F1 Winter Break
Vettel: Plan for double points at final race of the season is “absurd”
Scuderia Ferrari
Posted By: James Allen  |  11 Dec 2013   |  12:50 pm GMT  |  244 comments

World champion Sebastian Vettel has described the plans to award double points for the final race of the season from 2014 as “absurd”.

Following a meeting of the F1 strategy group and the Formula 1 commission in Paris on Monday, the FIA announced a host of rule changes, including the regulation which will see the winner of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix score 50 points, rather than 25.

It is intended to mean that it’s mathematically more difficult for the title to be decided several races before the end of the season. But Vettel, 26, told German newspaper Sport Bild: “This is absurd and punishes those who have worked hard for a whole season.

“I value the old traditions in Formula 1 and do not understand this new rule. Imagine, in the last Bundesliga [football] match of the season there was suddenly double points.

“Drivers, fans and experts are horrified.”

Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko told Sport Bild that there had been a proposal to offer double points at the final four races, but his team “were against it”.

He added: “At first it was planned to award double points for the last four races. Then the World Championship [up to that point] would have been almost useless.”

Formula 1 will be very different next year, with a raft of new regulations being introduced. One of the key chnages is the switch from V8 engines to V6 turbos.

Vettel has admitted that he’s concerned the introduction of the smaller power units could dilute the show for fans.

“I am a bit sad because my first test in F1 was in a V10,” said the German, when speaking at the Autosport Awards earlier this month. “I remember that test, and then we went to a V8 a year afterwards. When I had my second go in an F1 car I could tell the difference.

“I just hope that we are not going down from a power point of view. We will lose the revs which I think is a shame because it is a new direction that we go into and a new technology.

“I also still remember the first time I went to see F1 was in 1992. It was raining and only free practice in Hockenheim. The cars were only coming out for installation laps, and just to hear the sound of the car coming around, to feel it in the ground; they are the first memories I have.

“I just hope in the future we will not lose this excitement. I think the cars need to smell, the cars need to be loud, it needs to give you something that you don’t forget.”

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we can only hope he's 49 points ahead going into the last race in 2014 and breaks down to lose the title by 1 point.

trouble is this will probably happen to alonso next year.


Haha you and me both eddie. It's about time. ..


Please tell the FIA how you feel - sign this petition and pledge to not watch the GP of Abu Dhabi unless they revoke the rule: http://www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/f1revokedoublepoints


I would sign a petition if I honestly thought they'd notice, but take a look: We have something approaching 1000 comments up with all (bar maybe 3) expressing our disgust, and that's just on JA's site alone - who knows how many articles / blogs / posts / rants in total there have been around the world.

If that's not already enough to make them sit up and take notice then I don't know what else would, but as you said they're choosing not to listen so it's probably all for naught anyway 🙁

It's going to be interesting to see how it pans out for them come Abu Dhabi.


Be realistic.

If the championship hinges on the final race then double points or not people will watch it.

But if the champion wins only because of the double points there will be blowback 🙂


Perhaps you're right. But it seems to me that there's been plenty of blowback already, and Jean and Bernie are choosing not to listen. And I don't know about you, but I can't stand to watch the sport I love erode this way. If you share my feelings, sign the petition, and help me spread the word. Let's do what we can ensure that the sport's commercial interests are aligned with its virtues.



That would, at least in some way vindicate the FIAs decision.

Would be an absurd way for anybody to win or lose a championship, anyway.


or ricciardo...lol


I want the oppositte to happen, for somebody else (hopefully Fernando, just to really drive the absurdity home) to lead by 49pts at Abu Dhabi, just to have Vettel steal title number five at the very last moment.


Then he can stand on the podium and say "I'd like to thank Jean Todt for making this all possible,"


"we can only hope he’s 49 points ahead going into the last race in 2014 and breaks down to lose the title by 1 point."


I hope it does happen to Alonso.


Why can't the FIA come up with something sensible such as - 1 extra point for getting pole position, plus 1 more for fastest lap and finally 1 extra for leading the most laps of a race.

This would give a theoretical maximum of 57 points over 19 races, and is much more reasonable and fair than just dropping double points at the last race.


I don't think your kidding... I think about all you can contribute is the opposite of someone's funny comment.


relax...he probably is only kidding


...and what makes you think I'm not?...


Running out of engines? Why not skip a race and save up for the last race for a double the points.


I hope it happens to you


Yes, I really hope that it happens to me too. I really hope that I will become a driver and get into F1 and be a contender until the last race of the season.


Vettel is correct, it's totally absurd.

Who comes up with this stuff? Next they'll be suggesting medals for the drivers....

We approach a season were reliability may already play more of a part than racing, and what do the FIA do? Throw this into the mix. It's quite possible that neither the fastest car, nor fastest driver will win the WDC this year, but someone who has a car which is reliable.

The double points in the final race aspect of F1 needs removing immediately.

Historically in F1 all races have had the same number of points awarded for a win throughout each season (where race distance of over 75% was completed). The older systems of allowing drivers to select their best 10, 15, 8 etc results to count towards the championship is infinetly fairer than the proposed system - and I think most F1 fans agree the old system was pretty crap!

If they want to spice things up a bit why not add in a token 5 pts for pole position? F1 used to have a point for pole waaaay back.

The drivers number thing, I quite like it works well in MotoGP and I think it makes it easier for PR purposes. I've No issue with that one, but double points at one race? Nope, dreadful idea.


Agreed. If I wanted to see this, I'd watch NASCAR. F1 has become a total joke with artificial passing (KERS), artificial tire degradation to induce artificial pit stops, and now artificial championships. After decades of watching, I'm punching out until it returns to a genuine sport. It makes me sick that we have so many awesome and deserving drivers that have been reduced to circus clowns. Seriously, who would want to own a championship attained by double points at the last race? Thanks Bernie, Max, Jean, FIA for all you've done. You deserve all the credit. I'm done giving you my money, which seems to be what you care about the most anyway.


He said something about Pirelli changing the tyres to favour him???


Agree - completely dreadful idea.

It makes a joke of the history of F1 - and honestly, I would imagine (maybe wrongly!) that if a driver did win this way they wouldn't feel the same because they won due to a gimmick.


His response to this issue endears me to Vettel more than any number of donuts ever could.


I think the old dropping races system was as bad as this one. It lead to situations like 1988 where Prost had to 'throw away' three podium finishes whilst Senna got to disregard a DSQ, a crash a 10, 6 and 4. So the driver with worst results won because he got to turn around and say nah nah those don't count man.


Imagine explaining that to sponsors now, we would technically have won the championship, but we had to throw away a couple of wins and some podiums so those other guys got it, no please stay, we can win next year honest.


Anything that arbitrarily alters results is bad for F1, it's about not just one race but a whole season of racing and the best results overall should always be the champion.


The medals was another pet idea of Bernie. He's has done a lot for F1 but it's time to go.

The DRS, the tyres that fall apart, the medals and sprinklers that fortunately never made it, were all Bernie's hallucinations. But this double points one is the most idiotic of all.

He was going to be a circus mogul but there wasn't much money in it.


Rather than making it a last race thing, perhaps they ought to do it they way they used to on It's A Knockout? I'm guessing Bernie's drawn inspiration for this wholly rational idea from?

Teams were given a "joker" card IIRC. Perhaps in F1 each driver should be given a placard of Bernie dressed as a jester, and when they display it ahead of qualifying at the circuit of their choice that's the round they're playing for double points.

Brilliant! And once that's a success perhaps from 2015 we can stipulate that drivers have to dress as penguins too?



I can't get the image of the drivers carrying a 'Bernie Joker' down to Charlie out of my head 🙂


Firstly I don't think it should be changed at all. But the British Superbike idea is much better if they have to do something. A bit like North American sports: regular season being the first 14/15 races then essentially reset for the last few races for the top 5 drivers. The thing is it's all pointless as if a team is dominating then nothing will prevent them winning easily.


If they are dominating - why shouldn't they win easily ?


Before I go any further, I'm going to nail my colours to the mast, and say what a shockingly bad idea double points is. Clearly the result of too many yes men at a table. If they want to mess about with the run in to the end of the season in an attempt to retain a bunch of semi fans, there has to be a better way of doing it.

My brother told me about the scoring system in British Superbikes. I looked it up...


While I am completely of the opinion that there really was nothing wrong with the scoring system as it was (look at the great climaxes to all but the 2011 and 2013 seasons), there are clearly more inventive ways of doing it that would have the simultaneous benefit of confusing everybody as well.


I don't like the numbers, but I agree with everything else there.

I have always thought a point for pole would just give it a little bit more drama on Saturdays!


Don't forget: when Bernie is involved, it is just about the money!

Abu Dhabi probably payed a lot of money to get the last race of the season from Brazil, and they want to see a return. Maybe they added a clause that if the championship is already decided by then, Bernie will get a few millions less. I don't think there is more behind this rule than that.


Ahh...didn't think it that way at all....totally new point and not so crazy either....



I suspect there is more than a grain of truth in what you say.


I totally agree with the power issue, it seems the FIA wants to do whatever it can to lower the power year on year and god I miss the old turbo's V12's and the 19k rpm V10's! its correct that in race trim next year the power units will probably have like 480-530hp in fuel saving mode and pushing a car that's near 800kg with a full fuel load suggest straight line speed will be very low and un F1 like, I can just see the WSBK and LMP1 commentators and fans laughing at these cars saying "a £8000 road bike is faster in a straight line" and these engines just doesn't capture the imagination of the 3.0 V10 producing 1000hp.




Where are you getting your figures? Next year's power units will have more hp than the v8s


Well look the power stated for the engines are 600hp, if thats what they have in quali and there needs to be only 5 engines for the whole season then I would guess along with the fuel allowance for the entire race these engines will be running on low boost and a lean mix so I would say 500hp range is realistic for some parts of the race as the ERS is only available for around a 1/3 of a lap so at times a 500hp pushing a 780kg car seems very weak to me.


Completely agree


That's the thing though - they don't want to spice things up. They are looking at tv viewing figures for 2011 and 2013 and noticing some people didn't bother watching as much as years where the title was won at the last race.

This isn't spicing things up, it's spoiling the meal by pouring too much sugar on the dessert in a vain attempt to sweeten up the season (which quite often goes down to the wire ANYWAY!)


But the thing is...it will work. If the title is not decided until the last race, this will work. How is this any different from DRS or KERS? Everybody gets the same chance and oportunity, so what's the big deal?

The only thing that this does is make sure people still buy tickets to last race and the rest still turn on the TV to watch the race. Everything else is the same, except that at the end of the race double points are awarded, and some will lose because of that and others will win. But the thing is, everybody is aware of it, therefore you cannot say that some got an unfair advantage.

Get over it people!


It's like making new laws on the hoof to cope with a particular incident - they usually turn out worse than the problem. Same here, I fear.

I'm rather taking to Vettel, at last. Not afraid to say what he thinks. Has some of Mark rubbed off on him after all ?


so if someone gets hit from behind in the last race he suffers double compared to any other race.....

that would be an unfair advantage for others....

seriously...this is just stupid. the basic idea in it self is good to spice the end of the year up, but they way to do it is wrong...


Perhaps because KERS and DRS are available at every race? I can see your argument and I agree that it does leave everyone subject to the same scoring system, but when you inherently 'double' the value of one race, you are inherently 'devaluing' the preceding races.

And it's a solution in search of a problem. We've had 5 of the past 7 years with a title decided at the last race. And this year it wouldn't have made any difference as Vettel wrapped it up regardless. It just seems like a dull attempt to engineer something that most recent years have acquired anyway.


It's Eccelstones idea.

Maybe he wants in future a lottery at the last race who should win the WC.

Why don't they give points for Pole and fastest lap!?


Because they don't think it would be better for F1 if Vettel was world champion in August


Points for pole could work, although a dominant car/driver combo' would just extend their lead. Points for fastest lap, would most likely lead to drivers who were running out of the points coming in for new tyres with a couple of laps to go - it would be the fastest lap of the race, but not really representative. Having said that, it would allow the 'out of points' driver to salvage something from their otherwise poor race. Maybe that could work too. 🙂


Totally agree. Still fits in with F1 history and makes Saturday worth something to the fans watching. Also see value in offering points for fastest lap as it would make the end of the race that more interesting even if the race leader was out of reach.


I agree, it is completely absurd. How artificial is this sport becoming?


I found myself wondering the same thing, but any sport is "artificial" it's just a matter of degrees.

Don't get me wrong, either this rule is fixed or the end is nigh for F1; it was pretty hard to take seriously this year (not the first time by any means) but at least everyone except for Mercedes were "pretending" to tow the line.

For me it comes down to the type of artificiality. Any sport with rules will be "artificial" to some degree and those that have a large technical component will be even more under fire as the line between engineering endeavour and athletic effort is blurred (though less so now with pit crews forced to make sub 2.5 second stops!)

For me the question about artificiality becomes consistency and sensibility; what this one-off double-points-finish does is hammer home that it's a sport growingly steered by the desire to capitalize on it, and not a sport that's growing because it's so-damned-awesome to watch and/or follow. That former focus, money-at-all-costs, will only dilute it to the point where it'll end up a has-been and that's unfair to the fans who scrimp and save for $400 race-weekend seats and/or all those employed by F1 who do it because they love racing and couldn't care less about the money involved.


+1 The sport is being bled dry for every penny it can make, every new rule is based in some way on increasing profit, its a sport....


Formula One is going off the rails fast.

Double Points Last Race - Just a knee jerk reaction from folk who have little clue what they are doing and each and everyone has there own self interest agenda.

DRS - Just ridiculous in the extreme and as silly as BE's suggestion of adding artificial rain.

No Commercial Rights Payout for Team Finishing Last - Just BE keeping as much money as he can. Did not the team coming last attend and partake in every GP and were there to add to each event ? They need and should get some of the money pouring into BE's coffers.

Paid Drivers - Like many, I want to see the best drivers competing against each other. To see the Hulk going back to Force India and Paul D out for 2014 just shows what is happening to this great sport.

The world has a chance to watch the finest motor sport engineering in action and yet the folk running the show allow the sport to slowly degenerate and head for the drain.

The EF series is coming, I think it will be a success, and F1 needs to wake up and listen to its very knowledgeable fans. This is not NASCAR where fans go to watch crashes on an oval. This is F1 where almost every fan understands the technicalities of the car construction and want to see this excellence in action uncorrupted by stupid decisions such as double points for the last race of the season.

As they say here in the good old US of A - Just my 2 cents.


The jury is in - Ecclestone and cronies, along with the FIA seem to be really lost in the fog of greed!

Agree completely that ALL teams competing in good faith should share in the ill-gotten gains of the F-1 industry.


Spot on. The change increases their power and importance. And that's their first priority, not the mouthing of what's good for the 'sport'. Bureaucrat empire-builders on disconnect from the sport and the fans. And how can this same mindset NOT consider BE's sprinkler idea, what's the difference?


Contrived PR statement or not, Mr Vettel, sir, I stand and applaud!

Yes, the points system is absurd.

Yes, an F1 car should excite, it should be phenomenal, it NEEDS to be something almost unreal!

I am hoping, that the engines will still be loud and I'm hoping the torque from the turbo will make them just a bit more tricky to drive.

But most of all, I hope the drivers get tires they can race on.


I see the issue as a matter of adaptability.

The points system has changed a few times in the last two decades.

The shame is our old buddy Vettel has to complain rather than get on with it like Kimi, Shuey and Alonso have done in the past.

It was not fair for the others yet they raced and won/lost championships.

Too many Vettel Lovers here


Not a Vettel lover by any stretch but he is a four time champion and judging by his results at Abu Dhabi, would likely benefit from it, it's great to see him agreeing with the very vast majority of not just fans but drivers and journo's alike.

You must be a die-hard Alonso fan who feels aggrieved this wasn't implemented earlier to think this change in the points system is anything like any of the other changes before it and is not simply ridiculous. Why on earth should the last race carry more value than any before it? It's already been shown that it would not have altered the result in any of the previously won championships that were settled before the final round & may only have delayed the inevitable by 1 race at the most.


It would Alter 2003 Kimi, 2008 Massa and 2012 Alonso.

Furthermore, the midfield would race till the end for double points rather than giving up mid season like usual and building a rubbish car for the next year.

If it was that Absurd they would not have wasted time and Money considering the idea.

For me, a point for for pole together with the 2002 rules sounds better.


Schumacher complained plenty during 2003 when it looked like he was going to lose the title, in spite of winning more races than Kimi/Montoya. To be fair I don't remember him complaining in 2005, but probably because Ferrari were so far behind.


The 2003 system was absurd with only two points separating 1st and second, the 1991-2002 points system which many famous drivers including Senna raced to seemed the constant points system.

Applying the above facts to your argument Vettel does not seem to offer an opinion on what is appropriate and why the new system would be Absurd.

With 7 points gap between 1st and 2nd, together with a front running car I can see why Vettel is making a cheap comment, at least Shuey and Kimi were smart enough to explain why they were aggrieved by the old system


That's right Seb!

He has 4 WDCs now and is the actual face and spokesperson for F1 to and for fans, not Bernie or Todt. I hope RBR put together something magical for Abu Dhabi to show this double points means nothing.

Time to break the close/domination/close/domination pattern for 2014 RBR and steamroll the field, wrap this up with 5 GPs to go.


> He has 4 WDCs now and is the actual face and spokesperson for F1 to and for fans

Either that or the new 'Red Bull anti-boo PR team' assigned to him is working wonders, helmet all over the papers, spokesman for the fans 'sticking it to the man', whatever next?

He'll have aided in the conception and delivered endangered twin baby pandas for Christmas at this rate 😉

> I hope RBR put together something magical for Abu Dhabi

I do too, go on Deitrich build them a new track, please.


Spokesperson !

I think not.

Looking forward to anybody but Vettel winning the WDC next year.


But...but...wait a minute...isn't RBR part of the group that passed this rule? Vettel going agains Bernie, FIA AND RBR?


Why do you think RBR voted for this? There are 18 votes and decisions are taken on a majority-vote basis.


I thought it was unanimous, but it appears majority is enough.

Also, it is in Red Bull's interest to grow ratings and vote for efforts that are in favor of ratings growth. They are selling cans of sugar water and want us to see the logos after all.


In the F1 page and in the first article here about this subject says that this has been unanimously approved by the F1 Strategy Group and the Formula One Commission.


RBR get one vote. Even if all the teams voted no, the FIA and Bernie can outvote them if they work together. The 'strategy group' is a great bit of doublespeak - though calling it 'Bernie's rubber-stamp committee' might be a bit too close...


According to an interview with Helmut Marko not.

He said also, that they wanted it for the last 4 races!

I think you can compare the new rules with soccer: The goals in the last 15 minutes count twice.


For once I find myself supporting Vettel! Who knew that day would arrive..


The bizarre thing is I'm not a fan of RBR at all, yet I drink Red Bull all the time. Go figure.


Damn their PR, it's working, another one bites the dust.

We're becoming a minority, vive la resistance! 😉


It's going to be OK Wouter. Last 4 years would have been easier on you if you "found the light" earlier.


It's called wisdom. Cheers!


'Absurd' is the best description of this double points plan. It MUST get reversed before the start of the season.


Well done Vettel, as WDC he needs to stand-up and make points like this, if the WDC is seen to object to farcical changes like this double points, it makes life difficult for the G&T brigade running this "sport"


Doesnt unanimous decision mean Red Bull agreed with the double points system at the strategy group meeting? Then why this disbelief?


unanimous decision by the team management, not by the hired help, the driver


The strategy group decides on a majority vote basis.


Right... because Vettel is Red Bull...


I think the team management agreed with it but he personally doesn't like it. He is a 4 time and reigning world champion and is entitled to voice his personal opinion. Also I don't expect CH to have to run all his decisions by an employee.


Did it say it was unanimous decision? From what I understand the FIA gets 6 votes, Bernie gets 6 votes and the top teams get 1 vote each (total 6 if they all agreed). It sounds as if RBR voted against the double points for the last 4 races. Even if all the teams voted against the points system change, the FIA and Bernie could out vote them by block.

It sounds as if RBR and Ferrari probably voted against the cost cap but Ferrari's veto is not allowed in cases where it might be detrimental to the existence of the sport.


Yes, in f1.com says this "Following a meeting of the F1 Strategy Group and the Formula One Commission in Paris, the following items have been unanimously approved" and this madness is one of those items.


Wow, thanks, didn't see that. Gives a different spin on it. So RBR rejected the last 4 races being double points but agreed on the final race. Odd. Maybe they thought if '14 is anything like '13 it won't make a lick of difference anyway...


Here's a scenario for the geniuses at the FIA:

In 2014 Mercedes and Ferrari both build decent cars for the new regulations and take the fight to Red Bull. RBR, on the other hand, struggle.

Coming into the last round Vettel trails by just 40 points with 50 up for grabs.

At the start of Alonso, Hamilton, Räikkönen and Rosberg are all taken out by a driver who shall remain anonymous but who kind of rhymes with El Dorado.

Benefiting from their misfortune Vettel takes the win, picks up 50 points, and seals his 5th consecutive WDC.

Is that what you (the FIA) were after?


Love the 'El Dorado' rhyme haha


El Dorado may also take out Seb and Ricci in the same move, and force Massa into Button and Bottas who cannot avoid Hulk, Perez and Bianchi. Meanwhile Magnusson DNFs.

That leaves El Dorado to collect 50. Good old Pastor wdc 2014.


"At the start of Alonso, Hamilton, Räikkönen and Rosberg are all taken out by a driver who shall remain anonymous but who kind of rhymes with El Dorado."

I literally fell off my chair laughing at this! Bravo!

On topic: Double points is stupid, imagine the uproar if Vettel only won his 5th WDC because of the last race being double points!


🙁 Probably


Who do you think you're talking about? Not Vettel surely, the 4 x Weltmeister doesn't need such absurd scenarios.

He'll have it wrapped up with 4 races to go, Abu Dhabi won't even matter in 2014!


It would be sad for Ricciardo, but I kinda hope next year's Red Bull is a dud (relative to other cars).


Huh a bit premature isn't? I have a feeling Renault will have too much of a defecit for Vettel to win a easy championship, he can sti do it if the likes of Alonso and Raikkonen implode and Hamilton loses the plot again but it'll be clos.


You're probably right, but my point is that under certain circumstances this whole idea may backfire on the FIA and if it does I'll probably have a little giggle and then switch off.

After all, what could or would they try next? Maybe a random shuffle of driver points halfway through 2015? Maybe the viewers will get to vote on which driver gets eliminated? Or maybe they should just have all the drivers participate in a karaoke contest.

Yes I'm being ridiculous now, but give it time.


Is this because sponsors are unhappy that the viewers are turning off with races left to run?

It is a desperate idea dreamt up by accountants, only worthy to be put in the trash can along with suggestions like qualifying lotteries, reverse grids, sprinklers and forced pit-stops.


Well said Papa Sebastian.


He is absolutely right. The sound of the engines ant the shaking of the ground is the outstanding memory from seeing

F1 cars live.


“I value the old traditions in Formula 1 and do not understand this new rule. Imagine, in the last Bundesliga [football] match of the season there was suddenly double points."

Vettel has shown himself to be a bit stupid here...

Football is completely different because you only complete against one opposition at a time. Double points in a final season football match would give an advantage to the teams playing against weaker opposition. For F1 to be like football there could only be two cars on a track at a time.

I like double pints idea. Bottom line is, it's the same for everyone, and if you're good enough you will still win.

Nascar has "the chase" which prevents someone winning the championship too early.


How is it the same for everyone?? This is terrible for people who have worked to build up any sort of lead over the course of the season. It will also weaken the championship. If anyone wins due to this rule in a scenario where they would have not, it throws a bunch of question marks around whether or not it was deserved.


Why can't they just have 2 races on the last weekend. Either have quali both mornings, races both afternoons, or a reverse grid second race. This way you retain the integrity of the points system, while increasing the chance of the title going to the end.


Yes, Nascar has "The Chase", but viewership and attendance revenue have been on the decline in Nascar since they introduced it.

That gimmick isn't working in Nascar and has no place in F1.


That is the point, he is arguing that double points in the final match will be as crazy as is this case, yes is equal to everybody but unfair for the all year work, so the difference between sports doesn't mean anything, about the Nascar, well I would say that most of F1 fans don't want F1 to be similar to Nascar at all.


yes Perry, I think you've got it!!!


I would like to see your reaction when this backfires and Vettel still wins!


Quite the contrary. Seb is the grid's smartest guy, so it seems you may even manage to save your label.



Just look up Malaysia 2013.


How should I take your avoidance of answering the question? Is it a tacit admission that the matter is not quite as self-evident as you had imagined ? 😉


Indeed! See who left and who stayed at RBR.


On what basis do you conclude Seb is the smartest guy on the grid? I am not saying you are wrong (although I suspect Rosberg would give him a run for his money when it comes to smarts)but I would be interested to know what you have based your argument on.



I don't know about the smartest, he may not have Rosbergs academic skills, for instance, but Seb certainly is up there, it is a major theme of every magazine bio.

In this week's Autosport their is another article about his spare capacity to think in the races, as well as his ability to identify the most important techniques needed in that particular race, and focusing on that. It was also a major point in this Motorsportmagazine.com bio:


He also has very well developed language skills, so understands nuance and inclination in his secondary languages (of which there are 3 or 4, having learned Finnish for fun!). He apparently endeared himself to his mechanics at his first test with RBR (and I believe his first time working for a British team, previously workin for BMW Sauber and STR) with cockney rhyming slang and does a german tinted Birmingham accent, for example.


Just look up "self-evident".


Why award a particular race double points? This is illogical; for the sake of consistency every race must award the same points, it's defined in the rules.

I'm surprised the comission unanumously voted in favour of this.

There are drivers and teams who work hard all season; what if they have a bad day? A DNF for whatever reason might drastically change both drivers and constructors championship. It might cost someone the title.

This decision is spectacle-oriented. I assume the betting houses are rubbing their hands.


Having double points in the last race is the same as having one extra race on the calender. It wouldn't have made any difference to this year's title anyway.

This plan is a joke!

I like Vettel's line about double points on the final day of the Bundesliga (on the BBC website) - he must have been reading my comment on here yesterday.


"Having double points in the last race is the same as having one extra race on the calender.'

No it's not


To be effective, the ‘Double-Points-System’ shouldn’t be reserved for the last race alone.

It should be arbitrarily implemented on a race-by-race basis when any one competitor draws too far ahead in the WDC -

If the winner happens to be the current leader, prior to the current race, then the points should be deducted from his overall score rather than added.

I acknowledge that this idea might be flawed – a much more sensible option would be for an FIA representative to draw points allocations out of a hat at the end of each race – that would really mix things up a bit and add to the ‘excitement’.

He could do this within the safety of a wire cage a-la Blues-Brothers to prevent hurled bottles and trophies reaching him.


I can't see Vettel singing Rawhide, but maybe I'm lacking in imagination.


i'm not a Vettel fan, but i agree with every word he says


Spoken like a true fan - let's hope his opinion carries some weight.


If by the end of the season he finds himself in a position where the double points finale is to his benefit, I suspect he will change his opinion. Of course though, he won't say this. If it didn't work out his way he would stand firm on his opinion, however if it did go his way he would be silent on the matter.

Having stated this opinion, he has essentially said that a championship won with these double points being a contributing factor is not legitimate. His words could come back to haunt him. Facts and statistics would not be affected but his image and credibility could take a significant hit. Imagine a situation where the other driver in competition for the championship goes up to Vettel after the final race and says, "so I guess this means I am champion as you don't believe the double points should be awarded". Will Vettel then decline the title? I doubt it.


I agree with everything he said.


I see what they are up too. It's all part of a Machiavellian scheme to increase the popularity of Seb and Red Bull.

Introduce the idea of the double points in the last race, everyone is up in arms and near rioting ensues . Then the idea is dropped because Seb and RBR don't like it.

Hey presto, Seb and Co are heroes 😉


Yes, they already are heroes after 4 X run, no one on the grid is better.

Also, don't worry, they will maintain integrity of F1 in 2014 by wrapping up the WDC and WCC well in advance of this Abu Dhabi dog and pony double point show.


They are 4x champ's, no question. Heroes, not so sure. Certainly not worshipped as they should be considering their outstanding achievement's. A nice PR coup to improve their popularity wouldn't go amiss 🙂

BTW, I am somewhat confused - yesterday you were on the side of the FIA and today you appear to have done an about turn and joined the rest of us?? Have I woken up in a parallel universe ? 😉


@Alberto Dietz.

All that booing this season - is that confirmation of their popularity? Only just over 50000 attending the German GP on race day - more confirmation of their popularity?

I guess I misread the signals ;-).

BTW who is the bankster? - your use of the apostrophe indicates possession, eg Fergie's Utd.


Their popularity is well assured where it counts, particularly among those not deluded with a bankster's wildly overrated crybaby.


No Tim, I'm clearly against this gimmick.


I also understand the key arguments for it, and when they are presented it's hard to argue against them.

Let's say you're in the room with this group and it's on your shoulders to argue against these points?


Ok, this is all a bit weird. I think this is the 3rd time this thread that you've said pretty much the same thing, about wrapping up the title early.

Has the real Sebee gone on holiday, and left Tealeaf to handle his handle? Sebee, if you're being held hostage, end your next post with three winky faces, ok?

😉 😉 😉

Everything will be ok!


I'm just putting it out there into the interwebs to plant the seed and make it real in 2014.

Isn't that the obvious real solution to maintain integrity and ensure the gimmick doesn't impact the outcome?

You know, the cost factor of this is interesting. Potentialy the desire to score those point will result in teams pushing late into the season due to this. Thus spending money they would normally spend for next year. Although in 2014 stability to 2015 ensures that it's money well spent.




Vettel is absolutely correct.


Well, on a scale of 1 to 10 it is right up there with DRS and marginal tyres.


Just when F1 hits an all time low with DRS, it goes another level lower... this is a repeating pattern.

Somebody came up with the idea of watcing the 1980 - 1990 seasons in place of current F1... that seems like a good idea... I might do that - just watch the 1980 races in place of the modern F1 borefest...

Maybe in a few years, F1 might get back to proper racing.


This is brilliant! The Beeb should show great historical races during the weekends which they don't get the live broadcast.


I've been watching from 1996 through to 2003 and it's been brilliant. Would like to continue all the way up to 2010, but am unable to source 2004 or 2005 🙁


Spot on, Sebastian. One thousand times no to extra points. And he's right about the sound, the feel, and the smell. The first time I experienced Formula One up close was at Watkins Glen in 1971, standing on the bridge over the track (they let you do things like that back then, including walking through the garages at night while the mechanics were working on the cars!). The sound and thrill of the cars below with Hill, Stewart, and Fittipaldi at the wheel was phenomenal. Imagine if the new cars sound like a VW bus going down Hangar Straight!


I just read a HILARIOUS proposal from Lotus on new regulations. It is in Russian...I am wondering whether anybody knows the English link? So funny.


Pure [black &] gold!


I particularly liked the "#SillySeason" tag - kinda tells you what they think of this stupid rule.

Tell me this will be dropped before the season starts. Please.


It's in English on FB fanpage.


He won't be the only driver to say that the rule is "absurd". Rest assured there are many more may be all of them!


considering the response of everybody hating the new points system what would it take to reverse the decision? it needs to be done.


Probably another unanimous decision from the teams. I'm sure they'll manage to revert this.


Using the words "teams" and "unanimous" in the same sentence is like trying to push together two magnets of the same polarity, but you did it with style 🙂


If FIA doesn't care for the opinion of a four times world champion, it will look like it's no longer governing motorsport, and more like starting to became a dictatorship


I am starting to like Vettel! He comes across as a genuine fan of the sport - more so than many previous champions.



I just can't stand his fingering & squeeling.

Stop that immediately Vet & you'll get some actual fans I think.


Don't be fooled by the FIA - this may well be an underhand trick to raise Vettel's profile, as he has virtually no respect amongst the fans... only the people paid by the F1, seem to think he is great... I wonder why?


Agreed. He seems like a pure racer, and you have to love that. A throwback?


“At first it was planned to award double points for the last four races. Then the World Championship [up to that point] would have been almost useless.”

Those in charge of F1 have got their heads up their collective posteriors even further that I imagined. Talk about a demotivator for the teams trying to consistently perform at their best all season, when in reality you can coast and just put it into overdrive for the final races to win the championship. The parasitic and lazy losers win again. A great example to society!

This doubling of the points issue for the final race is just so bad on so many different levels!

The Spanish Inquisitor

100% Agree. No sense



Qualifying: 5, 3 and 1 points.


Race points as actual

The winer of the race will lost 5 positions in the next race, the second 4 and the third 3, so they must use theirs skill to overtake others pilots during the next race.


Fast lap: 3 points


Why should a driver be penalised for doing a good job and winning?

BTW is Vettle the only driver against this as he's the one that the rule was created to stop winning all the titles


How about 2 race events, reverse grid second race. It still awards quali performance, as well as encouraging overtaking in the second race.


Agree this is absurd, and credit to Vettel for saying so - it may increase the 'entertainment' value, but has nothing to do with motor racing, as a sport. Those who do a good job throughout the season stand to suffer as a result of this


So "they" all get together and pass the double points rule. The scenarios that everyone mentions are valid points but "they" are in control. So be it. But it still won't be as bad as NASCAR's in-season points manipulation. The teams will figure out a way to have their most reliable powertrain available for the last race.

On other points, I certainly agree with most that DRS and substandard tires are ruining the purity of F1, and Douple Points is just another rule that teams will have to deal with.

Even so, the racing should still be exciting!


If Alonso (who would seem to be the likeliest benefactor of a double points last ditch chance against Vettel) comes out against this - then it will be very interesting.

The drivers have often given very different opinions on things like DRS, the tyres, rule changes and interpretations etc, but if they all turn round and say this is a really stupid idea - it will be a genuine PR disaster for F1.

I don't think any of them will refuse to run of course and they'll take the double points as none will risk their career by refusing, but if they all denounce it, there could be some pressure to reverse it.

Obviously the fans annoyance doesn't matter in the slightest as the FIA and FOM assume most fans are silent consumers who just pour the money in and stay quiet but if journalists and drivers are both out there announcing what a misguided move this is - it could get it changed in 2015. Sadly I think 2014 has already taken Abu Dhabi's money to host the last race and they've likely demanded a fix to ensure the viewing figures are maintained up to their unutterably dull hotel advert (sorry race...)


Had to smile at your referring to the race as a hotel advert.


Off topic, but I would be interested to hear Webber's take on the Porsche LMP1 now that he has some seat time. How does it compare to F1?


The LMP1 cars a bit slower than F1 over all but not a lot, and the gap is closing. The big difference will be the length of the race. endurance v sprint.


Does anyone other than FIA think this is a good idea? I've not seen any comments from any source supporting it.

In this new year of new engines, would a better alternative be that the drivers could select their top x number of races to be used for their score? This was the way points were awarded some years ago when reliability was more of an issue. I think the driver only counted points from something like 10 out of 12 races. So this would still allow drivers to race and not be punished too much if they have reliability issues.


If they want open wheels NASCAR, then I`m gone


He's right. We all are.

Lets hope someone listens.


Never thought I would say this: I am joining "camp Vettel" on this one. Everything he said is right.


I know what he means by the smell, the cars now smell of nothing, but they used to smell of gunpowder, it was intoxicating!


Most of the posts on this subject are agreeing with Vettel. To me it's not even a case of agreeing with Vettel, the more simple solution is for the others to raise their game. When you look down the grid, McLaren and Ferrari have plenty to do, Lotus and Mercedes need to continue to improve with Force India and Sauber following on, so no need for changing the points system. However, it should help to keep fans watching and attending races until the end.


So, we have DRS, DPS and DQS - dull qualifying system.


James, Have you read Autosports suggestion of banning team radio... Brilliant... that is by far a better way to make the races better...

It shows how blind the strategic working group is... theycome up with stupid ideas, but this simple idea would be amazing...


Or leave the radio working but ban telemetry in the race. Make drivers relay the info back. Get rid of the OK an Pit buttons so we can hear them call for stops. And get rid of that silly delay.


DRS is absurd, random points is just as absurd... everyone knows it.

The FIA are probably trying to fool the fans into believing Vettel is against it, so they can artificially raise his reputaion...

Sorry, until F1 demonstrates it can have WDCs that win on racecraft skill, and not on delta-times, I have no respect at all for any winner of nothingness.

It disgusts me that even the drivers are willing to take money, and stay quiet on the lack of any real racing in modern F1...

It wouldn't be so bad if F1 was actually entertaining despite being aritifical, but its actually terribly boring to watch fake winners and fake overtakes etc...


What is real racing then? Just go watch some spec series if it disgusts you that much. And if you want F1 to be more level write to Ferrari, Mercedes, and McLaren to step it up.

While you're at it, tell their drivers to step it up too 😛


How anyone could even consider turning this into some kind pro-Vettel PR conspiracy completely boggles the mind...

But hey, never miss an opportunity for a bitter dig at Vettel.


I'm hoping this somehow doesn't pull through. The sheer stupidity of it has already been noted many times - even by one of the ones who should benefit from it most (Vettel is always quick at Abu Dhabi) - I'm just struggling to understand the logic behind it in the first place.


Double points at Abu Dhabi, huh? Qualifying will be more important than ever there. Maybe they can go half points at Monza in 2015 or quarter points for an eigth of the races.


They should've just included another start if they wanted to award more points in the last race weekend. Like GP2 style or something. Fewer laps, softer tires, no mandatory pitstops. Something different to spark up the last race.


This is interesting. If they want to mix up the results more get rid of the time and laps limits. Make Monaco a two race sprint. Or make Monza an endurance race. Modify Abu Dhabi so that the entrance to the pits is a shortcut that eliminates the time penalty of making extra stops for fresh tires.


How about they modify the exit of the pits so that instead of a gradual curve it become a ramp that will launch the cars back into the race.



Enthusiasts are characterised by there fear of change as they feel they have invested so much in there chosen hobby.

This was without doubt one of the dullest season on record. And i only watched it on the BBc. Imagine enduring the wall to wall SKY broadcasts.

The need to do something. Even if the title is long since decided the last race will be all action as teams attempt to jump up the table.

Once upon a time the unexpected could be counted on as teams were not so slick and organized. Now bugger all is likely to happen and the majority of fans watching know it.


Nothing much happened because we've had several years of stable regulations where the emphasis has been on reliability.

In 2014 we'll have new power units that will likely kark it every five minutes while the rest of the time they'll provide a huge amount of torque in cars with less downforce resulting in cars that be sideways much more than we've seen.

Kind of like when they took away the blown exhausts for 2012; the driver's rocked up in Australia and were all the place.

Should be interesting in it's own right.


Regardless of how you feel about VET he is 110% correct in this. Why are other drivers not speaking out against this?


Could be one of two reasons:

First they're being reined in by their PR managers.

Or second, they like the idea of maybe being able to catch Vettel in the final race.

Or both 🙂


I think that all people who bring up the argument of new artificialness (if there is such a word) are forgetting that in the 80's, often hailed as the best era for F1, there was a rule almost as stupid - it said only your best 11 finishes count towards the championship. So we've been there, done that. Senna would not have won WDC in 1988 had that rule not existed as Prost actually scored more points over the whole season.


You drive to the rules in place at the time.

Senna may have adopted a more agressive 'all out' approach in 1988, knowing only 11 races counted. If all 16 had counted he may have driven more conservatively and consistently like he did in 1991 for example.


And so people may drive to this rule. For example everyone will want to keep a fresh engine/gearbox. And maybe there will be a specific aero package etc.

I know the rule is stupid but it's not the first in F1 and probably not the last. I mean how stupid was the "no tyre stops" rule. It happens all the time.


Agreed but one stupid rule doesn't mean a new one is good? Double points is an awful idea, unfair and favours teams who have a car which is better at the final race's track. Some elements of sporting tradition are worth changing but not this one. For the record I approve of some changes such as DRS and the Pirelli tyres because nothing was more stupid than the mid 2000's processional races where faster cars could not overtake slower ones.


Actually there was some form of best scores rule from the start of the WDC until 1990. I don't think it was a bad rule at all. It meant that drivers were not penalised as much for suffering unreliability and encouraged more racing for the win rather than settling for a safe points finish. I'll support the most exciting racer over the most consistent any day.

And yes- the double points idea is just plain stupid.


If he don't like it then I'm all for it...Just sayin'


TOTALLY AGREE WITH YOU, Leslie. Well said!!!

If it's bad for RBR it's EXCELLENT to me.


Absurd: Change tyre specs mid season to favour a specific team.


Ridiculous way to live your life, but if it makes you happy...!


Early april fool by bernie perhaps ?



I love your journalism and insights but on a few rare occasions you are remarkably sanguine. This absolutely ridiculous rule change of double points is one such example. I was counting on you to slate it along with Ecclestone's and CVC's cash hungry stupidity. Abu Dhabi as the last race as well? I'm lost for words at where some parts of F1 are headed. Come on James, give us some views on this...surely as a fan you can't like what is happening, speak up for the rest of us who have far less of a voice than you do.


Easy does it there Ace! James is just exercising his duty as, what we used to call it in the old days, a reporter - the highest form of journalism there is. Commentating in commentating. If that's your red meat, there are countless F1 wags out there to satisfy your cravings. Keep up the good work, Mr. Allen.


James, why isn't any one else from the inside commenting on this?


scanning through the comments really quickly. I have yet to find any fans supporting this idea.

I hope this will not happen. Has this been decided?


I seem to be the only one in favor of the double points system if you disregard Perez.

I am surprised people seem to have forgotten Button's pre race comments in Brazil. His focus was already on 2014. The race was just an obligatory thing to do. Not so if he were to be racing for double points …


There is one or two, but it's like finding a needle in a haystack.


What a wasted opportunity. But it's not too late yet!

For 2015, have every race pay for the number of points awarded. What, you say you have already signed a multi-year contract for hosting Formula 1 races? You've already paid us millions for the privilege?

Yes, but have you got a contract for points awarded? If you want your race to count, pay us. And, if you want your race to count more, just pay us more. 99 points in Russia? Sweet. That'll be $99M, please. But imagine the buzz for 1001 points in Bahrain!

Of course, the additional proceeds go directly to the commercial rights holder. It's only fair. He also has some unforeseen legal fees to pay, so we'll give him a helping hand.

(I'm only being slightly sarcastic. 50 points in Dubai did not come cheap)


2 points for pole.

5 points for fastest lap of the race

5 points for fastest pit stop (constructors only)

seriously, f1 is loosing the plot, hardly any fta viewing, teams that cant agree anything together, stupid ticket prices, no access to teams / drivers, so far behind with internet streaming, and f1 is meant to be the ultimate.

Look at rallying from the 70s 80s to what it is today, that's where f1 may be heading


Sitting on pole already is a benefit and it's usually the fastest drver who takes it, why give extra points for that? The fastest lap is usually driven by the guy in the fastest car of the day - who is also the one most likely to win the race. Why reward him once more? He already gets a shedload of points.


Why not just have at a random race the pole sitter start from the back of the grid?

What a bunch of stupid ideas!

Let them race, best man /team wins.


Vettel is absurd this is the best thing to happen in F1 since the got rid of grooved slicks.


I agree, double points for annoying personalities not the last race...

Vettels finger wag will surely cost him the title not these points..

I think people and the FIA are annoyed so much they are wiling to go this far to see this Newey guy win so many titles, and oh yes the guy who drives the car.


When conspiracy theorist stand behind Vettel...You know they messed up on this one.


Double points in the last race is pretty dumb.

Two shorter races on the same track on the same day or weekend MIGHT be a workable, agreeable compromise, but still...


James, why didn't the teams veto this rule change? If they could do it to mandatory pitstops, why not this? Sounds like none of them are in favor of it?!


Double points is a amateur league trick you use when the last race of your regional motocross series is way upstate and no one is going to go because of exhaustion and maxed credit cards unless there is a major incentive. it's totally unnecessary in a pro sport where everyone turns up for every race.

I'm glad Vettel is making these comments. This is something you can do better as you age, as with age comes some credibility on matters where a sense of history is important. You also get better at talking to the media about topics which are more complex than the state of the tires. We saw Webber in such a leadership position on Bahrain in part because he was one of the older guys on the grid.


Because that would mean more points for Seb!

It's long past the time that Bernie was put out to pasture if afraid


I agree: Bonus points on a bogus track is totally absurd.

However, having the bonus points on a track like Interlagos would make an already crazy venue t o t a l y insane! All Fia has to do now is switch Abu Dabi with Interlagos.


DRS and artificial tyre rules (ie you must use both types of compounds) are also gimmicks yet no one complains about them...


"Yet no one complains about them"

Are you kidding?


It's such a crazy proposal, I think it's a smokescreen for something else.

Tried and tested Bernie politics, everyone focuses on the ridiculous while some sneaky change passes through - but what is it, or has it not appeared yet?


He is absolutely right: I still remember the first time I went to see F1 in Imola in 1988. I had been watching F1 on TV for years but it was the first time live and I can't forget the feeling I got from hearing the car coming around for the sunday morning warm-up as I walked toward the circuit and got close enough to feel the sound.


Ladies and Gentlemen, I have been a fan here in America for over 45 years enjoying races both here and in Europe. I remember paying less than 50 US Dollars for a weekend of thrills at the Watkins Glen track in the late sixths and actually being able to climb up in the sign at the end of start Finish straight in Monza to Jackie Stewart win there in 73 in a real F1 car! Tn the last ten years I have found my enthusiasm waning for the what I call the Contrived Sport of F1. It is Truly unfortunate that a group of ancient and Jaded Billionaires have taken the finest most exhilarating sport in the world and turned it into a class in high speed tire management on what seems to the rest of the world inferior tires, one tank of gas and cars that seem full of aero in turn loosing Aura. Now with V-6 turbos which may not be a bad thing but not a V-12 thing, we are now seeing our beloved sport turned into a NASCAR type Joke with Double points at the last race in a Middle East Sandbox at 500 or more Dollars a seat to observe from a quarter of a mile away. I am truly Disappointed.


Hey come on now...if you've been an F1 fan that long surely it has always been clear that Formula 1 is a contrived sport for jaded billionaires. As a fellow North American, need I remind you of silly races in a Las Vegas parking lot as merely ONE example where spectacle for the sake of money trumped actual competition?

Then there is the way Ferrari and a couple of other teams ALWAYS get their way, or that there are always teams and drivers that have no business on an F1 grid...

The long and the short of it is that BECAUSE F1 is considered the "pinnacle" of motorsport (and perhaps the pinnacle of ALL sport), its bright spotlight will always attract bored billionaires, celebrity sycophants, fly-by-night teams and drivers, and anyone else hungry for attention, excitement, money, women or fancy parties.


Thank god at least one driver isn't scared to open his mouth as the others sit back and watch as their means of income is turned into a real circus... The FIA should've charged with bringing the sport into disrepute...

James, who on the World Council came up with this one? Is is another scheme by Bernie to deflect interest from his court cases?

Please do some digging and let us know...


I really really struggle with these new rules! F1 is step by step in self-destruction mode. Common sense? Ha!

Let F1 die and start from scratch without all these self involved people who lost complete touch with realities.

Saying this as a loooong time fan!


James, anyway that FIA will relook at this rule or is it done & dusted!


Will the double points at last race make the second last race ridiculous?

Many taking new parts at the second last and take a penalty, even perhaps not finishing, to have an advantage in the last race?


I remember standing at the end of Hanger Strait during quali in 1994. Unforgettable. not quite an Avro Vulcan taking off, but in that league. Will a V6 really be anywhere near next year?!


Maybe i'm a bit cynical, but does anyone else think that the whole issue is just to keep people talking about/debating F1 for a while in the off-season; only to be magically reversed once the new cars come out and we all have something else to get our F1 teeth into?

If i'm right, it's working bloody well.

Must admit though, i'm looking forward to the fight over no.27.


Will this mean teams will look to optimise their car design to primarily suit the Abu Dhabi circuit? No more celebratory doughnuts because a final-race engine-failure could be catastrophic? What about the potential "number two driver" sniping a rival contender out of the race?

Worst. Idea. Ever.


Needless to say, I wholeheartedly agree with Vettle's words, for one very simple reason:

All of a sudden, the remaining races have lost considerable value, and they are, regardless of merit and degree of difficulty, half the value of the last race...Could the remaining tracks not sue F1 ?

If we wish to keep on calling F1 a sport, points should be gained on merit alone, and if by any chance the championship is won several races before the end, so be it. Do you wish to give more points? Let them be earned with pole and fastest lap.

The best thing that could happen would be an immediate departure by RBR and TR, as well as Vettel, from F1, and let's see what happens next year.

In every half reasonable sport, there have always been eras of domination, by teams or individuals, and those times come and go, without resorting to idiotic ideas like what we have seen lately. Sadly, Mr. Ecclestone's greed will soon kill this glorious endeavor.


I don't get what Seb is saying. Why would he be worried. If the car,....ehem, the driver is in a comfortable lead towards the end of the season, why would something drastically change in the last race???


I think this double points rule is a sham! Surely a better way forwards is to revers grids after qualifying (and award points in quail to incentivise getting pole even though that person then starts at the back).

This would mean there would be no more processional races, add a genuine level of excitement and keep things simple for the casual viewer.


"Surely a better way forwards is to revers grids after qualifying (and award points in quail to incentivise getting pole even though that person then starts at the back)."

Then everyone will have an incentive to qualify tenth/midfieldish, getting decent qualifying points while still being in with a realistic shot of a race win.

I'd sooner turn on the sprinklers than do the reverse grid gimmick. In fact after DRS, designed-to-degrade tyres, and double points for some GP's, the sprinkler idea no longer seems all that objectionable. That Bernie is very devious!


Reverse grids are a good idea on paper, but personally I don't like them.


Sad that F1 is starting to resort to gimmicks to spice up the show.... Always thought that they were above that stuff. I'm really starting to be concerned about the future direction of the sport. Slowly morphing into a lite version of NASCAR "racertainment" is just going to alienate casual and hardcore fans alike, IMHO. Hope they revisit this stuff sooner rather than later.


James, it would be great if you could go into more detail about how this rule change was decided upon. It would be interesting to find out who first proposed it, how long it was considered for, who was consulted and who voted for it and why.

I know you wrote about the working group who came up with it but I, as I'm sure many fans are, would be keen to know more about how they operate and how they reached a decision that seems so unanimously opposed elsewhere. I do wonder if it had less to do with the championship and more to do with Abu Dhabi paying for more prominence.

Your reporting on the subject has, as always, been first class.


Why do people always suggest giving a point for pole and fastest lap? How often did Vettel get both this year? He doesn't need any more points!


Good point 🙂


Here's an idea already mooted...

Keep the points system as is.

Give 5 points for pole

Give 5 point for fastest lap.

Give 5 points to constructor for fastest pit time...

However, if you want to continue with this whole lottery bussiness, drop 22 numbers in a hat, and let each driver draw his starting position...

Now drop in some more numbers and have them draw the laps on which they must pit...TWICE.

See, Mr Ecclestone, now i've made it EXCITINGLY stupid...not just stupid!!

Double points is going to dilute the value of the championship...

and i so do miss that beautiful screaming 3.5litre Ferrari V12, or the melodious Honda and Renault V10s...

Tornillo Amarillo

What is the impact of double points in the team budget?

I mean, with the double point system, teams would have to develop the car for the last race, while they are almost fully committed for the car of the next season, aren't they?


Not only that, but - as alexdhq pointed out in the original article - with extra points the teams will have bigger entry fees for the following year.


Well said Seb, nice to see a sense of responsibility for the history of the sport and what appeals to true fans.


I don't see how it will produce anything but unsatisfactory outcomes... If it's a close championship it's not nessesary and if it's not close, it can only produce results that forever leave the come from behind champion looking undeserving!


Personally, I’m no longer a fan of F1 after this year. I live in the Caribbean, the only reason I got my 4DTV sat setup was so I could watch F1. Engine changes,tyres and DRS has done me in.

I agree with most of you with the double points in the last race - its rubbish. The passion has gone from F1. It can be seen in the drivers faces after the race. What they have succeeded in doing to F1 is akin to giving all fielding positions in cricket baseball mitts and saying bowlers can only bowl underhand.

Let me tell you what I would love to see.

Extend the calender to 22 races. Make tyres that can be driven on. No DRS, no KERS, no push to pass. Enforceable salary cap is a must. Make the FIA hire the drivers, and pay the contracts, or some designated independent body. Bring back in-season testing in a big way. Then make every driver drive two races for every team during the season.

I will not be renewing my 4DTV subscription this year. I can get NASCAR on the cable I have. NASCAR, at least, panders to something exciting. Ain’t no push to pass there.


[I think the cars need to smell, the cars need to be loud, it needs to give you something that you don’t forget.”]



Excellent idea. I suggest that all the championships in the past are corrected according to this system. In that way we will not have a new rule. There will be some history behind it.


Vettel's 4 championships clearly give him an inch of safety from reprisals from the FIA for speaking out. Fair play to him, he is the only driver to stick his head out of the parapit and speak out.

It is a shame that drivers like Hamilton and Alonso appear to have kept quiet (presumably as they have the most to gain).


Good thing I don't own of of the tracks that has a financial arrangement with Bernie, Todt and Co. for a F1 event.

I'd sue them for devaluing my the value of my contract and ability to attract fans in relationship to Abu Dhabi.

Who in their right mind would want to attend or even watch my 'event' when it only provides half points to the end of season event? Very simply through this proposed discriminatory action my contract is worth considerably less. I demand financial compensation!

Chew on that cud for awhile..


He's right, the end.


I don't often like anything SV does or says, but everything he has said here is right on.


Wouldbe more funny if the race is started at the box with engines off. Then the drivers have to push the car a lap before they are allowed to enter it.

Perhaps then some heavier and probably stronger drivers get some benefit 😉


And if this does do the trick will they make the last two? last three? races double-points?

Why not skip the 'hoping and wishing' this will spice the show and just penalize whoever is leading at the season winds down? No different than DRS handicapping the one in front. BE's sprinkler idea looks like it's consistent with the philosophy of the great minds that came up with this, and of course too self-important to ask fans what they thought of it beforehand.


The most likely scenario is for the top two drivers to arrive at the last few races with a gap of say 10 points and leave with a gap of 60 or more points if one does very well and the other has a so-so race.

Why not have each team (or driver) pick one race where they will get double the points (provided they manage to score any)? They would have to make their selection before the beginning of the race weekend, and do it secretly so we would only find out at the end of the race! Now that would make for good drama...


What happens if someone dominates the championship again? Are we going to have a 100 points for the final race?? a 1000 points?? may as well just turn up for the last race!

Disgraceful idea


f1 is becomeing a bit of a farse.


Double points for Abu Dhabi makes no sense. Now there are some club racing where a race at random during the season is selected as a double points race, but it is designed to force teams to appear at every race.

The WEC has double points for one race (Le Mans) but that is because the race is 24 hours versus the six hour distances of the majority of WEC races.

Double points and the title decider at Abu Dhabi after two races in prime-time shows how the switch to pay television instead of FTA television can pay dividends. Instead of maximum television audiences in prime-time, a return to afternoon television is permissable with Abu Dhabi at 1 PM BST instead of the 7 PM BST (Austin) or 4 PM BST (Sao Paulo) races.

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