Formula 1 websites and their popularity – 2013 spec

Some people who read the blog in the relatively early days just over a year ago may remember a piece I did entitled “Formula 1 websites and their popularity“, in which I compared the popularity of thirteen Formula 1 websites and seen which is more popular than the other. Now that the 2013 season is over, I thought it may be worthwhile to see which websites have made considerable strides in their readership numbers for the year, or vice versa as the case may be.

Again, the key here is “the lower the rank, the higher the hits”. In brackets is the difference versus 2012. Obviously the further down you go, the difference may be wildly different as a few hundred or thousand hits could make a huge difference, but it is an interesting experiment nevertheless.

– 2,686 – The official Formula 1 website (down 319 on October 2012 ranking)
———–———–———–———–———–
– 01 – 6,557 – AUTOSPORT (down 162 on October 2012 ranking)
– 02 – 7,775 – ESPN F1 (down 340 on October 2012 ranking)
– 03 – 9,676 – Auto Motor Und Sport (down 928 on October 2012 ranking)
– 04 – 17,803 – PlanetF1.com (down 1,119 on October 2012 ranking)
– 05 – 20,155 – GPUpdate.net (down 3,022 on October 2012 ranking)
– 06 – 24,661 – Crash.net (up 7,668 on October 2012 ranking)
– 07 – 25,736 – F1Fanatic.co.uk (up 8,206 on October 2012 ranking)
– 08 – 28,873 – Motorsport.com (up 39,658 on October 2012 ranking)
– 09 – 66,913 – James Allen on F1 (up 23,236 on October 2012 ranking)
– 10 – 92,945 – GrandPrix.com (up 45,471 on October 2012 ranking)
– 11 – 117,174 – F1Today.net (up 109,537 on October 2012 ranking)
– 12 – 147,190 – Pitpass.com (down 1,443 on October 2012 ranking)

For reference, I have included the official Formula 1 website, which is significantly higher than the highest dedicated Formula 1 news site. Also, BBC F1 and Sky Sports F1 are excluded from the list as the figures are not on the Alexa Web Company website, and besides, their figure would dwarf the ones listed above.

The only raw change in the table is that F1Today.net has overtaken Pitpass, however the table itself is a tale of two halves. I would have expected the main Formula 1 websites to be down year-on-year anyway due to Sebastian Vettel’s dominance in the latter half of the season. AUTOSPORT unsurprisingly is top of the websites worldwide thanks to its weekly magazine, with ESPN and Auto Motor Und Sport in third. The latter is Germany’s main Formula 1 site so a lot of its traffic is generated from Central Europe from countries such as Germany along with Austria and Switzerland to name two examples. ESPN’s website famously used to be F1 Live, which is why they are so high up the chart.

PlanetF1 (an indirect subsidiary of BSkyB) and GPUpdate both recorded drops, but then the statistics show a complete 180. Crash.net up, F1Fanatic.co.uk up and Motorsport.com significantly up. James Allen’s blog is also improving its user base which should not be a surprise to anyone. The gap, on the basis of this table is closing, with fans moving from your traditional news services to forum and blog based conversation. If you think about it, nowadays you have Allen with a blog, Joe Saward runs a blog, Will Buxton, Adam Cooper, the list goes on. It is with these blogs – the first two in particular where communities are formed, which drives traffic.

Of course, the above is not a definitive list, I’ve named thirteen Formula 1 websites. There are hundreds of websites that blog, write stories and create stories. Have I missed any websites out that may feature in the table above? (don’t mention mine, please!) On a serious note, it would be interesting to see how many of the above thirteen websites readers have visited. For me, I read AUTOSPORT, F1Fanatic.co.uk, James Allen’s site when it is linked from Twitter and that is about it. I do go onto the official Formula 1 website, but only if I’m looking for scheduling information.

Source: Alexa Web Company. The ranks above are the three month average global traffic rank for each website taken on November 29th, 2013. I think Alexa is the most reliable for tracking web analytics, but even if it is not, I thought it would be interesting to put these figures up for anyone interested.

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Humphrey: “Would love to see F1 on BT Sport”

Just a few weeks after securing UEFA Champions League rights, it appears BT Sport have their eyes on another prize: Formula 1. I called the move a few weeks ago ‘game changing‘, but now BT Sport’s presenter Jake Humphrey is mentioning Formula 1.

Of course I imagine Humphrey, who left the BBC F1 team at the end of 2012, was asked the question in order to generate a tabloid-esque headline to the Mirror. But anyway, this is what Humphrey said:

I would absolutely love to see F1 on BT Sport. I think if Formula 1 want to be in a place where the best sport is they really have to look seriously at joining BT Sport and being part of this revolution, because if you’re elsewhere then you’re just going to be left behind. So far BT have blown me away by what they’ve done, they promised me they’d impress me. I think I and no one else in the UK actually expected them to get every single Champions League and Europa League game. So now we have FA Cup, Moto GP, so there’s already some motorsport on BT, Premier League matches, the Champions League and Europa League.

So, there you have it. I really don’t believe there is much point discussing this. The BBC and Sky deal is until 2018 and unless either party breaks it, you cannot rip a legally binding agreement into pieces. Also, as for being ‘left behind’, last time I checked viewing figures were approximately 4 million per race for Formula 1, whilst BT Sport has not yet broken 1 million viewers.

Anyway, let us see how successful their MotoGP coverage is throughout 2014 before discussing F1.

BBC F1 season review to air on December 28th

The BBC F1 season review will air on BBC One on December 28th at 13:15, it has been confirmed. As noted by Suzi Perry on her Twitter: “I’m on my way to see these fellas to film our #bbcf1 review show .. Tx 28th December… @therealdcf1 pic.twitter.com/zT1bOXqbHX”

As noted previously, the Sky Sports F1 review at Christmas will première on Christmas Eve at 18:00, whilst the official season review on DVD and Blu-Ray will be released on December 16th.

Sky Sports F1 to repeat every classic race through December

Having F1 withdrawal symptoms? I think you will like the title of this article… yes, that is right, Sky Sports F1 are repeating every single one of their 2013 classic races throughout December! Fantastic news, and one I am very, very happy to see.

I won’t go through the individual commentators for each race, but below is Sky Sports F1’s Classic F1 schedule through December. Enjoy!

Monday 2nd December
20:00 to 22:15 – 1999 Australian Grand Prix
22:15 to 00:45 – 1999 Malaysian Grand Prix

Tuesday 3rd December
21:15 to 23:30 – 2007 Chinese Grand Prix
23:45 to 02:15 – 2006 Bahrain Grand Prix

Wednesday 4th December
20:15 to 22:30 – 2011 Spanish Grand Prix
22:30 to 01:00 – 2003 Monaco Grand Prix

Thursday 5th December
20:00 to 20:45 – 1991 Canadian Grand Prix Highlights
21:00 to 23:00 – 2003 British Grand Prix

Friday 6th December
21:00 to 22:00 – 1993 German Grand Prix Highlights
23:00 to 01:00 – 1998 Belgian Grand Prix

Saturday 7th December
11:00 to 13:00 – 2001 Italian Grand Prix
15:00 to 17:45 – 2008 Singapore Grand Prix
18:45 to 22:15 – 2010 Korean Grand Prix
23:15 to 00:45 – 1989 Japanese Grand Prix Highlights

Sunday 8th December
14:30 to 16:45 – 2009 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
18:00 to 20:00 – 2007 United States Grand Prix
21:00 to 23:30 – 2003 Brazilian Grand Prix

Monday 9th December
16:00 to 22:15 – Australian Grands Prix
=> 2003, 2007 and 2010

Tuesday 10th December
16:00 to 00:45 – Malaysian Grands Prix
=> 2002, 2003, 2007 and 2010

Wednesday 11th December
16:00 to 01:00 – Chinese Grands Prix
=> 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011

Thursday 12th December
16:00 to 01:00 – Bahrain Grands Prix
=> 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010

Friday 13th December
15:45 to 19:00 – Spanish Grands Prix Highlights
=> 1986, 1991, 1994 and 1996

Saturday 14th December
17:30 to 19:00 – Monaco Grands Prix Highlights
=> 1992 and 1996
19:30 to 22:00 – 2008 Monaco Grand Prix
22:30 to 01:00 – 2011 Monaco Grand Prix

Sunday 15th December
16:00 to 16:45 – 1995 Canadian Grand Prix Highlights
16:45 to 19:00 – 2008 Canadian Grand Prix
19:30 to 22:15 – 2011 Canadian Grand Prix

Monday 16th December
16:00 to 18:00 – 1987 British Grand Prix
19:30 to 20:10 – 1994 British Grand Prix Highlights
20:10 to 22:10 – 2008 British Grand Prix

Tuesday 17th December
16:00 to 18:15 – 2000 German Grand Prix
19:30 to 21:30 – 2005 German Grand Prix
22:00 to 00:00 – 2011 German Grand Prix

Wednesday 18th December
16:00 to 17:30 – Hungarian Grands Prix Highlights
=> 1986 and 1993
19:30 to 22:00 – 1997 Hungarian Grand Prix
22:30 to 00:45 – 2011 Hungarian Grand Prix

Thursday 19th December
16:00 to 16:40 – 1985 Belgian Grand Prix Highlights
16:40 to 18:40 – 2000 Belgian Grand Prix
19:30 to 21:30 – 2008 Belgian Grand Prix
22:00 to 00:00 – 2010 Belgian Grand Prix

Friday 20th December
16:00 to 17:30 – Italian Grands Prix Highlights
=> 1988 and 1995
19:30 to 21:30 – 2010 Italian Grand Prix

Saturday 21st December
16:00 to 18:45 – 2009 Singapore Grand Prix
19:30 to 22:15 – 2010 Singapore Grand Prix
22:45 to 01:30 – 2011 Singapore Grand Prix

Sunday 22nd December
16:00 to 18:30 – 2011 Korean Grand Prix

Monday 23rd December
15:45 to 16:45 – 1994 Japanese Grand Prix Highlights
16:45 to 19:00 – 1998 Japanese Grand Prix
19:30 to 00:15 – Japanese Grands Prix
=> 2000 and 2007

Christmas Eve
15:45 to 18:00 – 2011 Indian Grand Prix

Christmas Day
15:45 to 18:00 – 2010 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
19:30 to 22:00 – 2011 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Boxing Day
16:00 to 19:15 – United States Grands Prix Highlights
– 1983, 1984, 1987 and 1991

Friday 27th December
18:00 to 20:00 – 2007 Brazilian Grand Prix
20:00 to 20:40 – 1993 Brazilian Grand Prix Highlights
20:40 to 22:40 – 2008 Brazilian Grand Prix

That breaks down as 78 classic races. 21 in highlights form and 57 in full race form, assuming I’ve counted properly. It does include the Bahrain’s of this world, but hey, it is F1 in December. I’m really happy to see this, and this is what I envisaged the channel would be used for during the off season. I do not normally praise Sky Sports F1’s schedule, but this is brilliant to see in my view.

Me personally? I won’t tune in every night, but it will be great to flick the channel on one evening and be taken straight into a classic F1 race. Hopefully Sky publicise all of this, because it would be real shame to see it go under the radar.

Will these be shown again in January? The fact that they are all being shown all in December suggests not. Schedules only go to New Year’s Eve, what is happening beyond then, I don’t know. As always there may well be timing adjustments and the such like above, as I always I’ll update the blog.

BBC F1 versus Sky Sports F1: Your 2013 Verdict

The Brazilian Grand Prix is over and another season of Formula 1 has passed. It may not have been the most enthralling season ever, with Sebastian Vettel in command of the championship from the Summer, but it has been an interesting affair nevertheless. The BBC F1 Forum and Sky Sports F1 race day programmes have gone off air for the final time this season.

I’ve illustrated many times on this blog the positives and negatives of both BBC and Sky this season. But, like I did this time last year, it is time for you to have your say.

The comments section is open for everyone to comment, so get your BBC and Sky thoughts in below this post. Where do you think BBC’s and Sky’s weaknesses are? What would you change for 2014? How do you think both sides compare to 2012 now that we are firmly into a new era of Formula 1 broadcasting in the UK? And of course whilst the main focus of the blog is F1, comments about the wider broadcasting spectrum are more than welcome.

The best thoughts will be put into a new blog post in a few weeks time.