3 Best VPNs to Watch F1 Races Online in 2021 (+ Free Options)
Formula 1 is broadcast in multiple countries around the world, but I was disappointed that the official F1 website doesn’t clearly list which platforms host live races in specific countries or how to access them.
Most live streams are region-locked and some countries don’t stream F1 events at all. However, it’s simple to find a good (and even free) live stream online, no matter where you are. I’ve found the best way to bypass these restrictions is by getting a VPN with fast speeds and reliable connections to watch live F1 streams.
I’ve tried many free VPNs that claim that they can bypass geo-blocking, but didn’t actually work! I tested more than 15 providers to find the 3 best VPNs to watch F1 from anywhere in the world. If you need to find an effective service quickly, I recommend that you try ExpressVPN risk-free with its money-back guarantee for 30 days. It not only bypassed every F1 broadcaster I tested but also has consistently fast servers without buffering or lag.
Best VPNs to Live Stream F1 Online
- ExpressVPN — Watch Formula 1 online in the US, UK, Canada, India, and more with fast speeds and unlimited bandwidth. You can also try ExpressVPN risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.
- CyberGhost — Optimized servers make streaming F1 easy, but connection speeds are inconsistent.
- Private Internet Access — Thousands of servers across the globe provide limitless connection options, but service can be spotty.
3 Best VPNs to Watch Formula 1 From Anywhere
- Watch F1 in the US, the UK, Australia, Canada, and more
- 3000+ global servers in94 countries
- Unlimited bandwidth ensures excellent speeds
- Connect up to 5 devices simultaneously
- 30-day money-back guarantee
ExpressVPN can bypass geo-blocks around the world with its fast and consistent connection speeds to easily watch Formula 1 in 2021. During my tests, ExpressVPN consistently unblocked streaming services from multiple countries. My average download speeds were 25-40Mbps — more than enough to live stream F1 in HD with minimal buffering.
You won’t find many VPNs that unblock streaming services as reliably as ExpressVPN can. The company boasts it works with 100+ streaming platforms worldwide, but I wanted to make sure it was capable of accessing F1 live streams in multiple countries. I was happy to find ExpressVPN successfully bypassed geo-restrictions in the US, UK, Australia, India, and more. I tested this by watching a replay of the Tuscan Grand Prix from the free streaming service Hotstar by connecting to a server in India. I didn’t have buffering throughout the stream, even though I was across the world.
To guarantee a fast connection for F1 streams, you may want to use the service’s MediaStreamer feature. This is essentially a smart DNS service that allows you to bypass regional blocking. It’s especially useful if you’re looking to unblock F1 content on a device that doesn’t have a native ExpressVPN app, such as PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. While MediaStreamer provides better overall speeds, keep in mind that it doesn’t encrypt your internet traffic so you won’t have any of ExpressVPN’s security benefits while using it.
ExpressVPN organizes everything in a list format so you don’t have to select a server from a map-based layout. To ensure you get the best experience, the app recommends the fastest servers for you based on your location. While you can still manually search for a server in a specific country, I found this to be a great feature because I knew I was connecting to the best servers every time.
Before you commit to a subscription, you can try ExpressVPN’s F1 streaming abilities risk-free for 30 days. I found the process very easy when I tested it myself. After requesting a refund through the 24/7 live chat, the customer service agent processed my refund in under 2 minutes and the money arrived in my account 5 days later.
ExpressVPN works on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Chromebook, Raspberry Pi, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Fire Stick, Android Smart TV, and Apple TV.
ExpressVPN also unblocks: ESPN, DAZN, BBC iPlayer, Eurosport, Sporza, Sport1, Sky Sports, France TV Sport, Sportsnet, HRT Sport, 9NOW, ServusTV, Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Sky TV, HBO Max, HBO NOW, SHOWTIME, Sling TV, ESPN, and more.
May 2021 Update! ExpressVPN has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $6.67 per month for the 1-year plan (you can save up to 49%) + 3 months free! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
- Unblocks F1 in the US, the UK, Australia, and more
- 6800 global servers in 90 countries
- Optimized servers for smooth F1 streaming
- Connect up to 7 devices simultaneously
- 45-day money-back guarantee
CyberGhost has servers that are optimized for the best possible speeds and performance, so you won’t have to worry about poor video quality when you’re watching the big race. It has a dedicated selection of optimized servers under the “For streaming” tab that tells you which service it works with. You can find optimized servers for a number of platforms that carry Formula 1.
For example, I noticed there was a server in Austria optimized for the public broadcaster ORF, which carries F1 streams. After connecting to the server, I was able to easily bypass ORF’s geo-restrictions and start watching its live sports streams.
One minor issue was that these optimized servers were slightly slower than ExpressVPN. I was a bit disappointed by this since CyberGhost puts such a strong focus on these servers. Speed tests confirmed they were on average 5-10Mbps slower for download and upload speeds when compared to ExpressVPN. It also took significantly longer to connect to its servers, so I was forced to restart the app. While by no means a dealbreaker, you may want to take this into account if you’re looking for a VPN with the very best server performance.
Despite slightly slower speeds, my testing showed CyberGhost is still one of the top VPNs for watching F1 live streams. If you’re not ready to commit to a full subscription, I recommend that you try CyberGhost risk-free with its money-back guarantee for 45 days. That’s a much longer refund policy than many VPNs and will give you plenty of time to watch F1 events on its optimized streaming servers. When I tested it, I was able to easily request a refund through its 24/7 live chat customer support and received my money back within 5 days.
CyberGhost works on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Chromebook, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Fire Stick, Android Smart TV, and Apple TV.
CyberGhost also unblocks: ESPN, Eurosport, Sporza, Sport1, Sky Sports, France TV Sport, Sportsnet, HRT Sport, 9NOW, ServusTV, Netflix, Sky TV, HBO Max, HBO NOW, SHOWTIME, YouTube, Sling TV, ESPN, and more.
May 2021 Update: CyberGhost has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $2.25 per month for the 3-year plan (you can save up to 83%)! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
- Unblocks F1 streams in the US, the UK, Spain, Australia, India, and more
- 12,000+ global servers in 70+ different countries
- Disguises your IP address to be undetectable by streaming service providers
- Extends protection for up to 10 devices simultaneously
- Try risk free with 30-day money-back guarantee
Since it’s the lowest-cost VPN on this list, I was doubtful that PIA would let me watch F1 races online. When I started testing the platform, I was pleasantly surprised to see how well PIA did at accessing some of the most popular sports streaming platforms. For example, PIA easily unblocked Sky Sports with its UK server, letting me relive the nail-biting action of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix over and over again.
One reason PIA is so popular is because it has a massive server roster. Private Internet Access has over 12,000 servers in over 70 different countries, which is far more than any other provider on this list. Even with so many IP addresses, PIA sometimes has difficulty to ensure all of them successfully unblock streaming services. This means that connections can be spotty on some servers, so be mindful that it might take a few tries to find the right one.
There’s no risk to seeing whether or not PIA works for you. You can try Private Internet Access risk-free for 30-days thanks to its money-back guarantee. I tried the service for 4 weeks before reaching out to the live chat team to cancel my account and ask for a refund. After telling them I didn’t want the service anymore, they gave my money back in my account in less than a week.
PIA works on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Chromebook, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Fire Stick, Android Smart TV, and Apple TV.
PIA also unblocks: Sport1, France TV Sports, Sportsnet, 9Now, ServusTV, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and more.
Why You Need a VPN to Live Stream F1 Online From Anywhere
Formula 1 events are broadcast around the world, but every country has its own licensing agreements. Generally, these broadcasters will block you from streaming content outside of these regions.
For example, if you’re in the US and have a cable subscription that gives you access to ESPN, you won’t be able to log in and watch F1 online if you travel to another country. However, a quality VPN can get around these geo-restrictions by hiding your location and sending your online traffic through a VPN’s server’s IP address. The VPN “tricks” the streaming site into thinking you’re in the same country as the server and allows you access.
Although VPNs should be capable of bypassing geo-blocks, not all of them will actually be successful. Streaming platforms are able to detect low-quality VPNs and easily block them. To reliably get past these restrictions, you need a premium VPN with military-grade encryption. However, the VPN also needs fast connection speeds to stream F1 live streams in HD and UltraHD.
3 Easy Steps to Watch Formula 1 From Anywhere
- Get a VPN. I recommend that you get ExpressVPN to reliably unblock F1 streams and watch at high speeds.
- Connect to a server in your desired country. For optimal speeds, use auto connect to get the best server if available.
- Log in to an F1 streaming service. Enjoy the race!
Where to Watch the F1 Live Stream Online
One of the best things about using a VPN to watch F1 live streams is that you’ll no longer be restricted to the services offered in your country of residence. I was able to access both free-to-air and premium streams in multiple different countries with ExpressVPN. If you want to watch F1 events in another country, you can try ExpressVPN risk-free with its money-back guarantee. As long as you cancel within 30 days, you’ll get a full refund.
In most countries where Formula 1 is broadcast, you need a paid subscription to watch it. However, there are a few countries where free legal streams are available:
- Australia — 10play (only airs Australian events)
- Austria — ORF
- Brazil — Globoplay
- France — TF1
- Italy — TV8
- Slovenia — TV3
- Switzerland — SRF
- United Kingdom — Channel 4
To access these free streams, you’ll need to get a VPN and select a server in one of the countries above. I successfully used ExpressVPN to connect to all of the free-to-air stations above and watch their live streams.
If you decide to use a free-to-air channel to live stream F1 races, keep in mind the coverage may not be as high-quality as with a paid subscription service. You may also have to watch broadcasts in a foreign language.
Cable and Subscription Services
Formula 1 is primarily broadcast on paid cable and subscription services around the world. If you have a cable subscription with a sports package, you may already have access to F1 content. Many providers also have websites and apps that you can use to watch online.
If you want to watch the full F1 season, you may need to purchase a subscription package or find a free trial. Then you’ll be able to watch Grand Prix events live on premium channels at no charge as long as you cancel before the trial is up.
Here are the viewing options available to you in several countries around the world:
ESPN has broadcasting rights for the full 2021 F1 Grand Prix season, so you’ll need to find an internet TV service that has this channel to watch Formula 1 live events. The WatchESPN app is a convenient way to watch races but requires a cable subscription to log in.
Fortunately, there are many streaming services that cover ESPN. A 7-day free trial of F1 TV Pro will give you live stream access if you sign up for a 1-year subscription. Be sure to cancel before the trial period ends.
In addition to F1 TV Pro, here are some other options for watching F1 live streams in the US:
- Sling TV — Supports a large number of desktop, mobile, and TV-connected devices. New customers have a 3-day free trial.
- Hulu + Live TV — New and existing Hulu subscribers can try the live TV package for free for 7 days.
- YouTube TV — You can watch live TV from 85+ channels, including ESPN. You can try it free for 7 days and cancel at any time.
- AT&T TV NOW — Formerly DIRECTV NOW, you can sign up for a 7-day free trial.
Although Fox Sports has broadcasting rights, online streaming service Kayo Sports has access to every practice session, qualifying session, and full Grand Prix. I recommend taking advantage of the 14-day free trial to watch the next F1 race live and cancel your subscription afterward.
If you’re outside of Australia, you’ll need a VPN to bypass viewing restrictions on both Kayo Sports and Foxtel. Keep in mind that free-to-air broadcaster 10play is only allowed to show F1 events held in Australia due to local regulations. Unfortunately, this doesn’t include races hosted in other countries.
While there are options for watching F1 in Canada, none of them offer free trials.
The 2021 F1 season is split between TSN (The Sports Network) and its French equivalent RDS (Réseau des sports). If your cable or satellite TV subscription includes either of these channels, you can stream it free of charge online through the TSN or RDS websites. If you don’t have cable, you can purchase an online-only pass for both platforms for one price without a trial period.
If you don’t need access to other sports broadcasts, F1 TV Pro offers a more affordable solution. Unfortunately, there isn’t a free trial available.
Much like ESPN in the US, Sky Sports has broadcasting rights to every F1 Grand Prix event in 2021. If you’re in the UK, you can watch it online through the Sky website or the Sky Go app. However, subscribers outside of the UK will need to use a premium VPN to get around the geo-block. I recommend that you take advantage of ExpressVPN’s money-back guarantee and try it risk-free for 30 days. All you need to do is connect to a server in the UK and sign in to Sky.
Outside of Sky Sports, there are a few other ways to watch F1 in the UK:
- Channel 4 — Britain’s public-service network is free to watch, but only shows F1 highlights after the race.
- NOW TV — You can get a week-long subscription to this internet TV. Keep in mind that there’s no free trial.
Star Sports has broadcasting rights to the 2021 F1 season in India. Live race telecasts air on Star Sports Select 2, but make sure to check your local listings for confirmation. You can easily watch live F1 coverage by subscribing to Disney+ Hotstar, which also has Star Sports Select 2.
While testing the Disney+ Hotstar service, I discovered that it has some free F1 coverage. Hotstar offers free ad-supported content in India, which includes past Formula 1 races. I was able to watch the entire Tuscan Grand Prix replay without a subscription. This service is useful if you missed any past races from this season. All you need to do is log in to a premium VPN, connect to a server in India, and open the Hotstar website to watch F1 for free.
If you want to watch Formula 1 in Singapore, your options are more limited. Live races are only available on F1 TV Pro, which isn’t currently available in Singapore.
Your best bet is to use a premium VPN and find a broadcast in another country on this list. I recommend getting ExpressVPN because of its ability to reliably unblock, high speeds, and affordable monthly price. You can even try ExpressVPN risk-free with its money-back guarantee for 30 days!
The best way to watch F1 races in New Zealand is through Spark Sport, a monthly streaming service that has broadcast rights to the entire F1 season. If you’re looking to use it for just one race, you can take advantage of Spark Sport’s 7-day free trial.
FAQs on Formula 1
Can I use a free VPN to watch F1?
Yes, it’s possible — but I wouldn’t recommend it. Although there are some trustworthy free VPNs on the market, they often have strict data caps and slow speeds. While this isn’t a big deal if you’re looking to do basic web browsing, you’re going to struggle to watch hours of Formula 1 coverage in HD on limited bandwidth.
Be careful of “free” VPNs on the market that have hidden costs. They could contain malware, track your online activity, or even sell your private data to advertisers.
If you really want a risk-free way to watch F1, I recommend using a money-back guarantee from a premium VPN. You can try ExpressVPN with zero risk for 30 days and receive a full refund before the time frame is up. It’s much safer than using a “free” VPN service and I easily got my money back when I tried the refund policy myself.
Can I watch Formula 1 on Netflix or Amazon Prime?
Unfortunately, neither Netflix or Amazon Prime have any live Formula 1 Grand Prix events. While both streaming services offer tons of original and licensed programming, neither have ventured into live streaming sports. Don’t worry — you can definitely watch the races on these streaming services by easily connecting to a country server that has access.
In 2018, F1 TV Pro was supposed to be available on Amazon Prime Video in select territories. However, there has been no news from Amazon or F1 since that initial report. As for Netflix, the closest option it has is the highly entertaining documentary series Formula 1: Drive to Survive.
How has the coronavirus affected the Formula 1 season?
Like almost every sporting league, the 2020 FIA Formula One World Championship was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The season was originally set to begin in March, but ended up being postponed to July. The initial count of 22 Grand Prix races was cut down to 17 to account for the shortened season. Although several prominent events such as the Monaco Grand Prix were cancelled, the league’s coronavirus response has largely been a success. Teams must adhere to strict testing protocols and maintain social bubbles. Everyone is also required to wear masks.
Speed Past F1 Geo-Blocks With a VPN
Since it can be difficult to unblock restricted sports content in some countries, a VPN is the best way to ensure you never miss a moment of Formula One racing.
All of the VPNs on my list have advanced encryption that can bypass geo-blocked F1 live streams. Unlike many free VPNs, these premium services offer fast speeds that give you high-quality HD streams with limited buffering.
If you’re not sure which VPN to choose and want a quick suggestion, I recommend ExpressVPN for its fast speeds, high-quality streams, and reliable ability to access every F1 streaming service. Even better: you can try ExpressVPN with zero commitment by using its money-back guarantee for 30 days!