The Double Points Argument
One of the biggest talking points in the F1 community in the last couple of months has been the idea of awarding double points for certain Grand Prix races. At first when the idea was floated by Bernie Ecclestone, he wanted to award double points to drivers in the last race of the season. Now Ecclestone is proposing that double points be awarded to teams, and drivers for the last 3 races of the season.
The idea for double points was, as Ecclestone claims, to help other teams and drivers, but now he is saying that it was done because of Sebastian Vettel’s dominance of F1, and to help Ferrari.
This proposal has angered not only fans but also teams and drivers within F1. Surely any changes to the rules of F1, proposed or made by the head of F1, must not favour any particular team? The idea to give double points to any race of the season is not going to affect who is dominating the sport as a driver. In actual fact if a driver is winning the majority of races, there is more chance of that driver winning a race that gives double points. This will then allow that driver to create an even bigger margin in his favour.
The good news is however, that for Bernie to implement the double points system for the last 3 races, he would need all teams to give it a unanimous agreement, and the word is that teams backed by Mercedes will block any upgrade to the final 3 races.
As well as Mercedes, Ferrari, McLaren and Force India all have the Mercedes engines, and with early results in Jerez proving good for the teams with the Mercedes engines there is a good chance these teams will support Mercedes to block the double points system.
With Ecclestone claiming that the points system was designed to help other teams or drivers, maybe he should take note of an idea a group of journalists came up with at Jerez. Most test weeks see long periods of time when there is very little action on the track. This is what happened in Jerez last week, and to pass the time a small group of journalists started to discuss ways to improve F1.
The idea that developed was a ranking system for potential rookie drivers for teams to choose from each year, a bit like they do in American Football. The way this would work is that the least successful teams would get the first pick of the rookie drivers, and the big teams such as Red Bull would get the lower ranked rookies.
At first this may seem like a crazy idea, but it would mean that less successful teams would get better drivers. It would also give lower ranked drivers chances to increase their skills in the top teams.
This system could also have a bigger knock on effect as far as funding goes. If potential backers know that a less successful team is going to get the choice of the best young drivers, this could make the difference between smaller teams surviving, and not going under.
What is surprising is that a group of journalists whiling away the time in-between action during testing, have come up with a much better idea than Bernie Ecclestone and the FIA could manage between them for a fair way to even out the field between drivers and teams.
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