F1 uses Singapore's night race to grow its global fanbase
She got her first taste of Formula One's only night street race last year, and Briton Ellie Norman is back to film the 12th edition of the Grand Prix.
She is director of marketing communications at Formula One Group (FOG) and the Singapore film will be in the package she intends to put together as part of her promotion collaterals that will be used to help grow F1's following globally.
Speaking to The New Paper yesterday, Norman said: "This is an incredible platform that has a city centre, amazing entertainment and a beautiful backdrop under the lights.
"All the ingredients are there to showcase F1 to our global markets and fan base.
"This is one of the most demanding races for the drivers and we are creating lots of story content through the lens of teams.
"Sport is made up of entertainment and great competition and our focus is to take the best bits of the Singapore Grand Prix and serve it as a marquee event within our digital and social media space."
Liberty Media hired Norman after taking over FOG from former supremo Bernie Ecclestone in 2017, and a big part of the plan was to overhaul a sport that did little to cultivate a younger audience.
The American group's strategy to grow this target group is to focus on digital - through over-the-top platforms, social media and in the esports space.
Norman, the first woman in FOG's management, has been tasked to make it happen.
She has reviewed all Grands Prix on the calendar, and she singled out the night race at the Marina Bay Street Circuit as the benchmark for every F1 host.
Norman said that while the sport has been consistent in delivering racing spectacles, promoters at all venues should do a lot more to give fans added value.
"They need to dial up their efforts to make the sport more appealing to a vast and broad global audience, which the 'home of the night race' does really well," she said.
In revealing her strategy, the 38-year-old represents the face of change at FOG.
Ecclestone had a vice-like grip on F1 when he was at the controls.
He made the major decisions and was the point man for media.
Liberty Media has embraced a different approach, installing a team consisting of former Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn as managing director of racing and former ESPN vice-president, Sean Bratches, as chief of commercial operations.
Norman said that to grow F1's base, her mission is to stimulate interest in the sport and encourage new fans to follow it on television and all digital platforms, and eventually in the stands.
Asia, she said, is a key market and Vietnam's entry next year will boost F1's presence in the region.
But she insists that the street race in Hanoi will not hurt the Grand Prix in Singapore.
"It (Hanoi) is an untouched market and can co-exist with the night race here, because the Hanoi race is a day-time event that takes place in an entirely different location," she said.
"Racing in China, Japan, Vietnam and Singapore allows us to have a regional presence and focus."