Teams considering an even more generous points system for 2010

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Button's 2009 winning margin would have been greater still under the new system
Button's 2009 winning margin would have been greater still under the new system

Get your calculators out again – the F1 teams are planning a further change to the 2010 points system to give even more points to those who finish in the lower half of the top ten.

However the revised system, which has already been changed once since last year, would also cut the value of a second place finish, according to Autosport.

Here’s how the second proposal for the 2010 F1 points system compares to the new system announced last month and the two that preceded it:

Finishing position 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
1991-2002 10 6 4 3 2 1
2003-2009 10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1
2010 Proposal 1 25 20 15 10 8 6 5 3 2 1
2010 Proposal 2 25 18 15 12 10 8 6 4 2 1

The teams want to offer points to recognise finishes further down the order which is fair enough. But are they being too generous? Under the new plan a sixth-placed finish, which was worth a tenth of a win in 2002, will be worth almost a third of a win this year.

This graph shows the percentage value of each finishing position on the above table, and it’s clear to see how each new version of the system has become more generous:

F1 points systems, 1991-present with both 2010 proposals (click to enlarge)
F1 points systems, 1991-present with both 2010 proposals (click to enlarge)

Although the value of second place has been cut, the difference between it and a win is still nothing like as wide as it was in 2002.

Under this latest proposal it would be even easier for a driver who’d won several races at the start of the year to cruise to the title by picking up minor points finishes later in the season.

Whereas the original points system planned for 2010 would have increased Jenson Button’s winning margin over Sebastian Vettel to 27.5 points, this would increase it even further, to 33.5 points.

Here’s how the 2009 championship standings would have looked using the latest 2010 points system:

Driver Points
Jenson Button 239.5
Sebastian Vettel 206
Rubens Barrichello 191
Mark Webber 170
Kimi Raikkonen 124
Lewis Hamilton 123
Nico Rosberg 94
Jarno Trulli 82
Fernando Alonso 73
Timo Glock 68.5
Heikki Kovalainen 58
Felipe Massa 56
Nick Heidfeld 51
Robert Kubica 47
Giancarlo Fisichella 24
Sebastien Buemi 20
Adrian Sutil 15
Kamui Kobayashi 10
Sebastien Bourdais 8.5
Kazuki Nakajima 5
Nelson Piquet Jnr 1
Jaime Alguersuari 0
Luca Badoer 0
Romain Grosjean 0
Vitantonio Liuzzi 0

See the actual points here: Final 2009 F1 championship standings

Happily the teams have avoided over-complicated changes like giving a point for pole and fastest lap, which would only lead to some rather unsatisfactory ways of deciding the world championship anyway.

What do you think of the latest change to the points system? Is it better or worse than the original plan for 2010?

New points system for 2010

71 comments on “Teams considering an even more generous points system for 2010”

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  1. I’m not fussed. Is the teams motive there to increase revenue through sponsorship deals?
    i.e: The X$ per championship point scored deals are worth more this way.

    1. If they can find sponsors that gullible they’ll snap them up, but I doubt it!

      1. Your poster boy Keith, NP Jr, Managed to score a grand total of 1 point, marginally beating Mr Badoer in the table rankings, now he must be pleased with that.

  2. MUCH BETTER – More consistent and gives a greater points haul to the victor. This I think is the best points system devised yet for F1.

  3. More points to the 4-8 places compared with last time. Probably better because of the tight competition this season with Ferrari, Mercedes, McLaren and Red Bull.

  4. I don’t mind either of these 2. Just so long as they decide on one and I can then get my head round it.

    Can you imagine the maths though if we have a 3 or 4 way title decider this season??

  5. I overall preferred the old 9 (or 10), 6, 4, 3, 2, 1…but among the last option the very last one is the best to me.

    On observation I would like to give: is it really worth to spend a lot of time in decisions about scoring??? Isn’t overtake the real problem of formula 1 sport???

    1. David (not the same :p)
      25th January 2010, 13:46

      Are either of them actually problems? F1 has done fine with jackall overtaking for more than the last decade. And F1 has done fine with the 9-6, 10-6, 10-8 points systems, too. Massive audiences, massive dollars, massive recognition.

  6. I think this system looks better, in both the gap between first and second and in the tail-end points.

    1. I agree, we can now see that Nelson P JR, is actually a better driver than Luca Badoer, as NP has 1 point to LB’s 0 points. This is a detail that the previous table just didn’t reveal.

  7. The fact that they are changing the system again within such a short space of time proves that the last change in December was rushed and not thought through. I remember thinking at the time that the change seemed to come out of nowhere without even any rumours.

    While this proposed new system does address some of the problems of the last one such as the problem with seventh place and increasing the relative gap between first and second, it creates some new problems of rewarding lower places more as the article points.

    Although I understand that the points system has changed many times in the past, I am still against the points for a win increasing by 150%.

    At least it doesn’t look like they will be introducing points for pole or fastest lap yet.

    1. The fact that they are changing the system again within such a short space of time proves that the last change in December was rushed and not thought through.

      Yep – they should have stopped and done their sums before telling people.

  8. A small step in the right direction, but as you say winning is not well rewarded. In 2002 and before you needed a 2nd and a 3rd to make up the same points as a win. Even under the proposed new systen you only need two 4ths. Not a huge incentive. Still at least they have started to realise there is a problem, evey little helps….. mind you to get back to the 2002 ratios you would need a system like 80, 48, 32, 24, 16, 8, 6, 4, 2, 1

  9. shame we won’t be able to put points scored in 2010 into a historical perspective. the ‘career total’ part of a driver’s profile will become more irrelevant.

    1. It’s been irreleavant for decades, but with a new system it’ll be obvious to everyone.

      1. Xanathos is right – that went out the window when they first changed the points system in 1960.

        1. Has nobody ever thought about normalizing the values so that historically all drivers can be compared? Kinda like the Castrol rankings but for the points systems?

    2. it is irrevalent now as well – there has hardly been an unique system since 1950. We will just have to rely on more comparable results – wins and podium finishes.

  10. As long as the difference between 1st and second is big, and will require for the 2nd to push for a win rather than settle…

    1. CounterStrike
      25th January 2010, 14:41

      I think the 10-6-4-3-2-1 was perfect.

      It was scrapped to tighten the fight when introduced in 2003. It was successful, Kimi lost the title only by two points & the top 3 constructors were seperated by less than 15 points.

      Time we revert back to that. this system is unfair on the drivers from the past.

  11. I would have preferred something with a smaller maximum of points awarded. I’m just thinking of all the point-scoring records that have suddenly become irrelevant.

    1. They’ve been irrelevant for decades. The maximum points available in 1950 was 63 (54 discounting the Indy 500) whereas since the late 70’s the maximum on offer has been around 130-190 depending on the number of races. Add in other factors such as the number of points-scoring positions, reliability of cars and the early timing innacuracies and you see that points totals are pretty much meaningless. Jarno Trulli has scored almost as many points as Fangio but it has no reflection at all on their respective driving abilities.

  12. This 2nd proposal is better than the first, if only for the 8-6-5-3 bit that was plainly wrong.

    I would vote for reverting back to the 10-6-4 system, though, with 9-6-4 a strong 2nd place, to maintain somewhat of a historical reference. But, with the 10-8-6 system of late, all stats are screwed up anyway, so they may just as well change it to 25-something-something, now.

  13. Proposal 2 is worst than 1.I still think the FOTA point system was better.

  14. Good stuff, I like the seven-point gap between 1st & 2nd. The championship table will look weird for a while but we’ll get used to bigger numbers.

    Very relieved they’re not changing the tyre stops, according to the last paragraph in the Autosport report.

    1. Yeah I like the points gap too. Makes a win more valuable.

      This points system for 2010, will make the grid more competitive. There will be good racing throughout the field like what you see in Moto GP.

  15. lehonardeuler
    25th January 2010, 14:29

    It’s definitely worse than the 1st proposal (except for the issue in p7): The sum of all positions adds up to 101, to the 95 of the 1st proposal.

    My system: Since we are not giving “round” numbers to the first finishing positions, I think this system would look best:
    25 17 12 9 7 5 4 3 2 1

    2nd to 1st ratio: 68% (60% in 2002, 80% in 2009, 80% in 2010 1st proposal)
    3rd to 1st ratio: 48% (40%, 60%, 60%)
    6th to 1st ratio: 20% (10%, 30%, 24%)
    1st to sum of all pos: 29.4% (38.4%, 25.6%, 26.3%)

    Maybe you could help me tweak this 3rd system :)

    1. Comment of the day now can someone give this guy a job at the FIA please?

    2. The is the best system lehonardeuler, Hope some team members are reading these wonderful forums.

      25 17 12 9 7 5 4 3 2 1 Best of the best

    3. LehonardEuler
      25th January 2010, 19:37

      Maybe it’s good, but it has a major disadvantage: It’s easy to get confused.
      What about this? Taking 25 points for a win, but keeping inside the current points system:
      25 15 10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1
      or maybe taking 20 for a win, but not as rewarding as the 25pt variant:
      20 14 10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1

      The 1st one performs almost as well as the old 10-6-4, and as well or better than the 25-17-12. But the 2nd one (20-14-10) it’s a bit more generous.

      pros: Add just 2 numbers to the points system we all already know.
      25basis: Very much like the old 10-6-4

      cons: I don’t know if everyone like this distribution of points, p1 one is very much rewarded, as it used to be…
      Again, historic stats are ruined, or should be adjusted in order to compare.

      4th and 5th proposals are on! :)

      1. LehonardEuler
        25th January 2010, 19:39

        one more con on them both: Points distribution (gaps) are not as harmonic as in 25-17-12

      2. LehonardEuler
        25th January 2010, 19:48

        One last comment:
        The 20-14-10 basis it’s somewhere between the 10-6-4 and the 10-8-6 (like the 25-17-12), since it would equal 10-7-5

      3. I like your last one best, Fifth Variation, would it be? I would submit the following small alteration:

        Make Fourth Place 7 points instead of 8. That puts a more definitive gap bewtween the Podium finishers and the also-rans.

        The 20-14-10 is an excellent split for the Podium.

  16. CounterStrike
    25th January 2010, 14:37

    This points system is unfair on people like Senna & Prost. Imagine a Button or Webber ending up with more career points than the golden four,Hakkinen & the others.

    And what about Schumi? He could hugely benefit(I doubt he’ll score one though) to further increase his tally.

    I say stick on to good old 10-6-4-3-2-1.

    1. I don’t see how it’s unfair to past drivers. If you want to compare their carreers you’re going to have to recalculate to the current value anyway. It’s harder work to compare them, but one point now has less value than it had then (or the other way around, might be easier). So when Senna won, instead of 10, you recalculate to 25, which is the current value of the win, nothing unfair about that in my opinion. By that logic it would be unfair to come up with any kind of change whatsoever because it might give someone a slight advantage. That way we’ll never move forward (or backward, depending on how you look at it). That argument is not valid.

      I think this point system is better than the one they used before this and I can imagine why they want to change it. The smaller teams get more chances to score some points and there simply are more cars on the track, so you need more places to score points. I think this system is definetly an improvement to the previous proposal since the value of a win increases. Other than that, I don’t think it’s going to matter that much.

  17. I wonder how many championships will be decided by one point now…

  18. CounterStrike
    25th January 2010, 14:45

    Kovi would have been the 1982 WDC by a long way.This points system reflects poorly on the past champions.

  19. Makes morse sense than the first proposal, but ut’s still ridiculous. It makes F1 look like a less prestigious series by counting down from 25 points, and is quite confusing to remember.

    I recognise that with the level of competition and reliability the points system needed to be extended down to 10th, but they keep going about it the wrong way. In my opinion it should either be 20, 16, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1 (doubling the previous system and inserting 3 and 1), or even better, keep it 10 for a win and introduce half points, so: 10, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.5, 1, 0.5. Okay, it looks a little ugly at the bottom, but it’s a great compromise in preserving the old system whilst adapting it to meet new demabds.

    See, no matter how we change the points system, the final results of last year stay pretty much the same in terms of order. But the problem with giving 25 or any number over 10 for a win is that a retirement when a championship rival wins is even more of a punishment, and in future if a leader gains a big points gap this way then they may be tempted to ease off and cruise to the title, and that’s boring racing. It’s not so much the gap between the points positions, but the number of points.

    I think this is just another cynical move to artificially raise interest when it’s the racing that should be being improved.

  20. Also in the same Autosport article:

    “The SWG also talked at length about the possibility of introducing a rule that would force drivers to make two mandatory pit stops during a race, but this was not approved either. F1 drivers will therefore only need to make a single pit-stop in 2010 so as to ensure that they run on both types of tyres made available.”

    1. David (not the same :p)
      26th January 2010, 1:26


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