Brown: F1 must accept Netflix's artistic licence with Drive to Survive

McLaren CEO Zak Brown says Formula 1 should be happy to accept Netflix's massaging of the truth in Drive to Survive, even though it has upset some fans.

Brown: F1 must accept Netflix's artistic licence with Drive to Survive

The latest series of Drive to Survive has served to divide opinion among F1 supporters, with some revelling in the background insights while others getting riled by the way it has top-spun some of the drama.

In particular, the frequent cutting in of radio conversations or comments to play up controversy grated with some – and it was noted how it tried to portray a sense of conflict between McLaren duo Carlos Sainz Jr and Lando Norris.

But despite the criticisms, Brown says F1 has to understand the wider benefits that have come from the Netflix series, which has proved to be hugely popular and help raised the profile of F1.

"I think Netflix has been great for F1," said Brown at the Bahrain Grand Prix. "It's been trending number one.

"I think it was number one in 25 countries. So I think the primary goal of Netflix is to entertain and bring new viewers to F1. And I think it's accomplished that tenfold, which is great."

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing

Zak Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

Brown says Netflix's treatment of F1 should be compared to the way that Hollywood frequently puts entertainment over the need to be realistic in movies.

"[Look at] Top Gun," he said. "You watch it, and I'm sure every fighter pilot went, you can't do that in a jet. But it was a great movie.

"So, of course, all of us living in the sport know that Carlos and Lando had a great relationship, and there wasn't the kind of a tension portrayed there.

"Any time you get into a television show, they're going to create some entertainment that we all within the paddock know, maybe it wasn't quite like that.

"But I think that's okay, and I think what's most important is it has done some wonderful things to bring in new fans around the world. So we're very supportive of Netflix and what they're trying to accomplish, even if they take a little bit of creative licence here and there."

Read Also:

Brown's comments have been echoed by Red Bull team boss Christian Horner, who says he felt uncomfortable at times with some of the Drive to Survive treatment.

Writing in a pre-race column, Horner said: "I was recently asked if I winced whenever I watched it back, the honest answer is yes, constantly!

"It is a TV show but it is also showing a side of the sport that is not normally conveyed during a conventional weekend broadcast.

"It shows some of the characteristics and some of the personalities, which is presented in a certain way to engage the audience. But overall it is very positive for F1 and the popularity seems enormous."

shares
comments

Related video

Brundle: F1's rake focus is a "distraction"
Previous article

Brundle: F1's rake focus is a "distraction"

Next article

Mercedes faces "tricky" decision over 2021 vs 2022 development split

Mercedes faces "tricky" decision over 2021 vs 2022 development split
The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023 Plus

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

Changes to the regulations for season two of Formula 1's ground-effects era aim to smooth out last year’s troubles and shut down loopholes. But what areas have been targeted, and what impact will this have?

Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history? Plus

Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history?

Who are the quickest drivers in Formula 1 history? LUKE SMITH asked a jury of experienced and international panel of experts and F1 insiders. Some of them have worked closely with F1’s fastest-ever drivers – so who better to vote on our all-time top 50? We’re talking all-out speed here rather than size of trophy cabinet, so the results may surprise you…

Formula 1
Jan 25, 2023
One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1 Plus

One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1

OPINION: During what is traditionally a very quiet time of year in the Formula 1 news cycle, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has been generating headlines. He’s been commenting on massive topics in a championship that loves them, but also addressing necessary smaller changes too. Here we suggest a further refinement that would be a big boon to fans

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
How can McLaren keep hold of Norris? Plus

How can McLaren keep hold of Norris?

Lando Norris is no longer the young cheeky-chappy at McLaren; he’s now the established ace. And F1's big guns will come calling if the team can’t give him a competitive car. Here's what the team needs to do to retain its prize asset

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make? Plus

What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make?

While a quick pitstop can make all the difference to the outcome of a Formula 1 race, most team managers say consistency is more important than pure speed. MATT KEW analyses the fastest pitstops from last season to see which ones – if any – made a genuine impact

Formula 1
Jan 23, 2023
When F1 ‘holiday’ races kept drivers busy through the winter Plus

When F1 ‘holiday’ races kept drivers busy through the winter

Modern Formula 1 fans have grown accustomed to a lull in racing during winter in the northern hemisphere. But, as MAURICE HAMILTON explains, there was a time when teams headed south of the equator rather than bunkering down in the factory. And why not? There was fun to be had, money to be made and reputations to forge…

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2023
What Porsche social media frenzy says about F1’s manufacturer allure Plus

What Porsche social media frenzy says about F1’s manufacturer allure

Porsche whipped up a frenzy thanks to a cryptic social media post last week and, although it turned out to be a false alarm, it also highlighted why manufacturers remain such an important element in terms of the attraction that they bring to F1. It is little wonder that several other manufacturers are bidding for a slice of the action

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2023
Why the new Williams boss shouldn’t avoid ‘Mercedes B-team’ comparisons Plus

Why the new Williams boss shouldn’t avoid ‘Mercedes B-team’ comparisons

OPINION: Williams has moved to replace the departed Jost Capito by appointing former Mercedes chief strategist James Vowles as its new team principal. But while he has sought to play down the idea of moulding his new squad into a vision of his old one, some overlap is only to be expected and perhaps shouldn't be shied away from

Formula 1
Jan 17, 2023