When Chase Carey and Liberty Media took over Formula 1 in 2016, they had a laundry list of issues they wanted to address and improve.
One thing they probably didn’t expect to address was the sport’s usage of “grid girls.” The grid girls are used to promote sponsors, and they also hold umbrellas or driver name-boards. Ross Brawn, F1’s managing director of motorsports, said it is a “delicate topic” and they’re trying to “respect all parties.”
“There’s a lot of people respect the tradition of the grid girls and there’s people who feel that it has become a bit dated, so we’re addressing that,” Brawn told BBC Radio 5.
Carey said the issue wasn’t of the utmost importance to him, and it won’t be a personal decision for him.
“On the list of things I have been dealing with, grid girls wasn’t really up there on top, with all respect,” Carey said.
“Is it something from the past, or is it something distinct that should be part of the future?
“I don’t think it will be a personal decision for me. I may have a point of view but, when you have a sport, you are dealing with teams and a large eco-system and a large fanbase that is very passionate. There is never going to be a consensus, but a set of views.”
Red Bull’s Christian Horner said the grid girls add “glamour” to the sport, but he said the sport has to be open to everything. That includes using men and even children to promote sponsors.
As Carey said, this isn’t exactly at the top of the list of issues for F1 to be concerned about, but they’ll eventually get to it at some point.
F1 has far more pressing concerns at the moment, so perhaps they might shelve this topic for the future.