Interesting figures in Maurice Hamilton’s latest piece for Grand Prix:
…word is that BMW is spending £40 million on DTM. Just on hospitality! Surely this can’t be true?
I also hear through similar impeccable sources that BMW are paying large sums buying up grandstand seats just to make the DTM races look good – although I do find that difficult to believe of a firm that is struggling financially to do a decent job with a rally car that has such huge WRC potential.
I’d love to see some more figures, but it’s probably just a fraction of an F1 hospitality budget. BMW Sauber were quite innovative, they had that travelling “Pit Lane Park” at several races, with an F1 car doing demo runs, doughnuts and pitstops.
Having customers who buy the same car three times, like Maurice Hamilton, helps pay for it all!
Team hospitality in the paddock has gotten huge, compared even to ten years ago. None of the manufacturers appear to dare coming out with some sort of “foldout bus and a large tent” setup. I’d fully expect the kinds of semipermanent buildings that seem state of the art now to cost a lot, especially when, as is the case with all three manufacturers, they’re active in more racing series than just DTM, so they might build this kind of infrastructure and afford the logistics to ship it around the world. Or calculate if it’s “cheaper” to build a European, Asian and American variant and not have to cargo-haul it across oceans… (Which is what a rock drummer I’m aware of did. He plays a rather large kit.)
I’m pretty sure the Audi DTM hospitality unit also goes to WEC events. The one at Le Mans looked very similar to the one seen at Brands Hatch the other month, they may very well have been the same structure.