Voice of the #F1 Fans: How to Improve #F1

Voice of the Fans

Brought to you by TheJudge13 contributor Daniel

Note from the Editor: Daniel submitted this story as a comment however it is a prod for constructive debate. TJ13 is all about the fans of F1 and their voices, so let us hear your voice!

Sorry for the long story but I would like to see what the general public thinks of my improvements for F1.

Feel free to bash, comment and improve:

  • Normal tires, 1 provider for all teams. No limit on amount of tires per weekend.
  • 2 pit stop minimum per race
  • 150 liters maximum fuel load (so engines are still somewhat efficient)
  • No more fuel flow limitations
  • Removal of sensors from cars and on-track data management. No more 20 people per team looking at data, cutting cost. The driver should feel if something is wrong, and if its too late, he simply retires. No more ‘strat 6 to save the engine, ‘watch the left front brake’, ‘manage the tires’. No, the driver should feel/smell/hear/know when to back off or face the consequences.
  • Support race with completely similar cars in which F1 drivers compete (clios, Seats, A-series, whatever ). A great way for manufacturers to promote road cars AND promote the drivers.Not every race, but 3 times would more than suffice.
  • Any engine configuration is allowed. Let the manufacturers complain about leaving, but there are 100s of companies building racing engines, let the teams decide what they want, not the manufacturers. More diversity, more engine failures and teams can simply switch engine supplier in between races if they want/have to.
  • Races to be held by in countries where there is a fanbase, not where they have to fly-in the fans (Bahrain, Abu-Dhabi, China, Baku etc.) These races have no point for sponsors nor for fans.
  • Protected status for certain tracks, you all know which ones.
  • No more Tilke domes. Nobody likes them.
  • Dramatic cut in hosting fees, allowing GREAT tracks to also apply for a race. I mean 10 million MAX.
  • This will result in FAR lower cost for tickets. Increased attendance, more revenue, more sponsors, healthier finances. Day ticket per person should not cost 120 Euros. If a ticket costs 50 euros, 100,000 people visiting, you are already there.
  • ANY circuit can apply. If we excuse Monaco from the safety standards, then why shouldn’t Brand’s Hatch be possible? Because of money? Let teams/drivers decide if they want to show up. Not popular due to safety concerns, it will not be on the calendar.
  • Free online distribution of the race, AFTER the race. Free money for the sponsors this way, thus more sponsors will enter the sport.
  • Maximum amount of downforce allowed. How you get that downforce, is up to you
  • Any budget is allowed to be spent, no budget cuts
  • Better distribution of funds.
  • Drivers are forced to do gridwalks and fan engagement, be present for the fans, the whole weekend. If you are the best in the world and earn 20 million for driving, better show your gratitude to those who pay for it in the end. Watch Le Mans, see how it works there.
  • The catch? For every point you are ahead in the championship, you receive added weight. This is unpopular because it is not ‘pure’. But the more weight a car gets, the more important the driver becomes. It also means a team can spend 2 billion if they want, but if that ends up with a car which is 75 KGs heavier than the rest, there is no point is there? So it will be about spending vs. advantage over the rest. Most will get a shot at the title from day 1, and a great team will still have an advantage over others on many different levels. You simply make sure that a team cannot become dominant for too long. If your advantage diminishes, your weight will also go down. So it is fair. No more unfair then handicapping customer teams but not supplying software for engines or producing tires which only suit a certain team. I am sure a mathematical equation can be created which adds exponential weight for every point ahead 🙂
  • All added weight is removed for the final race. This way a team which simply did the best job, will have a chance to consolidate their hard work and show everyone how great they are.

Oh yeah, what is also key for F1 to survive is to get rid of the shady/banking/corrupt government image it now has. If you need to show the boss sitting next to Putin because you want the world to know how evil/powerful you are, you are doing it wrong!

Disclaimer: TheJudge13 provides a platform for Formula 1 fans to publish their voice on matters relating to Formula 1. The views expressed in Voice of #F1 Fans are those of the contributor and not those held by TJ13.

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26 responses to “Voice of the #F1 Fans: How to Improve #F1

    • Been there, done that. Didn’t work! In 2009, the flaps could be adjusted by up to six degrees, limited to only two adjustments per lap.
      Alan Jones had the best solution back in 2001, drastically reduce downforce to reduce cornering speeds and increase braking distances with smaller brakes. Did they do that? Hell no, that’s why we have all this ridiculous fake stuff like DRS, KERS and the like.

    • Even better, F1 should have it’s own governing body … full stop! That way every decision will be for the betterment of F1, not the motor industry!
      F1 is NOT about manufacturing road cars! Never has been!
      It’s about exotic, innovatively designed open wheel cars, racing with the best of everything the owners, engineers and sponsors can provide.
      F1 is meant to be a fantastically entertaining show which excites everyone’s senses in every way. That equates to enthusiasm from owners, team members, sponsors, fans etc etc. Excitement and enthusiasm are becoming extinct adjectives in F1!
      Alas … as long as the cretins at the FIA are in charge of it’s day to day running, F1 will continue to be a boring, flat black, highly predictable motor industry puppet!

  1. When you say ‘Normal Tyres’ what do you mean? Tyres like they have now? Road tyres? No such thing as normal, they are all designed for a specific purpose although some are more flexible in their use than others.

    As for 2 stops minimum? Well, that depends on the tyres but some of the best races to watch of late have been where drivers like Perez have managed to eeke out their tyres to a one stop and score a good result. I also posted recently about still recalling Salo in a Tyrrell managing no stops at Monaco. Rules which force split strategies often bring the best races to watch.

    Opening up engines just ensures the richer teams win. Remember when Ilmor created a bespoke engine for Penske once for the Indy 500? A massive cost for just one race but it was so much faster that they walked it.

    This, and your comments on sensors, lead to one question that has been asked time and time again.

    What is F1?

    It is entertainment, or a technical showcase?

    If it is entertainment then take away the sensors, take away the telemetry and you get the element of risk back as the less things are controlled (i.e. electronic engine management etc) the more of a balance the driver must find between speed and reliability. But the cost is you lose the technical innovation. The engineering interest. Probably the manufacturers as they will learn nothing by going back to what is essentially 80s technology. You will get more varied results simply due to the failures that will ensue.

    Personally, I’d rather engineer a technical solution where aero wake isn’t the primary cause of the processions we see and let the development continue.

  2. NO, not just one tire supplier for all teams! BUT free to choose for all teams for every grand prix. If Pirelli suits your car best at track A, but for track B your car is faster with Bridgestone tires choose them. In general this will result in faster lap times, which we all want to see in the king of motor sports. And it will bring back competition in tire suppliers, which will result in better tires. Another positive about my proposel is that a top team may have chosen a wrong tire and perform badly and a lesser team with the right tires suddenly can compete.

    • How about they choose the tyre they are going to use at the start of the year, for all year, at every race but have only 1 change available during the year(just in order to make it easy for someone who gets it completely wrong to rectify)? I think this would really mix things up. The top teams would go for the tyre that has the most performance whilst not being too drastic on the durability, whereas a mid/back of grid team might gamble on some thing a bit more extreme for the races to give them a better shot. Tyres still to be manufactured by 1 company so the playing field is level. Could make things interesting.

  3. Great post Daniel, in my opinion we just need more parity in order to have better competition. Why not take a look at a league that is doing well and learn from the NFL.
    All teams share revenues equally, there is a salary cap and the teams that finish last get to have first pick out of all the new talents into the sport. From your suggestions I especially like the freedom in engine choice.

  4. I like the idea of F1 pushing technology where it is road relevant. I am not keen on aero as it has little benefit on road. I love the idea of getting ‘free’ power from brakes, turbo etc. This can and is starting to be used in road cars which is great.
    60% of prize money divided equally between all teams paid in 12 equal instalments staring at end of season. The remaining 40% divided based on constructors championship position. PU cost to be capped at 30% of smallest prize money payment.
    Standard front and rear wings, to reduce cost and downforce. Made by external company so no differences between them.
    Minimum starting fuel 120lts, no max but retain max fuel flow. If no max fuel flow then it will end up in massive race on ‘push to pass’ type buttons.
    Increase max energy store by 200%. Allow electric motors to drive front wheels.
    Minimum of 1 tyre change as 2 compounds must be used. These compounds need to be a very soft sticky one (lasts 20% of race) and a hard one that will last 80% of race. More tyres available for race, so you could run 5 sets of soft and 1 set of hard.
    Probably lots more but fundamentally cars need to be able to overtake and race flat out most of time.

    • Back then you couln’t switch from supplier during a season and had to stick with the same supplier according to contract. That’s not what I’m suggesting above. I’m saying free to choose for every Grand Prix.

      • back in the late ’60’s, teams would run BOTH Firestone and Goodyear tires during practice to see which worked better.for the race.

    • More power and less downforce. We want to see cars driven at the limits of adhesion, where drivers are regularly going past the limits making mistakes. Oh wait, there is no punishment for making mistakes anymore since they eliminating most of the gravel traps. Maybe they can go into timeout? Oh wait, we do have timeout. Can this sport become anymore wossified?

  5. My feeling is that you can either be “the pinnacle of motorsport” or “the pinnacle of technology,” you can’t be both.

    Looking across to the WEC, the technology is great, but are the general public really that interested in it? Debatable. Even those that are, how many really know how an MGU-H works for example? Of course some do, but I’d wager the majority do not, and a significant proportion of that majority don’t really care.

    Technology is one of those things where unless your tech minded, you don’t really know how it works, all you care about is that it does. I mean, how many people really know how their smartphone works, or even their hoover for example? My bet, you never think about it, but if it went wrong…?

    Technology is one of those things where, you need it, you appreciate it, it makes your life easier, and in many ways you come to depend on it, but you never really love it. And this is exactly the same thing that is going on in F1 atm. People didn’t come to love F1 because of the technology element. They came to love it because of the human element and the excitement. F1 has to return to that.

    When you consider the top level of FIA motorsports atm, you have F1, WEC and Formula E. Formula E is ideal for electric, WEC for hybrid, and F1 for marketing. I think F1 would be wise to accept that. Motor racing has always been about marketing.

    When you accept that being “the pinnacle of technology” probably isn’t the most important thing to the general public, and even if you were, the F1 rulebook puts you at a significant disadvantage to the WEC boys, I think it makes a lot of sense to maybe step back from the pioneering technology standpoint, so you’re not building things out of all kinds of things from the far end of the periodic table, and instead just focus on fan entertainment.

    That’s not to say the engines etc should be run on coal and the tears of baby squirrels, by all means still run hybrids, but make it clear that the R&D costs of developing innovative technology in F1 probably isn’t the place for it.

    If you want road tech, it should be on an LMP1 car or sports car in my view.

  6. I want to see cars that can follow each other closely for lap after lap – hence less aero grip and more mechanical grip required.

    I want to see drivers racing and pushing every lap – so a new tyre developed. Didn’t Goodyear manage to do this in the 90s? Doesn’t Michelin do it now for WEC?

    I want to see less clone / corporate drivers and more personality with the drivers having more time to spend with the fans – a la MotoGP.

  7. @Daniel re the manifesto.

    Wow, the first six points look like you want a return to a mid 1970’s Formula Ford car; club racing complete with the “celebrity” Escort Mexico race.

  8. Managing left brake and stuff like that is safety and shouldn’t be banned. Some valid points. Some contradict each other. Some hope for the goodness in the old folks running the show. Won’t happen. Sorry. But keep dreaming and writing. I enjoyed it.

  9. Pretty pointless list. Sorry, but just rewriting everything wholesale is throwing the baby out with the bathwater. How about sprinklers and reverse grids too?

  10. great job, daniel !! I agree with the majority of items.
    great racing has always been about sight/sound/smell and touch. taste? not so much 🙂

    visually to me, the cars look way too much like a stretch limo or hearse than a sleek nimble sports car. even shortening the nose and rear overhang will not improve the visuals to me. the issue is that huge space behind the driver filled with batteries and over 30 gallons of gas the FIA will never again allow gas stored in the side pods or drivers compartment, so where are we going to store this extra gas? or bigger batteries? add another foot to the wheelbase? widen the car by a foot? not for me thank you.

    to get back to the visuals, 1 thing needs to happen IMHO:
    reduce the storage capacity and shorten the car. but this means either much shorter races (not acceptable) or re-fueling (has its own drawbacks) or way less horsepower (not acceptable). the only other option I see is to break the race into 2 shorter heat races and I bet that will go over like a lead balloon !

    the second big issue I have is regarding downforce
    they proved long ago that the cars could drive upside down at whatever speed it is… so what? for “relevancy” to street cars, aero is NOTHING but low drag, crosswind stability and no lift. period!!! even the mega buck supercars have surprisingly little downforce.
    not everybody will agree that an original Lotus 49 is more beautiful than a Lotus 79. no problem. stick on a simple small spec front and rear wing.
    very low “aero” will result in much longer braking distances and ability to follow closely to make a pass attempt. it will slow the corner speeds and increase the value of visual/sound/smell where all the paying fans gather.

    if I wanted to see a slot car race, I would go to a slot car parlor… .

  11. reinstall gravel traps,
    allow tire war with predefined pitstop amount, but free choice of compounds, more than 1,
    keep fuel amount limit but free up the flow,
    remove drs,
    keep hybrids at certain output and
    free up ice configuration with set output or
    set total output with free config of ice and hybrids combined,
    enlarge diffusers a bit,
    tyre proportion to go back to ’80ies,
    maybe remove front wing alltogether – 80ies proved it’s not that necessary – huge savings,
    free up a bit pit access for fans not having vip, but more on merit a la late hanging around or staying at extreme weather,
    consider more extreme circuits a la Laguna Seca, Sonoma if they are meeting basic standards,
    lover down that exclusive pit&paddock thing as most of attendants look a bit lost anyway on tv as if they had no clue where they were going to,
    lover race fee to potential hosts with taking the region, circuit, fan base and heritage in account,…
    there may be more things there, but if NOTHING is tried . . . we could do 100s more lists like this and nothing will happen if nobody listens to fans – exactly AS IT IS AT THE MOMENT

  12. Great ideas! But unfortunately, the FIA will never allow these things to be implemented because it will take away their ‘teacher’s pets’ monopoly and in turn, cause them to leave.
    Best thing that could happen to F1 would be what I said in a reply above.
    Do away with the FIA and create a board of directors to run F1. Every single decision MUST BE IN THE BEST INTEREST OF F1, not massive automotive industry manufacturers with an agenda to sell road cars.

    There are plenty of other hi-tech industries out there which no longer bother bringing their innovative ideas to F1 for R&D and marketing opportunities. Those amazingly clever people will never return to F1 until the FIA stop pushing them away and stop opening every possible door to motor industry related companies.

    One of my biggest gripes is the lack of time we see the cars on track!
    Why spend all that money and effort to build the damn things and transport them all around the world if they spend the majority of possible running time in the garage. It’s absolutely ludicrous!
    I want to see three 2 hour practice sessions on Friday … as well as a full Quali session, 1 hour warm-up and a race on both Sat and Sunday. It gives much more value for the money spent on a weekend or 3 day pass. Many more people would attend multiple days rather than simply buying a ticket for race day.
    There’d be a hell of a lot more value for money for Pay TV patrons too! Bernie could make a hell of a lot more money off TV stations who sell advertising time. As Daniel stated in the article, that would allow him to drastically cut the stupidly exorbitant fees he charges tracks to hold the race but still fill his daughters’ inheritance tins!

    I also believe there should be a “Qualifying Championship”. Points for the top ten, 10-1.
    At least then we would see the cars going all out on every lap, rather than using quali sessions as an extra practice session or… the worst thing I’ve ever witnessed in F1 … sitting out full sessions to save engines and tyres.
    IT’S A FARCE!

    • it’s all 100% Man You say. The problem is that FIA has NO say. Not at all. They sold their say to ingenious Bernard Charles Ecclestone & subsequently to CVC, and as long as likes of CVC own the sport nothing will change. Bernie is NOT to blame, he’s just doing the job for his paymasters as good as he can.(strange he’s not Knightened – he turned nothing major into GLOBAL show, the Biggest Sports Show on Earth !!! )

  13. ” For every point you are ahead in the championship, you receive added weight.”
    That would mean that Hamilton would have raced at Abu Dahbi with a car 381kgs heavier than Will Stevens. Is an F1 chassis equipped to just bolt on a few hundred kilos? Even if it somehow leveled the field before that point, how exciting would it be to see the top cars as they are now with an extra 200kgs?

  14. Some very good ideas here … I have one why not let every driver race once in every car throughout the season … that way we know who the best driver is, and independently which is the best car, but takes away the monopoly of a season where one team and one driver dominates (unless they can win in any car 🙂 )… also avoids a “one make series” to equalise the drivers … have a lottery draw at the end of each race to find out who drives what the following week (but you can’t race in a car you’ve already been in …

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