Drivers to pick ‘career numbers’ next year

2014 F1 season

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Formula One drivers will select race numbers which they will retain for the rest of their careers from next season.

Drivers will be given the choice of numbers between 2 and 99 from next year.

The number one will remain for special use of the reigning world champion, if they choose to use it. Where two drivers choose the same number, whoever finished highest in the championship will have first preference.

This is the first change to the numbering system for Formula One cars since 1996, when the current system based on the constructors’ championship finishing positions was introduced.

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150 comments on Drivers to pick ‘career numbers’ next year

  1. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 10th December 2013, 4:21

    I love the idea of permanent race number but hope Vettel don’t change it every weekend the way he does with his helmet .

  2. Travis (@mcmerctn) said on 10th December 2013, 4:39

    This is the one rule change I really like in a see of others I think are terrible ideas (2 Pit stops per race rule). When I think of Valentino Rossi, I see the blue and white bike with the 46 on the front. When I think of Jimmie Johnson in NASCAR, I think of that 48 on the side. It will be great for me to have the similar associations, but now with the drivers in the sport I follow most closely.

  3. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 10th December 2013, 4:41

    Between 2 and 99, what about 0? It was good enough for Damon Hill…

  4. I’m afraid Seb will take No. 23

  5. 27tifoso28 said on 10th December 2013, 8:06

    Ferrari need to keep 27 and 28 regardless of the driver, I hope Luca has caught on to this as he has the power to veto any decision made by the FIA. Ferrari must always be 27/28 you drive for the team not yourself. All the other teams who cares let the drivers pick them

  6. David not Coulthard (@) said on 10th December 2013, 9:54

    What about 0, π, and i?

  7. Rob Wilson (@rob-wilson) said on 10th December 2013, 12:38

    I can see Hamilton & Button both wanting #22 Maybe Lewis will get it and Jenson will stick with red 5..or maybe that was just something ted Kravitz said and Jenson doesn’t even know.

  8. The funny thing is, we will never know what number Vettel will choose, he’ll probably keep using 1 for the rest of his career…

  9. sbl on tour (@sbl-on-tour) said on 10th December 2013, 14:57

    who really gives a stuff about who has what number
    bring back the white circle with the number in the middle and make sure its visable to the fans that actually go to the races
    still think pastor should have 666 mind

  10. Jason (@jmwalley) said on 10th December 2013, 15:22

    What a joke. Thankfully the numbers are presented so small on the cars these days that we wont be able to see them.

  11. Paul (@frankjaeger) said on 10th December 2013, 19:44

    I’m not opposed to this, not massively in favour either. Sounds like a attempt to drive merchandising in the future

  12. What is the point of personal numbers and artificial means of keeping the championship alive unless something is very broken?

    Perhaps we should have the ‘Friday draw’ where drivers pick the car they have to drive for the weekend from a hat?

    Why not dress the drivers up as clowns during the driver parade and introduce custard pie’s and buckets of water for a bit of extra entertainment?

    Have the podium ceremony carried out in a ‘Big Top’ , in any case it really is becoming the ‘F1 Circus’.

    Perhaps good, clean, hard, fast racing, where the best driver wins, is a novel concept these days. Rant over.

  13. Sharon H (@sharoncom) said on 11th December 2013, 11:51

    I’m not against this idea, although it will be pointless if they don’t also make the numbers more prominent on the cars.

    It seems a bit much if a driver misses out on his preferred career number because his team produced a poor car last year. Does that mean he gets to change to it if he does a bit better in the championship the next year and the driver with ‘his’ number does worse? Could get a bit silly.

    As for what numbers drivers will pick: if you look at karting, where drivers sometimes get to choose their race number, birth year is quite popular. I will be very surprised if anyone picks number 2.

  14. MagillaGorilla (@magillagorilla) said on 11th December 2013, 12:43

    I think Lewis will pick 12 or 27

  15. Crashtor Malfunctionado said on 12th December 2013, 20:47

    Honestly, Ill be very dissapointed if Ferrari aren’t able to permanently lock down 27 & 28. This is extremely important to the tifosi and the overall heritage of the sport. Overall, this is a very positive move in my eyes. It works brilliantly in motogp, and if F1 could adopt aero regs that make the cars look more simple yet beautiful, like say from 1988 – 1995 style F1 cars, the numbers can be clearly visible from the nose of the car as well. I personally think the low wide shape of cars in that era emphasise a sense of speed, danger, and exoticism that the modern ugly 2009 + spec cars dont. The V12 Ferrari 412T2 from 1995 just looks and sounds like a lethal weapon, and gives off a greater sense of speed and power regardless of the lap time difference from 1995 to 2013. This is something the FIA/FOM have dropped the ball on massively. Aesthetics plays a massive role in ones perception of speed.

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 12th December 2013, 21:16

      The numbers are being assigned to drivers so Ferrari can’t do that. So Alonso could ask for 27 and Raikkonen 28 (or vice-versa) to accomplish what you’re suggesting. But if someone who finished in front of them in the championship wants those numbers (i.e. Vettel and, in Raikkonen’s case, Hamilton and Webber too) then they won’t get them.

      And, of course, if they then moved to another team they would take those numbers with them. McLaren of course used 27 and 28 in 1990 when Alain Prost had the number one on his Ferrari.

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