Cars, cartoons and collaborations


Ahead of the release for DISNEY PIXAR’s movie Cars 3, models of Lightning McQueen and Jackson Storm had been present in the Formula 1 paddock over the course of the weekend at the British Grand Prix two months ago. What’s Liberty Media’s plan here?

Owen Wilson (the voice of Lightning McQueen in the movie) attended the 2017 Formula 1 British Grand Prix along with the film’s director Brian Fee and producer Kevin Reher. Wilson also got to feel the thrill of the Silverstone circuit on board the F1 Experience two-seater car around the world-famous race track.

Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Kevin Magnussen all made appearances in the film speaking in their native languages. This comes months after Lewis Hamilton made an appearance in the latest game of the Call Of Duty franchise.

Sean Bratches, Managing Director, Commercial Operations at Formula 1, noted: “We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Disney and the blockbuster Cars franchise. After seeing the incredibly authentic race scenes in Cars 3, we knew that the British Grand Prix was the only place to launch the film in the UK and we’re sure it will delight our growing family audience for Formula 1”.

Lee Jury, co-head of the Walt Disney Studios UK added: “We are so thrilled to be partnering with Formula 1, what better way to celebrate the release of Cars 3 than to welcome the legendary Lightning McQueen and his new arch rival, Jackson Storm, to Silverstone in this unprecedented activation at the Formula 1 Rolex British Grand Prix. Fans are in for a treat”.

It’s just a small splash in the pond compared with what Liberty Media plan to accomplish in the coming years.

Stephen Camp

Cars 3 sees Owen Wilson reprise his role as the voice of the legendary racer Lightning McQueen in the all-new Cars 3, a blazing-fast adventure that finds McQueen feeling blindsided by a new generation of hi-tech racers, including newcomer Jackson Storm – voiced by critically praised actor Armie Hammer – who intends to push the renowned champion out of his own sport. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez, with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!

Collaborations such as this are fantastic for Formula 1 and the wider audience as it represents an attachment the whole family is able to get behind. Moving forward the sport can utilise these marketing opportunities to push the product into other markets and publicise the brand, the possibilities are endless when it comes to this as Formula 1 is the largest racing brand in the world with so much influence it has yet to tap into.

The more our sport can market itself in other countries in line with numerous opportunities, whether it is a film product, a driver swap demonstration or anything the marketing department can think of, the better the long-term outcomes will be. If the people can attach themselves to whatever the brand is attempting to promote, the wider audience is likely to take notice and therefore promote the sport and the Formula 1 brand.

With the Cars 3 promotion it was a huge step in the right direction for Formula 1, but I’m sure it is just a small splash in the pond compared with what Liberty Media plan to accomplish in the coming years.

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