Naomi Schiff admits F1 fans question her role after Hamilton support | Celebrity News | Showbiz & TV
Naomi Schiff, 28, spoke exclusively to Express.co.uk ahead of the Australian Grand Prix about the most challenging aspect of her job as a Sky Sports F1 presenter.
Former W-Series competitor Naomi is leading the way for the Formula One broadcaster in the largely male-dominated sport.
However, last year, the retired professional racing driver was targeted by Twitter trolls who questioned her credentials to give her opinion as part of the Sky Sports team.
Mercedes champ Lewis Hamilton, 38, rushed to her defence at the time, and branded her a “great asset” to the Sky Sports F1 presenting line-up.
Despite the criticism, Naomi has remained positive, describing the scrutiny from some viewers as “challenging”, but “[not] necessarily a negative thing”.
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She told Express.co.uk: “The toughest thing, obviously, coming into it, especially considering the people I sat next to on the podium are majority ex-F1 drivers, to bring across that credibility from my side is always challenging.
“Because you’re already starting with a part of the audience that are wondering why I’m there.
“So it’s just about always being on top of things, and making sure that I dot my I’s and cross my T’s, and there’s almost no room for error.
“But yeah, that’s the game and I don’t really see it as necessarily a negative thing. It keeps me on my toes. But it’s definitely challenging.
“Even when you asked the question earlier about what’s the best part of the job, the thing I’m quite passionate about is being able to have my face on screen and for young women, and women in general, and girls all over the world to be able to see my face.
“And I hope that in some way that inspires them to be involved in a sport like this one day, but also, at least they feel represented in the broadcast.
“So that’s definitely an important thing.”
Naomi continued: “And yeah, being in that position, I can often control the narrative, so I can ask the right questions and speak about the right topics, and that would help to empower women.
“So yeah, that’s definitely one of the best things as well.”
Her words about the importance of representation in the sport were echoed by British F1 icon Hamilton, who supported Naomi last year.
The sportsman tweeted: “Naomi is an ex-professional racing driver & totally qualified to give her opinion as part of the Sky team.
“She’s been a great asset since joining & we should welcome more representative broadcasting with open arms.
“Still have a long way to go to change these attitudes in sport.”