Automobile Club de Monaco President, Michael Boeri, has announced that the Monaco Grand Prix will feature the return of the grid girls, in defiance of parent company Liberty Media’s decision to remove them from the event earlier this year.
Promotional models, commonly referred to as “Grid Girls” accompany drivers to their cars and hold placards displaying driver names as well make appearances as part of awards ceremonies. The decision by the US-based F1 parent company, Liberty Media to remove the performers from the event has divided fans and spectators.
Critics of the decision, which include the likes of former F1 owner Bernie Ecclestone, condemned what they perceived to be a knee-jerk reaction aimed at pandering to over-zealous political correctness in the current #MeToo climate.
Now Monaco, the most famous race on the F1 circuit, is reviving the practice for this year’s event beginning on May 27.
“The relationship is good with Liberty Media because they understand that Monaco is not Spa or Monza,” ACM president Michel Boeri told Monaco-Matin. “We've had no problems with Liberty Media, except for the grid girl issue. They'll be there, on the grid, but won't be holding any name-boards. They're pretty and the cameras will be on them once again.”
It appears that Boeri isn’t the only fan of beautiful women taking the grid at the F1. Defending champ Lewis Hamilton published a screenshot of the news announcing the return of grid girls along with the comment “Thank you Jesus”, but quickly deleted the post for fear of a backlash from the public.
The Russian deputy, Prime-Minister Dimitry Kozak, indicated that the Sochi Grand Prix would also feature grid girls, stating that the planned use of ‘grid kids’, children involved in karting or junior racing, was “wrong” because children would be “scared”, adding that he would support the return of glamour models to the event as, “[Russian grid girls] are the most beautiful.”