lio007 wrote: ↑
Fri Nov 04, 2022 4:03 pm
I started to follow F1 from the Canadian GP in 2011.
I really enjoyed it from the getgo, the sporting and technical competition on and off track.
Sure, there have been opinions and there were some heated discussions, but by far not to that radical extent which we have to witness in the last couple of years.
I thought about what could be the reason for that and I have the impression it started when F1 got a lot of attention and also became quite popular by the Netflix series.
What do you think might be the root cause?
I'm really interested in forum members' opinions that are F1 followers for already quite a bit of time.
It's not Netflix, no. IMO Netflix only accentuated it.
There was an uprising beginning with the rise of Max-verstappan and movement called the Orange Army. The bad behaviour from DTS fans actually brought a "counter" offense to the bad behaviour of some individuals in the Orange army IMO. I will explain at the end, but go through a bit of history as I recall it.
Max was very polarizing when he entered the sport. He was seen in two lights: an unbalanced child raised only to win in F1 - a Michael Jackson sort of figure basically - or, the next coming of Senna. When Max was started F1 at seventeen years old in 2015, flashes of brilliance was there but he was not really taken seriously. It wasn't until 2016 when he won his first race for RedBull in Barcelona that the world realized that this kid was the real deal. He was the "hero" for the Dutch now but the orange army didn't really start gathering momentum yet. It was after the failure of another "hero" that really triggered the explosion of the Orange army and its misbehaving offshoots.
Lewis Hamilton was always the next big thing after he routed 2XWDC Fernando Alonso. Won't go into that history, but Sebastian Vettel aka "Baby Schumi" was the man to quell this "hip-hop" threat to the sport. Things were going swell. Vettel got off to a rocky start in 2009 but was a dominant force from then up to 2014 before he was unexpectedly defeated by an upstart Aussie. The cracks showed but it was seen as only a blip in form and still Vettel was the "one" to take it to Lewis in 2017 and 2018. His efforts failed obviously. But while all that was happening young Max was blossoming.
As one star falls the other rises they say, and now the title of the "one" shifted to young Max in 2019. Everything aligned; the Dutch had their great contender, and the sport had "the one" to bring down Lewis Hamilton.
I think this huge anticipation by the Dutch of their contender taking over the sport brought more of the common person to the races. We saw that with entire stadiums full of orange shirts. The common folk like what we see in soccer obviously brings with it the hooliganism and fanfare. I am not saying Dutch people are hooligans, I am saying when you have massive gatherings of "common" sports fans bad behaviour usually comes with it. It's not really new in Formula 1, we actually saw a bit of it in the F1 mecha like Silverstone and Monza, but the Orange army brought it bigger because they were at more races and they are only supporting one single driver not a team or bunch of drivers.
That rise in the Orange army and its fringes was when I noticed too, that this very forum started to be a hostile place. Again I do not hate the orange Army, I actually appreciate the growth of the fanbase. I'm just telling what I noticed with the influx of more "commoners" that support one driver.
Fortunately and unfortunately, Netflix has brought a counter to that in some respects. We have more fans spread about instead of two axes of fans. Every driver gets a bigger share of fans now, which I think is great. It's just the pantomime built up around the drivers is a bit of an issue. But I totally separate the pantomime from the sports hooligansim that we have seen. It's two different things. I actually believe the fan-base will beging to settle down and unify within a few years.