Has F1 become 'tainted' over the past five years?
3rd August 2010, 23:52 at 11:52 pm #127930
I’m in a ranting mood a the moment, and I feel like ranting about my favourite subject; the changes f1 has experienced in recent years.
Before I get too in depth with this, I would like to point out that I agree costs had to be cut. Things had gone too far, but I also feel they have gone too far in the other direction, taking knee jerk reactions and making the sport look a little mickey mouse at times. This is where my arguement stems from, the vain attempt to cut costs and the push to ‘improve the show’.
Since 2005 the formula has changed dramatically; Engines have been scaled back to V8′s, rev limited and homologated. This in my opinion, is equal to metaphorically cutting the balls off of an F1 car. Technichal developement has also been severely restricted with inovations such as the tuned mass damper and the F-duct being banned for often questionable reasons, there is also currently no room for major innovaions with the current regulations basically forcing a spec chassis with a custom floor, front wing and rear wing, all in an attempt to ‘improve the show’. In addition, we have tyres that could probaly last 2 races, even at the lowest end of the compound range. Bridgestone have got lazy due to a complete lack of competition from a rival tyre supplier.
Other rules I severely despise are the testing ban and the lack of a spare car at races. The testing ban currently makes f1 look a bit mickey mouse, with teams turning up at races and looking amateurish when they find certain parts are causing their rear wing to melt. The lack of a spare car at races is at best useless beauocracy, as stated by Anthony Davidson, teams have a third car at race weekends, but are banned from using it or having it assembled, what is the point? It is causing fans and drivers to lose out when they have a crash in practice 3 or in a major pile up at the start of the race, which can happen at any time.
Another problem to plague f1 since 2005 is tacky regulations, the worst of which is to come next year with the proximity wing, this is the most fake and contrived thing to be ever even considered for use in f1, and I HATE it. This year has also seen its fair share of tacky rules, such as the qulifying tyre rule, which in itself is not a bad rule and in fact could be quite interesting if it wasnt for the fact it only applies to the top ten and dont get me started on the duel compound rule.
What I think will happen in the next 5 years…
In the next 5 years I can see some of these problems being alleviated. Frstly I think a relaxation of the testing ban is inevitable, f1 cannot safely go on without some testing mid season. Another thing I can see changing is the tyre situation, Pirelli have repeatadly stated that they want somebody to compete with in 2013 and the most likely candidate for that is michelin who could adapt their sports car tyre technology to F1 with the proposed 18 inch rims. A future tyre war could also allow f1 to do away with some of these tacky regulations that are currently inflicted on teams by the fia, I can see tyre manufacturers having to supply a qualifying tyre and a race tyre at race weekends, the qualifying tyre being used for qualifying and then kept on for the start of the race for all competitors with a switch to either another set of quali tyres or the race tyre at the pit stops with no rules controlling which is used.
With the new engine formula being brought in in 2013 engine developement should be freed up again and rev limits should be removed, with perhaps a fuel limit instead of turbo pressure limits or rev limits, there should also be variation on the engine layout used with some teams using I4′s and others using V6′s.
I think I have covered everything there and emptied my mind onto the internet. Rant over.4th August 2010, 3:27 at 3:27 am #143159
I think F1 definitely need to find ways to open up the ability to make meaningful innovation to attract the automotive world into F1. Right now, with all the rules currently applied to chassis and engine, there is a very small window of innovation allowed for. In addition, as newnhamlea1 points out, many of the little innovations are snuffed out within a season or two, hence reducing even more the already small area avaliable for innovation. Right now, automotive manufacturers are being attracted to sportscar racing because there have a lot more freedom to innovate (Porsche’s hybrid 911, diesels at Le Mans, bio-fuels in ALMS, etc). Since there it a high level of automotive interest in sportscar racing, the rule makers in sportscar racing don’t have to worry as much about controlling costs because they are not facing a lack of interest for possible participants. Perhaps if F1 created a rules packaged that allowed for meaningful innovation they may attract the manufacturers back who are apparently looking for racing venues to showcase their ability to innvated to the public. Additionally if the manufacturers see real benefits from the money they are spending they won’t complain about costs. This is key because F1 is supposed to be the pinacle of automotive design and sheer speed. How can it be that pinacle if, as newnhamlea1 points out, their slowly removing that title with testing-bans, reduced engine specs, reduced aero, and silly movable wings (really? like push-to-pass in Indy? really? good racing . . . really?). You don’t need to worry about HRT being able to compete if you have, for example, Volkswagon plus five more new manufacturer joining the sport. Additionally, there are only so many grid slots avaliable, and not ever engine supplier can team up with McLaren or every manufacturer buy Sauber. Maybe, if F1 attracts the manufacturers, some will chose to pour money into Force India, Torro Rosso, or HRT. Why can’t F1 roll the dice and find out?
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