Securing the Future of the New Formula 1 Teams

This has been an interesting week for not just Formula 1, but Motorsports to an extent with a raft of changes being either announced or proposed; however out of all of the changes, the most visible and immediate is the complete restructuring of the rewards in Formula 1. The new points system, which now ranges from 1st down to 10th place was devised to accommodate the fact that the grid will be at 26 cars again from next year – as has been revealed in many other places, the new scheme will follow a path of 25-20-15-10-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1.

This is the first change in the system since 2003 when the points for a win were squeezed to accommodate rewards for 7th and 8th place – something that was shoehorned into the sport following Michael Schumacher’s total domination in 2002 (he won the title that year by July at the French Grand Prix in Magny Cours). This kneejerk reaction didn’t stop the German maestro taking two further titles and an even more dominant championship in 2004. Prior to that the points had gone down to 6th place with multiple variations over the years; however this particular adaptation of the points is the most radical and far reaching yet, with the main reasoning behind it to aid new teams that are entering the sport now.

While the new scoring scheme may not be popular with everyone, it is quite forward thinking to a degree. The expansion of rewards will potentially ensure the survival of a number of the newer squads in the sport – something that was drastically overlooked during the last days of full grids in the late 80’s and early 90’s. Admittedly, a vast majority of the smaller teams in F1 during those years were truly woeful and slow, with some absolutely dire squads running at a snails pace compared to even them!!
A common thread from the Formula 1 of those years ago was that many teams barely lasted eighteen months and when they were on track, they were dreadfully slow and it is a trap that the series cannot fall into once again. For a form of racing that is considered the pinnacle, it was utterly embarrassing to watch a number of cars slogging it around at the back of the field piloted by less than mediocre drivers with more money than talent – often getting lapped by the eighth or ninth tour around. However, the chances of seeing a repeat of the likes of Andrea Moda Motorsport (pictured left) or Life Racing are extremely limited. 

Although there has been very little news from USGPE, they are apparently well on target to be ready for the group launch at the end of January. As for the other new teams, Virgin and Campos Meta are supposedly quite far into their projects, with Lotus not far behind them. While not suggesting that an extra hand should be given to the new entrants, more should be done to stop them from falling into a downward spiral, from which they may never emerge – the expanded points system may go so way to stop to that. However, if a team deserves to survive, then they probably will… probably.

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