Chase Carey: “We will continue to be a sport with glamour”

Chase Carey insists F1 will still be glamourous despite the ban on grid girls
Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Despite the recent ban on Grid Girls, Chase Carey insists there will still be ‘pretty girls’ involved in Formula 1, and that they aim to maintain the glamour levels of the sport.

The decision to stop using grid girls has been received with mixed opinions, with many being critical that a traditional part of Formula 1 has been removed, but Carey, the chief executive of the sport, insists the sport needs to evolve with time, and it was a necessity to put the ban in place.

“We’re going to maintain glamour,” Carey was quoted saying to reporters on “We’re going to continue to have pretty girls at races. I think it’s a part of life, and it’s a part of what makes our sport special. It is a sport of glamour and of mystique. But I think you have to continue to evolve.

“In today’s world there are obviously different sensitivities to 10-12 years ago. I don’t think you can just be stubborn. There are things that made sense in the past that don’t going forward. When I was at Fox I used to say, ‘I wish the world was frozen with three broadcast networks. It was a much simpler world’.

“But it’s not. You do have to continue to evolve and respect people’s views. If a meaningful number of people don’t agree with something, I think you have to respect that. But we will continue to be a sport with glamour, with excitement – and with pretty girls.”

Carey admitted the mixed reactions to the ban on grid girls was expected, and he can see the reasoning from both sides of the story, and although he would have kept them if it was up to him, the ultimate decision was decided with the fans in mind.

“I think the reaction [to the scrapping of grid girls] has been what we expected,” Carey added. “We’ve had some people who have been positive about it and others who were concerned. Unsurprisingly, many long-term fans view it as part of the sport they grew up with and I respect that.

“Actually if you just left it up to me, personally, I like the grid girls. But it’s not a decision for me, it’s a decision for fans.”