Drive to Survive: What Google Trends says about F1 TV


Since its beginnings as the Drivers’ World Championship in 1950, Formula 1 has never been far from the cameras.

Over the years, F1 has adapted with the times to ensure fans of the sport stay connected and enjoy the best that modern technology has to offer.

Now, with the development of streaming platforms like Netflix and Prime Video, the viewing experience for fans has completely changed, meaning highlights, stories, biographies and movies now accompany live racing – everything throughout the season.

Drive to survive

Between August and May 2022, tech site ExpressVPN discovered that searches for “stream F1” increased shortly after the fourth season of the Drive to Survive documentary aired on Netflix, suggesting that the show had in fact created new fans or rekindled a flame among old ones. .

ExpressVPN adds that an increased level of support for the F1 season was also visible on Google Trends.

The volume of searches for F1 streaming and Drive to Survive prior to Season 4 was insignificant, with less than 25 points in total on Google’s interest over time graph. This makes the correlation between the two subjects easy to see.

The biggest spike in interest came in early March, which coincided with the release of the new season on Netflix.

Searches for the two topics also pushed over 25 points in December 2021, despite Drive to Survive not having aired (the show’s previous season ended in March). Here it is likely that viewers of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix were also tuning in to additional media, rather than just watching the races live.

Rush – The F1 Movie

rush f1 movie

Despite the above, F1 still occupies a sporting niche in the UK. Only 10% of the population cite motorsport as one of their favourites, meaning it is far behind football, golf, rugby and cricket. Of course, these sports can gain popularity because they are relatively easy to join, while motorsports, an inherently expensive sport, don’t have quite the same level of accessibility.

In fact, the Red Bull website notes that an official F1 car can cost around €15m, so it’s not for everyone. Of course, Drive to Survive is just the latest in a long line of documentaries and films that have introduced racing to new audiences.

Critically acclaimed Rush (2013) told the story of Niki Lauda and James Hunt, starring Daniel Brühl and Chris Hemsworth, while Senna (2010), equally well thought out, was a documentary about the eponymous Brazilian before his tragic accident .

Individual pilots have proven popular with filmmakers over the years. Schumacher (2021), Max Verstappen: All It Takes (2020) and Superswede (2017) also spotlighted some of F1’s most charismatic characters, while Ferrari, McLaren and Williams were all brought to the big time. screen in one form or another. or another.

Unfortunately, there’s not much planned for 2022.

Observing Google Trends around the biggest events of the season can reveal a wealth of information about how fans and businesses are interacting with their favorite teams and drivers and how they are maintaining interaction outside of their biggest events. .

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