Francis Bourgeois Should Replace Martin Brundle For The Formula 1 Grid Walk

Francis Bourgeois might just be what Formula 1 needs.

The inaugural Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix earlier this month saw a bunch of celebrities in attendance – James Corden, Pharrell, Venus and Serena Williams… But the star that got the most attention was Francis Bourgeois, the TikTok-famous trainspotter who’s become a cultural icon.


If you’re not familiar with Francis, check out our handy explainer here. Essentially, he’s a young Brit whose enthusiastic love for trainspotting and eclectic filming style – where he straps a GoPro to his head facing at him to capture his reaction in a fish-eye view – have endeared him to millions of fans across TikTok and Instagram.

Francis was brought along to Miami by Coral Eyewear, one of Williams’ sponsors. The charming 21-year-old made the most of it, sitting in a Williams F1 car, watching cars speed by at the pit wall and joking around with drivers Alex Albon and Lando Norris. He seemed at home on the grid.

He was so at home on the grid that we think should be a more permanent fixture of F1. Indeed, we reckon he should take over the famous ‘grid walk’ from Sky Sports F1 journalist Martin Brundle.

Brundle’s pre-race grid walks have become a much-loved part of an F1 weekend but there’s increasingly a feeling that the 62-year-old former F1 driver is a bit embarrassing. Recent gaffes at Miami and at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix last year have led many to question whether or not Brundle’s the right man for the job.

RELATED: The Miami Grand Prix Has Us Asking: When Did Formula 1 Get So Cringey?

As far as we’re concerned, the often awkward nature of Brundle’s grid walk is half the appeal – but if you’re going to be awkward, you may as well steer into the skid, to use a motoring metaphor. Francis Bourgeoise’s awkward but affable character would be of enormous entertainment value. Imagine him having a chat with DJ Khaled while wearing a GoPro!

It would also do wonders for F1’s continued growth, particularly in America. There’s a reason celebrities – even social media celebrities like Francis – are increasingly being invited along to race days. Their popularity helps get new, younger fans interested in the sport, which is all part of F1 owners Liberty Media’s commercial strategy.

That said, we don’t see Francis giving up his love of trainspotting for an F1 gig. Race cars might be as fast as bullet trains but they’re not quite the same…

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