Ferrari SF70H, Circuit de Catalunya, 2017

Should F1 ban ‘shark fins’?

Debates and PollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

The new season hasn’t even begun yet and already there is clamour from some quarters for F1 to ban one of the off-season developments.

The vertical engine cover extensions known as shark fins have been furiously criticised by some for making F1 cars ugly.

Shark fins were previously seen in F1 until the end of 2010, when they were banned using a regulation which banned bodywork “situated between 50mm and 330mm forward of the rear wheel centre line [and] more than 730mm above the reference plane”.

The possibility of banning shark fins for 2017 was discussed but rejected. All ten teams have since produced cars with shark fins of various types. Should they be forced to get rid of them?

For

Critics of shark fins have a straightforward case against them: they don’t like how they look. Part of the thinking behind the change in the regulations for 2017 was to improve the appearance of the cars, so anything which makes them appear unattractive is likely to be a cause for concern.

Against

Whether they look good or bad is down to personal preference. But even those who don’t like their appearance should appreciate F1 is supposed to be about the pursuit of performance, not a beauty pageant. Banning ‘unattractive’ elements will only make the cars look more similar.

I say

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Monaco, 2008
Red Bull introduced the shark fin
It’s amusing that Red Bull, the team which introduced the shark fin to F1 nine years ago, is now lobbying hardest for it to be banned. But I don’t think ‘it looks ugly’ is a good enough reason to ban something.

I do have some sympathy for their position, however. The rule book already makes it difficult to avoid creating designs which I don’t like, particularly the clumsy ‘thumb tip’ noses. If the rules are going to be tweaked in the name of aesthetics I’d prefer to see problems like this being prioritised.

But ultimately I think F1 is trying to do enough already by balancing the teams’ insatiable desire for more performance against the needs to ensure the cars are safe and costs are kept (somewhat) under control. Throw aesthetics into the mix and not only do we have yet another variable to master but one which is highly subjective.

Take a moment to look at the different shark fins we have seen so far this year. Some are blunt, some are curvy. Some have T-wings, some do not. This variety is what F1 should be all about. Instead of fixating on whether they’re ‘ugly’ or not, we should be pleased to see a mix of designs.



You say

Do you want the shark fins to be banned? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

Do you agree F1 should ban 'shark fins'?

  • Strongly agree (17%)
  • Slightly agree (11%)
  • Neither agree nor disagree (9%)
  • Slightly disagree (19%)
  • Strongly disagree (42%)
  • No opinion (2%)

Total Voters: 531

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127 comments on “Should F1 ban ‘shark fins’?”

  1. Well, the thing is, I wouldn’t mind shark fins if they provided some great aerodynamic advantage, but according to some engineers, all they provide is about 0.1s to 0.2s per lap. And although I don’t necessarily think they look bad (some of them look quite decent indeed), I think they should be banned as I still preferred the look of the cars without them.

    1. In a sport that looks too hundreds or even a thousand of a second improvement to gain an advantage your complaint is trivial to say the least.

    2. 0.1 or 0.2s is a big difference in F1.

      1. @socksolid That’s true, but if all the teams were to stop their use, are you seriously telling me that a reduction of 0.1-0.2s for all cars will actually change anything?

    3. Only 0.2 secs per lap? Over a race distance that can be massive.

      1. @homerlovesbeer So you’re saying that it would make a difference if a 60-lap race lasts about 12 seconds longer? Because that’s just ridiculous.

        1. @mashiat, as others have said, I don’t think you have quite realised how fine the margins between teams can be sometimes, particularly amongst the midfield teams.

          In qualifying trim, a difference of 0.2s at some circuits could be several rows on the grid – at Interlagos, for example, being 0.2s slower than Kimi (who qualified 3rd) would have put you 7th on the grid.

          Equally, there have been a lot of races where a difference of 12 seconds over the race would alter the results, and sometimes quite noticeably.
          For example, in the Chinese GP last year, 6th to 10th place were separated by about 10.5 seconds by the end of the race, so a difference of 12 seconds for a midfield team there would drastically change the balance (from scoring a decent number of points to scoring nothing at all). Especially in that part of the grid, where there can be some quite fine margins, potentially sacrificing a few positions and several points per race could have a quite sizeable impact by the end of the season.

        2. It is not about the race being 12 shorter. It is about one team getting 12 second improvement from such relatively simple part. If you finish 12 seconds behind the leader in a race then it is possible that you could have been able to challenge for the win had you had the sharkfin on your car as well.

          1. Oh come one! If they all lose the shark fins, the gaps will REMAIN THE SAME.

          2. @damon, will they? Some teams might gain more than that – indeed, this whole debate seems to have been manufactured because Red Bull believe that they can use it to hinder Mercedes and Ferrari (thinking that they gain more than that from their shark fin), but don’t want to openly admit that their real goal is to nobble the opposition.

          3. @socksolid Like @damon said, a shark fin ban isn’t for some teams, it is for ALL teams, so I don’t quite understand what you’re arguing here. It’s completely invalid.

          4. “Oh come one! If they all lose the shark fins, the gaps will REMAIN THE SAME.”

            @damon it would only remain the same if they were all getting the same time out of the fins – which they’re not. That’s the point. They’re all using different designs and therefore all getting different performance benefits.

            So the gaps would not stay the same, they will ADJUST RELATIVE TO THE PERFORMANCE BENEFIT OBTAINED BY EACH INDIVIDUAL TEAM.

          5. @godofwine
            Yeah, the performance benefits may vary. But so what? Every possible change in rules some constructors use better than others. The cars got wider – some used it better than others, the tyres got wider – some used it better than others, the cars got heavier – some used it better than others. There is no absolute or “correct” pecking order for the field. It’s not like the state of Formula 1 with shark fins is more proper than the state of F1 without it. Everything is relative to the rules of the particular time. No set of rules is better than any other in giving a platform to compete in building the fastest car one can build.

      2. Steve (@machinesteve)
        19th March 2017, 8:34

        14 seconds over a race is a whole pitstop gained.

    4. Strongly disagree. But if must be baned that should be from next year s cars not in the middle of the season as the design of the cars is based on them.
      Regulations must be set once at the start of the championship until the end of it.
      If designers find holes in the regulations, f1 comity must set new advanced for next season.
      Period
      (except safety reasons)

      1. @venar I agree that it should be from next year.

    5. I like the shark wing with the tee wing. I want more. Reminds me of the Viking horn on the mclearns in 2007.

  2. If the only gripe is aesthetics, we should first re-examine the awful noses, not the shark-fins.

    1. And get rid of the T-wings.

      1. The T wings are mounted on the shark fin.. so remove the shark fin and the t wings are a added bonus.

      2. T-wings are cool

    2. We could do both. I think the nose regulations could be better because I think everybody agrees the finger noses are ugly. The shark fins are more controversial. Personally I’m not a fan but I don’t see the sharkfins that big of an issue.

      1. Nope, not even close to everyone agreeing. The phallic noses from a couple years ago, sure. But all this hype about the cars being ugly is massively over stated.

        Thumb noses don’t bother me at all.

    3. Agree to some extent about ugliness. For me, the most excessive area of
      sheer ugliness is the one sector that is constantly being developed. And that
      is the aesthetic disaster area called the front wings. Yes, I am as aware as
      anyone else of the advantages they confer in setting up the full body airflow,
      but in reality, because they are universal, they actually confer little or no
      advantage and make overtaking next to impossible.

  3. Adrian Newey was misquoted..after the pre-season test, what he actually said was ‘Finns should be banned’!

    1. Agreed. Everyone is missing the point that Adrian Newey is a huge racist against Finns 😂

      1. F1 is about speed. Aerodynamics is about speed. It dictates the appearance of the cars. The rules dictate how far they can go. Fans are missing the point by saying the cars are ugly and should look a certain way to please them. The same backward thinking was used to slate the noise the engines make. The engines sound they way they do because of what they are and will never sound like the days of yore cars. I believe people just like to complain and they will be the first up to slate F1 for not being faster. The Fins should stay because they make the cars faster and break no rules.

        PS I think the new wheels are ugly and the cars should run on ball bearings, so lets ban the wheels. /S (am I a true fan now?)

  4. I don’t think ‘shark fins’ look bad and in F1 performance is more important than beauty. I don’t know shark fins how affect overtaking. If overtaking will be harder because of this element than F1 should ban it.
    So I think we have to wait a year then we can choose to ban it or not. Today I vote strongly diasgree.

  5. Aesthetically I don’t like them, but I don’t think they should be banned either.

    If something there should be some sort of rule that dictates that they should have some sort of cut. The williams one just looks like a billboard.

    If we were to change something the noses should be a priority, and then the coat hangers, expecially the mercedes kind. The ferrari seagull I’m ok with that

  6. Nose first, shark fins OK.

  7. Shark fins of old tend to blend into the bodywork of the main body of the car, as it appears to with the above Red Bull.

    The problem isn’t just the shark fins, its that they go upwards away from the rear wing, and most have no apparent aerodynamic shape. If they made them as they used to it would be okay. These ones are eyesores.

    1. @strontium THIS. COTD. The shark fins themselves aren’t the problem. In fact, as the RB in the above picture shows, they can really emphasise agression and made the cars look awesome. But in the new rules, the wheelbase can be so long, and so much longer than need be (if you consider how much cooling these cars and engines actually need), that the shark fin appendage looks way disproportionate and long. The biggest aesthetical problem with the shark fins is not the fin itself, but the ridiculously long wheelbase on which it has to stand. That’s what makes it into this rudder or sail-like board rather than a cool, agressive addition to a car within proportion. So removing the fin is fine, but once again, the rules didn’t seem to consider the consequences. Shorter wheelbase and fin is a great combination.

      1. @hahostolze +1, especially about the wheelbase being so long. If they were to reduce the wheelbase at the rear by about 40–50cm (the diameter of the tyre, for comparison, is 67cm (68 for wet tyres)), then it would look so much better and the shark fins would be short and aggressive. It would remove this huge void of space.

        Plus, if I am not mistaken, shorter wheelbases also make the cars perform better in the corners.

        1. And make them lighter!

  8. Don’t care. Why is this even a discussion when F1 should be tackling more important problems? First real mistake Brawn has made to be honest bar deciding that exploring budget cap ideas.

    Some of them look ace, some of them look naff. So what? Should we ban certain colours from being on the grid next just incase somebody isn’t keen on a particular one?

  9. Chose “Neither agree nor disagree”. I hate the shark fins looks but that’s not the main point here and banning them is to put a plaster that masks F1’s much worse problem: the rule making process of F1 stinks! They want to improve the racing yet introduce more dirty aero. They want to improve the looks yet do nothing to eliminate the possibility of shark fins or thumb noses. Everybody could see that the elimination qualifying was the worst idea ever, yet they still went ahead with it! Even if they eliminate the shark fins, now or for 2018 it won’t do. They have to learn the important lessons and change their decision making completely. That’s the first thing Ross Brawn should deal with. Without it, F1 will just be “putting down fires” all the time, and that’s not a good working method in any field of endeavor.

  10. I don’t mind them but certainly think the cars would look better without them, but that just athletics.
    The cars look killer this year but no shark fin would be better.

    But I don’t think we can say F1 has to be the pinnacle of motor sport but its needs this, cant have that etc etc. The best F1 car is because of its design, not its look.
    If it works for aero reasons I guess it stays, but if no team are gaining speed over another send them off, the cars would look better.

  11. I think the question is irrelevant and the entire discussion is trivial. The job of the Aerodynamicist is the make the car as efficient as possible. If it ends up looking good fine if not tough! This is F1 it’s all about the speed secondly comes the noise, looks come a very distant third. If you have time to judge their looks they are probably going too slow to win a race.

    1. Aero depends on rules.. if the rule removed the fin it’s just something to take in account.

  12. It is very much a question of personal tastes. I for one have no problem at all with the thumb tips, but the fins grate on me like fingernails on blackboard. Then again it’s also a function of many teams’ apparent lack of aesthetic sense. Ferrari have done a fine job of blending it in a way that highlights the car’s curves, while Williams have done a fine job to disguise the car as a delivery van.

  13. It’s not shark fins I have a problem with it’s those coat hangar winglets at the end of them..Just seems a bit ridiculous

  14. Whatever, a non issue. In forums I have visited this has only been a topic because Motorsport media keep bringing it up. The thumb tio nose us what fans bring up. More important than shark fins, get rid of those dozens of front wing elements . they banned winglets and things before 2009, now every front wing has 10 little winglets? And Mercedes has a double t wing? Where does it stop, when redbull turns up at Monaco with a 4 tier t-wing and dominates the race?

  15. Voted to keep the shark fins.

    Though, it made me wonder why they aren’t made out of something transparent, like acrylic. I guess it would be weight, but the thought of mixing in some transparency made for a nice minute of thought :-)

    1. @phylyp I was thinking exactly the same, it would look quite cool.

      But yes acrylic is quite heavy compared to carbon fibre and if you make it thin enough not to be it would flex a lot

    2. ExcitedAbout17
      18th March 2017, 14:10

      Have the race numbers painted on them (monotone 50cm diameter).

      Or even better, those Indy LED lights (race number & Position).

      Or sell the space to JCDecaux;
      Or get the some graffiti kids spray-paint them (during the race)!
      And (whilst we’re at it), the monkey seat should only be allowed if there is an actual monkey sitting on it!

      1. “Have the race numbers painted on them.”

        Won’t happen. The teams will complain about it taking up sponsorship space, even though 90% of them don’t use that space for anything.

        No, what we need is to standardize the helmets.

    3. So, they are so ugly you want to camouflage them ;)

  16. Never had an issue with shark fins

    1. Ditto. The front wings are far more ugly and have a much larger effect on the racing, they should be looking at changing those instead of focusing on the shark fins.

  17. DO NOT ban shark fins. Allow the engineers to have a free hand. Let them show their ingenuity. We do not want all cars to be exactly similar, do we?

    1. @malleshmagdum
      How much ingenuity is there in a shark fin once you have it on the car?!? They’re all the same, come on.
      “We do not want all cars to be exactly similar, do we?”
      You’re saying all the cars having shark fins – that look the same – makes the cars look different? LOL.

      1. @damon Are all the shark fins the same? Give me two teams that got the exact same shark fin design! Apart from the RBR and FI, all the shark fins are different.

  18. Visibility or lack of it, particularly at the start of the race is my major issue with them.
    I also have an issue calling them shark fins, plasterboard sheet would be more appropriate,

    1. What on earth are you going on about?

      1. If you put an obstruction between the object you are looking at and your eyeline you can no longer see the object.
        Hope that helps you understand.

  19. No. They should ban thumb noses. They are hideous.

    1. I think once you see Force India’s pink protrusion you will no longer be calling it a thumb nose.

  20. Strongly disagree, I don’t think banning things is generally the right way to go.

    What I do think should be done is use that bit blank space for something useful – big numbers for helping fans to distinguish the drivers. Sort of like: https://cdn-9.motorsport.com/static/img/amp/800000/880000/883000/883600/883669/s6_3674958/f1-september-young-driver-test-2012-brendon-hartley-test-driver-mercedes-amg-f1-testing-no.jpg but bigger and bolder.

    1. @graham228221 – good idea for driver identification.

      In fact, I’d take it a step further and mandate that teams put the 3-letter driver code on the sharkfin. While I can remember the numbers for key drivers, I struggle to recall it for the midfield teams and lower. I don’t see the value of a 2-digit number when we could just identify the driver with their 3-letter code.

      1. @phylyp perhaps you don’t remember the numbers because they aren’t obvious enough on the cars ;)

  21. Keep them. Wasn’t the entire point of these new rules to make the cars even faster?
    When I look at a F1 car I want my mind to be blown. It should look like something that ordinary people can’t figure out. It should be mental.

    And I know its a safety matter but still.
    For those who say looks matter, explain the halo.

    1. “It should look like something that ordinary people can’t figure out. It should be mental.”
      Haha, next thing you know, you’ll be calling it spiritual :)

  22. Yeah Ban it. ASAP. for start of European part of the year.

    It is uggly, adds 0 to good racing, reduces the show,… makes cars easier to handle, less spectacular to drive…

    So that’s that.

  23. Re write the rules to make thumb noses impossible.

    Only RB making a noise possibly because they gain less from them so banning them would be a net performance gain versus their rivals.

  24. Strongly disagree; not that I like the fins but F1 is so massively over-regulated. “between 50mm and 330mm forward of the rear wheel centre line [and] more than 730mm above the reference plane” is a typical bit of wording… and this sort of specification is applied all over the cars. That’s why they all look the same and are ugly. Leaving fans panting over silly things like paint color.

  25. I don’t particularly like the look of shark fins, or far worse, T-wings. However, I do also like the following argument:

    Banning ‘unattractive’ elements will only make the cars look more similar.

    Trouble is, there isn’t much variety added if all cars feature shark fins.
    And then there is this:

    But even those who don’t like their appearance should appreciate F1 is supposed to be about the pursuit of performance, not a beauty pageant.

    Which also has one big caveeat: All those ugly appendages (worst in the mid-late 2000s) are workarounds around rules that aimed to reduce aero-performance. If it wasn’t for that, a car fully optimised for performance would have a clear and clean shape and as a side-effect also be much more beautiful.
    For examples of F1-cars that subjectively seem beautiful to me, look up the Tyrrell 019, the Ferrari 642 or the Jordan 191.
    That said, albeit delivering a new possible pet-peeve with the shark-fins, the 2017 look pretty good and spectacular, and on top of that we got some color back.

  26. I can’t really compare these shark fins to the ones of yesteryear.

    I actually think they really balance out the car aesthetically. Mercedes is a great example of what I mean. Check out an image of with and without, and you’ll see that the car looks much more ‘boat’ like without it. The cars look stretched now (i’m not a fan of making the cars longer. Felt very unnecessary), so adding some height to them levels this out a bit and feels a lot more in proportion.

    What need to go, however, are the hideous thumb noses. Don’t get me wrong, the cars look so much better now that I’ve started to ignore them. But there’s no doubting that the cars look much, much better without them.

    I haven’t heard one person support them since their induction in 2014. I heard from a few people that the rules had been written to essentially ban them, but that seems to have been a big misinterpretation.

    1. Well, I much prefer the Force India nose to Mercedes’ nose. Just me :P

      1. Now THAT’s an unpopular opinion.

    2. @ecwdanselby, the thing is, whilst there have been a number of posters who have complained about the wheelbases of the cars getting longer and longer, most of them haven’t actually changed that much – in fact, at least four teams (Renault, Sauber, Williams and Toro Rosso) appear to have shortened the wheelbase of their cars compared to 2016.

  27. I don’t mind the shark fin as they look alright, but they really should ban those stupid extra wings that are being placed above the wings… Those look stupid and could possibly break off during a race… Keep the fins, get rid of the extra wings

    1. How can they break during a race? If a car is flipping, breaking the extra wings is the least of their problems.
      I personally like them, I think they look cool.

  28. The FIA will push me to impose more regulation, and I’ll say no. And they’ll push, and I’ll say no. And they’ll push again, and I’ll say to them, “Read my lips: No. More. Regulation”.

      1. It’s a very clever play on a quote made by George Bush Snr back in the day, James.

    1. My vote for COTD (provided enough people get the reference) :-)

      @James@ironcito is referring to a famous excerpt from a speech by George Bush Sr. about not raising taxes (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Read_my_lips:_no_new_taxes#Pledge ), and has rephrased it to refer to regulations!

      1. I should have read this before posting, @phylyp

        1. @andybantam – no worries. I now know there’s at least 2 of us who got that reference :-)

          1. @phylyp Surely you meant ‘two of us are old enough and boring enough to take the amount of interest in politics required to remember a quote that must be nearly 30 years old’…

            Haha! :)

  29. I don’t like the fins but I voted they should not be banned. It is a product of the sport’s aero development and I can accept that. I didn’t care for the past’s X-wings, McLaren’s Viking horn wings, pointed raised “bullet” noses or stepped noses. I thought if we must have the fins, then at least put the car number on that space. Ross Brawn thought the same thing years ago and the teams pushed back, according to Autosport’s website.

  30. Estaban de los Casas
    18th March 2017, 15:08

    Amazing in the world of keeping secrets about new season changes and the advantages they return in the realm of being faster between opponents, l find it curious that 20 brand new race cars, built to new regulations, are almost identical, that no one went radical AND THAT THEY ALL CAME UP WITH SHARK FINS. Are we mislead with in that next generation cars are so universally similar. How is it even possible? Its not possible that teams didn’t share ideas between them? They look too similar. Keep the Shark Fin and lets see how cool they look while racing next week.

  31. I think we should ban any bodywork!

  32. F1 should ban people who are moaning about superficial things like bodywork extensions.

    1. Its superficial only if it doesn’t work for them.

    2. Maybe people should ban F1 and promote sports that make people healthier and the world better, rather than something as superficial as cars going in circles polluting the air?
      Motorsport is a superficial form of entertainment and nothing more, you silly man, and if its entertainment value can’t be criticised then I don’t know what the point of having it is.

      1. My thoughts too. F1 is entertainment for gear heads. People in entertainment are mosly beautiful. Lets keep the the cars looking sharp too.

  33. Keep the iconic shape of an F1 car! I dislike the shark fins because of aesthetics and that is probably the opinion some of us share. All of the cars would look very cool with out them, especially the 2017 grid with low-slung rear wings and the more aggressive appearance. No shark fins brings back memories to the design of the 90’s era cars which I love. Ferrari 641/2, Williams FW17/18, Benetton B195, McLaren MP4/6, etc. Point is, there were some really nice looking cars on the grid back then, and while I understand the aero benefits and pushing the boundaries of function, (F1 has always been this shape, more or less, and has evolved over time), I have trouble letting go! :)

    1. None of the iconic or legendary cars were made to look like previous cars, nor had their looks artificially changed to be “pretty”. It was the innovation and uniqueness that eventually made them memorable. Someone probably complained when wings first started to appear and “ruined” the bullet-shaped cars of the 50s.

      1. @ironcito
        “None of the iconic or legendary cars were made to look like previous cars, nor had their looks artificially changed to be “pretty”.”
        This is an excellent point, Diego :) However, although it’s true that their looks weren’t artificially changed to be “pretty”, they just happened to be.
        Back in the past, the pursuit of speed lended itself for designing good-looking cars, today it doesn’t. And that’s the whole problem.

        “It was the innovation and uniqueness that eventually made them memorable.”
        It’s not the point of car to be momerable, but pretty. A car that would look like a turd on wheels would be memorable, but that’s not the point, is it?

        1. @damon
          The point of the car is to be fast, not pretty.

          Earlier F1 cars are pretty in retrospect, because of what they mean and what they achieved.

          Take a look at the Lotus 79, for example. It’s boxy, the front wing looks wrong, it looks like the driver is in a bathtub. But it’s F1 history, it was successful, so it’s beautiful.

          And that’s not even going further back, like the Tyrrell 003 or the Matras. Today they’d be described as hideous, if it wasn’t for the historical context and the retro appeal.

  34. They’re there for aerodynamic reasons, not to work around the rules (as is the case with the noses).

    I actually don’t mind the look of them. They make them look faster to me. It’s not much to get used to either, we’ve had them in F1 before and seen them on several other cars in recent years.

  35. no, rules that are created for aesthetic reasons (like this season’s wings) are idiotic

  36. F1 is about performance, not aesthetics. Fast is beautiful.

    If they offer enough of an advantage to warrant inclusion, then let them stay.

    1. “Fast is beautiful.” And this is why people complain about how ugly it is, yeah right @sham.
      The reality of 2017 is that “Fast is ugly”. If Formula 1 was only about performance, then the cars would look closer to this: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Y7mXH_iljmU/UkpBpYLylaI/AAAAAAAAJqc/CAHrihkqzfs/s1600/Solar_Car_-2011_Tokai_Challenger-.jpg
      …and there wouldn’t be live broadcasts on sundays, because nobody would care.

      Formula 1 is a form entertainment and looks are part of the entertainment value.

      1. Looks are part of the value, yes. That I agree with. But, in my opinion, the current endurance cars are disgusting to look at… Yet awesome at the same time.

        No reason an F1 car can’t be the same. The 2017 cars look great to me.

        I’ve never considered not watching F1 because of how the cars look. Those that do, maybe need to wonder if they would be better of watching a series where the cars don’t evolve and change.

  37. Strongly disagree

    F1 is all about performance of the cars not the looks.

    And if they ban it, please not during the season. The cars are designed like this within the current rules

    My 2 cents

  38. I’d like to see them banned purely from an aesthetic POV, I think there ugly & really ruin the overall look & flow of the car designs.

    There’s some photoshops removing the shark fins in the link below & I think they all look way better.
    https://wtf1.com/post/see-2017-f1-cars-look-like-without-shark-fins/

  39. What a lot of reactionary youngfarts, “F1 cars didn’t have fins before (ie since I started watching) so fins are ugly”. As an oldfart I say keep the Fin and ban the wings, and as bonus make the RBR windshield/head-protector work, then we’ll have beautiful F1 cars again.

    1. @hohum, you know, the increasingly reactionary streak that you are displaying reminds me more and more of Bernie Ecclestone…

    2. Steve (@machinesteve)
      19th March 2017, 8:40

      At least the shark fins actually make the cars look different without them the 2017 cars look just like cars from the 1970s, 80s, 90s and 00s to the casual viewer – I’d say F1 is a bit stuck, no wonder people are bored…..time to give the sport a 21st century aesthetic boost to go along with the engine technology……oh that’s right you think they are too quiet…..you people hate change…..Doh!

  40. I love all the little aerodynamic bits that teams stick on the cars, shark fins included. A bunch of little winglets that all do their part to make the car a bit faster is part of the “ultimate racing machine” appeal for me.

  41. Old Shark-fin very good looking. I miss them :(
    New shark-fin not so good looking, but still pretty cool. I hope FIA will keep them.

  42. I think generally modern F1 cars are very unattractive. The winglets on the front wing, the noses, the fin, the Finns, etc… but I like the car to be as fast as possible and that I like.
    I think the Indy Lights cars are good looking, no fancy footwork, functional and clean. Just my humble opinion….

  43. Strongly agree. Get rid of them, they spoil the sleek look the rear of an f1 car has. I wonder how many drivers will appreciate them at Silverstone air field with the strong crosswinds…

  44. I think that Mclaren mp4-10 was the pioneer of the shark fin… what do you think?

  45. “But even those who don’t like their appearance should appreciate F1 is supposed to be about the pursuit of performance, not a beauty pageant.”
    Nah. That statement is so overrated.
    I’d rather them have a 3.5 litre screaming engine for better performance than have a nonsense vertical plank.
    And cars have always been and always will be a beauty pageant. That’s why people love cars – it’s a form of technologie and art at the same time.

  46. As long as there are no winglets attached, I am fine with them.

  47. Ban? Why ban? Is it unfair sporting wise, no then don’t ban. Free F1!

  48. I think for the aesthetics I just roll my eyes, these are race cars, not supertoys for rich people.

    But on the other side they do add stability to the cars, something that to my mind reduces the quality of the racing.

    But I also think the rules should not be changed mid season if they can help it and frankly, why not ban it after they first were revealed? Too late in my view. Overall, I don’t care much either way.

  49. F1 should never be about aesthetics. So, no to banning because it may not appeal to the eye.

  50. Don’t care at all & wouldn’t even care if they had twin overhead fox tails.

    On they thing I’m interested in is Friday, Saturday and Sunday next week when we’ll get to find out who’s car is quick and who’s isn’t.

  51. Shivang (@angelicdarkness)
    19th March 2017, 10:15

    For me, The cars can look a truck as long as they are fast. The moment they lose their speed then its a problem for me.

  52. If F1 really needs some variety, why not leave it upto the teams to decide whether or not they want to use a shark fin?

  53. Why is everyone getting out of their prams?

    I really don’t understand what the issue is?

    1. There really isn’t an issue here at all. It’s just a pre-season tizzy that will evaporate next weekend.

      1. I think you’re right, @nickwyatt

        There are still much more important issues that plague F1 currently. None of the negatives have disappeared since Liberty took over. They haven’t had time.

        But, here we are. The masses moaning about something which is less ugly than this unavoidable thumb nose, as @keithcollantine points out.

        It’s just a storm in a tea cup.

  54. Well, it’s settled then. Based on this poll and the preponderance of the comments, the FIA will reject the majority view of the fans and ban shark-fins henceforth.

  55. Incidentally, the Jaguar D Type was such an ugly car…

    Wait, what?…

  56. I do not think that banning Raikkonen or any other Finnish driver will do any good for the sport. Yes he is a predator and in the right car would love to hunt down his pray. But calling him a “shark finn” and considering a ban is a step too far. The same applies to Bottas is he turns out to be good in the Merc.

    So, I for one hope our “shark finns” are here to stay.

  57. I think they look unattractive but I don’t think they should be banned outright. Discouraged maybe by tweaking something else in the rules.

    I would not miss them if they were not there but like some people have said we will probably forget all about them if the racing is really close.

  58. I don’t even think they look bad. Plus, they’re not a safety hazard. If you people are so concerned about looks; dust off a Hispania F110, change the wings, stick wider tires on it, put it on the grid, and see what happens.

  59. I’ve been really surprised to hear them described as ugly. I don’t think they are at all. Is it another media invention to create controversy and clicks?

    I saw the cars in action (slow and fast) in Barcelona a couple of weeks ago and thought the cars looked fabulous.

    Why are people so fussy? I sometimes wonder if each fan has one perfect F1 era that they themselves loved, and anything that deviates from that will always be wrong. Or do some perpetually grumpy journos (as always, I don’t count you in this Keith!) kick off a discussion hoping that anyone having a grumpy day will agree with them?

    I hope the fins will be used to give spectators a better idea of who the driver is. If you’re at the track it’s really hard to see who’s driving which car. At home, watching TV, you might get a glimpse of glove colour (e.g. Mercedes) or helmet colour. But even the commentators struggle to tell which driver is which. Different coloured fins, or huge numbers on the fins, might help.

    Roll on the 2017 season. I can’t wait!

  60. For the most part, I really like the shark fins. The Renault, Haas, Sauber and Toro Rosso examples, I think, add to the purposeful, aggressive stance the cars have this season. Red Bull is against them because they run such a high rake that their car doesn’t benefit significantly from a shark fin; hence they want them gone to give themselves a competitive advantage.
    That said, the Williams and Force India are particularly “slab-like” and look like they came off an LMP1.
    T-wings don’t really bother me either way.
    I only started watching F1 in 2011, a newcomer, I know, but since then I have learned that F1 fans are not truly happy unless they are complaining about F1, so bicker on fellow race fans!

  61. Shocking results. I initially thought it would be 90/10 agree on ban.

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