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Published September 18th 2023

Highlights from the Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix to Get Your Heart Racing

We analyzed over 550,000 online mentions to see what got people talking.

This year’s Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix was jam-packed with exciting twists and turns. With plenty of excitement both on and off the track, we dove into the biggest talking points across social media.

Here’s what you need to know.

Real-time insights

Looking at the minute-by-minute social data we can see which moments during the race got the internet talking.

The conversation naturally grew throughout the evening, and started picking up around 20 minutes before the race started.

The most notable spike in mentions was at 9:52 PM, when winning Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz crossed the finish line. Sainz taking to the podium left viewers’ hearts racing, as he became the first non-Red Bull driver to win a Grand Prix in 2023. The win also ended Max Verstappen’s 10-win streak.

Throughout the race, there were a number of smaller spikes in online conversation volume, when drivers crashed or retired from the race.

A sports event would not be complete without its fans. By tracking this social data in real-time, we can understand how fans are actively engaging in conversations online. They are keen to voice out their opinions and interact with fellow fans throughout the race, especially when something dramatic happens (like George Russell’s unexpected crash during the final lap).

The most popular teams and drivers

We used Brandwatch data, to see which teams and drivers saw the most mentions online during the race.

Unsurprisingly, Ferrari had the biggest share of voice of all the teams during this year’s Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix. It generated 120,000 mentions and 59% of the team-related conversation. With Carlos Sainz’ impressive win and Charles Leclerc coming in fourth place, fans were quick to celebrate the team’s efforts.

Red Bull and AlphaTauri took second and third place. Red Bull have performed remarkably this season, so driver Max Verstappen’s loss and the team’s failure to place on the podium were key talking points.

AlphaTauri driver Liam Lawson is a rookie to the grid – with Singapore being only his third Formula 1 race so far – so his effort to secure ninth place got people talking about the team. People are keen to see how he’ll continue to fare for the rest of the season.

Liam was also the third most mentioned driver during the race, following Sainz and Verstappen.

Mercedes’ drivers George Russell and Lewis Hamilton secured spots as the fourth and fifth most discussed drivers. Hamilton came third in the Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix, but at the expense of his teammate Russell, who crashed during the final lap.

The entertainment acts that stole the show

The Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix is renowned for its world-class entertainment acts. This year, thousands of fans braved the humidity at Marina Bay to catch music performances by artists including Post Malone, Kings of Leon, Robbie Williams, The Kooks, and Jackson Wang.

Jackson Wang stole the show as he took up an astonishing 94% of mentions about the entertainment performances. This was not the first time Jackson Wang’s performed in Singapore, and the mention volume is evident of his growing popularity in the region.

The Kooks and Post Malone were the second and third most mentioned performances, respectively.

The highlights that got fans talking

There were a number of key talking points during the race that got fans chatting on social. Here are the ones that stood out the most.

Lance Stroll’s crash during qualifying

An enormous crash for Lance Stroll left him out of luck when finishing his lap during the qualifying race on Saturday. The Aston Martin driver hit the barriers on the outside of the final corner, causing him to miss the Singapore Grand Prix. This crash left the crowd stunned.

Godzilla returned to the track

Max Verstappen had a near miss with a lizard during the first practice session this weekend – which was astonishingly his second time encountering a lizard on the track. The first time was back in 2016, when the infamous lizard – nicknamed “Godzilla” – caused a near miss. This time round, the Red Bull driver joked with his race engineer, saying “maybe Godzilla had a kid”.

The end of Red Bull’s winning streak

During qualifying, both Red Bull drivers were eliminated early on – leaving fans in shock. Sergio Perez spun out of the race, while AlphaTauri’s Liam Lawson knocked Max Verstappen out. Fans didn’t see this coming as Red Bull has won all 15 races of the season ahead of the Singapore leg.

Round up

Utilizing social listening tools to follow live events is ideal for any brand wanting to follow the action closely. With live events, fan conversation changes by the minute depending on who’s winning – or if there are any exciting hiccups throughout the event. Brands can benefit from tracking peaks in conversation to identify opportunities to get involved, or even to monitor crises. 

Last year’s highlights

We covered the Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix last year too. Here were the highlights.

Conversation saw a huge peak in 2022 as the winning driver, Sergio Perez, crosses the finish line.

Using a real-time social listening tool like Brandwatch can help your brand to monitor live peaks in your marketing campaigns, so you can be the first to know what's happening.

Sponsorship tracking

In 2022, we used Brandwatch’s image recognition technology to uncover the top logos captured during the event.

Red Bull came out on top when it came to logo mentions during 2022's Singapore Grand Prix, receiving 29% of all image-related mentions throughout the broadcast. One of Red Bull's drivers won the event in 2022, which explains the huge boost in Red Bull-related image mentions.

Oracle, Salesforce, and Puma came next among the most mentioned brands by logo. These are brands that were heavily involved in the event – for example, Oracle is also a recognizable sponsor on Sergio Perez’s clothing.

It’s clear that sponsoring events with huge followings, like Formula 1, can bring in hundreds of thousands of indirect logo mentions for brands.

Image recognition software allows companies to have full visibility of marketing campaigns and live events. With the high number of sponsorships events like Formula 1 generate, there can be plenty of indirect brand mentions that you might otherwise miss.

Who were the popular drivers?

The most popular team during the 2022 race was Ferrari, who stole a third of all mentions. Up next were Red Bull and Mercedes, with 15% and 13% of mentions, respectively. The most popular drivers were Charles Leclerc, Max Verstappen, and Lewis Hamilton – with 19%, 16%, and 14% of mentions, respectively.

By breaking down conversations into smaller, more granular pieces, we can analyze mentions to understand the themes of these online conversations better.

What else was popular among fans?

Formula 1 isn’t entirely about the drivers or teams, and 2022's Singapore Grand Prix was no different. From a weather-delayed start, race conditions, and safety cars, there were a few hurdles that fans discussed before and during the event. Now let’s look at the mentions of these topics in correlation to the race. 

The weather was the biggest talking point leading up to the event.

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