On the eve of the United States Grand Prix, the global survey which offers the opportunity for Formula 1 enthusiasts to express their preferences on the most popular driver or team – led by Nielsen Sports and Motorsport Network – has finally provided the expected results. The more than 167,000 voters, from 187 countries, have in fact elected Max Verstappen as the pilot most appreciated by the public, with 14.4% of users indicating the Dutch of Red Bull. With this result, the 24-year-old has thus ousted his direct rival from the throne of preferences Lewis Hamilton, even dropped to third place in this special ranking. In front of the reigning champion, the compatriot rose in fact Lando Norris, voted above all by young people and the female public with an overall 13.7%.
Behind the Mercedes driver came Norris’ teammate, Daniel Ricciardo. Thanks also to the exploits of the two standard bearers of the McLaren, the latter was elected as the most popular team, also thanks to the double obtained in the Italian Grand Prix – the latter included among the five most popular races – which raised the overall preference to 29.5%. Beyond the votes cast in favor of a specific driver or team, the survey highlighted more than positive data on the general appreciation of Formula 1, up compared to 2017. Ferrari was therefore ousted, down from 32 to 18 %. The Mercedes also gives ground, slipping in popularity from 16.2% in 2017 to 11.9% today.
In particular, almost the 60% of enthusiasts indicated a “Correct balance between sport and entertainment”, with another one 55% which declared a state of health of the category “Improved compared to 5 years ago”. Finally, the feedback obtained on the future of the series is very interesting, in particular as regards the research and use of new fuels for 2030: here too, the 55% of fans want to see the Circus as world leader in these new technologies. Finally, with regard to the Sprint Race, only 6-7% agree that “His introduction made the show better”.
Results that have not gone unnoticed by the President and CEO of Formula 1 Stefano Domenicali, who commented on these votes as follows: “We are enormously grateful to all the fans who took the time to share their views in this huge poll – said the manager from Imola – their opinions are very valuable to us, and we are extremely happy with what we have seen in the results. I also want to thank Motorsport Network and Nielsen Sports for the incredible work they have done. We have the privilege of being a truly international sport, racing in continents and countries around the world with a global fan base. We reach every corner of the globe through our events, television broadcast and social media and media content. This is a blessing – he concluded – but it is also a great responsibility. We need to protect what we have, make it grow, reach more fans and make sure these fortunes stay and strengthen. “
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