Gimme, Gimme, Gimmicks


Formula 1 is back! I'm back! The blog is back! Rafts of changes both on and off track over the winter have left many expecting 2014 to be the most exciting and unpredictable season for a considerable period of time. The first test has already been and gone - some leaving an often chilly Jerez feeling distinctively more positive than their counterparts. Everywhere you look change has happened, is happening and will continue to happen as this season rapidly moves up the gears. One thing that seemingly never changes with this wonderful - yet often perplexing - sport of ours is a majorly baffling talking point. For 2014, it's double points.

Do we really need more points in Formula 1? A 22 car field with points down to 10th place is arguably already too many. Having said that, two of the current teams on the grid have failed to score a single point with this format in use, so maybe it isn't too many..?

When I heard the news towards the end of last year that double points were being considered, I automatically assumed it was another 'sprinkler' moment. Alas, it wasn't. It's actually going to happen; and it could get worse if Bernie's desire for the final three races to be double weighted comes to fruition. I've yet to see a compelling reason as to why this is a good idea. To keep the Championship alive until the final race? Isn't the point of having a 19-race Championship, with equal points for each event, to find out which combination of team and driver has been the best?

If the points system has to be tweaked yet again, then why should it be for just one (or possibly three) races? Surely it'd make sense to apply it to all, or none. Somewhere in the middle? No thanks. Other alternatives could include rewarding points to all positions - similar to NASCAR - or revert back to previous systems, with points down to 6th or 8th place. Surely these would be more sensible, logical solutions to an area of the sport that didn't really need touching.

Vettel's dominant run at the end of the last season may prove to be a one off, and if this is a reaction to how 2013 panned out then it could be seen as a rash move. Had Vettel dominated in such fashion in previous seasons, then yes, a possible change to the points system would be more understandable.

I'm trying to find a crumb of comfort in this whole situation. It's difficult. Maybe it won't happen! Maybe it will in fact provide some extra excitement towards the end of the season. But with huge changes to the regulations testing the biggest and best brains in the business, new drivers on the grid and new races on the calendar, surely we'll already have enough excitement for one season. Is too much change a good or bad thing?

One thing is for certain, 2014 looks like it'll be a belter of a season. I've enjoyed the break over the last couple of months, and with the first test now completed - providing us with the usual barrage of questions rather than answers - the often missing excitement of previous seasons is starting to grow and grow. It may be a bit too gimmicky for some - myself included, but one thing that we will see this season is the best being tested by technology far beyond anything we've ever seen before.

Expect the unexpected, both at and away from the circuit.

Paul Godley - 02/02/2014

Image source (and all image rights): Bernie nervously poking his head around the door -

Top Drivers

Driver Points
Hamilton 252
Rosberg 211
Vettel 203
Raikkonen 107
Bottas 101
Massa 97



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