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Volume 20 No. 45
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And it feels so good: Carey, Hill are reunited for Formula One TV

Chase Carey and David Hill are back together again.

Colleagues from the earliest days of Fox Sports, Carey, the Formula One CEO, tapped Hill, the former Fox Sports chairman, to breathe new life into F1’s television production. Hill will work with F1’s existing production crew, which produces the world feed that rights holders like ESPN will use.

“It’s business as usual; I will be telling stories,” Hill said. “I’m going to be working with the guys on everything from camera angles and camera positions to graphics, music and audio. What I hope to do is to make it louder.”

Hill plans to follow the same script he used 16 years ago when Fox picked up NASCAR rights in 2001. That means testing different track positions for both cameras and microphones during races. If certain positions don’t work, Hill is prepared to swap them out for new positions.

“The key thing of what we’ve got to do to appeal to the world of the millennials and Gen-Z — we have to have the verve, danger and excitement of a video game,” he said. “It’s amazing what you can do with a few seemingly minor changes.”

Hill’s plans extend beyond TV production. He also hopes to use all the data that comes from F1 cars to anchor an OTT service that will serve as a second screen and attract more casual fans.

“Look at where everything is going,” he said. “Everything is data driven. Everyone wants to get inside. There are no inner sanctums. We have to present that information in a way that’s readily accessible to someone that’s never experienced the sport.”

Hill described F1 telecasts to date as professional but added a few tweaks will make the races more relevant, especially to American audiences.

“If we can do to F1 what we did to NASCAR after we got those rights at Fox, which was double the ratings after three or four years by just tweaking the coverage, I’ll be stoked,” he said.

— John Ourand