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Measuring competitive balance in Formula One Racing


  • Budzinski, Oliver
  • Feddersen, Arne


The Formula One Championship (F1) is one of the biggest sports businesses in the world. But, however, it seems to astonish that only very few scholarly articles analyze the F1 business. The aim of this study is to contribute to closing two gaps in the existing literature: it contributes (1) to the (sports) economic analysis of the F1 business and (2) to the literature on competitive balance in non-team sports. Like competitive balance in team sport leagues, also for F1 racing three dimensions can be distinguished: (a) race-specific competitive balance, (b) within-season competitive balance, and (c) between-season competitive balance. In addition to classical tools and data, some new and F1 specific indicators, like average lead changes or leading distance, are employed. Also, pitfalls induced especially by the used data source or calculation method are highlighted.

Suggested Citation

  • Budzinski, Oliver & Feddersen, Arne, 2019. "Measuring competitive balance in Formula One Racing," Ilmenau Economics Discussion Papers 121, Ilmenau University of Technology, Institute of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:tuiedp:121

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    More about this item


    Formula One Motor Racing; competitive balance; empirical industry study; sports economics;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Z20 - Other Special Topics - - Sports Economics - - - General
    • Z21 - Other Special Topics - - Sports Economics - - - Industry Studies
    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism
    • C01 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - General - - - Econometrics
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • M21 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Economics - - - Business Economics

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