Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013

Don’t want double points? Tell the teams that matter

CommentPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Yas Marina, 2013“At the final event of the championship points for both titles will be doubled.”

This controversial clause, added to article 6.4 of the 2014 Sporting Regulations last month, is to be debated again by the F1 Strategy Group in two days’ time.

Responses from fans to the rule have been extremely negative. In a poll of more than 800 registered F1 Fanatic readers 91% opposed the double points rule.

Critics of the rule described it as unfair, artificial and likely to make a mockery of the championship if it was decided the title in favour of a driver who benefited from it. Two wins at the start of the season will be worth less than one win and a tenth place at the end of it if the regulation is not scrapped.

The rule was proposed by Bernie Ecclestone after last year’s championship was decided with three races to go. Highlighting the knee-jerk nature of the plan, Ecclestone originally proposed offering double points for the last three races of the year, but amid opposition his proposal was watered down to a single race.

He now claims the scheme could not be dropped in time for the new season but might still be expanded to three races. This is obviously disingenuous and should not be taken at face value as he is the instigator and most ardent supporter of the proposal.

Emboldened by fierce criticism of double points from fans, journalists and past champions, and able to take advantage of Ecclestone’s political weakness, the Strategy Group could water down his plan even further and rid the sport of it completely.

In the six weeks since the rule was announced I have been inundated with emails, Tweets and Facebook messages from fans criticising the double points rule. I sympathise with this point of view and it’s encouraging to see major newspapers, media agencies and television news stations have picked up on the fans’ revolt against the idea expressed on F1 Fanatic.

I have had some requests to promote online petitions against the plan. Though well-intentioned, I feel they are flawed as the FIA, FOM and the teams have no reason to go looking at these websites in the first place and no reason to assume the results haven’t been rigged somehow.

If you want to make your point about double points to those who matter in the clearest and most effective way possible then contact them directly. Six teams are represented on the Strategy Group and some of them have already indicated their displeasure with the rule including Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo and Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.

Here’s how to contact the six Strategy Group teams on your favourite social network and by more traditional means:

Team Twitter Facebook Google + Email Post
Ferrari @InsideFerrari Ferrari Ferrari Ferrari contact form Address
Red Bull @RedBullRacing Red Bull Red Bull feedback@redbullf1.com Address
Mercedes @MercedesAMGF1 Mercedes Mercedes enquiries@mercedes-amg-f1.com Address
McLaren @McLarenF1 McLaren McLaren Address
Lotus @Lotus_F1Team Lotus Lotus Lotus contact form Address
Williams @WilliamsF1Team Williams Williams enquiries@williamsf1.com Address

It’s not unheard of for the rules of F1’s points system to be changed this close to the start of the season. The last such change occurred in February 2010. The vast majority of F1 fans are hoping for the same this year to eradicate the folly the sport embarked upon during the off-season.


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69 comments on “Don’t want double points? Tell the teams that matter”

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  1. Good shout. I’ll send some emails now – was looking for constructive to do whilst in work!!!! :D

    ps. @keithcollantine – need to swap the emails around for Ferrari and Red Bull.

      1. Guys, honestly we need to send emails not only about the double points. We need also voice our opinions on:
        -DRS & tyres combo making things too easy on track

        Good example was Canada 2012. The race could of had an amazing finish, except Lewis over took Fernando 3/4 down the straight way before the braking zone. How can the FIA not understand it needs to be fixed?! The DRS zones are too damn long.

      2. Surely all we need to do is get Ferrari onboard, as much as I despise it, they do have veto power over F1 can they not use it to get rid of this ridiculous rule?

        1. They won’t because the rule won’t last long and will be ridden off after hopefully one season, and therefore they don’t want to waste it.

          1. But don’t they have veto over everything? I thought they could veto any rule they wanted?

            I’m not sure what you mean by wasting it.

        2. Ferrari’s “veto” rights are thought to be restricted though – it appears that they can only veto a limited range of matters if they can prove to the board of FOM that it would have a direct financial impact on them.
          This, as a regulation imposed by the FIA, albeit at the behest of FOM, would seem to fall outside of the scenarios where Ferrari could exercise its voting rights.

  2. I am going to chip in by bringing to the teams on Strategy Group my displeasure about the double points. Thanks a lot @keithcollantine for providing all possible contact information of the six teams sitting in the Strategy Group.

    1. * bringing to the notice of the teams on *

  3. I’ll invite them all over for coffee and tell them waht’s what.

  4. Let’s double the points of all races. Ecclestone is happy because he has more races with double points, and we as fans are happy for obvious reasons.

  5. Tweets or Emails, what is the best way to finally be heard?

    1. @jeff1s Tweet and email links to this article so that all your followers and all you know voice their concerns through all possible means to reach all six teams on the Strategy Group. Have I covered everything? ;)

    2. @jeff1s … Loads of money could be more efficient :)

      1. @spoutnik Who has that much money to fill the coffers of BE?

        1. @seahorse Right, nothing can fill his magic Wallet of Holding, it’s by design :)

  6. I propose a standard message to be send to those teams. It’s more appealing for us if we just have to copy paste it. Something like:

    Dear [team]

    As you are very much aware, the Formula 1 2014 season is knocking at the door. These are exciting times with a lot of changes coming up, and I am very much look forward to it. Most of these changes I believe are for the better, but one isn’t…

    It has become clear in recent weeks that the last race of 2014, at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi, will have double points. Double points, for this circuit only. I as a fan of F1 and motorsport in general believe that this rule is an attack on the values of the sport:
    -It’s unfair, because a driver and/or team that works hard throughout the year is under threat of loosing out on valuable championship positions. Furthermore, the chance of technical failures will be much higher this year, especially that late into the season. Imagine your driver being 26 points ahead of everybody else in the championship. During practice you notice damage to your engine and are forced to bring a sixth engine, which will incur a grid penalty for you. Your closest opponent flies away with victory on sunday while you couldn’t get a high enough to score atleast 24 points. A perfect season for you just ruined this way. I could come up with so many examples how this is unfair, but I am sure you can too and feel that this unfair.
    -It’s costly, because at the end of the season teams will have ussually fully moved to developing next year’s car. With such a rule most if not everybody will be forced to keep developing the current car until the very last race. With so much worries about the financial positions of the team, and even talks about budget caps, this goes against the will of reducing costs and making F1 financially a viable project.
    -It’s unethical. It devalues all the other races to second hand weekends. All those races should be equal, and be given equal importance.
    -It’s downright stupid. This isn’t the solution for making F1 more exciting. Did we need this rule in 2010? No. Did we need it in 2012? Hell no! How about 2008, where Hamilton won the championship in the very, very last corner ? Could you imagine a driver still loosing out to the title this way just because his luck turned on him at the wrong circuit? Can you imagine what outrage that would created in the F1 world? This rule is nothing more then a panic reaction to the 2013 season, where a dominant team won the title fair and square.

    Please dear [team]. You have a meeting coming up where you decide on the faith of this rediculous rule. Make sure you do the right thing, drop this rule and make it never ever come back.

    Your’s sincerely,


    1. I think it would be detrimental for our purpose if all of this starts looking like spam.
      If you’re gonna do it.Do it properly.The time it took for you to write it might convince people that what they read is actually important to you rather than a joke

      1. I agree with @wally02avg that it would look like someone hacked all our email ids and sent the same email from the hacked email ids to the teams. We can agree to base our arguments on the lines proposed by you. But it is important not to spoil one of the valuable options available to chuck out the ridiculous double points rule @turbof1

    2. @turbof1 not a bad idea, but I would avoid some words, like “stupid”, “hell”, “ridiculous” etc.

      1. Way too long. Keep it simple, polite, to the point, avoid hyperbole, rhetorical questions, hypothetical scenarios or assumptions about what others think, use as few adjectives as possible. Pick one solid argument, drive it home in one short paragraph, end of.

        That’s my two cents anyway.

    3. Great idea. In addition to this I’d like to suggest a standard hashtag for tweets. If we all tweet those teams with, e.g., #DropDoublePoints, maybe it would have more gravitas. It’s easier for the apathetic amongst us to tweet than to do anything else.

    4. Plus higher entry fees for 2015

  7. Is it really any worse than DRS? Hard to make a mockery of a championship in which the “racing” is already a completely artificial yawnfest.

    Anyone else remember being on the edge of their seat lap after nailbiting lap as Capelli’s hopelessly underpowered March tried to get past Prost’s McLaren a few years back? How much more exciting it would have been if he’d just been able to press a button and breeze past on the straight without the slightest effort. Not.

    Double points or no double points, I won’t be watching F1 this year for the first time since 1982. If we wanted to see stupid over-contrived rubbish we’d watch NASCAR.

  8. Just ask Mark Webber to write the email to all the teams on the Strategy Group, he knows how to say this kind of thing.

  9. Done, all the teams, had to look to find one that might work for McLaren. (ended up using a media centre address)

    I too feel a form letter is a bad idea, could be regarded as spam, rather each fan needs to sincerely write each team and express how they feel about the double points rule and encourage each team to act on this accordingly at Wednesday’s F1 Strategy Group meeting.

    Hoping for the best and they cancel plan to introduce any kind of double point for any race, as it is artificial and it dilutes the true racing and development traditions of F1.

    Cheers !

    1. What was the McLaren address?

  10. I honestly don’t think we can make a difference, it’ll be down to how much the teams want to object, and they already know the what the fans think.

    TV figures must have dropped significantly at the end of last season which I’d imagine is why Bernie came to this decision. Maybe if all races where still live on BBC then this would’ve never happened? Just a thought!

  11. Fans will really be ****** off if this double points gimmick helps Vettle beat someone else at the final race.

  12. I contributed with my two cents and have already sent a mail to the Cavalino, Lotus and Mercedes. Later I’ll send it to Red Bull (needless to say they have shown their disagreement many times, but still I’ll do it), Williams and finally a twit to McLaren

  13. Thanks for doing this Keith! Emails sent from USA!

  14. If the rules and technical regs hadn’t changed then I have to say something had to be done to increase competitiveness. But since we have new tech regs, new engines we are in a complete unknown as to how the season will go.

    Leave the points alone!

  15. Worst case scenario, Keith, you gotta prepare the points system for an F1 Fanatic Editor’s Championship.

    Otherwise personally, I may keep my own scores based on the 10-6-4-3-2-1, because 10 for a win is so clean and elegant and 6 numbers much easier to recall and calculate mid race on the fly, and of course, most important for me, it was the system used when I first got into F1.

    1. I had started watching when F1 was doing points down to 8th place. The 6 points places are pretty easy to follow, and doesn’t devalue a win like the 8 place system does (since it’s only a 2 pt. differential between 1st and 2nd, whereas isn’t 4 pts. under the 6 place system).

      There’s a sense of… symmetry (not the right word, but the only one I can think of) in 6 points places: you have the podium (best of the best) and then the following three (best of the rest).

      Although, that said, I’m not complaining about the 8-place or current 10-place points sytems, since they’ve both produced very exciting championship battles.

  16. Michael Tomkins
    20th January 2014, 14:58

    Emails, web contacts, and tweet of my own writing sent. I fully intend to stop watching F1 if this rule remains on the books. Sporting should be about fairness and equality. I have no interest in watching a cartoon mockery of a once-great sport.

  17. I’ve mentioned it before but if it does happen, the only way to hit them is to boycott the race. If they get hugely reduced viewing figures for their double points extravaganza, they’ll realise that without the fans on board, they are screwed.

    Now, I am fully aware that going on a site called F1 Fanatics and suggesting for all to miss a race is rediculous and won’t happen so I’m not suggesting to not watch it. I’m suggesting to watch it in a way that doesn’t get recorded on the viewing figures. There are hundreds of dodgy streams, torrents etc. I’ve got Sky and I’ll torrent it instead to prove the point!!

    1. I keep posting this, but if you live in the UK then viewing figures are only recorded for 5,000 households who have special boxes to monitor their viewing habits. The 5,000 households are supposed to a representative sample of the country so that numbers can be extrapolated. Unless you have that box (assuming you are in the UK, although it may be that lots of other countries do the same), a boycott is quite pointless. Boycotting iPlayer could be worthwhile however.

      1. Ah right didn’t know that. Can they not judge what you are watching through Sky etc?

        1. I’m not sure about that. I looked into it before and all official viewing figures are only produced as I said and include sky. Perhaps sky also record what people are watching, but I really don’t know, and I imagine those figures would be kept internal anyway. So if you aren’t one of the 5,000 homes, I expect sky is okay to watch without adding to any viewing figures that matter.

  18. Hasnt Ferrari spoken against it? If so, they might just veto it.

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