You may have wondered where Will Buxton was these days or you may have seen his mad microphone skills in the background during driver interviews or on YouTube but the reality is, he’s working with Formula 1 on their broadcast packages.
I always suspected Will and Jason would head down that road and since there has been a delay of their official F1 TV streaming service, I sensed that Will was still producing content through his Paddock Pass program and other outlets. In my mind, he’s waiting for F1 to start their full broadcast package…I could be wrong but that’s my hunch.
Regardless of what I don’t know and what I’m guessing at, Will is now part of a Twitter broadcast via @F1 just after the podium ceremonies and that’s most likely a very good thing as the ESPN service here in the US stops broadcasting post-race programming from Sky Sports F1. Since we’ve no F1 TV service yet, Will’s post-race coverage will be a welcome sight.
Wait…what about F1 TV and Spain?
Now, I assume this live Twitter show is in addition to the official launch of their F1 TV Pro streaming service that was postponed in Australia, slated for Bahrain and then officially announced to launch in Spain which happen in two weeks. Some sort of talk about being ready and beta testing and ironing out the details blah, blah, blah.
I understand F1’s excitement about launching Will’s Twitter talk for post-race coverage but I find it a little strange they don’t mention the official F1 TV Pro streaming service that will be launching in conjunction with the Live Twitter show. Nothing suggesting that Will’s Twitter feed will join the F1 TV launch in Spain for a comprehensive full race and post-race coverage etc.
To quote any Star Wars movie, I have a bad feeling about this. I could be completely wrong (and I hope I am) and F1 may spend the next two weeks telling fans how to sign up for the coming F1 TV service so we are ready to hit the ground running in Spain.
I assume they are still on target for the Spanish Grand Prix to launch F1 TV Pro but if it doesn’t launch and the Live Twitter show is a concession, I’d say this Over-the-top service is starting to become a Below-the-belt punch to F1 fans in general. I really hope I’m wrong about this…I really do. Frank mentions the F1 TV broadcast below so let’s hope they just left it out of this press release. Fingers crossed.
Formula 1’s digital expansion continues apace, with another important addition: an F1 Live Show exclusively on Twitter…
As of the Spanish Grand Prix and for a further nine rounds of the 2018 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, followers of the official @f1account on Twitter will be able to access an exclusive live post-race show, hosted by leading broadcaster Will Buxton with accompanying F1 legends as co-hosts.
F1 Live Show goes on air after the podium ceremony, live from the paddock where Will will bring the show to fans across the social platform throughout the season. He will be joined by a top class panel featuring the likes of 2016 Formula 1 World Champion Nico Rosberg.
Each show will feature Will interviewing the key drivers, engineers and team principals from the race. They’ll analyse the key moments of the race thanks to real-time race playback, and amplify the conversation across Twitter’s fan community. Buxton will continue to contribute to Formula1.com and present across the Formula 1 international TV feed and digital platforms.
The exclusive, original show comes as Formula 1’s popularity continues to rise rapidly on Twitter, with over 3.5 million Twitter followers and 13 million unique users tweeting about #F1. The live show will be available globally, with fans heading to @F1 on Twitter via mobile and web to tune in.
The partnership with Twitter goes beyond Twitter’s exclusive license for the F1 Live Show. Additionally, for all Grands Prix going forward, post-race highlights will be distributed via Twitter video clips, providing fans with a vast array of on-track highlights, and advertisers an opportunity to reach a dedicated F1 fanbase at scale.
Premium video content has been a key focus for Twitter since 2016, with the platform investing heavily in original live sports programming across NFL, NBA, MLB, esports and others. Twitter live shows and official highlight clips offer new opportunities to engage audiences by bringing content and conversation together on a single screen.
Nico Rosberg, 2016 FIA Formula 1 World Champion, said:
“It is good to see the new direction of F1 across digital, as a key channel to engage with fans and future fans of the sport. I was delighted to join this programme when F1 asked me to participate. I love F1 and I believe that we can grow the sport through digital engagement. The Twitter live show is a terrific step forward.”
Frank Arthofer, Director of Digital and New Business, Formula 1 said:
“On the heels of the of F1 TV launch announcement, we are thrilled to announce a new initiative aimed at expanding our fan engagement and monetization strategy on Twitter. Twitter came to us early on with an emphasis on co-producing original live content to extend the race weekend dialogue. Given how well their platform caters to driving conversation around global live events, the strategic fit was perfect; we’re thrilled to be partnering with them on this show in 2018.”
Theo Luke, Director of EMEA Sports Partnerships at Twitter, said:
“We are excited to collaborate with Formula 1 to bring an exclusive daily live show, expert analysis and video highlights from the 2018 Championship alongside the best curated real-time conversation. Passionate F1 fans will need to look no further than Twitter to find everything that’s happening throughout the season.”