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F1 2009 - The Official Thread


Rob.

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Well, the new season is a while off yet, but this change would be so major I thought it was worth starting the official thread for 2009 a bit earlier than usual...

The 2009 Formula One Drivers' Championship will be decided by a medals system instead of points.

F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone announced on Wednesday that race winners will from next year be awarded medals with the Championship settled according to who has the highest number.

Gold, silver and bronze medals would be given to the top three finishers and the driver who won most races would be crowned World Champion.

Ecclestone says the system should be approved by motorsport world governing body, the FIA, before the end of year.

"It's going to happen," Ecclestone is quoted by Associated Press. "All the teams are happy. The reason this happens is that I get fed up with people talking about no overtaking.

"The reason there's no overtaking is nothing to do with the circuit or the people involved, it's to do with the drivers not needing to overtake.

"If you are in the lead and I'm second, I'm not going to take a chance and risk falling off the road or doing something silly to get two more points. If I need to do it to win a gold medal, because the most medals win the World Championship, I'm going to do that. I will overtake you."

Ferrari's Felipe Massa would have won this year's title under the proposed system as he won one more race than 2008 Champion Lewis Hamilton.

"This year, we saw on a number of occasions Lewis not overtaking Massa for that reason," Ecclestone added. "If he'd driven for me, tried it and made a mistake, I would have complained. It's just not on that someone can win the World Championship without winning a race."

http://www.planet-f1.co.za/story/0,18954,3...4551592,00.html

Opinions?

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I knew you were going to say that Arwebb! :P And I agree. There are a number of things wrong with this proposal:

  • The notion that this will increase overtaking is wishful thinking. The majority of circuits either favour Ferrari or McLaren. When one team is dominant at a circuit, no changes to the points system is going to make a third or fourth place driver in an inferior car capable of reaching first or second. Furthermore, for cars below fourth/fifth place what incentive is there to do any overtaking?
  • It doesn't reward consistency. Ecclestone may have a point in saying that the current system is weighted too much in favour of consistent drivers rather than winners but you don't solve that by going to the opposite extreme. A slight adjustment to the points system could easily solve this; such as making it 12 points for a win rather than 10.
  • This does nothing to prove who the best driver is; it instead puts even more weight on the technical side of the sport. Drivers in inferior cars but with immense talent wouldn't stand a chance under this system. Kubica's great 2008 would be worth bugger all under this system.
  • The season could be over by race nine. The whole point of the current points system was to shake the sport up a bit in the era Schumacher was dominating and winning the Championship with four or five races left. Now Schumacher has left we're reaping the benifits of this with the last two championships going down to the last race. Why change this, it's been great?
  • Stewards decisions will be more costly. Massa would have won the championship because of a stewards decision if this system was in place last year. It wouldn't have been a contributory factor as would have been the case had Massa won the championship in Brazil, but the reason for his title. Until we get more consistency in decisions, any system which increases the possibility of a championship being won off the track shouldn't be considered.
  • How is this consistent with Bernie wanting to cut costs in the sport? If the only way of getting any reward is to finish in the top three the middle-teams will go for broke. Either that or they'll pack up and leave for good.

I seriously hope Bernie was overexaggerating when he said all the teams are behind this system. It would be a joke if such a system were implemented. This is what Twenty20 is to Test Cricket, what pool is to snooker, what pitch-and-putt is to golf. It lacks the subtlety, the tactics, the team play and any intrigue in the narrative of a season lasting 18 races. It's dumbing down and whilst it may generate some new fans, I can't see many existing F1 fans sticking with it for long.

Bernie, a rethink is needed, and quickly....

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I don't think a complete do-away with the points is necessary, but there needs to be a greater weight on winning.

And Rob, even with a 12 point system with 8 for second, Massa would still be world champion.

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If you think that's the reason I'm arguing against this proposal, you're wrong. I've given several good reasons why this is a really silly idea.

And besides, drivers drive tactically; they are bitches to the points system. They and their teams adjust to the system placed above them by the powers that be. Both Hamilton and Massa would have driven differently under a different points system so saying "Massa would be world champion" under a 12 points for a win system is frivolous number-play and nothing more. We simply don't know who would have been world champion last season had the points system been different.

I actually agree with you Faster. There needs to be a greater weight on winning but consistency must also be rewarded which it isn't under Bernie's idea. A small adjustment to the points system would be perfect for that, I agree.

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At least it means that a win is more important than a finish. And it would have meant that Felipe Massa would be current world champion and not Hamilton because Massa had more wins.

But Massa would only have been champion under this system on the basis of the ridiculous decision to demote Hamilton at Spa. If that does not prove how stupid this idea is, I struggle to see what else will.

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I don't particularly like this proposal or anything to do with Bernie, but more emphasis needs to be placed on winning. A couple years back Raikkonen has the chance for the world championship despite Schumacher winning a fair few more races than Raikkonen.

I would have a points system

1st - 15

2nd - 10

3rd - 5

4th - 3

5th - 2

6th - 1

With a much greater emphasis on being on the podium and especially winning.

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There has to be scope in the scoring system to reward both race wins and consistent finishing. Reading the reports today, I note the following points on recent championships:

First, the 2003 championship (one of the closest this decade) would have decided in July after the British Grand Prix under this system. So much for generating excitement.

Second, the 2005 championship, instead of being clearly won by the best driver with the best car, would only have been won on countback.

Third, the 2008 championship would have been won in the stewards' room instead of on the track. That is wrong.

I entirely accept the notion that we want to encourage more on-track action and give greater emphasis to race victories. But what is wrong with going to, say, 12 points for a win while maintaining the rest of the scoring system.

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There has to be scope in the scoring system to reward both race wins and consistent finishing. Reading the reports today, I note the following points on recent championships:

First, the 2003 championship (one of the closest this decade) would have decided in July after the British Grand Prix under this system. So much for generating excitement.

Second, the 2005 championship, instead of being clearly won by the best driver with the best car, would only have been won on countback.

Third, the 2008 championship would have been won in the stewards' room instead of on the track. That is wrong.

I entirely accept the notion that we want to encourage more on-track action and give greater emphasis to race victories. But what is wrong with going to, say, 12 points for a win while maintaining the rest of the scoring system.

Nothing and that is probably the best case scenario right now.

How for the 2003, Schumacher had 4 victories to that point with 5 races to go.

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Excatly. I'm hopeful that if three people on an internet forum can see what is wrong with Bernie's solution and come up with a small change we all think is do-able (i.e. 12 points for a win) the FIA will do the same.

Fingers crossed.

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Schumacher won six races that year to Raikkonen's one.

Yea but 2 of those races were in the last 5 races after the British Grand Prix, Raikkonen, Ralf or Montoya could have won the majority of those races and been world champion. Or another driver entirely could have swept those final 5 races and had 5 wins to Schmacher's 4.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The sport is crumbling from under their feet and all Bernie can think of doing is squeeze more money out of hosts. From what I heard Turkey, China, Australia and Malaysia are considering giving Bernie the finger like France just did and saying its economically not worth it anymore.

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FIA makes standard Cosworth offer

FIA president Max Mosley has moved in the wake of Honda's Formula One exit to lay out the terms for a drastically cheaper engine offer from Cosworth that will help reduce costs in the sport.

On the same day that F1 lost a major manufacturer, Mosley has written to teams explaining his vision for how a deal with the famed Northampton engine supplier can help bring budgets down substantially.

He has revealed that the FIA is now in exclusive talks with Cosworth about a deal for teams from 2010 that could result in an annual engine and transmission cost of less than £6 million.

Mosley says that as long as four teams sign up for a supply of engines from 2010, then the annual charge for a three-year deal will be just £5.49 million - with an upfront fee of £1.68 million. If more teams sign up, then the cost will be reduced further.

In a letter sent to F1 teams on Friday, just a few hours after Honda cited the worldwide financial downturn as forcing it to quit F1, Mosley outlined his plans for a standard engine - and made it clear that manufacturers would not be forced to run them.

The tender process for standard engines ended last month and after evaluating the options, the FIA has opted to press ahead with Cosworth.

Mosley wrote: "We have completed the tendering process and are now in exclusive negotiations with Cosworth together with Xtrac and Ricardo Transmissions (XR) to supply a complete Formula One power train starting in 2010.

"The engine will be a current Formula One engine while the transmission will be state-of-the-art Formula One and a joint effort by two companies which already supply transmissions to most of the grid.

"The cost to each team taking up this option will be an up-front payment of £1.68M (€1.97M) and then £5.49M (€6.42M) per season for each of the three years of the supply contract (2010, 2011, 2012). This price is based on four teams signing up and includes full technical support at all races and official tests, plus 30,000 km of testing.

"The annual cost will reduce if more teams take up the option, for example to £4.99M (€5.84M) per team with eight teams. It will further reduce if less than 30,000 km of testing is required. Neither engine nor transmission will be badged."

Although the idea of a standard engine had prompted quit threats from several manufacturers, Mosley has clarified that teams will not be forced to run the power units if they do not want to.

However, he has made it clear that any engine that car makers produce themselves will not be allowed to have better performance than the standard unit.

Teams will have the option of using the standard engine, building the unit themselves or, Mosley explains, "continue to use their existing engine, with the current ban on development and requirement for engine parity still in place (noting that the engine supplied will become the reference engine for output and other performance indicators and no engine will be permitted to exceed those indicators)."

Teams building the engine themselves or using their own power unit will, however, be required to use the XT transmission.

Mosley believes the engine move, allied to other cost cutting measures, will keep the independent teams alive and potentially find new manufacturers if more car makers pull out - which Mosley says 'seems likely.'

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/72324

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Exactly; as much as I dislike the man, I think his most recent ideas are much more sensible than Bernie's.

Honda pulling out of F1 is a warning sign. Mosely is putting forward an idea which would radically change F1 but could prevent it collapsing under its own self-worth and vanity. Bernie is dangling shiny gold medals in front of teams who have no chance of getting them at a time when the smaller teams are seriously considering "what's in it for us?".

At least Mosely is trying to fix the things in F1 which are genuinly broken. Bernie is fiddling with the bits which are pretty much fine as they are.

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Three car teams anyone?

Former Minardi team owner Paul Stoddart is convinced Formula One can battle through the credit crunch.

Stoddart says the sport will survive but told BBC Hereford and Worcester that Honda might not be the only team missing from next season's grid.

"There may be one more casualty - I've got a feeling there is one more to come," he said.

"If that happens, you'll have eight teams lining up in Melbourne, probably running three cars."

He added: "It doesn't cost an awful lot to run a third car and most teams have got a test driver or a rising star they would like to give a try out to anyway."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport...one/7769107.stm

Well, it would certinaly shake things up a lot if that happened, and from what Mosely and now Stoddart have been saying, it seems a possibility only 8 teams will be on the grid next season.

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But 24?! That'd be brilliant; I'm almost hoping another team pulls out! Three McLarens and three Ferraris on the grid would really blow things wide open and make pit stops and team tactics very interesting indeed.

I wonder whether Button would be offered the third McLaren seat in that scenario? And what if the team which pulls out is Renualt (not at all unlikely). Could we be seeing this?

Hamilton, Kovalainen, Button in McLaren

Massa, Raikkonen, Alonso in Ferrari

[drools]

OK, I'm getting a bit carried away, but how good would that be?!

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The sport is crumbling from under their feet and all Bernie can think of doing is squeeze more money out of hosts. From what I heard Turkey, China, Australia and Malaysia are considering giving Bernie the finger like France just did and saying its economically not worth it anymore.

Add to that the loss of Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix , San Marino was axed , The United States Grand Prix was funded by the Richest track owwner in the World , and I see that the German Government has said no to putting any money into the German Grand prix beyond 2010. This is one of the greatest industrial economies saying to the Car Makers including their own Mercedes and BMW 'you shell out the money because your the one who benefits'.

Adding a Gulf State to the Calender for the Formula one Season only increases the expenses when you start losing European Races. What use is F1 to Renault if they indeed don't have a home grand prix ?

A fleet of 747's compared to a convoy of trucks is what Eccelstone is looking at with a further adding of India in 2011. You watch Hungray will axe their race as well . BMW , Mercedes or Ferrari don't gain from having a new race in the gulf states simply because they sell their product in that part of the world with or without a formula one race and pretty much everyone in that market has bought those cars if they can. Eccelstone has played a game of Chicken with too many places that are now saying we have to take care of our people who in some cases are losing pensions , jobs and homes. A formula one race is not an overriding priority for a country to fund drivers and teams making 10 of millions in the case of the drivers and Teams losing money hand over fist.

The Australian Grand Prix Lost 40 million AU dollars last year.

Formula One is going to go the way of the Dodo Bird if this keeps up .

Rob the three car team thing is not going to happen simply because that means more expense and Ron Dennis is Quoted as saying they feel MacLaren will take a 100 million pound hit for Corporate Sponsorship for the Next two years. This is with a team with the drivers championship and a very marketable driver at that Lewis Hamilton. The Advertisement Budgets are being slashed Worldwide and that is evidenced by NBC who had the greatest ever ratings for a Summer Olympic Games now laying off 500 people. Tiger Woods just got his contract axed for Buick automobiles and that was a mere 7 million dollar a year contract for one of the most famous athletes on earth.

A pit stop for Formula One costs 3000 pounds sterling for the tires.

The absence of North American races will certainly put Car makers out simply because the races in Canada and the US was a promotional tool for Mercedes , Toyota , Honda and BMW among the current crop of car makers involved. In the past Ford , Jaguar and other have been involved. Think of the other industrial giants that were involved . Good Year once was a tire supplier , Michelin as well.

Honda leaving as one of the most stable industrial companies in the world speaks volumes to the liability F1 for them. 450 million dollars a year and they finish what 9th out 11th for the last place with points ? Honda is not selling cars in America and spending 450 million to be seen very little during a race.

Honda however is Sticking with American Lemans and Indy Car racing in North America. 450 million would probably pay for two years of all of Honda's racing ventures in America Combined.

You watch some more teams are going to fall before Melbourne.

Jim jones

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well, for a first time that I could remember, there will be no North American stop in the F1 calendar. That occurred because the Quebec government did not agree to the terms the FIA wanted, in order to have the Canadian Grand Prix to continue operating. Therefore, here is the calendar for all the races for 2009.

1. The ING Australian Grand Prix at Melbourne (March 27-29)

2. The Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix at Kuala Lumpur (April 3-5)

3. Chinese Grand Prix at Shanghai (April 17-19)

4. Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix at Sakhir (April 24-26)

5. GRAN PREMIO DE ESPANA TELEFONICA at Catalunya (May 8-10)

6. Grand Prix de Monaco at Monte Carlo (May 21-24)

7. Turkish Grand Prix at Istanbul (June 5-7)

8. Santander British Grand Prix at Silverstone (June 19-21)

9. GROSSER PREIS SANTANDER VON DEUTSCHLAND (July 10-12)

10. ING MAGYAR NAGYDIJ at Budapest (Juny 24-26)

11. TELEFONICA GRAND PRIX OF EUROPE at Valencia (August 21-23)

12. Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps (August 28-30)

13. GRAN PREMIO SANTANDER D'ITALIA at Monza (September 11-13)

14. Singapore Grand Prix (September 25-27)

15. Fuji Television Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka (October 2-4)

16. GRANDE PREMIO DO BRASIL at Sao Paulo (October 16-18)

17. ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX (October 30-November 1)

Link 1: Official F1 Web Site

Link 2: The F1 2009 Race Calendar

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