the ground made it impossible to have the show that we planned for our exhibitors and attendees,” said Paul McCarthy, president of AASA. “AAPEX and your industry associations have, and will continue, to support industry growth, pursue industry advocacy, ensure members’ safety, and do what is right for our industry.”

AAPEX 2021 will return to the Sands Expo and Caesars Forum Conference Center in Las Vegas, Tuesday, Nov. 2 through Thursday, Nov. 4. All inquiries should be directed to W.T. Glasgow Inc., (708) 226-1300, billjr@aapexshow.com.

For additional information, visit the AAPEX 2020 FAQ page.

Historically, AAPEX features approximately 2,500 exhibiting companies displaying their latest products, services and technologies that keep the world’s 1.3 billion vehicles on the road.

AAPEX buyers include automotive service and repair professionals, auto parts retailers, independent warehouse distributors, program groups, service chains, automotive dealers, fleet buyers and engine builders.

AAPEX is a trade-only event and is closed to the general public.

AAPEX is co-owned by the Auto Care Association and the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA), the light vehicle aftermarket division of the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA). For more information, visit www.aapexshow.com or e-mail: info@aapexshow.com. On social media, follow AAPEX at #AAPEX20.

The Business of Racing – No SEMA Show for 2020

The Business of Racing – No SEMA Show for 2020

Earlier this week, the organizers of SEMA put out a short statement regarding their 2020 show. It can been below in its entirety.

Statement from SEMA about the 2020 SEMA Show

DIAMOND BAR, Calif. (August 5, 2020) — SEMA, the Specialty Equipment Market Association, announced today that due to Covid-19 and concerns that event facilities and services will be unavailable, the SEMA Show will not be taking place in 2020.

While both event organizers and industry members have been working tirelessly to deliver an outstanding SEMA Show in November, mounting uncertainty has rendered continuing with the event inadvisable. SEMA expects the decision will bring much needed clarity to an uncertain picture and will help exhibitors, attendees and partners plan accordingly.

Recent SEMA Show survey results indicated interest in a possible virtual tradecshow with related live elements. SEMA will be working with industry members to determine interest levels on specific alternatives.

“The SEMA Show is committed to furthering businesses in the automotive specialty equipment market, and to providing manufacturers and buyers with the best opportunity to connect, promote new products and discover new trends,” said Chris Kersting, SEMA president and CEO. “We appreciate the spirit, hard work and innovation our industry puts into the SEMA Show each year. While we are disappointed circumstances prevent us from hosting the Show in November, we look forward to getting everyone together in 2021 for another outstanding event.”

Full refunds for SEMA Show exhibitor booth deposits and attendee registration fees will be issued.

Updates will be posted to SEMAShow.com.

This certainly didn’t come as a surprise and frankly, I’m surprised it didn’t come sooner. If it had gone on as planned I’m not sure how the spectacle that is SEMA would have taken place. There are just too many people from all around the world and although it is indoors and the convention space is huge, in this environment I couldn’t see it happening. I have some experience organizing a show booth for SEMA and by this late in the year, we would have been wrapping up some final details and dotting our I’s and crossing our t’s. Now those show organizers can rest up a bit and save some budget for 2021.