France and Formula 1

It is worth noting that the highest-rating sports broadcast in France last year was TF1's coverage of the Brazilian Grand Prix in April, which boasted a viewership of 9.5m people. This was 100,000 viewers more than Channel 2's coverage of the semi-final of the World Cup Rugby tournament, a showdown between France and England, in November.

Both shows outrated the soccer match which attracted the biggest audience, the final of the Champions' League between Real Madrid and Olympique de Marseilles in September. That drew an audience of 9.4m.

It is interesting to note that the average audience for F1 in France in 2003 was 3.5m although there were notable spikes with the Austrian GP (4.8m) and the United States GP (6.1m).

The French GP rated a rather disappointing 3.1m.

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