Just Kidding, F1 Is Sticking with Grid Girls
Remember just last month when Formula One merely suggested that they were reconsidering having grid girls on the tracks? These are the female models dressed in sexy sponsor attire holding umbrellas and name boards on and off the track, if you recall. Backlash from fans, drivers, and owners was swift and now F1 is backing off of its original statement, saying that now that grid girls are still “under review” but that the organization is looking to make them “more relevant” to competition instead of removing them.
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Quite frankly, I was prepared for there to be backlash. Thanks to social media, any major change in a sport with a lot of fans gets kickback, and this was no exception. Users chose to point out that getting rid of grid girls would leave them unemployed, or that other sports have cheerleaders and ring girls so F1 shouldn’t have to change. Some more brutal people took the opportunity to call F1’s suggestion the bad side of feminism or political correctness gone wrong.
I’ll admit that I was ready for the comments from the public, but I wasn’t quite as prepared for the way that drivers and owners responded. While I thought most of them would say something about tradition to soften their wishes the pretty models to stay, some like German driver Nico Hulkenberg came right out and said things like “It would be a pity if they took the eye-candy from the grid.” Most of the other official comments ran the same way as social media, with Red Bull consultant Helmut Marko comparing grid girls to cheerleaders and Mercedes executive chairman Niki Lauda saying women should be “allowed” to stand on the grid.
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We’ll see if any change to the role of women in F1 ever actually happens. Truly, if F1 wants an easy way to have women be more relevant on the track they can let more of them put on fire suits and drive.
News Source: Jalopnik
A Dayton native, Rebecca got her start blogging at the curiously named Harlac’s Tongue while studying abroad in the UK. She loves tooling around town with her Ford Focus named Jerome to the song they’re playing on the radio. On any given weekend, you can find her with her camera at area festivals, concerts, and car shows, shopping at flea markets, or taking an adventure on the open road. See more articles by Rebecca.