Formula 1 is ending the practice of featuring “grid girls” at its races, as the tradition has increasingly come under fire from critics.
The women, often provocatively dressed, would parade around on the track prior to the beginning of a race, accompanying drivers to their cars and sometimes holding umbrellas to protect them from the sun.
“While the practice of employing grid girls has been a staple of Formula 1 Grands Prix for decades, we feel this custom does not resonate with our brand values and clearly is at odds with modern day societal norms,” the sanctioning body wrote in a press release announcing the decision.
“We don’t believe the practice is appropriate or relevant to Formula 1 and its fans, old and new, across the world.”
Formula 1 was purchased by USA-based Liberty Media in 2016, and the company has been taking steps to broaden its appeal.
The Australian V8 Supercars series removed grid girls in 2016, while the British Professional Darts Corporation recentlly announced plans to stop using “walk-on” girls after pressure from its broadcasting partners.