“Our goal was to try and take the pain in 2020,” Greg Maffei, president of Formula 1 owners Liberty Media, told investors this week.
Maffei can consider that mission accomplished after Liberty laid bare the devastating effect of the pandemic on F1’s finances last year.
F1 slipped from a $17m profit in 2019 to a loss of $386m in 2020 as Covid-19 saw races cancelled or staged without spectators.
Revenue almost halved from $2.02bn to $1.14bn, with race fees falling from 30 to 12 per cent of income as F1 scrapped payments from promoters unable to sell tickets in order to keep the season going.
“Our goal was to do as much as possible make that a 2020 event and bring 2021 back to normal,” Maffei added.
With the start of the season moved to Bahrain and delayed until later this month, and no indication yet of when fans will be allowed back to races, normal still looks some way off.
Bud shows bottle with NBA deal
These are febrile times in the world of sports broadcast rights, and not just in Turkey.
Over in Brazil, Budweiser has taken it upon itself to show NBA matches on its social channels.
The weekly stream is an extension of the beer brand’s existing partnership with the league.
NBA chiefs say the unusual deal has prompted interest in similar arrangements in Argentina, Chile and Mexico.
Given the trend for US sports leading the way, perhaps here in England we can look forward to watching domestic cup football on the Facebook page of Carabao or Papa John’s.
Does what it says on the tin
Sick of tuning into watch golf and being unable to catch a glimpse of a particular player?
Those days are over, on the PGA Tour at least, thanks to its new commercial partnership with Amazon Web Services.
The deal will see Amazon set up a new streaming platform, Every Shot Live, which will allow anyone to, well, you get the idea.
World Rugby’s bad timing
Interest in women’s sport is booming, with US footballer Alex Morgan’s new media/commerce enterprise TOGETHXR just the latest evidence of the industry’s shifting sands.
So it is unfortunate that World Rugby has recommended the postponement of its women’s World Cup, set to take place in New Zealand in September and October.
The decision is likely to be rubber-stamped at a board meeting that begins on Monday – or International Women’s Day.
Squash survives Covid squeeze
Not many sporting events can claim to have taken place in front of crowds in both 2020 and 2021.
But the Canary Wharf Squash Classic is set to be among that select group after it was rescheduled for 14-19 November.
Last year’s tournament at East Wintergarden, which is usually held in March, was the last to take place before the men’s tour was suspended due to Covid-19.
“It’s impossible to explain how excited we will be to get back,” said tournament director Tim Garner.