Topics: Formula 1
May 8, 2009
The FIA has tried to tweak the Formula One rules and regulations in such a manner as to save massive costs. Good for them, but some of the rule changes are staggeringly bad for the actual racing. One of the biggest issues is the ban on in season testing.
To understand where we are it is first necessary to look back a few years. We are coming off two of the most exciting years in Formula One history. The last two seasons have been decided in the last race with nail biting wins. In 2007 it was Kimi Raikkonen and Ferrari winning the driver’s championship by a point. 2008 saw Lewis Hamilton and McLaren Mercedes returning the favor.
And now we have 2009.
Formula One has been turned upside down. The reason? Ostensibly, the issue has been the economy. While there is no doubt sponsorship money has dried up, one certainly gets the feeling the FIA is out to collect some scalps for past perceived transgressions. More importantly, the racing may seem more exciting as back markers duel, but there is little doubt this is the most uncompetitive season since Ferrari dominated the championship during the Schumacher years.
Brawn GP is the class of the field. Red Bull can give them a run in the rain, but that is it. Only the most myopic fans could suggest otherwise. Is there any hope of anyone other than Jenson Button and Brawn GP taking the championship? Not a chance. The other teams can make technical advance, but one rule makes it futile.
The FIA claimed it could cut costs by cutting out in season testing in Formula One. They organization may have, but they’ve also eliminated any chance that a team can make a big advance in car speed and competitiveness. The teams now are left to run computer simulations and try to test during the practice sessions for the races. This is a good thing? I think not.
The 2008 season saw Renault advance from a back marker to a car that won two races under Fernando Alonso. One of the races was weather influenced, of course, but there is little doubt that Renault was able to significantly develop the car. Too bad there is no chance of that happening this year.