After months of debate, Formula 1 has announced grid girls will become a thing of the past.
The long-standing tradition will formally end with the start of the 2018 FIA Formula 1 World Championship season which kicks off on March 25th at the Rolex Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.
The use of grid girls has come under fire in recent years as some have deemed it an outdated tradition designed to objectify women. Formula 1 seemed to have agreed with this analysis as the group’s managing director of commercial operations, Sean Bratches, said “Over the last year we have looked at a number of areas which we felt needed updating so as to be more in tune with our vision for this great sport.”
Bratches went on to say grid girls have been a staple of Formula 1 for decades but they “feel this custom does not resonate with our brand values and clearly is at odds with modern day societal norms.” He ended his statement by saying Formula 1 doesn’t believe the use of the gird girls is “appropriate or relevant” to either the organization or to fans across the world.
Some fans will surely disagree with the decision and even Formula 1 acknowledged it considers the “time spent by teams and drivers on the grid before a race as one of celebration, where guests and various performers can add to the glamour and spectacle of the Grand Prix, enabling promoters and partners to showcase their countries and products.”
Despite this, the practice is coming to an end and the changes will also apply to “other motorsports series that take place during the Grands Prix weekends.”