Australian Grand Prix boss Paul Little hopes Melbourne’s main event will become a night race but explains the main hurdle holding him back, while F1 CEO explains why Melbourne was chosen over Sydney .
Little, a leading Victorian business leader and former chairman of Essendon, has revealed his hope that the GP at Albert Park will become an evening event within the next decade.
He believes the spectacle of a late-night race and higher global television ratings meant the Australian GP board should consider the idea.
“I would love not to rule out a night Grand Prix,” he told the herald sun.
“I just think if we could make that work, that would be amazing. An amazing show but also great to reach the rest of the F1 audience.”
Australian Grand Prix boss Paul Little hopes Melbourne’s main event will become a night race, but explains infrastructure is a major hurdle.
Little, who is also a major Victorian business leader, has revealed his hope that the GP at Albert Park will become an evening event in the next decade. He believes the spectacle of a late-night race and higher global television ratings meant the idea should be considered by the Australian GP board.
Little says the biggest hurdle to making a night run a reality is the infrastructure. F1 cars don’t have headlights, so huge reflectors are needed to light up the track.
“As it stands today, we couldn’t run a night race even if we wanted one without a significant amount of work to get the lighting installed,” he said.
‘(But) I think it would be an amazing show.
“I’ve been to the Singapore Grand Prix a couple of times, which is a night race and the drivers love it. And the show is tremendous, so I think it would be good.’
There are currently six Formula 1 races that take place at night: Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Qatar, Las Vegas, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi, and they offer a unique aesthetic that is unlike any other form of motorsport.
“It definitely adds something a bit different,” Australian F1 driver Oscar Piastri said when asked about the idea.
‘I don’t know if there would be too many happy people going to work on a Monday morning.
“But from a business perspective it would obviously make a lot of sense.”
Australian F1 driver Oscar Piastri thinks a night race in Melbourne makes sense
There are currently six Formula 1 races that take place at night: Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Qatar, Las Vegas, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi, and they offer a unique aesthetic that is unlike any other form of motorsport (Daniel Ricciardo in a photo running at the Singapore GP at night)
Meanwhile, Formula One boss Stefano Domenicali says choosing Melbourne to host the Australian Grand Prix was the right decision, despite a Sydney launch he described as “unbelievable”.
“We had a very important offer from Sydney to have the Grand Prix, and that was dealt with in a very, very professional way,” Domenicali said at the SportNXT conference.
“At the end of the day, it was not an easy decision, but overall, it was the best of Formula 1, and we are very happy and proud to have that agreement with Melbourne because what has been done in the last few decades has proven to be very strong and successful.
‘With respect, of course, it was done in an excellent way. (Sydney) were very serious and did an amazing job.
“The decision in the future is for others, but we have always been committed to Albert Park.”
Meanwhile, Formula One boss Stefano Domenicali says choosing Melbourne to host the Australian Grand Prix was the right move, despite a Sydney launch he described as “unbelievable”.
The Melbourne race drew a record crowd of 419,000 in 2022 and is expected to be even larger this year.
‘It is a destination city. We are four kilometers from the CBD,’ said Domenicali.
“The appeal is that new fans come in because they can jump on a streetcar in our city and be on the loop in 20 minutes to see something they’ve never experienced before, and when they experience it, they say, ‘Me.’ I am going back this year.
I think last year’s event did two things. It showed Melbourne delivers on the global stage, which is important. You can never rest on your laurels in Formula 1, whether you are a team, a promoter or a partner.
“But it also showed the government that the people of Victoria love big events and when they are presented at the highest level then they are very, very good for the city.”