This weekend there has been a lot of talk about the 2014 rules and the possibility of making some changes, under pressure from Red Bull and Ferrari in particular.
We’ve had lots of comments, especially in light of the criticism voiced by Red Bull’s Adrian Newey on Friday, and here we post one of the most eloquent and well argued of them, to give a fan’s perspective and to give voice to the views of those who watch the sport week in week out.
Both Ferrari and Red Bull and their senior figures have been talking down the sport recently, as has its commercial boss Bernie Ecclestone; trying to shake the tree and make changes to things like the noise, the fuel flow meters and even the race distance, putting pressure on the FIA and current pace setters Mercedes.
FIA president Jean Todt will meet with Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo and Bernie Ecclestone today in Bahrain to discuss this, but he has already said that while he can sanction a raising of the decibel level of the engines, he will not approve any other changes to the rules, which were agreed some years ago by all the teams.
Here is the point of view on the talking points of the moment from one of our regulars, Ferggsa.
Do I like it? Yes. Is it essential to F1? I would say no, and besides it doesn’t seem like the V6s are mute anyway. Will it drive fans away from the track? No more so than expensive tickets.
Someone already proved speed is relative. If the car is doing 280kph or 320kph you can’t tell from trackside or on the TV screen. The new cars are faster on straights and slower in the corners than the previous ones; so what? The main thing is that they are driven to their full potential, [it doest matter] how fast they are actually going.
In the old days drivers had to manage tyres, fuel, engine, gearbox or the [cars] broke. Now they have to do it [because of] imposed conditions: degrading tyres, fuel limits. [However,] the end result is similar, otherwise it would be racing for one or two laps and then following each other for 50 laps – more so when cars speed is largely defined by a team’s budget.
I do think, regardless of strategic decisions, drivers should be able to push closer to the car’s limit.
Having less driveable cars, like these new ones seem to be, is one of the few elements that adds to the sport and the show.
Sport or Show?
The FIA’s toughest job is to regulate a sport that provides a good show. Some of us like the sport more, regardless of the show conditions, others want a better show, regardless of the fairness of it.
And on top that it has to do this by dealing with state-of-the-art technology, so who has the best solution? Todt, Bernie, Newey, Random, Goferet? Hell, not even James Allen has it.
Like most dictators, Bernie was great when he started and he singlehandedly put a little-known, elite sport onto TV worldwide, but he should move over soon for the sport’s sake.
F1 bosses crying about 2014 rules
I find it hard to believe that Mr Todt decided on his own to change the rules and that Bernie, Luca et al had no idea what would happen.
There are tech committees, sporting committees, commercial committees and a now defunct FOCA which should have voiced opinions beforehand, not after three years of development and manufacturing.
Of course it is difficult to agree with your competitors, but if they don’t even try, then they have to live with whatever the rules say, however awkward they may be.
When RB started I was a big fan, I liked the spirit and the fact that they were giving the big boys a run for their money. They became successful on merit and I admire that, but in a few years they have become more arrogant and ruthless than the worst ever from Ferrari.
Threatening to quit, to leave Renault, to blast the present rules sounds to me like very poor spotsmanship, and even, a bad business decision, they might end up with Bernie cutting down on their money, Renault refusing to supply engines, FIA not listening to their opinions, and even fans not buying drinks.
I dont like artificial devices in principle, but given present aerodynamics, it is the least worst option to no passing at all, and having faster drivers held up by slower ones.
Besides, I think us fans have an idea where drivers just push a button and fly past, but there are many variables involved, and it is not that straightforward.
The second option is to cut even further on wings and allow for closer racing.
Circuits and filling the grandstands
Want more fans on track? Have cheap races close to larger fan bases. I can’t fly to Bahrain and pay for plane, hotel, plus tickets. Only affluent Europeans, Aussies and Japanese people can. The locals probably don’t go on track in India, Korea, etc because tickets are too expensive, not because they dont like F1.
Just like the teams, we do not agree on everything, so even with the mother of all polls someone suggested, there will always be different opinions.
The powers that be should listen, and we have become more vocal, but in the end they (the FIA) should decide what’s best.
Do you agree, or disagree with these points? Have your say in Comments section below