Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013

Irvine lambasts “insane” double points rule

F1 Fanatic Round-upPosted on Author Keith Collantine

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013In the round-up: Eddie Irvine ridicules the controversial new F1 rule which will award double points for the last race of the season.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Eddie Irvine: Formula 1 is now embarrassing (Belfast Telegraph)

“I think Formula One has lost its way. This latest rule of double points for the last race is insanity. That actually made me realise I am not going to watch another race until that rule gets kicked out. That is just embarrassing. It really is. They should be ashamed of themselves.”

Vijay Mallya Q&A: Force India throwing everything at 2014 (F1)

“I will not compromise the quality of drivers for money. I will not let down all of my people in Silverstone who are so passionate about designing and building a competitive race car and then compromise the car on the track by taking a driver who is not the very best, simply because he brings money to the table.”

I’m among the best in F1 – Grosjean (ESPN)

“I think I have proven that I am part of the best drivers and that’s how I consider myself.”

Di Restas ??fixated? by chance to make millions (The Telegraph)

Paul di Resta and his father Louis were accused of being ‘totally unreliable witnesses’ who became ‘fixated’ by the prospect of a multimillion-pound sponsorship windfall, as the damages lawsuit brought by the Scottish driver?s former manager Anthony Hamilton continued in the High Court on Tuesday.”

Newey warns F1 risks stagnation (Autosport)

“If the regulations continue to become ever more restrictive we’ll eventually get the point where the car’s more or less designed by the rulebook.”

Worst. Rule Change. Ever. (The Buxton Blog)

“This rule change threatens to devalue the entire championship. The entire sport.”

Ecclestone’s new formula for F1 finale is a folly that may yet blow up in his face (The Herald)

“It is a fundamental principle of sport that the best person wins. The latest F1 idea flies in the face of that. They are creating a lottery which could deny the best for the sake of resuscitating flagging interest. And making the sport even more artificial than it is now.”



Comment of the day

@Uan takes issue with revisionist views of Sebastian Vettel’s breakthrough victory in the 2008 Italian Grand Prix.

Can we put to rest the canard using [Sebastien] Bourdais to marginalize Vettel?s win? The win is only one metric. Look at the season as a whole.

Vettel had nine points finishes to Bourdais’ two. Look at the way both finished the season after Monza: Vettel ?ǣ 5th, 6th, 9th, 4th; Bourdais 12th, 10th, 13th, 14th.

As for the win, one of the more impressive things is that he didn?t bin it. Look at Hulkenberg last year in Brazil, he really should have won the race, P2 at the minimum, but he did collide with Hamilton, and while the penalty was harsh (it was more a racing incident), it shouldn?t have happened.

Vettel had 35 points in 2008, more than both Red Bulls drivers and Bourdais combined. And he was only 21 years old. At Monaco, he qualified 18th, but finished 5th (if any driver did that today they?d be hailed as the second coming).

From the forum

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Onofre Marimon was born 90 years ago today. He drove alongside his great Argentinian compatriot Juan Manuel Fangio at Maserati in 1953, finishing on the podium at Spa. He did so again the following year at Silverstone, but during practice for the following race at the Nurbrgring he crashed and was killed.

Image ?? Ferrari/Ercole Colombo

116 comments on “Irvine lambasts “insane” double points rule”

    1. Somebody pointed last week that most driver in F1 aren´t vocal about this because their teams supported the rule change (named Ferrari and Mercedes) so I don´t think we will see some drivers like Vettel and Ricciardo againts the rule.

      Whats made me mad is that even when 90%! of fans is againts the rule FIA is not listening! And it´s made wonder that at this point does FIA even care about the fans and what they want?

      1. @celeste
        Vettel was actually the first to speak out about it. We’re probably not the audience the FIA are worried about anyway, they care more about the casual viewer who is much less likely to watch after the title is decided than we are.

          1. @mike the problem is that we are the true fans… with no money to go to Abu Dhabi and boycott it. Bernie, CVC & Co don’t care if our hearts get broken, they just want to see their wallets full of media advertisement and merchandising money, and they don’t care if it comes from the same viewers who enjoy the “thrill” of Survivor, the WWE or American Idol.

        1. Not quite true @george, it actually was Daniel Ricciardo who first mentioned it was a crazy rule on his twitter account. Then came an interview with Vettel and one with Marko.

          I must say that I am a bit sceptical about hailing how these drivers are “the only active drivers to speak up about it” when to me it seems they are doing exactly the same as all the other drivers, namely dancing to their teams tune. Its clear that Red Bull was not amused by this and that is why their drivers spoke up (not to say that its not a bad rule in their opinion, just that its nothing exceptional that they say so when their team is of that opionion as well).

          What is maybe more telling, is that so far we have heard of only one driver who is positive about this – Perez. Surely when the teams would be all clearly in favor of the rule we would have more people who would be hailing this as the best thing since sliced bread.

          1. @keithcollantine @bascb

            Here’s Ricciardo’s tweet from 10 December 10:42 UTC:


            (in reply to the question “no reaction to the silly double points?”)

            First evidence of Vettel’s opinion appears to be this article:


            So Ricciardo beat Vettel by just over 5 hours :) Keeping in mind though that Vettel does not use Twitter et al so will only give his opinion when asked.

        1. I have the same feeling about the race at the Nürburgring. As as many mentioned before, the result of the race has been devalued. Going to any race, except Abu Dhabi is essentially watching a race that is half as important for the championchip.
          If only it would cost half as much…

    2. @omarr-pepper

      I hope more drivers, not only former drivers, start doing something, or at least giving a reasonable opinion against the double points in Abu Dhabi. Or 2014 will not be worth watching.

      Hear, hear!! I agree totally on this for the only reason that if ALO or anybody else wins the WDC there will always be that : “that championship is fake since the last race counted double” spine in it!! No sir…. I want my racing clean!!

        1. If Vettel is second for the whole season and wins at Abby Dabby, I’ll be absolutely over the moon, seeing as this rule has literally been created to try and hinder him..

          Never have I seen a rule made with only one person in mind. It’s disgusting.

          Imagine how Vettel feels about it, it’s quite upsetting really. He’s had to put up with all those boos, he’s had to put up with his competitors, his peers, saying his machinery is superior. The media saying it’s boring and now they’re changing the rules as if to say Vettel winning is bad for the sport, at least if he wins as quick as he did this year.

          If Vettel packed it all in and quit tomorrow, I wouldn’t blame him. Never has a champion been treat with such disrespect. To be frank, Formula 1 as a whole from the fans to the Rule Makers don’t deserve Vettel at the moment.

          1. Never have I seen a rule made with only one person in mind. It’s disgusting.

            Don’t you remember all the rules brought in by the FIA to slow down Schumacher/Ferrari in winning championships @ukphillie?
            It also included a rule changing the points (to award less extra for winning), amongst other things.

            I am not even sure this rule is against Red Bull or Vettel especially, because for the last couple of years they have been the ones winning the last race more often than not.

          2. What a lot of bull*hit, the rule wasn’t created to hinder Vettel, it was simple made to keep the mathematical decision of a championship last longer so that TV stations won’t have ratings dropping in the last few races. Only a person with no common sense will say something like this and i have a feeling the whole Red Bull reaction was exactly based on such no-sense people because they want to play a marketing trick on the rules supposedly being made to stop them.
            This way they will appear greater if they win and they will have a bag of internet defenters saying the rules were against them if they screw-up.
            Anyone with any sense of logic sees very clearly that such a rule will not hinder Vettel anymone that will hinder anyone else. There is no way do know how the championship might develop and whether it could end up helping or hindering someone like Vettel. As you many said here he may even end winning based on such a rule so if it was a rule specifically ro hinder Vettel then ether the FIA has some crystal ball that tell them how the 2014 championship will end up going to the last race or they muse be the biggest fools ever for making a rule that has every chance of benefiting him as hindering him.

    3. Would you watch a movie if the end is spoiled before you go to the cinema? i wouldn’t.

      You mean that if the championship is very close between two or more drivers then what’s the point of watching all the races if it’s only going to be decided in the final one?

      To be honest I don’t expect it will be close so I wouldn’t even worry about that, 5 races in we will have a pretty good idea of who’s going to win it (like 2009/2011) one team and driver will dominate and will make this rule useless for the first places in the championship.

      1. @mantresx what if “TEAM A” is dominating but we go to Abu Dhabi with Mr A-team driver with 30 points or so over Mr. B-team driver. Mr secondB-driver could kamikaze against Mr A, (or even just plain bad luck can make a backmarker or any of the other 20 cars crash Mr A-driver). MrB becomes champion by bad luck of the best driver? I mean, FIA is trying to recreate Silverstone 2013 on purpose? That was the most unpleasant race to see alongside Indy ’05. I won’t eat the story of “One team dominate”, because nobody can predict this. All the races will be somehow linked to Abu Dhabi.

        1. @omarr-pepper Japan ’89 or ’90? You would like to think that a DNF tactic wouldn’t be used to decide the championship but it’s happened before and, with so many points at stake (and so many casual fans targeted for an artificial finale) a controversial ending might be what the commercial rights holder wants.

    4. Yes F1 drivers must start having a voice again like in the old days. This PR dictatorship doesn’t help the sport. Some are giving their opinion though, Checo likes it, Seb hates it but what about the rest? They all have twitter accounts after all. Here at F1F, sure it’s not the largest sample possible, the results are simple to read, the bulk of people hates this move and I’m starting to think this rule was made in UAE and it did cost a fortune!

    5. My only problem with this new rule is at a fundamental level – How can you deem one race is worth more points (and thereby more efforts/more skill, etc.).
      On top of that, this has not been the done for circuits like Monaco (historical), Spa or Monza (arguably more challenging) but for Abu Dhabi… there’s no way this will not be seen as a gimmick.
      And I agree with the sentiment that if a driver wins The Title with the aid of this rule, his victory will be diluted and controversial at best…

      1. So what this tells me is that viewership must have been so massively down with SV winning so early, that they are willing to take a desperate measure to try to prevent a driver doing that again. Perhaps I missed info on this but do we know how bad the ratings got, or get these days with an early WDC?

        I thought there was going to be enough change for 2014 that they didn’t need to do this, but I’ll have to assume desperation has set in. After all, phony DRS, and lousy tires, didn’t do it…didn’t even stop the processions let alone prevent a runaway winner.

        What a shame F1 no longer trusts the viewing audience to be there through good hard wheel to wheel racing by reduced aero creating the story on the track, and instead feel they must create the story in the boardroom using methods that have proven to not work, and have only repelled viewers, not attracted them, and obviously will continue to do so.

        I refuse to believe that today’s audience (ie. new viewership) is so different vs. diehard long time racing fans, that they wouldn’t be enthralled by true wheel to wheel action on the track, and instead must have their ‘victories’ manufactured. Is phony the new real? If so, I refuse to believe that will last. Surely to goodness F1 will wake up out of this fog once they realize there is no longer a way to determine Great Champions, so dumbed down will be the product.

    1. FOM/Ecclestone has 6 votes, the FIA has 6 votes and the 6 teams who sit in the group have one each. Ferrari has an overriding veto on decisions if they can offer a genuine reason for using it.

      So basically, Todt and Ecclestone likely clubbed together, overruled the teams and Ferrari didn’t see fit to veto. The Driver Number and other rulings were an attempt at a smoke screen to fit the points rule in.

        1. No, majority vote in the Strategy Group.

          That’s why all the commentators pointed out that the Big Teams thought they were clever by agreeing to it because it meant they could tread on the little teams, but really it was just another FIA/Bernie divide-and-conquer moment.

  1. I’m dead against the new double points rule change, but I think opposition has to be proportionate. Otherwise it sounds scathing for scathing’s sake.

    That quote out of the Herald article seems a bit over the top..

    They are creating a lottery…

    It’s far from a lottery. We’re not quite at BTCC’s way of forming the grid just yet.

    1. The odd thing about that BTCC rule is it was actually introduced for safety reasons. Before the grid reversal draw, you’d get drivers purposefully slowing down on the last lap, so they’d finish 10th and get pole in race 3. Thanks to the draw, they now race lights-to-flag. Which is better for everyone :-)

        1. FIA and Bernie got spooked by the big outcry of the non-Vettel fans that the championship is boring and they’ll stop watching if Vettel keeps winning. This sentiment was amplified by some drivers like Hamilton, and extensively repeated by the media.
          FIA and Bernie just had to do something about it (and prevent further neck injuries) and they came with the “brilliant” idea of double points that works on multiple levels. It will keep the interest, or better the controversy, until the last race and will enable them to charge bigger fee for hosting the last race. No wonder the race is in Abu Dhabi.

      1. I don’t know… he has a point. I’m not in favor of the rule either, but it’s not the end of the world. This is all turning a bit too fanatical. If viewership goes down because of it, then I’m sure they’ll change it back. That’s a WAY more reliable indicator than a bunch of overdramatic divas who gang up on anyone who doesn’t agree with them.

        1. It’s not just ‘a lot of people’ complaining, nor just a ‘bunch of over dramatic divas’…it is an overwhelming number of fans as well as highly experienced F1 insiders from the past and present, who are extremely against this. So much so that trying to sweep this under the carpet by claiming F1 knows what they are doing, in spite of phony DRS, and huge tire problems, and now this, will not go very far.

    1. When they are competent at it, yes. Right now it’s a disaster and Newey brings up valid points.

      Next year rule change is nothing like shake up. It is so restrictive, teams like Red Bull will benefit more from it as they are specialists at marginal development.

      It’s not like other teams can’t come up with radical solutions, they are NOT ALLOWED to.

      1. @kimi4wdc, As you, and Adrian Newey, point out this is just one more stupid rule, but the biggest problem with F1 is the homogenisation of the cars by restrictive rules. Newey being an aerodynamicist rather than an engineer overlooks the fact that the engines already are not allowed to have any differences but his point is still valid, I for one would rather trade open development and design in power trains for a one-design body/aero-package, it would have been lovely to have heard a V12 Ferrari at 18,000 rpm competing with the V8s and possibly V10s as well, for the last few years, and who knows, maybe Ferrari or Mercedes could have found enough extra power to compensate for the RBRs aero advantage.

  2. We all hate it, just like we hate DRS and tyres that turn into **** when being raced on instead of being carefully driven on. We hate the fact a lot of us have to pay for a channel owning the rights to F1, we hate about half of the circuits on the calendar and we hate having to pay sickening amounts of money to attend a race. We hate the stewards interfering with the few decent on-track battles we have nowadays and we hate the cars getting slower year after year. We hate the looks of the cars, we hate the ever-growing feeling among people running F1 that they’re managing a show instead of a sport. We hate Ecclestone’s ideas like turning on sprinklers to make races more exciting, we hate mandatory pitstops, we hate run-off areas about the size of footballfields. We hate double points for the last race of the season, we hate paydrivers stealing away race seats from actually talented drivers, we hate teams being bullied out of F1 and we hate the retarted way money is being divided among the teams. We hate, hate, HATE. Everything.

    And just like you, I’ll be in front of the tv come March. See you then!

    1. @roald Won’t be so sure of that. These things pile up and at one moment you reach the limit of the things you can hate and still remain a fan. For each person it’s different but it comes eventually, that last straw. I might change my opinion yet but as of now, provided this rule isn’t changed then I won’t be watching in March for the first time in two decades.

      I really hope Bernie and the FIA don’t share your opinion as there’s a whole lot of wishful thinking involved on their part if they do

    2. COTD!

      You’re right. We all be to curious to boycott the Australian GP for starters. Although the purity of F1 devaluates.
      I was curious; will drivers get 20 second stop and go penalty’s in Brazil? Will backmarkers get a two race ban when they crash with one of the frontrunners? A DNF in the last race will be disastrous!

      1. I think what F1 should fear is that people will no longer care enough to even bother hating aspects of it. They will just be indifferent, and fickle, and won’t care if they miss a race or not, and certainly won’t pay the big bucks to go to a race…not that F1 seems to care about actual attendance at a track anyway.

        I would hate to see F1 peter out into nothingness, because I am a long time fan who has seen better days, and therefore know the difference, but I hope that if that happens then someone will start a new series that actually will be the pinnacle of racing that will actually put the show back in the hands of the drivers on the track.

        Meanwhile, I think fewer and fewer will be the people that will even bother to muster the energy to the level of hating, as more and more people just shrug their shoulders, shake their heads, and turn their backs.

        Perhaps it’s time for a breakaway series that doesn’t insult the viewership’s intelligence.

  3. Having done 148 races, driven for Ferrari and coming 3rd in the WDC, his opinion is formed with some experience. It also bears a strong resemblance to the opinion of the current champion.

    All these interviews start somewhere and then get syndicated world wide. This one happened to start in the Belfast Telegraph, the next Vettel interview may be done by the Ulan Bator Bugle and that too would get syndicated. .

    1. Given that it’s not something that the teams have to think ahead, design, or anything like that, I would think that it can be changed up to the last minute. But I’m just guessing.

      1. I’m not denying his accomplishments, he’s done a tremendous improvement over last year. Never the less, is up to Vettel, Hamilton, Räikkönen or Alonso? Not yet. I think he has a serious chance in 2014 though and I for one can’t wait and will support him.

  4. I really hope the 2014 championship is decided before the final race. That’s the first time in my 20-year F1-watching career that I’ve wanted that to happen.

    And spare a thought for the first driver who wins the title because of it… he’ll spend the rest of his life being told he didn’t deserve it, and knowing himself he didn’t deserve it.

    Even after being given some time to think about it and calm my viewpoint, I still reach the same conclusion. I hate it. Just hope sense prevails in the end and it’s gone before the season gets started.

    1. I really hope the 2014 championship is decided before the final race

      So do I then I shudder at the thought that in that case they will push a lot harder for the initial plan – double points for the last 4 races and it will become realized sooner than later.

    2. I would be highly surprised if this rule had nothing to do with Bernie. Abu Dhabi being switched with Interlagos for the finale, then it just so happens that a rule is introduced making it worth double: just too much of a (money-making) coincidence.

    3. @neilosjames

      and knowing himself he didn’t deserve it

      I’m sure Alonso would be quite happy based on his comments on his 2008 Singapore GP victory “I still count it as a win”. Also after Hockenheim 2010 when asked how he would feel if he won the title by the small margin resulting from the illegal team order he answered “If you win the title, you win the title”.

  5. For once, I find myself agreeing with Eddie Irvine. I doubt very much if I’ll bother watching a single lap of 2014 unless the ‘Abu Dhabi Super Prix’ is scrapped.

  6. How F1 could do with a character like Irvine at the moment, especially with Webber leaving the sport. Being a self-made man he was never cautious when it came to speaking his mind or rubbing people up the wrong way. His recent Sky ‘Legends of F1′ interview is well worth a watch (it’s up in full on Vimeo), particularly the insight on how highly he rates Schumacher while seemingly trying not to praise him too much, it’s a fascinating interview.

  7. I’ve seen a lot of people worried about the championship being put into a giant mess because of double points. I find it strange that a lot of people are arguing that it makes one race more important yet are saying they’re boycotting the season due to one race. I disagree with double points but chance has always been a part of Motorsport and any variable, artificial or not, can create undeserving results.

    1. It is a fundamental part of sport that the best man (and machine) wins. The regulations of the sport should be there to find which was the best combination that year. In the past there have been rules made to try and negate disadvantage caused by technical failure (dropping results), this rule doesn’t negate any disadvantage; it’s purely about the show.

      1. I think of it like this…I don’t just have disregard for DRS passes…I consider that even the non-DRS passes happened because DRS shaped the outlook of the race, the positions of the players on the track. So will the presence of double points for the last race affect the feeling and the aura of the other races starting with the first one.

        Sure chance is part of the game, and many variables can create undeserving results, but that does not mean they should keep inviting more and more artificial ones into the mix.

  8. Is Vettel the only current driver to have spoken out against the double points? Of course, he’s the one who reasonably stands to lose the most by it, but still… F1 drivers are such corporate automatons these days. Blecch.

    1. No, his Red Bull teammate Ricciardo was actually the first (a day before the Vettel interview went out he mentioned it on twitter) @maciek.

      But I remain skeptical about how much different it is that both Red Bull drivers spoke out to support their teams dislike of this from the other drivers remaining as silent as their teams have been on the issue. In that respect, only Perez stands out by being in favor, although I might have missed that Mallya praised this stupid idea before him.

  9. I went back and read the article on Vettel’s first win, and saw this comment in the discussion:

    @DC said on 14th September 2008, 16:59
    Great drive for Vettel. It is really exciting to see someone new up there.”


    1. Well, it WAS really exciting to see someone new up there!

      Now we have to wait for the next big thing. Grosjean? He is really impressing me, and it’s surprising to see how far he has come. I can’t wait to see how he does next year.

      1. That depends on whether or not Lotus can turn out a competitive car next year – which, given their financial difficulties and loss of personnel in recent months, is not assured by any means.

        One slight issue that I do have with that COTD is the fact that there a couple of caveats with those results – the next race after Monza, the Singapore GP, is somewhat unrepresentative given the race fixing scandal (after all, that same race saw Rosberg 2nd when, for most of the season, he couldn’t even finish in the top 10 in most races).
        As for the Japanese GP, Bourdais actually finished ahead of Vettel but was penalised – many felt entirely wrongly – after the collision between himself and Massa.

  10. Never thought I’d say this but Eddie Irvine is completely right. The double points rule is an embarrassment to say the least. Now that Eddie has said something sensible, I fully expect the four horsemen of the apocalypse to come along any minute.

      1. Apparently Rosberg has just suffered a 200mph tyre blowout during the Bahrain “secret” testing. When will F1 stop gimmicks? They’re killing competitive technology, making a lottery out of the championships, taking away from driving skill, and insulting most of the fans — certainly those like me who’ve been following it for over sixty years.

  11. The complaining about the double points is getting ridiculous. People claiming to never watch another race won’t end up doing a thing, they’ll just keep whining as always. For what it’s worth, I’m not for double points at all, but it’d be nice to see some coherent backlash from fans instead of whatever we’re seeing recently.
    Also interesting to see Irvine say “I am not going to watch another race until that rule gets kicked out”, and then go on to say “I don’t watch sport really” in the same interview.

    1. @ciaran I’d say that it’s the complaining about the complaining that’s getting ridiculous. Can you read another people’s minds to decide that they “won’t do a thing”? You’re too free to pass your opinion as a fact that will def. happen. And what’s not coherent about people that say they despise everything about this rule and will stop watching unless it’s changed? People need to get vocal in masses, send angry e-mails etc. and only then there’s a chance that this lunacy will be stopped.

      Also I don’t see anything wrong about what Irvine had said as obviously he meant sports that are not F1. For an insider, like a former F1 driver it’s quite normal to refer to F1 as just “F1″ with separation from other sports

      1. Please, let’s just stop this complaining about the complaining about the complaining already.

        (Note: this isn’t a complaint, just a polite request :P)

        I also don’t understand everyone talking about not watching come March, if you hate the double points rule then watch the first 18 races and boycott the Abu Dhabi race?

        1. @jerseyf1 Request noted… But politely ignored! :)

          As of the reason not to watch in March then it’s purely because there’s no point in watching a tainted championship which goes against everything F1 stands for(at least for me it’s purely because of that, I’m sure other people will have other reasons). If in the opinion of Scrooge McBernie and the FIA the first 18 races aren’t worth as much as Abu Dhabi then in my eyes the whole championship is worthless that may possibly crown a worthless champion too

          Admittedly the curiosity level about the new F1 is very high but I have a strong enough character to stand up to my promise

  12. Growing up in America going to various short-tracks I don’t really have an issue with it because “Double Points Nights” are the norm for usually atleast 2 races a year (midway & season finale, sometimes the season opener too).

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