Reader Rights: No problem and less problems in F1
Felipe Massa has said recently: “If you reduce practice because nobody wants to watch them, no problem. We used to have the morning warmup (on Sunday) and once it went, nothing changed.”
I like Felipe, but his statement sums up what’s wrong with F1: the hoi polloi have lost touch with what being a “fan of car racing” is like.
The stands don’t look as filled as they do on Saturday? So what if people are still paying to be there, wanting a full three days of entertainment for their travels? I watch all of the practices sessions – am I the only one?
I don’t think so…
The cars are the show. Sure, from their standpoint, you don’t need to run FP3, really. Kinda don’t need FP1 or FP2 in reality, you could run a generic setup and make a game of getting that right. Qualifying?
That hasn’t been about making sure an entrant is qualified for a very long time, you could just line the cars up based on the last race results. No problem. Alternately, just get rid of it as well, as it is not absolutely needed.
As suggested previously by the status quo, the races could be shorter. They could still be called “races” and only be an hour long, or heck, maybe only 45 minutes! It would really be nice if everyone could get out of the venue an hour sooner and back to their hotel.
Bernie wants 22 races? Obviously not necessary! You can have a championship with only maybe 5 or 6 races. Many series get by perfectly fine with only that many. That is some serious cost savings right there.
Imagine the savings if all of that was implemented!
As a side effect, Formula 1 would be downsizing it’s audience a good bit, and maybe it could get to a point where the scant remaining manufacturers – who are spending so much of their money gambling on racing – wouldn’t even have to participate anymore.
Spectators would have more free time as they took up other interests than Formula One, and they’d save enormous amounts of money not having to buy tickets and travel to go to the races.
Then, all of that money Mercedes, Ferrari, Honda and Renault are being forced to throw away could be spent on what they really insist they really want and need to do, which is their road cars. Obviously the most important thing, since that is reiterated time and again.
Finally people who accidentally bought houses next door to race tracks will be able to rest soundly one extra weekend a year without all of that noise!
Really, it seems like a winner all around? Formula One really doesn’t need to exist at all. No problem.
Opinion piece by GrandPrix247 reader Chip McDonald