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FIA
The World Motor Sport Council met today and ruled that the driver with the most wins will win the World Drivers Championship. Autosport did some quick matha few weeks ago when Bernie Ecclestone proffered his Olympic medals concept that hsowed based on wins, the result of 13 world titles would have changed over the history of F1.

In short, Bernie got his medals idea from Max today without the privileged of the driver actually getting a “gold medal”. Now it is just a regulation. The FIA also ignored the FOTA recommendation which showed that the surveyed fans do not want a simple “winner-takes-all” solution. They instead would like a tweaking of the points system that would keep the racing tight but allow the winner a little more gratification and incentive by increasing the points payout for a win.

From my perspective, this is another knee-jerk reaction that no one wanted except Bernie as he thinks the most wins is the exclusive prime mover for any team to compete. That consistent, good performance is really not a factor in F1…just wins. While the person who wins the most races is usually someone who is consistent, it obviously didn’t reflect that 13 times in the past. I have been a staunch believer that if a team has a driver who finishes second in every race and wins the title that it is by far a noble feat and deserves the championship. I guess the WMSC and Bernie disagree with me.

I am losing patience with the knee-jerk, pragmatic decisions of the FIA, WMSC and FOM. Messing with the points system is tantamount to de-valuing currency. It has a knock-on affect that is very egregious. It can really be detrimental to the series and skew what is and has always been the best racing in the world. NASCAR’s manipulation of points to create close racing is well documented. So much so that now “competition cautions” have been de rigueur and somewhat accepted by the fan base but it is also the very thing that is killing that sport in my opinion. leave the exciting racing to the teams and track, not a propped up points system and winner-takes-all type of gambit to make a false sense of entertainment.

I for one think this is a mistake and believe that FOTA’s suggestion should ahve been taken more seriously. Max knew that Bernie’s medal idea was half-baked and even said that the issue should be put before the fans for a decision knowing that the fans were adamantly against it. No one had to guts to tell Bernie that it was a bad idea. This prompted Bernie to suggest that they certainly weren’t going to ask what the fans wanted which raised the ire of many die hard fanatics of F1. So now we have Max and the FIA unable to turn Bernie’s medal idea down and yet have given him what effectively is a medal system without the medals.

I feel like I am being manipulated, lied to and unrepresented as a fan. I hereby form GPFA (Grand Prix Fans Association). Out goal is to regain some sanity in the sport we love and seek the removal of pragmatic, knee-jerk changes to a sport that makes a mockery of the pinnacle of motor racing. What’s next? A “Digger” mascot and cartoon of our own?

I will post a thread in the forum for GPFA member sign up. ;)

“The WMSC accepted the proposal from Formula One Management to award the drivers’ championship to the driver who has won the most races during the season,” said the FIA in a statement.

“If two or more drivers finish the season with the same number of wins, the title will be awarded to the driver with the most points, the allocation of points being based on the current 10, 8, 6 etc. system.

“The rest of the standings, from second to last place, will be decided by the current points system. There is no provision to award medals for first, second or third place. The Constructors’ Championship is unaffected.

“The WMSC rejected the alternative proposal from the Formula One Teams’ Association to change the points awarded to drivers finishing in first, second and third place to 12, 9 and 7 points respectively. “

Oh…PS- I guess they couldn’t tell us why the ruled against FOTA’s recommendation? Didn’t deserve their well-thought-out consideration? What happened to “transparency” Max? Guess we fans can’t comprehend complex decision trees, balance sheets and regulations…let alone points systems? I’m insulted.

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An F1 fan since 1972, NC has spent over 25 years in the technology industry focusing on technology integration, AV systems integration, digital media strategies, technology planning, consulting, speaking, presenting, sales, content strategy, marketing and brand building.
  • Jowl

    aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrggggggggggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

    • LOL. I think that says it better than my long diatribe. Amen brother!

      • Jowl

        I’m completly with you – this is just insane

  • I’m with you!

  • Jere

    I’ve had it! Someone shoot that midget!

  • SJ Skid

    So, if someone, say, wins 5 races, and no one else wins more than 4, but the 5-race driver crashes out in EVERY OTHER RACE, he [or she after Danica drives for USGPE] wins?

    Really?

    Seriously?

    Interest level… falling….

  • Noddy93

    crap crap crap

  • SJ Skid
  • Lucas S.

    Why those @^&*(* %$$^*()))*$*W$&(&* &^^%$#$%#$&^&^(*uy*&*^^&^* &^*&^^&$%^#$%@ #$@$%#@ %$^%&*^(&*)(_)_*()*&^&% ^&*^ &YY(&&!*($&$!@#$()*@#() $*@# &$*&%$ &%*(&%*& $%*&*%&!$&%* (!#$&%(#&$%*&*(%&#*(&%#&%*(#%*&#*(% Bernie &$*%&*$& %*$&%&*(%&*#$&%(#&% *(&@$#*%&*(#@ &%(*@#&$%* (&#@$*( %&$#*& %*#$%*&#*(%&*(#$&%*(#$&% *(&%*(#&$%*(&$*%& Max #$*(% &*(& %&%*(&* %&*( #$%&*(#$ %&*( #$ &%* (#$&% *(#$&%*( $&% $%&(*$ %&*($ %&*(#@ &% (*$& %( *$& % (*$%&#*( $%&(*#$&%*( $&%($&%(*$&%(*&$%(&$%(*$&%.

    Lucas S.

    P.S. It just wasn’t worth the effort to put in the non curse words. It’s not like anyone with the power to change it would even take it under consideration.

  • kcander

    Now there’s going to be a mad scramble for teams to sign Noriyuki Haga. Win it or bin it, Nitro!

  • SR

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…Who do they think they are??? …and where is the FOTA’s reaction/response? They need to come out against this and be a voice for the fans who support their teams/sponsors.

    • SR

      BTW, in case anyone has misunderstood this…Max and Bernie have officially given the fans (specifically the fans) the middle finger with this ruling…

  • Steph

    Oh…ARSE!!!!!!!!!!

  • What an idiot decision. The suggested 12 p for win was excellent but this is complete shit. Only a complete idiot would change the rules this dramatically. Thank you for spoiling this season assholes !

  • FastCars

    I’d just like to say that I agree with all the comments posted so far. This is utter nonsense. A championship winning season is built on consistently good results, not just wins. Like most other contributors to this discussion, I agree that coming second in two races is a lot more “worthy” than winning one of them and crashing out carelessly in the other.

    The best we can hope for is a) that this is withdrawn again after this season and b) that it doesn’t affect this years championship winner.

    One final thought – it might favour Hamilton, who will probably be last in each race until about Hungary, before McLaren figure out which part is killing the aero, fix it, and he wins enough of the remaining races to take the championship under the new regs! You heard it here first :)

  • TeamOrders

    Team Orders!!! That’s going to be THE major side affect, and they’re going to kick in very early in the season (eg race 1????).

    It would be crazy for Ferrari to let their drivers actually race and have Massa win 4 and say Kimi 2, but have Lewis win 5 and Heikki 0.

    Under the old system teams could allow teammates to share wins until about mid season because the penalty was only 2 points; 10 vs. 8. Under the new system though it’s a win or nothing so teams who want the WDC can’t afford to divide wins between drivers.

    Not good.

    • @ TO: This is a perfect example of how Max’s pragmatic approach never thinks through the long term knock-on effect of his decisions. They just “wing it” most of the time. The teams will game the system and it will make it worse, not better. F1 doesn’t have the luxury of just winging it anymore.

  • Jim

    (sigh)
    WTF
    The good news is 8 engines per driver will be plenty now because once they fall out of the top 3 they will just park the car and call it a day. I can’t even comment on this because to be honest I can’t keep it family friendly

    Too many people have theri hands in the pot. FIA,FOM,WSMC,FOTA,GPDA
    Alphabet soup bullsh–

    • Roger Carballo AKA Architrion

      That is just what all the media are saying right now… you can throw your car to burn their engine’s on their 8 best tracks and then just go to rest and watch the show.

      Joining this mess, the fact just mentioned above that battle between teammates is history…

      The question is

      What the hell are Max-Bernie thinking on?

  • jonnowoody

    Now, come on, you hotheads.

    It is only the title which will be de-valued.

    The existing points structure of 10 – 8 – 7.5 – 6 will still determine who gets the silver and who the bronze.

    Don’t underestimate B.C.E. if he thinks you’re laughing at his rediculous ideas.

    When you think you’ve taken him down, he’ll crawl between your legs and stab you in the goolies!

    • Jim

      The troll doesn’t have to crawl between anyones legs ..just ask his wife

  • raithrover

    Someone really needs to split this double act up. It is ruining F1 as we know it.

  • dumpsterdiver

    I’m surprised that nobody has caught onto the other caveat to this news . . . that the FIA is making the “most wins” rule retroactive to last year.

    :)

    Massa ’08!!

    • LOL. Got a text message from Grace today that said; they’ll stop at nothing to hand Massa the title! ;)

    • JD

      Actually retroactive to 1981 so Bernie will have ZERO titles!

  • SR

    Why is this so obviously a bad idea to everyone who cares about F1… I think someone needs to sit Max down and explain to him what happened last season in Brazil…that race was quite possibly the best thing to happen to F1 in a long time (and I’m not an LH fan). How is this decision justified when their own research pointed to this being an unpopular idea? As I said, this is a huge FU to the fans…

  • Perhaps a forum discussion but why, for the love of Pete, would the FIA make this concession to Ecclestone and not provide justification or rationale to assuage everyone’s completely obvious fear of this decision. Who, among the “WMSC” though the public and teams would liek this? No one asked to given our Medicine because Bernie knows it tastes horrible but will make us better.

    If there are good reasons for this type of system, then let us hear it. Otherwise quit Eff’ing up our sport already!!!!

  • Entropy

    I read all your comments and it just amazes me. I mean, probably a few of you voted for Change last November. Then why are you so reluctant to change now ???

    If you think that announcement was Change, then wait till you see this article I found on majorleaguebaseballrules.com:

    [3/17/2009 – 1.44 pm]

    (New York) Major League Baseball (MLB) commissioner Bud Selig has announced today a major revamp to the league he is the head of since 1992. After months of non-negociations with the teams and the fans, MLB has announced today that games will no longer be decided by the final score but by the number of homeruns produced by each team.

    ”We looked at the ratings from previous seasons and we came to the conclusion that we had reached a peek during the Sosa-McGwire homerun battle in 1998, said Selig. It was then obvious to us that fans weren’t interested in ongoing game-strategies, hit-and-run, stolen bases or great defensive plays.”

    Beginning at the season opener on April 5th in Philadelphia, homeruns will be the first tie-break to determine a winning team. Were 2 teams to end the game with the same amount of homeruns, triples would be the next tie-break, then doubles, singles and finally stolen bases.

    ”I think it could eventually eradicate the demand for good all-around players, says 2008 MVP Dustin Pedroia, leading the league with 213 hits with only 17 homeruns. General managers will only be looking for big sluggers and no team will need us anymore.”

    Harry Davis, retired manager of the 1912 Cleveland Indians, has said via electric telegraph that he fears that this new rule may change the essence of the sport itself: ” I reckon we will see a lot of fat bastards being hired just to knock the ball off the park. Poor SOBs with no defensive skills whatsoever. Just sluggers. That’s really a shame.”

    On that worry, Bud Selig has instantly replied that he had already foreseen that problem and considers to change the existing team salary cap for a strict team weight cap. ”The team will be allowed a 2000 kgs cap for their 10 heaviest players, excluding of course the pitchers. Each team will be allowed to have up to 6 designated hitters in the AL and 4 DH in the NL. Of course, the weight cap is still under study and will not be force fed to the teams in 2009, but we will definitely ask for the fans opinions as soon as our decision will be final.”

    Reached at his home in Atlanta, returning ace-pitcher Tom Glavine admitted having already met with manager Bobby Cox to discuss the new 2009 homerun rule. ” We came to the conlusion that under that new rule, I may have to intentionally walk around 5 to 6 hitters per inning, to avoid any risk of homeruns, said Glavine. It would have been a problem in the past, but since points don’t matter anymore, it’s a small cost to pay. Games could last up to 6 hours but that’s a good thing for fans who pay to come see us play.”

    ”The bottom line is: Fans want to see homeruns, concluded Selig. And that’s exactly what we’re going to give them in 2009. It might slow down the game or make it harder to follow, but in the end there will be more homeruns. Period. And if there ain’t, then we will move the outfield walls closer to the homeplate. Simple as that.”

    We’ll have to wait a few more weeks to find out if the new rule will invigorate once again the fans’ enthusiasm towards America’s beloved kinda-sport.

    The 2009 MLB starts on Sunday, April 5, 2009 with a homerun chase involving the 2008 world series champion Philadelphia Philies hosting the Atlanta Braves.

    ————— [the writing team @ majorleaguebaseballrules.com]

    So there’s that. But regarding F1, I suggest they’d elect a jury of 5 single females and 4 married males to just give grades to each drivers at every races; evaluating: apexes, overtaking styles, sportsmanship, respect of blue flags, helmet designs, etc. The guy with the best overall grade (i.e. the one that drove the ‘nicest’ championship) wins it. How about that ???

    • Bud and Max must be drinking together again. Baseball is baseball…either love it for what it is or don’t watch. Look at what NASCAR has done to their sport trying to “spice it up” to retain viewers when Football seasons starts.

      I just have a different opinion of sports. Players making $200 million on a contract seems ridiculous to me and to be honest I really don’t want to pay $200 for me and my family to attend one baseball game in order to fund the salary and stadium(you see, the logic is the player can get that much because he puts bums in seats but if that stops, the player can’t demand anything). I think the over bloated nature of sports in general will devour itself eventually. Over valued events are starting to crumble. The concert scene has been hurting for years. Anyone recall the last massive arena tour by a band…other than U2? I mean 70,000 people in a football stadium to see one band, not a Live Aid deal.

      Maybe it’s Pollyanna to think that way but the global crisis is, in a way, saying just that. Over valued products and services are getting out of control.

      • Entropy

        Yeah, I know. I wrote that fake article because I was wondering what other sports would look like were they to be managed the silly way F1 is being handled, but then again, you are right: nearly every sports/events have slipped away from reason somehow. These days you really have to ‘block out’ the business part of an entertainment product (F1, MLB, U2) in order to fully enjoy it.

        PS. I think you should give yourself the Post of the Week in podcast #97 for your main story. I really do. Great job. Again. Cheers.

      • JD

        It’s interesting you mention NASCAR. Their championship system devalues wins even more than the 2008 F1 points system did. And the “Chase” has artificially made legends of some drivers who otherwise would not have been and also-rans out of ones who would be legends.

  • Ryan

    Sigh…Why are they ruining F-1?

    • I wish I knew that. Sometimes make me think of the scorched earth policy. ;)

  • Alabama_Tifosi

    This is horrible of me, but I’ll go to church sunday to make up for it….Will Max and Bernie just, ya know, DIE ANY TIME SOON PLEASE

    • Hecti

      i guess im gonna have to go to church too

  • Nic

    Like you all say it’s a bad idea plain and simple. But let me ask a question. Which was the last F1 race anyone can recall when the second place driver ‘declined’ to overtake for first position. It really is the case that in all races there is just one car that ultimately has the ability to win for whatever reason. We never see the second place driver just meakly follow the winner across the line a second or two later, do we?

    • JD

      You are correct. Racers have a natural tendency to want to win.

      I remember in the heyday of CART in America, when drivers like Emerson Fittipaldi, Bobby Rahal, Al Unser Jr and Michael Andretti were battling for championships there were so many end-of-race crashes because it was so competitive. CART had to step in and make regulations to calm the drivers down due to safety concerns and because fans were tiring of races being settled this way.

      If a driver in F1 wins four races early in the season, what is to stop him from attempting very aggressive, but basically legal, passes that more than likely will end up taking out his main competitors for championship wins? After all, a dive bomb attempt in the braking zone may result in a drive through penalty, but what the heck if it ends up taking out your opponent. It’s not like the offending driver would get suspended since he would only be doing what the FIA and Bernie want him to attempt to do.

  • Nick Clifford

    CRAZY!!! CRAZY!!! CRAZY!!!

    What the FIA is done is totally rediculous. What they are saying is that someone can win every race for the first 5 races, then not finish another race for the rest of the season, and STILL win the title. WHAT??? The FIA are potentially effectivley rewarding failure. What about the guy who wins 4 races and gets his car to the finish successfully in every other race? Where is his reward for being able to actually drive his car? Stupid system. Tweak the points if you have to, but stop with the silly wins rule.

    • Exactly Nick. That was Jenson Button’s point as well. you could win 5-6 race and sit out the rest of the season eating ice cream. I seem to recall racing having something to do with consistency. Being the most consistent team to only place second in the championship seems daft to me.

  • CIl

    Why not give 10 extra points to the pilot with more wins instead of this?

    Anyway……….. I won’t watch it this year!