Carey warns teams there are 'no free lunches'

Carey warns teams there are 'no free lunches'

5 December 2017 – Formula 1 CEO and Chairman Chase Carey has warned teams that there are "no free lunches" in the sport, following the downturn in revenue during Liberty Media's first full year in the sport.

Formula 1 teams have voiced concern that they are set to receive less prize money in 2017, as a result in the reduction in revenue, compared to previous seasons.

Carey, though, says that the reduction is due to Liberty taking a longer-term view compared to its predecessors, and insists its approach will ultimately benefit teams.

"We were clear that really in the short term we're investing in building the sport for the longer term," said Carey.

"I've said it before: I think the sport has been underserved by a continual short-term focus. I think we've got some fresh momentum back into it.

"A lot of things that were not going in the right direction in recent years, but this year attendance is up, viewership is up and I think we've got a much more positive spirit behind it.

"The sport needed fresh energy and investment.

"To grow things, well, to use an American phrase, there are no free lunches.

"We didn't have an organisation that was able to properly develop, to build the sport.

"We had no research, we had no marketing, we had no digital organisation and, realistically, if you don't have capabilities like that, you are going to fall behind.

"From the teams' perspective, sure, everybody would like to have free lunches and get the growth without the investment. The world doesn't work that way.

"I think that there is an understanding of and an appreciation for what we're doing, and in many ways we're very much agreed on what needs to be done for the sport."

Carey added that Liberty is "constantly evolving" its long-term targets as it continues to assess where growth is required in Formula 1.

"We have things we're moving forward with and we'll have things a year from now we're moving forward with and two years from now we'll have things moving forward," he said.

"It's not like, 'okay, we're done, here's the plan, now let's just go do it'.

"We'll have a set of things we're looking to do but that'll be constantly evolving as we go forward.

"When we started the year, the first three months of the year we had three people.

"If you look at things like the marketing and research and digital, our head of digital started three months ago, our head of marketing started four months ago.

"We have been putting the team in place as the year has evolved and in many ways a large part of our operating organisation is new.

"Before, we really didn't have a large part.

"We had a financial and legal staff but we didn't have an organisation able to support the business operationally."

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