An increase in the number of French drivers on the Formula 1 grid has not translated into greater TV access for local fans.
Pay TV station Canal+ has landed the broadcasting rights from long-time free to air broadcaster TF1, which is fronted by Romain Grosjean’s wife Marion Jolles (pictured) and former Grand Prix racewinner Jacques Laffite.
In order to watch all races live, French fans will now have to cough up €35 per month for the privilege, meaning it has now followed the lead of Britain, the Netherlands and Italy by introducing a pay-TV only model for local viewers to watch all of the Grands Prix live.
After a three-year drought of having any French representation on the grid, the country will now have up to four drivers to cheer for in 2013. Grosjean, Jean-Éric Vergne and Charles Pic have all retained seats on the grid with Lotus, Toro Rosso and Caterham respectively, while Jules Bianchi remains a contender for the final open seat at Force India.