When you stop to think about it, the current story of formula 1 in Germany makes no sense at all. We have had Germans challenging and winning World Championships for 15 years. There’s a German at Ferrari, at Mercedes, at Force India and the dominant team flies the German flag. So why are Germans not turning up at the German Grand Prix? Are the stars of today unappealing to the fans of yesteryear? Is it a social thing? Are the ticket prices too high?
These questions surround F1’s biggest mystery at the moment. What has happened to German race fans? They still flock to DTM and Races at the old Nürburgring but they don’t show up at Grands Prix. I don’t claim to know the answer except I have a feeling it is to do with the fans who were inspired by Schumacher not being inspired by the new generation: Rosberg, Vettel, Hulkenberg etc. all of them have much to commend them and all are doing well.
I guess it must be the prices… No wonder they want their fees cut. The Bernie Ecclestone statement that the race will switch to Hockenheim in 2015 seems to me to be a wake-up call to the Nürburgring, because Hockenheim doesn’t know anything about the plan (!) and, in any case, they don’t a race every year because they need the extra time to raise money to pay the fees.
One cannot help but think that this is once again a question of F1 pricing itself out of the market. That’s not really smart when one considers the power of the German automotive industry.