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F1 news

F1 under fire from Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Following another alleged use of a trademarked tagline relating to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Formula 1 has come under fire once again from the track's president.

F1 pre-season testing practice start
To news overview © XPBimages

Formula 1 has come under fire from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for allegedly using one of the track's trademarks.

The IMS, which hosts the famous Indianapolis 500 race every year, took issue with F1's use of the term 'The Greatest Spectacle In Racing' twice last year when promoting its own competition.

The term has been trademarked by Hulman and Company [who owned IMS for several decades before selling to Roger Penske five years ago] since 1986.

It was noted as being used twice - first in a video surrounding the build-up to the Las Vegas Grand Prix when it coined the event “the greatest racing spectacle on the planet” and again when rapper LL Cool J referred to the sport as “the greatest spectacle in motorsports” when introducing the drivers ahead of the Miami Grand Prix.

IMS president Doug Boles confirmed last year that he had discussions with officials with F1's commercial rights holders Liberty Media over the alleged infringements.

Fresh annoyance

However, on the build-up to the new F1 season, a broadcaster can be heard calling F1 “the greatest spectacle in motorsports” in a segment for US network ESPN.

Bole issued a statement to IndyStar in response, expressing fresh disappointment over the usage of the term.

“We are aware of the use of our mark in what appears to be a broadcast promotional spot. We will once again address it with the appropriate people and are prepared to take every measure possible to protect our brand’s intellectual property,” Boles said in the statement.

“It continues to be disappointing that others can’t create their own brand identity without infringing upon ours.”

The expression was also used by a rival series when NASCAR posted a video on its Threads account last week with the tagline: “The greatest spectacle in racing.”

However, the post was quickly deleted.

“It feels to me that was an honest mistake,” Boles commented. “But if they’d kept it up, we absolutely would’ve had a conversation.”

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