F1 Winter Break
Controversial double points rule for final F1 Grand Prix of season here to stay
Posted By: Editor   |  23 Jan 2014   |  8:57 pm GMT  |  174 comments

The controversial rule to award double points at the final race of the season is set to go ahead after a meeting in Geneva on Wednesday between Formula 1 team bosses where they did not attempt to overturn the ruling.

The idea, which was formed by F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone, first surfaced late last year with the idea of making it mathematically more difficult for the title to be decided several races before the end of the season.

At the time, reigning four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel described the plans to award 50 points rather than 25 for a race win at this year’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as “absurd”.

Earlier this week, Caterham team owner Tony Fernandes described the plan as a “fake fix” for problems which the sport needs to address.

Likewise, many fans, drivers and even Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo were against the idea while promoters of other Grands Prix on the 19-race calendar where unhappy that the Abu Dhabi race may be considered “more important” as a result.

But according to the BBC, it seems the rule is here to stay after none of the teams chose to raise issue with the idea at the meeting.

At the meeting, the team bosses also discussed the introduction of a cost cap in 2015 but they did not agree a figure for the limit of the spending. That will be discussed at a later date. The banning of tyre warmers was discussed but not yet introduced but a change has been made to the regulation about drivers stopping on the slow down lap after a race to save fuel. This will no longer be allowed.

The news comes ahead of the first launch of 2014 which take place tomorrow. McLaren will launch their 2014 challenger online, a day before Ferrari do the same thing.

Sauber launch online follow on Sunday, with Toro Rosso unveiling their car in the Jerez pit lane on Monday, a day before the opening day of the first pre-season test.

Mercedes, Caterham, Red Bull, Force India, Marussia and Williams are planning low-key roll-outs on the morning of the first test day on Tuesday while Lotus, who will not be in Jerez, have yet to confirm their plans.

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Very stupid plan, and a very big mistake. Ditch the plan, AND Ecclestone.


Wtf! This is so stupid and artificial. If someone loses the championship or gains a championship because of this ill stop watching.. This is one step closer to totally destroy this sport..


Couldn't agree more. Utterly stupid rule, alienates loyal fans which provide the core revenue stream as F1 moves away from free to air broadcast.

Dimitar Kadrinski

AND Ecclestone +1


How quickly you forget it is not about racing it is abut the show....bring it on....the circus of F1 is about to take its final bow....LOL


Agreed. More short term reactive thinking. Much like the continuous rule changing done mid nineties that eventually hobbled Ferrari/Schumacher.


Oops meant mid-2000's


Hobbled by design


I wonder how long it will be until Vettel goes from calling it "absurd" to exciting/entertaining?

For fans, there's no longer ANY reason to have ANY hope in the sustainability of F1's future.

The TEAMS are clearly unable and/or unwilling to acknowledge fans' concerns, let alone fight for the F1 WE want.

It's now incumbent upon us to vote w/ our wallets by switching to an exciting, interesting, fan-friendly series like DTM.

Sorry James. Maybe you can start covering touring cars tho and so keep your readership?


No one seems to like the double points, but no one objected to it.

They didn't agree a cost cap and probably never will.

Indycars seem to manage with no safety issues without tyre warmers.

F1 teams often talk about what they need to do in the best interests of the sport, yet they can never rise above their own self interest.

Maybe one day the FIA may grow a pair and govern it properly.


The arrogance is breath-taking, no-one is in support of this from the venues, drivers to the fans and media. Only in this sport is his level of arrogance permitted in the face of fan opinion.

The big teams will develop entirely new packages for this race and the small teams will develop their car specifically for this race in the hopes of securing left-over points.

Costs will increase, the remainder of the venues are devalued and F1 officially crosses firmly into 'it's a knock-out' territory.

Many fans have threatened to abandon the sport over the last few years but it's all bluster and we stay with it because we love it. Now, however, F1 will see some of that drop off in support actually happen - they have gone too far.

And the Teams did not object, they are every bit as cowardly and self-serving and the people who run the sport are arrogant.


I agree, a Stupid rule!

It also seems to fly in the face of cost cutting as teams will have to push development through to the end of the season.


"Indycars seem to manage with no safety issues without tyre warmers"

What about Zanardi's crash after spinning into oncoming traffic leaving the pits? Agree with your other points though entirely.


+1 Double points absurd..


So I watch only the final race, which is the one that matters


Quite the reverse. Surely you would consider the WDC leader after Brazil to be the World Champion. So why watch the last race at Abu Dhabi?


Maybe if we all skip the last race then it will matter..


+1!!! I already just torrent the races so I don't even have to FFW through commercials w/ my DVR, as that was too much of an inconvenience (note: i don't torrent broadcasts to which i'm not entitled, just the same ones from the ppv provider who's currently ripping me off.)


I'd say the opposite.

Watch every race bar the final one


F1 has both sold and souled out.


I wanted to order my Sons an my F1 tickets for our home GP at Hockenheim the coming days together with some friends. I guess I will skip is since I will not be following F1 next season if that rule stays in place. That rule is absolutely absurd, neither do I want my favourite driver to win or lose the title because of it.


You are telling me you are a big enough fan to fork our F1 ticket prices to see a race but your last straw was double points. I call BS on your fake outrage.

If you are still watching this pure sport with DRS, speck almost everything, points systems that see teams get a hundred points in three events, requirements for two tire compounds in a race, tire limits on weekends, no testing, and on and on, then you are not going to quit over a double point finish.

I think the idea is stupid but so is hyperventilating hyperbole about never watching.


Its called the last straw / straw that broke the camels back... On top of all the poor 2014 regulations. I went to Melbourne & Singapore last year (Germany & Hungary the yest before) - this year I am not even going to pay a TV subscription. I feel the same as my German friend.


Shame on the teams for not raising the issue. It just goes to show that the fans are taken for granted in F1. With a multitude of media platforms allowing fans to express their opinions there is not a single excuse for not raising this issue.

As a fan I hope the double points ruin what would otherwise be a close end to the the final race of the year.


'Yeah this idea is terrible! Why did we all agree to it now we've seen the onslaught of abuse from drivers, fans and all the other track owners?'

'So you'll all tell Bernie where to stick it then?'

'Oh steady on old chap, that seems a bit extreme...'




the bottom line is, the teams were frightened to fallout with Bernie over this issue.


Absolutely. It's truly amazing the way he keeps them all in check, even with the multiple legal threats hanging over him. But once again these 'racing titans' blustered and moaned in public, agreeing with the fans and drivers and ex-drivers and all the track owners other than Abu Dhabi who (mostly) agreed that it was either a fake fix or a total sporting disgrace - even Monte was going into every press interview saying it was a bad idea and he'd make sure it was discussed and removed at this meeting he was calling...then they all show up and like a pack of children nobody wants to say 'boo' to scary old Bernie.

I understand it's difficult to face down the supreme ring master of the circus with his billions and rather well known history of vindictive reprisals against those who stand against his ideas - but then just say so to the public. Don't make all this sound and fury about it being a disgrace when the public are outraged and then meekly lie down when it comes to the crunch. Just say 'it was Bernie's idea and Bernie gets to win on this one.'


Just say ‘it was Bernie’s idea and Bernie gets to win on this one.’...

Bernie probably told them not too!


This is an important point.

So often the teams publicly side with the fans but then in the backroom meetings they secretly sign-off on all these changes.


If the field is tight with the new cars, there would be no need to have the double points, champion will be decided towards end of season

If there is a clear front runner, it will make no difference anyway (ask Vettel)

So it only adds a lottery chance based on a good/bad result in that one race

If that's the criteria, have Ron and Christian and Luca roll dice and see who wins, never mind the cars and the drivers


Or have Bernie pick a card from a hat (full of Sebastian cards)

Dimitar Kadrinski



F1 is turning into an episode of the Road-Runner... what next... the FIA/Wile E Coyote issue a rule saying they have the right to throw tacks in the path of the 1st place car should they deem it necessary so the guy in 2nd place can win? Or may they grant themself the right to put up fake diversion signs to confuse the guy the 1st place, so the 2nd place drive and over-take him?

C'mon Bernie is gone.... silly season is over!



It looks like things are going that way. Simplest might be to throw a safety car if the lead car gets more than 1sec ahead of the pack, or run the all but the last lap behind the safety car, and finish off with a 1 lap point on cold tyres (should help with the challenge of completing race distance on 100kg of fuel too)


Are Tony Fernandes and Luca di Montezemolo alone to side with the fans on this issue?


They didn't side with the fans when they needed to. They made a song and dance about it and then chickened out of committing to their views at the meeting. Fernandes' team is small fry in comparison, but Ferrari's importance to the sport is enshrined in the extra money given to them just for turning up. They had the most power of anybody to object to this new rule.

A line has to be drawn somewhere and I will not be watching for the first time since I started in 1996. This level of contempt from FOM and the teams against the most negative reaction to a rule change I can remember in all my years watching, can't be overlooked. There are several other great series that don't compromise their sporting credentials as grossly as F1 that are well covered on TV.


Agreed. They did not side with the fans at all.


Well they didn't bring it up or instruct thier team representative to bring it up either so I wouldn't start praising them over the others.....

Something odd is going on if the teams all profess to not like the idea/rule, especially with Bernie currently de-powered and STILL they don't bring it up...something else is related here that we aren't hearing about.

I still have to say, I dont mind the rule. I appreciate and understand the intent and if it's the same rule for everybody then what the hell?

If at the very least to stop yet ANOTHER Red Bull "LIKE" runaway....Be that Red Bull or anyone else.


This news is kinda heart breaking! Hoping for one of two things now:

1) The title is wrapped up at the penultimate race

2) The teams boycott the final race 😛

If it does go down to the wire, I'll just have to see the real wdc according to the usual points award!

And still hoping this is challenged!

On a side note. Mclaren & Santander announce renewal of partnership. Shortly after Ron Dennis was reappointed. I wonder if this suggests the return of a certain Spaniard for 2015 😉


IN regard to your observation regarding Santander renewing the deal, I can't help but think about the Martin's talk with Alonso so I'd be willing to say Alonso new he is going to Mclaren before Kimi got signed up. I'll go even further and say Ferrai new too but didn't want to repeat Kimi situation from not so long ago hence Kimi signed alongside Alonso. Nice transition and I will bet my money Alonso will be either supporting Kimi or his car gonna have issues next season.


I don't plan on watching any F1 this year, sad. Will be te first time since 1994 that I don't watch a race.


Getting there myself. Used to get up/stay up religiously or "taped" the race--banned the children and wife from TV on race day. Stopped doing that. More and more just google the result. Need to open the formula back up, allow more technical variation/innovation, the suspense of late 90's early-mid 2000's is gone--fuel load was a mystery--tire choice--didn't know when they would pit, didn't know if the car would explode. Now just watch the start--go clean the bathrooms-- watch the finish.


That sounds very familiar, may be its our age rather than F1 that is to blame?


Really, with all the different engine developments, no blown diffusers, Energy recovery AND Kimi at Ferrari....you won't watch to see what happens....

Can't have been much of a fan then... 🙂

I can't say some of these developments/changes thrill me either but I do intend to watch with baited breath.

So many different story lines...which engine is going to come out on top. Which engine is going to blow up speactacularly on the warm up lap.....will Kimi beat Alonso. Will Jan beat Jensen, how will Kamui go, can he do a banzai pass in a caterham? Will dropping blown diffusers bring Red Bull closer to the field, will Mark Webber finally beat Vettel with no diffus...no wait 🙂 and so on....


So, a lot of teams complain in the press & then say nothing at the meeting...

It will be a hollow world championship for a driver if he goes into the final race 49 points behind the points leader and in the final race the points leader gets a DNF & the guy lying second gets the win. That just seems plain wrong.

On a better note, check out Renault's "Power Unit", it is a work of art:



I... I'm speechless.

To put it as simply as possible: Because of this rule, I won't be watching Formula 1 this year.

To quote Fernando Alosno: "I don't consider F1 anymore a sport."

To the VERY few who think that this isn't a bad idea, and 1 race hopefully won't mess with things too badly... Just wait to see how quickly this morphs into 3 double-points races, then 5, then a random triple-points qualifying session, then medals, double medals, a winner-take-all final race...

I'm finally off to find another good racing series to follow. Good-bye Formula 1, the sport that this American tried so desperately to love for 25 years. 🙁


Me too, sadly.

F1, to me, has been in slow decline for over a decade, at least now the decline has accelerated. Wishing you a quick, painless and financially devastating death, F1. Hope you can enjoy a rebirth as motorsport series that demonstrates what sport is. Greed might be a sport to some, but sport is more than greed.


Yep, agree. It is the thin end of a wedge and the only answer fans have against this kind of stupidity is to withold their wallet & their time from the sport. I find this easy to do given the host of other rules & changes that I also dislike (DRS, tyre quality, tyre rules, no refueling, 4 engines per season, qualifying format, etc).


Double points is a farce, what a shame it is going to happen, I shudder to think of what else will happen in the future to keep things interesting.


They might consider doing what the Australian V8s did back in the early 90s, where the top 5 qualifiers then had draw their starting positions out of a lucky draw. This was televised and painful/comical to watch, as was the carnage that usually followed in the race itself.

Or maybe give the pole position holder an opportunity to start at the rear, with the offer of triple points for whatever he earns, to encourage him to start back? Risk v reward.

Or maybe ... and here's a novel thought, we could just leave it alone, have some plain racing, and leave the gimmicks ...


This strikes me as a solution to a problem that didn't exist.

Does anyone aside from Bernie think it is a good idea? I've not heard anyone from within F1 circles come out and publicly support it.


I'd take a guess that as well as Bernard, the Abu Dhabi circuit owners love the idea as well.

Wonder if it was their idea or Bernie's?

I don't think they all realise that creating something so fake, instead of adding a decent overtaking spot to the final sector of their track, would repel so many people.

The disaster scenario is if someone blags an unimpressive 3rd place but with double points takes the championship from the leader who has their car failure at that race. 🙁


This is a great point.

I am extremely cynical about Bernie now probably more than most fans and certainly more than most in the paddock who treat, what now appears a doddery old man, as a messiah. He may be convicted in the upcoming trials and if he is not far enough away from F1 it will become tarnished too.

This is a ridiculous idea


Agree - of the last 4 seasons how many last races have decided the WDC?


It's surprising especially as teams and drivers didn't seem to like it. Perhaps someone has deep pockets.



How aware are the FIA/FOM/Teams that around 90% of people (from most surveys I've come across) disagree with this ridiculous double points idea? Are their heads buried in the sand or they just don't give a damn what the real fans think?

With the shift toward pay TV in F1, you would think that they would need to retain as many hard core fans as possible, instead of trying to make them feel disillusioned.


Really ...hard core fans....they do not care about anything but MONEY



Could you set up a poll on this site?

It would be interesting to see what the people off this site think?

Yes or No


This is garbage.


The double points to apply in final race of 2014, when one looks it objectively in true sense of the world between 1st and 2nd ia 14 points.in fair dinkum department it seems two teams Ferrari and Mercedes fighting it out with the Red Bull there about,the rest of the field have the job ahead to mould the chassis in tune with the engine in the early part of the competition, one feels that Ferrari are very confident about theirs chances in 2014 that they didn't use their "Veto" to disallow to be part of the sporting regulation for 2014 the double points awarded in the last race.


It is incredible that one man can make such an enormous decision like this. Could Gregg Dyke or Sepp Blater make decisions like this virtually unchecked?

For a sport with so much money involved, I'm amazed frankly that one mans view is so widely trusted by budget holders. Bernie's previous ideas have been resoundly ridiculed. Bernie appears so completely out of touch with the fan base, or even what constitutes modern sport. There is a reason that promoters don't usually have such influence on the rules.

F1 needs a sea change in how its run if it wants to be seen firstly as a sport, but perhaps even more importantly as legit.

Personally I hope Vettel benefits from this idiotic concept and wins the title at the last race. The egg on Bernie's face would be a delight.


The FIA/FOM/Teams don't really listen to fans, they say they do but money talks.

If you wanted to ensure a close finish to a championship season, wouldn't the first thing you do is to change the race points distribution!

The whole thing is a joke, you can take part in 18 races and earn your position, but it can all be undone in one race because someone thinks that is worth twice that of any other race.


just bought my tickets for WEC @ Silverstone, me and 2 kids, weekend camping all for less than £100.

I've watched F1 for nearly 50 years, never miss a race, total fanatic, NOT anymore, F1 has lost it big time.

bye bye


Shame on bernie and shame on F1!


It's a bad idea, but some people are not watching F1 this year because of it? Really. That is your loss over an issue which certainly isn't big enough to warrant no longer watching. The real fans will stay and follow the sport they truly love.

Colombia Concalvez

James, i just heard that Sam Michael will be the team boss of McLaren, what can you say about it ?.


It's a pity they are doing this in a season where attrition could very well be a deciding factor. It isn't needed this year and is a superfluous rule that could backfire by possibly making the outcome of the championship akin to a lucky lottery win. How can you root for a team with this hanging over the season? Have they really thought this through?


So what would be funny now is for VET to win #5 after being 30 points behind going in to the last race.


F1 really doesn't deserve the fan's it has. ..(left)

Shame on Eccleston, the FIA and most certainly the Teams, after all they had plenty of time to react and are well aware of the outrage caused by the proposal.

As I said they don't deserve us.


This has got to be the worst decision in a long while.

DRS, mandatory pit stops, rubbish tyres, forcing top ten to start on qually tyres, now double points for the final race.

When is this insanity going to stop; its not sport its manufactured racing.

If we want to see the racing we all love then the only solution is to have cars that are capable of exceeding the speeds they do now; only then will you see the most skilled, fastest and gutsiest drivers winning races.

May as well get rid of qually all together and do a grid spot lottery draw on Sunday morning like in horse racing.

Or better yet expand the season to 22 races and every driver has to start each race in a different position covering pole to 22nd throughout a season - would love to see Marussia starting on pole.


I hope Vettel walks away with that as well.


I don't believe any of you quitters who are not going to watch. New engines, all new cars, the great internal Ferrari battle, and you are driven off by points? No way.

Sports have rules. We can wine about them and yes even leave over them. But I can't believe anyone accepted DRS but will quit over double points.

I rank you right up there with all the Vettel haters who worship at the feet of Schumacher who as I recall was soundly disliked because he won too much. Can we all grow up just a little.



That's nuts. You spent HUGE dollars to watch DRS cars but are going to skip potentially the most interesting year in F1 in 20+ years over a rule that would not even have affected last season?

I'd hate too see what other tiny things in your life make you change so much. Hope they don't change the label on you favorite beer.


Just watch me.

I paid for sky and 2 race tickets in 2012.

I paid for sky and 2 race tickets in 2013.

In 2014 just gonna read about it here, unless I am very much mistaken about the rules & formula thats all I'm gonna do.


Hear, Hear.


public cant be trusted on these sort of issues and dont really know what they are arguing for or against.

We dont want some rubbish team to blunder to the title cos they were lucky and the engine didn't blow up in the first 2 races. At least this way the teams with the form that work hard will still be at the front at the end.


Cannot believe it. Bernie is an idiot for thinking this thing up, and the team bosses even more idiotic for going with his idea.


Did Bernie think this thing up? Or was it a proposition put to him? Maybe there is more to this than we know about.


If anything shows the ambivalence F1 teams/FIA hold towards its fanbase, it's this.



We've heard from technical personnel from all teams telling us how difficult it will be to make 100kg last the 305km. Now they have to complete another lap.

This new "post-race fuel sample" rule will lead to cars crossing the finishing line in the pit lane.

Enjoy your tv pictures, Bernie.


its wrong, its a gimmick, it should go.


With the BEEB losing MotoGP to BT Sport for 2014, and F1 on Sky, I had to choose which to go for.

I'm not interested in fuel saving / saving engines and gearboxes, silly tyre rules, artificial overtaking solutions.

So I cancelled Sky last year and went for BT Sport, it's a no brainer really. The new points system merely reinforces my decision.

I'll keep an eye on F1 but no more then that. I remember staying up for Suzuka to see Hill win, so it's a shame how it's gone.


So to quote Hill at Suzuka with Murray... so you've got to stop, because you've got a lump in your throat...

Losing the Motogp in 2014 is a real pain for me too, interesting that it will force either a BT MotoGP or Sky F1 decision for some. No wonder some go for live streams and torrents.

It all points to BBC not caring about the motorsport audience at all. Plus, after going back on their F1 contract beyond 2011, have ditched their technical man Gary A, dropped to less than half the races live so seem like they may be preparing to bin it altogether.

Enjoy the bikes, sure you'll miss Kimi Alonso fights though.


So what if the championship is decided before the last race? Artificially skewing the points to try to avoid it is ridiculous. What are the teams playing at not trying to fight it? Have you any idea James? Is there some political manoeuvring going on elsewhere that means they don’t want to rock the boat over this?


I think fans should boycott watching the final race. kill the ratings for the race with the double points.... if the rule has no commercial value then they will change it.


Do double points mean 11th place gets a point, or is double nothing still nothing?


Just had a thought, is it a case that the teams haven't objected(just for this year), as they see the last race as an opportunity to make up for the inevitable unreliability at the start of the season ?


Yet more fiddling to contrive the results

If Bernie wants to reduce the chance of the championship being decided before the end of the season then go back to the original points system. I.e 10-9-8-7 etc

Double points is a total switch off. I'm surprised the commercial sponsors don't complain


Terrible idea.

Though I guess instead of optimising their cars for Monza or Monaco, the less well funded teams will now optimise for Abu Dhabi, to maximise their potential gain in terms of Constructor's points, and thus prize money.

What was wrong with the winners being the driver and team that has been the best over the course of a season?



You must see that many fans are becoming disillusioned and F1 seems so obsessed with trying to attract a new audience that's its playing a dangerous game by taking its current fanbase for granted.

When you really look at it the only outcome was more talk and deferment of the real issues instead of making real changes now.

The teams are too scared to stand up to Bernie, it's time for Jean Todt to show whether he is a real leader or a puppet happy to play second fiddle



- The double points stay.

- No discussion on ugly noses...

- No figure for the cost cap, no method of policing it.

- And finally, no mention on doing something about the SHAMEFUL discrimination against taller drivers.

I still don't like it, but I am no longer ashamed to say it:

We ABSOLUTELY need another Max Mosley.


I will not be watching any F1 races this year.I will find a racing series to watch, and get interested in, where the results are not manipulated.


Good luck.

You will find balance of power weight changes, power restricting, and on and on because everyone has found the same thing, fans like close races and close championships and check out when they don't get it.

Here you have had everything they have done to the sport still ends up with one dominant team and driver much of the time. The best find ways to win under whatever rules are thrown at them. I say again, this rule would not have even come into affect this year.


Awful gimmick for a truly awful Grand Prix.


So I have followed F1 for as long as I can remember (1968 being my earliest recollection ofthe sport as a young lad). I have watched almost EVERY race for every season up until last year. I though 2011 was a great year, despite all the complaints about DRS and tyres etc. However, with all of the off-track crap and directionless tinkering with the sport, I got tired of it during 2012 and didn't watch every race. Come 2013 I watched (to my recollection) just 3 races.

I will be going to Melbourne for the start of this year, but only as I have been promising my wife for years that we would one day go to that event. So, as a treat for our 25th wedding anniversary (which coincides with the event) we are going. But I hold gave fears that I will find F1 the most boring event of the weekend, with V8 supercars and Porsche Carrera Cup much more enticing to watch.

With the radical changes to F1 being implemented for Melbourne, if it proves to be as dull as I fear then that is me done with F1. I probably won't even watch casually on free-to-air if one of the Asian races coincide at a sensible time with me sitting in front of a TV, and I certainly won't pay for it.

Maybe I am in the minority. Maybe the court procedings that Mr Ecclestone is subject to will force a change of control and allow a new direction. I doubt it as the same people in charge of F1 teams have consistently proven that they put their self-interests ahead of working together for the good of the sport, despite this approach being likely to lead to the ultimate death of the sport. I hope the parting is good in Melbourne as I fear it is the farewell party for me.


So in other words, you find spec racing more interesting as that is what you get in V8 and Porsche Cup. SO you are pro spec F1?


Actually - yes. For me, the most important thing is close, hard racing (with overtaking) and the drivers pushing the limits to win the race. Spec racing, as you refer to it, provides some of the most exciting racing, from karts through formula ford, to Porsche Carrera Cup an d 2013 in V8 Supercars was a stellar year (if you ignore the farce they created in artificially bringing Nissan to the front of the pack). Don't one-make series always give us great racing?

F1 has lost it's way. Too much is decided off-track and they don't seem to know what product they are offering anymore. The pinnacle of Motorsport? I don't think so. So what is it when they have much lower rev limits, have to nurse their tyres so they can only go flat out for one lap, have to slow even more to save enough fuel to get to the end? I have long believed there ARE things that could/should be changed to make the sport more exciting - such as steel brakes to increase braking distances (critical to corner entry overtaking moves), less aero and more mechanical grip, tyres that last the whole race with an option to use tyres that last half the race but offer more speed. I am a fan of DRS ( one of the few it seems) but they need to cut back on its use at some tracks.

Amazingly, I don't mind the look of the new cars. But the sound - it's like a touring car. The personalities also - it seems it is the off-track team members that seek the exposure these days and the drivers aren't allowed to have personalities, which is why Kimi is so popular now as he doesn't care and says what he sees. I wonder if Ferrari will clamp down on that like they did to Fernando when he displayed a bit of real emotion?).

So I stand by what I said. If (and it was "if" not a foregone conclusion) the F1 racing is dull and I continue to find the racing in other categories such as V8SC and Porsche more exciting then why should I waste my time watching F1 when there is plenty of choice in other forms of Motorsport that give me the close, hard, exciting racing (which includes overtaking and flamboyant personalities)?


Hahaha - you doughnut. I have been a fan for 45+ years. I've been more than happy with the majority of those years, even the Schumacher years that many derided as boring and unexciting. I was expressing my opinion (isn't that the point of these forums?) about how F1 is apparently losing its identity and direction and, as a result, alienating a very long standing fan. And, yes, the double points debacle is just one piece of that complex puzzle that is totally out of place in the F1 picture IMHO.

Most manufacturers have now posted samples of their engines running and I can accept your point about not hearing an engine in anger yet. However, the samples of sound files, together with my 45+ years of being in and around motorsports as a competitor, fan and photographer give me, what I believe, is an above average level of experience.

However, the main point of my post is to provide some feedback to the sport, as James' site is read by fans and industry insiders alike. If they are not worried about losing the likes of me as their new direction attracts more and younger fans, all well and good. If my view is representative of a significant percentage of existing fans and their changes DO NOT do the job of attracting a younger audience then the sport is dying on its feet and I am sure they would want that feedback rather than it come as a surprise that no one wants to watch or invest in the sport any longer.

My sincere hope is that the changes have the desired effect and the sport becomes more exciting again. Howerver, as I said, my fear is that these are the wrong moves and the sport is no longer something that grabs my attention. You will then have no further worry that I will clog this open forum with my inane rankings and leave it entirely to you to police the minds and attitudes of the ongoing F1 fans. I'm sure you are more than up to the job!


So this is not about double points at all. You just chose this thread to declare you are quitting F1.

Question, how can you piss and moan about the sounds of cars that have never turned one lap anywhere?

I stand by my statement that your reaction and many other quitters are those of individuals who will never be happy with the series, a series, period. Your complaints show that you are not really an F1 fan in the first place.

I'm all for voicing what we don't like but no one ever convinced anyone of anything by stomping out.


Bill, I am in the same position as you. Hope we enjoy Melbourne but F1 is fading unfortunately after all these years of enthusiasm. I will show a passing interest at technical development only. V8's may be worth a look.


As many above have indicated,the interest in F-1, and particularly accross the Pond here in the U.S. hasn't been easy to maintain. As a life-long Road Racig participant, official and fan, though it's been pretty easy to do, even when we only had the Sports Car Graphic and Autoweak publications to depend on for the latest happenings.

The 2013 fiasco of NBC (instead of Speed Channel) picking up the TV rights and their inept programming and lack of information about which one of their channels was carrying what bit or piece of the action taught some of us that we can find more productive and just as enjoyable ways to spend our weekend time. While some of the events were actually watched, the point was certainly made that "live action" wasn't the only way to get the information.

Now the rulling junta (whoever that really is) has shown that the fans who really do love the events aren't all that important and are going for the audience who lives for the crashes and suspense of a contrived program -"professional" wrestling comes to mind.

Just plain sad.


I hate this idea and I've been an F1 fan for 40 years. This is taking it too far. If Ferrari can't win the title fair and square, then shame on them. The while veto power they hold is about the only rule I can think of that is more disgusting than the double point finale. I've never been more disappointed. I wish we'd get evolutionary rules instead of, "lets scrap the whole working system" ideas. In my opinion, 2013 was one of the best seasons in a long while. We all know Red Bull cleaned up again, but gee wiz, they got there by steps.. evolutionary steps, while the other teams changed directions many many times. Look at the pull rod vs push rod front ends that caught Ferrari and Mclaren both out for years. Just stupidity to gain some aerodynamic advantage that Red Bull didn't seem to have a problem with. Anyway, rambling lol


Dumb idea. What about the long and glorious history and traditions of the sport...??

Dumb Dumb dumb.


THIS IS SPORT NOT A FAIR GROUND GAME, or a bloody game show where you can show a joker or have a bruisey bonus..!!!

Please if anyone else knows another sport that has had I stupid idea like this, please inform us??

In any another sport????

Tell you what "Tiger" on the 18th hole of the open you can have a double double birdie!!!

From now on in the FA Cup final, if you score a goal in the last five minutes it counts for double, or the last game of the season!!!

I could go on and on…….But the point is…..



P.S Shame on everyone that was in THAT MEETING…..

SHAME ON YOU ALL, FOR NOT THINKING ABOUT THE SPORT FIRST, just thinking how it might affect you and your team, well you should all have STOOD UP AS ONE and said, OI Nooo NOT IN MY SPORT.

SHAME ON YOU ALL……………!!!!!!

(I am so SO ANGRY……..YOU ARE ALL A BUNCH OF BACK BONELESS T********………!!!!!!!!)


This is completely ridiculous, if this rule is created to generate more interest but most of the people don't like it, don't they think that maybe it will do the opposite thing? Those guys up there have really big egos and can't see that they are wrong and the team principals don't help also... If this rule stays I just hope the champion - WDC and WCC - is defined in Brazil so they can see if their stupid idea worked at all


Seems a bit of a crazy idea. Instead, how about each team is given an egg at the start of the race. They driver must balance the egg on a spoon as they drive around the circuit. A dropped egg is basically a drive through penalty to get a new egg. The winner of the race hands the egg to the FIA rep who must then eat it to prove that it isn't fake. The eggs are also stamped with a unique serial number (or GUID for you software engineers out there) that validates it to be a genuine race egg.


4g plus cornering and braking, it would be a scrambled egg by the end - but I like the concept. A bit like the Jackie Stewart 'keep your ball on the bonnet ' challenge from the 1980's.


I think we could find that some teams bias their vehicle development to suite Abu dabi. A team from the bottom half of the grid could get 10 races in without a point and bank everything on getting a sub P10 placing in the last race. Could mean millions $ to them at season end.

Tony Fernandes is right. Its a fake fix. It will generate some fake excitement too.

Last words - If you had a presidential election and the votes on the last day of polling counted for double, would you vote any other day?


And to make the final race really interesting the leader of the WDC won't be allowed to race..........

Stupid nonsense rule this double points.

Bring on the clowns. Oh wait they're the rule makers.


James its incredible that such a huge majority of people dont want this yet F1 management dont care. I have read many comments online and even in person of oeople saying "..right thats the last straw I skipping F1 this year ".

Despite the excitement I had around the new formulas driver pairings- Im really lacking motivation to watch F1 now (after 30years).Certainly not night races held at aust night time in countries that have questionable ruling regimes!.

Perhaps that is the answer - perhaps if we all skip Abu Dhabi then Bernie &CVC can see we mean business and a certain huge loss of business will open their eyes !


Hi James

Do Ferrari only have an option to use their veto once a year? It seems weird that LDM didn't use it even though he disagrees with absurd new rule


Having never missed a race for 9 years I'm not watching F1 anymore because of this. it's not racing through skill but by lottery. It's ridiculous, full stop.


James I've been a fan of F1 for a couple of decades now, I might be in the minority but my response to this is... Who cares? The last four years has been a Red Bull romp. Their design team is better than anyone else. Their leader driver has only been the best driver in one of those four years. It's been pathetically boring even assuming there was any title challenger. Last year if it wasn't for Mercedes and their illegal test Red Bull would have wrapped it up even sooner. So if they want to introduce double points, who cares, so long as the rules are the same for everybody I'm fine. They can I introduce booby traps ala wacky races for all I care. I just want competition, not one team with a ridiculous advantage year after year.


Didn't we just year before last start out with like 6 different drivers from like 5 teams win the first six races. Wow it is hard to make some of you happy.


Does this mean Abu Dhabi will have pay double the hosting fee?


Poetic justice would be Seb winning his fifth title by 1 point at the last race, after trailing the entire season. I think even his detractors would take some satisfaction from this, if it were to happen, only to illustrate what a stupid rule this is.


This shows a) How out of touch Ecclestone is, and b) How no one's got the gonads to stand up to him. Disappointing.


Correct on both points.


So they're keeping the double points. Fine, there's nothing much we can do about it now except try to enjoy what we've got.

But does this mean that Abu Dhabi has to pay double the fees to Bernie? They should 😉


Double points for final race - absolute stupidity. F1 has lost its way. Sounds like a markerters brainwave but the wires became crossed.

Already have tickets for Melbourne but will not be following F1 very closely from March on.


Ok, let's put it like so:

Say Seb is 49 points in front of Alonso or Raikkonen, the latter two of who I am quite fond of, and I ain't particularly fond of Seb.

Seb DNFs, Alonso / Raikkonen takes the win for a full 50 points.

I'd still rather this stupid rule not in place and have Seb win the WDC instead. This rule makes the victory so hollow.

From what I remember, it's the TV companies who dreamt of this as they were unhappy with last year's final race with little audience. They probably felt "oooo make them push harder for final race by introducing this silly rule of double points". They have absolutely noooooooooooooo idea F1 isn't about pushing hard then you'll definitely yield rewards. Stop letting these TV companies have a say in how the sport should be run.


Unfortunately, they are a large part of the F1 revenue stream so they are bound to want a say in how things are run. This is just the start of their increasing demands, beyond the race schedule that has always been their's to control.


This sport (correction business) is broken. It is appalling that team principals could not voice their disapproval of such an absurd idea. The sport then wonders why it fails to attract sponsorship money. Perhaps there should be points for a lucky color? And there is no surprise that they fail to agree on a cost cap. The sport will spend itself into oblivion. People watch formula 1 for the drivers. Not for the gearboxes, tyres, front wings end plates and the exotic materials they use. Perhaps they just don't care if we watch? Perhaps they can just watch and talk about themselves?


Poorly thought out, infantile and, judging by the comments above, almost totally without fan support.

Very disappointed with this turn of events especially as the new rules are likely to make this a very unpredictable season already.



FIA and respective rule makers are a bunch of old crooks. If they are so out of this reality I propose another mutiny from Teams.

I hope that everything – even the 22nd place in Driver’s championship is decided before the final race.


Half price Silverstone tickets please


I bet this rule enables Vettel to snatch the 2014 title at the final race. Typical!


*sigh* This should be an exciting part of the year. Cars are being revealed and winter testing is about to start, meaning we can all waste far too much time on this site trying to put some meaning to the testing times.

When I read stories about the new engine formula, the new aero regs and think of a potential shake up of the field, I start to get excited and itching for the first Free Practice session, so I can finally see the cars go around the track.

But then stories like this come up and I remember that, despite all the potential for greatness this year, everything that's wrong in F1 still exists. Pirelli have a new 3 year deal, DRS is still wasting our time, and now we have this, the latest challenger for "****est gimmkik of the season". And it reminds me that all the potential is squandered on a formula that simply doesn't allow for good, fair racing.


A sad day for the F1.

Not surprising, though. Current team bosses only tend to think about the immediate future, and perhaps this last race is then viewed as an opportunity. And to hell with long term consequences.

This is where Ecclestone & FIA should have intervened to steer F1 away from such ridiculous ideas. Unfortunately, Mr. E. seems to have lost his touch completely, and also has other problems now to worry about.

I am very surprised about FIA and Jean Todt, though. He should have known better.


This rule is going to make Formula 1 even more artificial than it already is - I think it will be a hollow world championship if a driver wins because of Abu Dhabi.


A hollow 1st, a hollow 2nd too, and 3rd and 4th and 5th. Drivers and teams. You telling me a team that gets a podium in Japan is gonna get outscored by a team coming 6th in Abu Dhabi (or whatever position I don't even care anymore).


If FIA wants drama, why not have a 'regular season' of, 20 rounds then go to a 'play offs' weekend with only the top four TEAMs competing, all starting from zero points but with reverse grid based on drivers' finishing positions in regular season ?

Equally stupid as double points, so should stand a chance......


It is quite curious all of this. When Ferrari had their dominating streak in the early/mid 2000's Bernie was challenged about their domination. His response: "...the other teams should try harder". I would suggest that if Ferrari were still dominating, his response would be the same. But now that another team is dominating, the mans thinking has changed. It is a historical fact that the major teams domination in F1 is cyclical. This double points malarkey is nothing short of a joke, and does not reward consistency. I have always said that 3 championship trophies should be awarded each year. 1 for Ferrari, and the other 2 for the team and driver who race hard and do the best job throughout the whole season. The championship is become more contrived and manipulated each year...oh well, it is Bernies toy I guess. Thanks James, my spleen has just been vented.


If they awarded no points for the first 19 races of the season. Then award them for the last race of the year this would guarantee the title fight would go down to the last race of the year.

With ideas like this i could work for Bernie!!


You know, I don't get the outrage over the double points. For much of it's life the WDC has not been about who simply accumulates the most points over the season. We have often had systems where only the best so many results count towards the final tally, or the best so many in each half of the season. This has from time to time resulted in situations where the front runner could only marginally increase his points by winning (because he had to drop the points from some other result) or the guy who scored the most points across the season did not end up WDC (EG 1988 when Prost scored 105 points to Senna's 94, but after the dropped points the tallies were 87 and 90 and Senna was crowned champion). These systems seem unsatisfactory now, but points systems cannot be perfect and have been adjusted in the past to keep the WDC going longer. So maybe this is not that unusual a thing.


I'm not a Vettel fan by any means (got nothing against him either), but can you imagine if Alonso had a 48 point lead before Abu Dhabi and then Vettel won the championship again, actually benefitting from the double points finale? That would serve everyone right!


Funny, I had a very similar post but it was deleted.

I wonder why?


It's there now.

I've found that James and his merry minions tend to moderate the newest comments first, so the early bird actually has to wait a bit for their comment to show up 🙂


Oh so nice. Sorry my paranoia is on overdrive.


We have no record of that

Probably didn't get through. We only delete swearing, defamation etc


If a driver takes the WDC off another because of the extra 25 points gained in the last race I don't think fans around the world will regard him as a worthy Champion.

Surely that is the test ?


An artificial champ to me


Proof that the sport doesn't care about the fans.



James please start a petition to get rid of the double point rule. And another to get rid of Bernie his time is up. What perfect timing Mark Webber had leaving last year. I will still watch motor sport just not f1. Up coming driver's must be thinking why go to f1? It is no longer the pinnacle of motorsport. Best drivers worst rules


Bernie Ecclestone believes that the double points idea will attract casual viewers and that hard core fans will watch anyway.

What does everyone think to the idea of a little on-line petition to all F1 fans asking them not to watch the final race of the season? I know it would be very hard for us to commit to but it might be worth a try, and if it got enough notice might help the rule being dropped next year.

Thoughts on a post card.


Correct, I will watch anyway.

Wrong about the casual fans though, at least in the UK. Speaking to colleagues, none of them will be motivated to shell out for pay per view Sky F1 to watch the races live because of 'double points'.

Most of the casual fans that watched the season in 2011 and before don't even bother with the 9 live races they get paying the BBC for their TV licence. Maybe, just maybe they'll tune in for Spa because of the racing, past history of good races and awesome track.

Double points - engage blasee French mode - pfffffffff, boff.


So what happens if Vettel has the best car and dominates again? Or anyone or that matter? It won't make the racing go down to wire all it will do is allow them to set a new record for most number of points.

Also I don't know how F1 car development works but couldn't a team that usually run at the back, caterham, marrusia, develop a car specifically for Abu Dhabi? The. It wouldn't matter about the rest of the season because so long as they get a 1-2 or a similarly good result they fly up the table at the end leapfrogging plenty of teams.

Bernie really is F1's Vince McMahon, not that I watch WWE.


i think its a great idea.

Who wants to stop watching the season with a few races to go if the winner has already been decided? which it was last year.

Everyone turned off last year after the 'vettelathon' became so boring towards the end.

Sorry but I for 1 reckon its a smart marketing move and it will extend the interest in the season.


I would say that this is the worst rule i have seen imposed into F1 for a long long time and there have been some pretty contentious ones lately.

If F1 are going to do double points why don't we add a 'joker' round where each driver could select one race where he can get 'double points'. Then we can have a real circus!. I thought F1 was the pinnacle of motor sport?

Seriously i think Abu Dhabi money had something to do with this with Bernie...but i didnt say that did i??


I would bet money that if the last race was Brazil, there would be no double points. Abu Dhabi is well known for having some of the dullest races and most people wouldn't mind missing seeing that race. Nobody wants to miss Interlagos. Add in the fact that the season rarely goes down to the final race in any meaningful way and the result is ridiculous gimmicks to try and appeal to the new, young masses rather than the stalwarts who have been following the sport for decades. It is nonsense, ridiculous and downgrades the notion of F1 being a sport, but one thing it certainly isn't is a surprise. Shock is reserved for the new noses : )


It seems that someone from Abu Dhabi stroked a very large check to make sure their dolt of a race track would attract some kind of attention. Bernie hatched the entire thing only to pocket said financial instrument as he will be stroking quite a few instruments of his own, to lawyers, soon.


What an appauling shame..


It is a very stupid rule for the following:

Devalues the 18 races

Penalizes consistency

Promote team order even more. Team(s) are going to stack points on one driver earlier.

You want liven things up? Revert back to the old 10, 6, 4, 3, 2, and 1 rule with dropping the 5 worst races.... This would promote winning....

I pretty confident - high budget, move(s) to races out of Europe, and Bernie will ultimately cause major problems for F1..........


You have to laugh! I said way back, that the F1 Strategy Group was Bernie's dream come true and how he would manipulate the participants.

Here was a classic Bernie move, he made noises a week or so ago, in fact he merely repeated what he had said originally,that he really wanted more than one, maybe 3 or 4 double points races. So with this in mind and knowing that Bernie can bring pressures, inducements and bargains to bear, to get a majority vote, they all thought they had better not mention it and maybe Bernie might forget.

To be fair it's an excellent new rule which will give others a chance if there is a runaway Vettle again. However it is more likely to be someone from an engine supply team this year.

A few other new rules were put forward too, th most controversial being to elimiate tyre warmers in 2015. But we shall have bigger wheels by then (ideally) so the old warmers will not fit.


I read somewhere that this was being introduced for 2015, not THIS season, can this be confirmed please?

And all of you saying you won't be watching this season because of this rule, yes you will, you know that, and so does Bernie.

The rule is 'absurd', agree, but there is still a racing spectacle to be watched and I am not turning my back on it because of this, true fans won't.


This is even more stupid than allowing teams to change tyres on the grid under red flag.


After this was confirmed, apparently the Oxford English diction-airy [sic] decided to add to its definitions of gimmick, contrivance, stupidity and absurdity as "The 2014 F1 last race double points award." Oh dear, FIA, what have you done? And why didn't the teams stand up the Parisian cheese eating make a mockery of the points system monkeys and said, just keep the points on offer at every race the same? Where does the F1 rules go from here? Its make me and every F1 viewer shudder...........


So abu dhabi is now worth twice the other races???

what a ridiculous way to try and make a bland circuit interesting: move the last race to abu dhabi and give it double-points. I wonder how much money they paid for this.

bad decision. it sucks


This is TOTALLY ridiculous! I'm a long time (over 40 years!) F1 fan and cheered Vettel's championship wins. However, this double point decision will drive me away from the sport. I'll stick with MotoGP and attend a Formula E race.


I'm feeling the same way, too. While there have been quirks in the rules and points system over the years, this double-points thing has really struck a nerve with me.


MotoGP is pretty naff at the mo with small two tiered fields, try WSB, instead. Great racing throughout the big and very competitive field.


I've really enjoyed MotoGP and thought last season was terrific. But I'll definitely check out WSB. Thanks for that!


Perhaps Bernie is heading for a championship and cup type structure? The double pointers being the cup races?

Bring on the gold, silver and bronze medals!

There must be more ideas to come, how about a two race per weekend format, with a sprint race followed by a reverse grid main race plus a couple of London distance races.......oh that's Aussie V8's is it?


That's long distance, not London distance. Sorry!


As everyone else is saying, the drive to make F1 an easily accessible 'show' is stuffing up what has been a technically brilliant and massively challenging sport.

This must open up an opportunity for other series to step up to grab the support of the traditional F1 fans.


What if the Abu Dhabi race gets cancelled for some reason? We all know that the Middle East is a nice stable region...

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