Jul.4 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Bernie Ecclestone and formula one are being left behind by the “digital generation”.

That is the view of Lars Stegelmann, an executive of the market intelligence experts Repucom.

Commissioned by the F1 drivers’ union GPDA, Repucom headed the recent global fan survey.

Speaking to the German news agency DPA, Stegelmann said that in his view, one of the issues faced by F1 is that its image is “dominated” by “one man” — its 84-year-old chief executive and so-called supremo.

“The negative headlines are heaping up around him,” Stegelmann said, referring to Ecclestone.

He said the diminutive Briton’s advancing age might be an issue, which is “reflected in the statements and actions of specific target groups”.

“I am thinking in particular of the so-called ‘digital generation’,” he added.

Stegelmann said it is in this area that F1 is falling badly behind.

“We all know the changes that have happened in the past decade with digital media,” he said. “Formula one did not go along with it.

“On the contrary: according to Ecclestone he does not consider this target group because it is not a source of income. However, it is not just the 14 to 29-year-olds in the digital world, but increasingly the age groups above it.

“In this respect, these statements and actions by Ecclestone were certainly not productive,” Stegelmann added.