Why Do So Many F1 Teams Make Their Home Close to Rugby? - The Rugby Observer

Why Do So Many F1 Teams Make Their Home Close to Rugby?

Be it a blessing or curse, Rugby will always be associated with one sport.

Yet the area and its wider surroundings have fostered growth in a huge array of sports.

One of the most unexpected of these is Formula One. With Silverstone on the doorstep, why did this area become so associated with racing, and who calls it home now?

Motorsports in the Midlands

As the Midlands descend into Northamptonshire, just a short drive south of Rugby, there is a curious place nicknamed Motorsport Valley. After the Second World War, the region had a high number of large, flat airfields that were ideal for pushing cars to their limit. Additionally, many aerospace engineers were already based there.

One of the first major companies to open up shop was a consortium of engineers, including Robin Herd and Max Mosley. They began to build racing cars for a variety of sports, including F1. This soon attracted other teams to the area, and a network of suppliers also came. The area soon became a major hub for the sport and remains so today.

The Growth of Modern Motorsports

Source: Unsplash

At the time, motorsports had quite an elitist outlook. The only people who could be involved in it needed the funds to do so, and visiting the big races of Europe was for those who could afford expensive foreign travel. Yet two factors opened it up to the public, generating support for the major teams.

The first was access to satellite television in the United Kingdom. Going from four terrestrial channels to an unlimited amount meant that consumers had more choices. As the channels needed content, and with sport being at the forefront, motorsports was a much more regular staple on television.

Second was the growth in F1 betting online. Due to mobile devices and their fast connectivity, people can now quickly place bets in real-time. This is essential with a sport like F1, which spans global time zones. Placing F1 bets also provides an extra layer of enjoyment for fans, upping the ante as they see their favourite drivers and teams race to the finish line.

Which Teams Are in the Area?

The most quintessential British manufacturer, Aston Martin, has its headquarters at Silverstone. That means that when the British Grand Prix arrives, they don’t have far to travel. While the team has changed hands plenty of times, it has been at its current location in the Midlands since 1991.

Mercedes-AMG is also based in the area and has a chassis base in Brackley. Their association with the area goes back even further than their F1 association, as every engine with a Mercedes badge has been made there since 1991.

Plenty of teams past and present have also been close to Rugby. From Force India to Marussia, lots of teams have called the area home. Go a little further, toward Milton Keynes, and you will find even more. All of this provides jobs for the residents of Rugby and the surrounding areas. It seems that F1 is going nowhere, and Motorsport Valley will continue to thrive for some time.



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