MARCH 24, 2017
Brawn defends diluting F1 exclusivity
Ross Brawn thinks F1 can afford to dilute some of its "exclusivity" in order to bring the fans closer to the action.
A debate is now raging about new owner Liberty Media's decision to start selling access to the paddock, which until now has been a closely-guarded inner sanctum for VIPs and the media.
New sporting boss Ross Brawn admits that F1 must remain a "premium sport", but he said its exclusivity is "not always helpful" when it comes to attracting and keeping new fans.
Opening up the paddock, however, seems to be the decision of Brawn's fellow new F1 chief in charge of commercial matters, Sean Bratches.
Bratches also told the German news agency SID: "Our challenge is to find out what makes the most sense for our brand.
"We want to bring formula one to the world, but we have to do it in a well thought out way."
According to Brawn, another objective is to close the performance gap between the top and the bottom of the grid.
"We want all the teams to be able to win races if everything works out on the day, and at the moment that's quite impossible," said the former Ferrari and Honda chief.
To achieve that, teams will have to agree to a more equitable distribution of income, but Brawn acknowledges that the only way is to give every team more.
"The piece of the cake must be less important than the size of the whole cake," he said.
"We must convince all the teams of the advantages of that for formula one. If the sport becomes bigger, the benefit will be there for everyone."