In anticipation of the 2018 season, tomorrow we will trial a new procedure for post-race media interviews with drivers. This new procedure, which will see a change to the way the broadcast media pen is organised, as well as a change to the timing of the official FIA Press Conference, is aimed at providing more structured access for TV and print media and improved content for all.
Therefore, the following format will be in place following tomorrow’s race:
· On Sundays there will be two media pens:
i) Live Pen, reserved for broadcasters who are live at the end of the race
ii) Non-Live Pen, reserved for broadcasters who are not live on air
What will happen at the end of the race
· Drivers exiting parc fermé will go to the Media Pens. The top three drivers will go to the podium, as usual.
· Drivers classified from 4th to 10th position will first go to the Live Pen and then to the Non Live Pen. While those drivers are in the Live Pen, drivers classified from 11th to 20th position or not classified will go to the Non Live Pen and afterwards to the Live Pen.
· At the end of the podium ceremony, top three drivers will take part in the usual podium interviews, in English.
· Following the podium interviews the top three drivers will go to the Live Pen where they will be briefly interviewed by each broadcaster.
· At the end of this round of live interviews the top 3 drivers will be escorted by the FIA to the press conference room, where the official FIA Press Conference will take place.
· As happens now, at the beginning of the press conference non-English speaking drivers will be asked to speak in their own language.
· At the end of the press conference the top three drivers will go to the Non Live Pen.
· An FOM crew will also interview drivers in the Live Pen before the beginning of the FIA Press Conference: these interviews will be broadcast live exclusively in the media centre for the benefit all accredited journalists.
· Additionally, an audio file with quotes from all 20 drivers recorded by the FOM crew will be made available exclusively to the accredited media in the media centre.
· Broadcasters are reminded to limit the number of the questions to each driver classified from 4th to 20th both in the Live and Non-Live Pens.
· Live broadcasters will interview the top 3 drivers in the Live Pen for a reasonably limited amount of time. The FIA will manage the interviews in order to let all broadcasters conduct a brief interview. If any broadcaster misses its opportunity and/or wants to ask further questions they may attend the Non-Live Pen after the press conference but must give priority to the other broadcasters already in situ.
· Drivers who retire during the race must be available for live interviews in the Non-Live media pen immediately after retirement.
· The FIA staff will monitor the media pens – supported by the F1 Communication Department – in order to ensure that the procedure is respected by all parties. At their discretion, they may release a driver from the media pens.
· Team PRs must ensure that the drivers talk to as many broadcasters as possible.
· The location of the pens will be defined by the FIA Head of F1 Communications in agreement with the F1 Communications Department.