Should we have a 'champion's league place'?
11th April 2011, 11:29 at 11:29 am #129108
I was watching football the other day and thought it was interesting how so much more emphasis was placed on the mid and bottom table teams because they have something to fight for. In the Premier league the top 4 teams get access to a ‘European champions league’ and the next 4 get access to a ‘Europa league’, furthermore, the bottom three teams get relegated at the end of the season to the lower league. This means that pretty much every team in the league gets some coverage and comment, because every team has something to ‘fight’ for.
This got me thinking, in F1 the entire emphasis seems almost exclusively on the championship struggle, but sometimes (like maybe this season), you’ll get one driver who’s just dominating the championship, and maybe it would be nice to see other stories. For example, there was barely any coverage of the fight between Virgin and Hispania last season to not finish last in the championship and I found the Petrov / Hulk fight for 13th exiting.
So, I was thinking perhaps there should be a clear (non-money) reward system for certain achievements. Off the top of my head… The driver with the most fastest laps in a season gets to have a gold nosecone next season, or… The top 10 drivers get access to race in a pre-championship weekend series with standardized cars.
Are such ideas a little Gimmicky? – Yes. But I think they could subtly improve the way we watch F1 by making the focus slightly less on the front runners.
What do you guys think? Good idea? Or a complete non-starter11th April 2011, 11:42 at 11:42 am #165108
I completely agree with your idea of giving them more coverage, because a lot of the time the focus is on the top teams winning the championship. This is what the casual viewer is here to see. The thing is, it’s hard to cater for everyone. Personally I’d welcome more coverage of the midfield battle, like last year with Williams vs Force India, which has a history of Williams vs Jordan, me and my mates at school always had heated discussions about Williams vs Jordan.
I think the BBC are getting slightly better with showing this, as we have exciting rookies in three of the midfield teams, Perez, Di Resta and Maldonado. Obviously Di Resta is going to get the most coverage as he is British and it is the British Broadcasting Company after all. However this still needs to be improved upon I feel.
The problem comes with introducing some extra incentive, and I’m not sure this would mean the media would pay anymore attention to the teams. I like your ideas though, and there is probably something good in there. Having said this, there are prizes for places in the constructors championship already. 10th place means you get money, 11th doesn’t, but this still didn’t get much coverage last year.11th April 2011, 14:26 at 2:26 pm #165109
@Chippie – Well, I’ll follow your football comparison. What happens to the losers in the Champions’ League? Nothing. F1 is the first category, the most important, so you can’t promote drivers. You can’t promote teams from other categories because of the different budgets and the different cars. I’d like some awards (most overtakes, most fastest laps (which Alonso won last year), etc.), but they would be only words and no one would really care too much.18th April 2011, 15:39 at 3:39 pm #165110
In the days of the turbos there used to be a Jim Clark Trophy for the best naturally-aspirated cars, like its own mini-championship.
Perhaps we could have stuff for “most improved team since last year”, a reliability trophy, pole king, rookie of the year, things like that.18th April 2011, 15:48 at 3:48 pm #165111
OR we could just give everyone a trophy for taking part and run the series on tracks solely in the US19th April 2011, 0:56 at 12:56 am #165112
If you want to highlight the smaller teams (and therefore let them attract sponsors and survive), what about a sprint race on Saturday between FP3 and qualifying in which the lower teams battle for spots on the grid.
If they completely open up the entry process, even allowing for one car teams or even customer cars, we could see a lot of variety and fresh blood come into the sport. The downside to this is that traffic will be particularly bad.
If we let everyone who turns up race on the Friday, they will have to set a time (possibly within a certain time period in a practice session which would mitigate blocking by those on long runs) and the top 16 times go through to Qualifying. The remaining entries are then entered into a sprint race between FP3 and Qualifying of say 100km race distance. The top 8 from that race join the back of the grid for the Grand Prix in their finishing order.
The advantages of this are
- Gives smaller teams TV coverage and media exposure as they have their own race without the big teams hogging the spotlight.
- Opens up opportunities for new teams on smaller budgets, which in turn opens up opportunities for new drivers to break into F1.
- Numbers of cars on the grid and in qualifying sessions remains constant, so traffic problems won’t get worse.
- Maintains the integrity of existing F1 teams, without having a fickle bureaucracy decide which teams are worthy, usually by under-the-table agreements.
- More racing action during the weekend, more content to broadcast – more for fans to watch, more opportunities for those who make money of advertising, sponsorship and broadcast.
- In terms of racing, the track won’t be green when it comes time for qualifying.19th April 2011, 15:34 at 3:34 pm #165113
one of the biggest issue with regard to the exposure notion is this, it isnt regulated by the BBC, they are using the feed coming from FOM who are going to be focusing on the cars at the front in order to get those teams’ sponsors as much exposure as possible. I do like the idea of a sprint ract on saturday morning though19th April 2011, 15:53 at 3:53 pm #165114
What about a 10 lap sprint race, with DRS available at any point for any car following by less then 2.0 seconds to decide grid placings for those outside of the top 10?
Leave the format alone, improve the race coverage of the midfeild and rear when it’s not really going on up top. f1′s already good because there’s narratives up and down the feild anyway, an the feilds not that big in the first place, no need to invent any.19th April 2011, 16:00 at 4:00 pm #165115
All that is required is a better live tv director at FOM.
That is all. In Malaysia they kept showing us pit stops instead of overtakes, in China they did various irritating things, including missing the battle between Perez and Webber in the early laps, not even showing another part of the track but merely the cars immediately in front of them…
FOM are really rather bad. I dont know how we can make our displeasure heard, but really, they need to sort their act out. Better TV directing, 3D feeds, etc.19th April 2011, 16:22 at 4:22 pm #165116
Leave the format alone, improve the race coverage of the midfeild and rear when it’s not really going on up top. f1′s already good because there’s narratives up and down the feild anyway, an the feilds not that big in the first place, no need to invent any.
Agree!19th April 2011, 18:48 at 6:48 pm #165117
The more I think about it, the more I’m agreeing with the general consensus here; F1 doesn’t need gimmicks to make the mid table teams ‘more exiting’. I do love F1, and I am very sad that the midfield and bottom table teams don’t get enough coverage, but this doesn’t appear to be a good answer.
Thank you everyone for your input.19th April 2011, 21:50 at 9:50 pm #165118
I don’t like the idea of offering any further incentive than money.or awarding trophies for trophies sake, seems a little patronising.
It’s up to the teams to attract sponsors through gutsy decisions and radical, race winning designs. FOM should have no part in that. Might sound harsh but it’s a formula thats worked for 60 years. The strongest survive.
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