Formula 1, the pinnacle of motorsport, together with the FIA, is pleased to announce a new partnership, called Grid Kids, to make the pre-race ceremony more relevant and interesting for fans, especially the younger ones.
The joint initiative will involve the local Grand Prix promoter working alongside ASNs – the FIA-recognised national sporting authorities – who will provide a unique opportunity to youngsters and their families to be part of one of the most exclusive and exciting moments of the whole race weekend.
The youngsters will be chosen by their motorsport clubs on merit, or by lottery, and will already be competing in karting or junior formulae. The lucky few will then be able to accompany and stand alongside the 20 best drivers in the world on the grid as they prepare for the race.
Sean Bratches, F1 Managing Director of Commercial Operations said: “This will be an extraordinary moment for these youngsters: imagine, standing beside their heroes, watch as they prepare to race, the elite of the elite in motorsport, to be there, alongside them in those precious few minutes just before the start. What an unforgettable experience, for them, and their families. An inspiration to keep driving, training and learning so that they can dream of one day being there themselves. What better way to inspire the next generation of Formula 1 heroes.”
FIA President Jean Todt said: “Formula 1 is the pinnacle of motor sport and the dream of every young racer competing the junior series that make up the FIA’s single-seater pyramid, from karting all the way to F1. We are therefore delighted to bring that dream a little closer by giving the future champions of our sport the opportunity to stand alongside their heroes on the grid in the build-up to the race start. For the wider FIA, this is an excellent initiative that provides additional support to our member ASNs in their efforts to grow motorsport worldwide through a unique reward they can make available to youngsters participating in their national series.”
The Grid Kids will be chosen at every Formula 1 race, and where possible, also for the major feeder series like F2 and GP3. They will be accompanied by their immediate family who will have paddock access for race Sunday.