Alonso warns unpredictable F1 could lose credibility

2012 F1 seasonPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Fernando Alonso warned F1 is in danger of losing credibility because results have been so unpredictable this year.

Speaking to CNN Alonso said “It’s a fantastic season, it’s so unpredictable. I think people stand in front of the TV with some surprises every race and it’s good for the audience, it’s good for the sport to bring attention to the races.”

“On the other hand we can lose credibility. We cannot lose that the best teams, the best drivers, the best strategies or whatever, they win the races. Because at the moment from the outside it seems that in every race [anyone] can win and it doesn’t matter the talent, it doesn’t matter the team, the performance – it’s like a lottery.

Alonso, who is leading the world championship by three points ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber, said that what a driver achieves in Formula 1 is “not by chance”.

He added: “We need to make clear that if you win a race, it’s because you did something better. And at the moment I don’t know if this is clear for everybody.”

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121 comments on “Alonso warns unpredictable F1 could lose credibility”

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  1. I think the moaning over unpredictability is getting to be a bit much now. While I obviously don’t want a lottery either, I haven’t seen anything to indicate it is such. If it was, we’d see HRT’s and Marussia’s leading. But we don’t. The car and the driver still count for something. This year is simply very closely matched between teams and the strategy is proving a little harder to nail down. I consider this to be more back to the days of the early 80’s when they didn’t have computers in the pits processing every single eventuality and spitting out an answer of what’s the best way to do things.

    Besides, why oh WHY are people complaining over a close championship? I’m pretty sure the only ones F1 is losing credibility with are the ones who are used to a single team dominating or a usual two horse race. When they add restrictor plates and head for Talladega, then I’ll grant you it’s lost credibility.

    1. Alonso, who is leading the world championship by three points ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber, said that what a driver achieves in Formula 1 is “not by chance”.

      He added: “We need to make clear that if you win a race, it’s because you did something better. And at the moment I don’t know if this is clear for everybody.”

      He doesn’t say unpredictability will ruin F1’s credibility. Not making people understand that each race is actually won by a deserving driver/team this year – that, according to him MIGHT ruin F1’s credibility.

  2. I think that unpredictability seen this year is more related to the ban of blown diffuser and only then to the tyres. There´s no doubt that for this reason the pack is much together wich highlights any errors, less well balanced car or worst setup. When a driver/team as a perfect weekend (excluding 4 or 5 teams) it has a real shot to the win.
    And my question is: isn´t this just fantastic for the F1 fans? Doesn´t it create enthusiasm? Doesn´t this bring new fans to the sport?
    And at the end the best team/driver will still gonna get it!

    1. Problem is that there is so many definitions of “the best team/driver” in people heads and thats why we have such situation a hand.

  3. I wouldn’t say it was that unpredictable at the very front. Over the last two years whoever has been leading into the first corner has pretty much gone on to win the race. (as long as it was a dry race).

    It’s been a fun season, but a win has lost a little bit of impact. It does appear to have lost merit, but with such a large calendar now it was already starting to anyway.

    It’s been better than what we had with Bridgestone though. I still love the sport. :D

  4. antonyob (@)
    1st June 2012, 15:21

    Hes not covering anything and its not because a team is improving. Im not even sure its totally the slightly hit or miss nature of zoning in on the tyres sweet spot though it undoubtedly is a factor. The most notable change is the bunching up of qualifying times. If you’re less than half a second off 3rd place in qually you dont necessarily expect to line up 12th. Maybe front to back its not so much different but the midfield pack is so close now, add that to teams not finding the narrow sweet spot on the tyres and you get random winners.

    Its not ideal but theres not alot wrong with F1 when you cant guess who is going to win. It is the holy grail for spectator sport. However as a committed petrol head i do kinda want to know who has the best package of driver and car and Alonso has a valid point regarding this.

  5. F1 has already lost credibility for me, With gimmicks like DRS & these silly Pirelli tyres I no longer see it as the pinnacle of MotorSport.

    F1 has become nothing but an artificial, Open wheel version of Nascar!

    1. Except that it’s nothing like NASCAR. They rely on aero and slipstream just as much as F1, if not more regarding the slipstream.

  6. honestly if i know one driver is going win every race, thats boring and i would`nt watching as much

  7. What he has said makes sense – if winning were just by chance, then the sport would have no credibility.

    He wants the audience to understand that results come from the hard work of teams to do a better job in all the various aspects, even if the results so far appear unpredictable (presumably because teams are having difficulty in understanding tire behaviour).

    1. well in that case it`s on cause for concern yet , a this point in the season only the top 5 teams is wining apart from williams and they`ve been there in the past

  8. Alonso means that F1 may look like a lottery, but in truth its because the driver was better than the rest.
    I think.

    1. +1
      Thank you, for being among the very few in this thread to have understood what Alonso said, instead of jumping the gun.

      Alonso says no driver has won by chance, but this fact might not be clear to everybody, and it needs to be clarified so that F1 retains its credibility. Whew!

  9. why couldn’t Pirelli have continued with the same compounds as 2011? That season was just the right mix of tyre degredation for an exciting season, barring the fact that Red Bull had a better car by miles but the new regs have neatralised that advantage.
    Instead we’re getting these fast deteriorating tyres with this full-on-unpredictability feature..

  10. Tbh i dont know why hes complaining, the driver is leading the WDC for god sake, F1 isnt that predictable this season, eg the top teams are still leading the WCC and the usual drivers are leading the WDC, if say Caterham was in the top 3 of the WCC then it would be unpredictable
    Everyone seems to forget that theres a championshio going on and fan are basing it on race by race… were the drivers complaining this much in 1983 where it was similiar with race results, first Jenson and now Fernando…As Kimi would say ‘its racing’
    Been following F1 since 2005 and this season is without a doubt the best.

  11. Nonsense. Yes, the tire behavior is unpredictable and none of the teams have locked it down yet, but the main reason for the unpredictability is just that the field is so competitive now that teams have to raise their game in every single aspect of competition. A slow pit stop, or trouble navigating traffic on an in lap, or a minor oversight in car setup, or a lost opportunity to overtake will simply punish teams and drivers so much more this year than in the past.

    In fact, I would argue that this kind of season lends F1 more credibility. We’ve had way too many seasons in recent years where the team with the highest budget or star designer is able to design a car that is just superior to the rest of the field from the word go, and other teams have essentially no chance of mounting a challenge against them, no matter how well they execute on strategy/setup/team operations. How is that more credible than today, where a team has to make the most out of every single opportunity and execute on every single menial task at the highest possible level, or risk being eclipsed by scrappier teams who simply do a better job on that day?

    I’d put it this way… what could be more accurately described as a “sport”?
    a) A championship where the car design accounts for the vast majority of a team’s ability to compete, or
    b) A championship where car design can truly be balanced-out by operational effectiveness and driver excellence?

    1. well written
      some people have very short memory and quickly forgot how dull and boring most of the races were in the past years…
      but anything you do there always will be some who will not be satisfied

  12. This stuff gives me a headache. Last season Seb won the title with 4 to go, now 6 races down and suddenly people think the sport on the verge of becoming a joke because Maldonado won a race?

    Then again, the team principles don’t seem to mind. Maybe the drivers just whine too much…

  13. Alonso makes some good points, but in the end the three big teams of Ferrari/Red Bull/McLaren will leave the others behind because of the vast sums of money at their disposal.
    This season is very un F1. It is unpredicatable, one team is not dominating the field for all to forlornly follow. For us fans it is paradise on earth, for the teams and drivers it must be a nightmare.
    I buy into earlier comments that Fernando is playing down his title hopes so that Ferrari don’t ‘relax’ on developing their car. He knows, as do they, that the championship is too close and the margins are too narrow for complacency. Seeing how quickly McLaren went from having a strong car in Australia to where they are now proves this, and how costly it can be!

  14. Todd (@braketurnaccelerate)
    1st June 2012, 21:22

    Since Alonso is so intrigued by drivel quotes (que his Monaco helmet)….

    “The [driver] doth protest too much, methinks.”

  15. Are you hearing this Pirelli? In my opinion the tyres are just destroying the sport. The Red Bull won the race in Bahrain and the next race it was being lapped by the Williams. Tyres should not make that much of a difference! And I know people are going to say that “the best engineers will figure out how the tyres work and it is fair” but the team bosses like ross brawn and co have said that it is a complete guessing game- a lottery. The teams that get the tyres right just got lucky, it has nothing to do with understanding them better than the other teams. In my opinion, the best car/driver combo should win the race. If that means that one driver completely dominates an entire season, so be it, he deserves to. Anyone who thinks Maldonado in the Williams was the best car/driver combination in Spain is just kidding themselves. Same goes for Alonso in Malaysia for that matter, he drove supremely but that car should not have been able to win a race. Furthermore the whole idea of winning a race by seeing who can nurse the tyres around the track the fastest is just rubbish in my opinion. I will take watching world class drivers pushing 100% over a few extra overtakes any day.

    If Formula 1 wants to see more unpredictable results, I don’t think they should give the teams crap tyres and drs in order to try to produce that. They should open up the technical regulations. The regualtions are so strict now that all of the cars have essentially the same characteristics on every track, and as a result, the best car will win on pretty much any type of track. Give the teams more freedom in design. why not Let them have different types of engines, with some suiting high speed better and some low speed better if that helps. The current fomula is not the answer everyone is looking for

  16. Bas Weijers (@)
    2nd June 2012, 0:55

    Hi people, I’m relatively new to this site, but think it’s great.
    Mature comments of truly f1-fanatic people, who think before they write. Awesome :)

    Anyhow, to the point, I’ve been scratching my head over various discussions so far.
    Just the fact there are this many discussions over tires, a lottery etc, makes this F1 season the most discussable since quite a while I think.
    Though since the start of this season I’ve been thinking, in the end one team (or maybe two) really get the hang of it all, and render all these discussions useless.
    F1 will set itself straight I’m sure. Teams are working like mad to get things solved and predictable. At the end of the season the racing will be most likely a bit boring again (or maybe some new scandal/’gate’ will get out again).

    Nursing tires as dramatically as today is new, but hey, since no refuelling is allowed it’s also a bit about nursing fuel. No real limit-seeking until just around the pitstops where they could set their mixture ultrahigh for a couple of laps to do an ‘undercut’ and the last stint sometimes gave some special action.
    Some decades ago they were probably nursing their engines against blow-ups, or their brakes depending on the track – there are always limits that they would push towards, but ofcourse nursing their car all the way through a 2 hour race.

    It’s always been like this I think. Now we’re just at the start of a season with a really tight field. And no team has really got their ‘shit together’. YET.

    Personally I think that’s the beauty of F1! :)
    I hope not to offend anyone ;) Respect!

    1. @kdesser…I think that is well said and I agree completely.

  17. Ohm (@attakorn)
    2nd June 2012, 8:19

    Random or not I’m loving it!! Much prefer this unpredictability to last season! I think the reason why it’s like a lottery for teams at the moment is because they have yet to fully understand the tyres. That doesn’t mean the best team isn’t winning and it’s up to luck..if they are the best team then they’ll win because they’ll understand the tyres and get it to work better than others!

  18. For how many laps do these tires have a sweet spot 4? and how may laps does to take to get there? What’s the point of having a “FORMULA 1” if it’s all a half assed tire and pit strategy crap shoot. Pirelli FAIL!

  19. I have been a loyal fan for many years, I dont miss a session, but I really don’t understand how anyone can think the new tyres are making things exciting, all it is doing is making the drivers drive slow to look after the tyres, that isn’t racing. We all want real racing back, when the best drivers, the hamiltons, the alonsos and the rest push to the limit and show us what racing is all about, not all this tiptoe rubbish. Theres one way to bring real racing back, stop them from being forced to look after tyres, and there is only 2 ways of doing this, either make them have a minimum amount of pit stops to make sure tyres don’t fall apart, this way there is no need to drive slow to look after them, or my personal favourite choice, BRING BACK REFUELING!! Getting rid of refueling was the worst decision in F1, it wasnt needed in the past, but for the cars the way they are now with all the downforce making it so hard to overtake, we need the variations which refueling gave, and also the variations in tactics which made things so exciting. Please FIA, take note before people get bored, as I am a true F1 fanatic, and for the first time in my life, I am truley getting bored, I never thought F1 would ever see the days where driving slower and looking after the tyres would win you a race instead of pushing and getting every tength out of the car.


  20. Yes, he’s right, however I don’t think most people believe that luck can be, by itself, the only factor to win a race. You may be lucky to finish 2nd rather than 3rd, but not much more, and there’s always something you do better to finish ahead, like Alonso said.

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