F1 Season comparison - French and German Grand Prix special

The German Grand Prix provided a remarkable and unforgettable race. Lewis Hamilton started the race in 14th position and gave a flawless performance to win the race, propelling him to a 17 point lead over Sebastian Vettel. It was the way in which Hamilton won that earned the attention of fans and journalists, dramatically aborting a pit stop by cutting across the grass to get back on the track when the safety car was deployed after Vettel crashed out of his home race. This risky move caused Hamilton to come under review by the stewards who, after 90 minutes, decided not to hand out a time penalty.

Using Kantar Social TV Ratings (KSTR) data, our comparative series looks back at the social engagement during the 2017 season and how that compares to this season’s equivalent. However, as there was no German Grand Prix last season, we are comparing the engagement of this race to the only other race with no 2017 edition; the French Grand Prix.

Looking at the total amount of tweets for both races, the German Grand Prix received a lot more tweets than the French Grand Prix. The latter fell on the same day as World Cup group matches, including England’s emphatic 6-1 win over Panama, which could have affected engagement with Formula One.

The top 5 countries are almost identical, the only difference being Italy instead of France for the German Grand Prix. Given that England played on the same day, it might not be surprising to see almost half the number of tweets from the UK for the French Grand Prix than the German. The thrilling aspect of the German Grand Prix was also likely to instigate an uplift on tweets.

Due to the number of total tweets, it is expected that the hashtags in the German Grand Prix would appear more. #seb5 has appeared consistently across both races, his crash contributed to an increase in tweets, but it could be due to the German’s absence on social media, thus receiving mentions in hashtags rather than by handle. A strange addition for the French Grand Prix was #F1jp, which is a hashtag used by Japanese F1 fans but even though the hashtag is used a lot, Japan do not feature in the top 5 countries.

The accounts mentioned are not too different between the two races, Lewis Hamilton however, almost tripled the amount of mentions for his handle even though he was victorious in both races. Mercedes official team account was also mentioned more, overtaking Ferrari in the standings from the French Grand Prix.

Whilst the French Grand Prix may have suffered slightly due to the World Cup schedule, it still provided an exciting race, with Vettel causing a crash and receiving a penalty. But ultimately, the German Grand Prix had everything; spectacular driving, bad weather conditions, a non-threatening crash and controversy and it was this action-packed race that gave Twitter multiple things to talk about and therefore deserves the high engagement it received. Stay tuned to see if the Hungarian Grand Prix can follow that one!

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