With Formula 1 in America this week for Sunday’s United States Grand Prix, ESPN platforms surround the race telecast with SportsCenter coverage, a digital pre-race show, and more.
Holding it all together at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, for ESPN is Lori Mancini.
A managing producer based at ESPN headquarters in Connecticut, Mancini has wide-ranging responsibilities when ESPN is on-site at a Formula 1 event in North America and away from the track for the rest of the year.
“I am the primary liaison between ABC and all ESPN platforms and Formula 1 and all Formula 1 teams, so my job revolves around establishing and maintaining relationships with everything F1,” she said. “I am proud to say that we have a solid rapport with F1 personnel and all teams.”
Leading up to each North American race that ESPN is staffing, Mancini arranges all interviews, coordinates crews, and sets the shooting schedule for all ABC, ESPN, and Digital shows, as well as for social and marketing needs.
“Then, when we get to the site, it’s a whirlwind with all hands on deck,” she said.
I love it. F1 is the Met Gala of motor racing. The race is spectacular, the paddock always a spectacle, and probably the best people-watching in any sporting event. – Lori Mancini
Her responsibilities at the racetrack vary from meeting with F1 officials and tracking down drivers to ensuring any live segments go smoothly – even to assisting ESPN Operations with packing up after the race.
“We are a very small group, and all help each other,” she said.
Away from the track, she works to push F1 internally at ESPN with SportsCenter and other platforms, including ESPN International, ESPN Deportes, digital platforms, and social, sharing ideas and garnering interest.
“I touch all facets of F1 internally: production, operations, marketing, sales, digital and social,” she said. “And I work closely with our writers for the ESPN F1 website.”
Reporting to ESPN Vice President, Production, Kate Jackson, Mancini also works on volleyball, gymnastics, Special Olympics, and the ESPYS coverage. The Rhode Island native, who has been with ESPN for five years after previously doing freelance projects for the company for more than 15 years, enjoys the F1 assignment immensely.
“I love it. F1 is the Met Gala of motor racing,” she said. “The race is spectacular, the paddock always a spectacle, and probably the best people-watching in any sporting event. This is my first experience covering racing for ESPN, and I can’t be more excited to be part of this project.
“I’m so proud to be part of the F1 production team, as they are some of the most talented and hard-working people I’ve had the pleasure to work with at ESPN.”
The Lenovo Formula 1 United States Grand Prix airs live on ABC, ESPN+, and ESPN Deportes on Sunday, Oct. 22. Coverage begins at 1:30 p.m. ET, with the race starting at 3 p.m.