F1 commentator loses job after targeting Serena Williams

Ex driver turned commentator Marc Duez from Walloon TV station RTBF in Belgium loses his job with the broadcaster after making several of what many might describe as misogynistic comments during the Formula 1 race in Monte Carlo targetted at Serena Williams.

Tennis superstar Serena Williams was invited to the Monaco Grand Prix as Aston Martin’s guest of honour. The 23-time Grand Slam winner was even allowed to wave the chequered flag. Duez commented:

“Serena Williams will be waving something different today.” presumably in reference to what would normally be her tennis racket, but in a manner that inferred something else less savoury. 


When Red Bull driver Max Verstappen then crossed the finish line first, things got even worse. The TV commentator made a snide assessment that one could clearly see that Williams was “not a cheerleader”.


But it went further: a friend of the US-American, who was standing next to her on the balcony, Duez called “ugly” – much to the astonishment of his co-commentator Gaëtan Vigneron.

For this reason, according to “Het Laatste Nieuws”, his broadcaster RTBF has launched an internal investigation and suspended the commentator. Duez himself has since apologised.


“I want to apologise to the people who might be affected by my statements. I didn’t want to shock anyone,” he told Walloon media. However, this does not change his suspension for the time being.

Duez was once a racing driver himself. In the 1990s, he won the 24-hour race on the Nürburgring four times. The 64-year-old also made a name for himself as a rally driver.


4 responses to “F1 commentator loses job after targeting Serena Williams

  1. “But it went further: a friend of the US-American, who was standing next to her on the balcony, called Duez “ugly” – much to the astonishment of his co-commentator Gaëtan Vigneron”

    Reading this it would appear a friend of Williams called Duez ugly – when what allegedly .happened was a friend of Williams heard Duez call Williams ugly. And nobody who speaks English would ever use the term “US-American”

    If you are going to use Google Translate – at the bare minimum check that the article make sense before you publish it.

    • thanks Cav, it’s bank holiday in the UK and I didn’t bother reading through this submission! I don’t believe G translate has been used but the author is not a native speaker of English

    • Actually, what happened was: Duez called Williams’ friend ugly and she most likely didn’t hear it since he was speaking in French as a guest commentator for the French speaking Belgian media not Walloon but a national TV from Brussels (the capital city btw). I know that because I was watching it and heard everything…
      I think it’s important to know the facts before writing an article because as I was saying he was a consultant/ a guest commentator. In the article it sounded like Gaëtan Vigneron was just a co-commentator when he is the usual commentator.
      And I agree with you cavallinorampantef1, this article made very little sense!

  2. And perhaps know the difference between infer and imply. I moved to this forum some years ago after another – I can’t remember its name – folded. But there are fewer articles, some quite nonsensical, and nobody seems bothered to comment anymore. Somehow Max Mosley’s death is unmentioned: isn’t that F1 news?

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