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Could F1 2011 be even better?

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Sarah Holt | 15:55 UK time, Monday, 15 November 2010

The final grand prix of the season in Abu Dhabi summed up why the 2010 season will go down in Formula 1 history as a classic year.

There were super-fast Red Bulls, world champion drivers in the thick of the action, strategic errors, raw emotion and a final twist in an epic tale as Sebastian Vettel won his first world title.

Before the race was run, the sun-soaked paddock was buzzing with talk of "the greatest season ever" and debate about the highlight of the season swelled.

In fact, as the dust settles on Abu Dhabi, the teams' attentions are already turning to 2011 - all the teams and most of the race drivers get their first run on next year's new Pirelli tyres at the Yas Marina track at the weekend.

With just 118 days to go until the cars and drivers return to the desert in Bahrain to rejoin battle, expectations are already building that 2011 could be another classic year, matching events this season.

As BBC pundit Eddie Jordan exclaimed on Sunday: "We have five world champions competing next year, what are we in for?!"

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Jordan is right to be excited.

The men who defined this season remain in situ - Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button at McLaren, Fernando Alonso at Ferrari, and Vettel and Mark Webber at Red Bull.

All of them know they have things to improve in 2010 - particularly the number of errors they have made. And the long winter will give each of the 24 drivers on the grid time to analyse and agonise over crucial mistakes and frittered points that ultimately defined their seasons.

"Every one of us made too many errors and that is why we found ourselves in a position with five guys fighting it out," reflected Button, who saw his title defence end in Brazil.

Though he was the first to bow out, Button had the cleanest season of all the five contenders but found himself let down by a lack of pace - particularly in qualifying - as he got to grips with a McLaren in his first season with the team.

Alonso will rue his uncharacteristic errors in Australia and China, his crash in Monaco and, most of all, the fatal call from Ferrari to bring him in early for fresh tyres in Abu Dhabi.

Hamilton will reflect on his ill-judged passing moves in Monza and Singapore, which effectively ended his hopes, while Webber will relive his frightening somersault in Valencia and his costly crash in Korea.

Vettel, too, made more than his fair share of errors. He must take the blame for crashes with his team-mate Webber in Turkey and an unwitting Button in Spa, while his attempt to go around the outside of Webber at the start in Silverstone earned him a puncture.

For Red Bull, though, one of the biggest areas of focus will be the poor early-season reliability, from spark plugs to wheel nuts, that prevented Vettel bursting into an early lead.

When Red Bull adviser Dr Helmut Marko was asked on Sunday what his next goal was after his team captured both championships, he said they intended to cut out the errors so they could win the titles sooner.

All the top teams will be adding grease to their usually slick operations over the winter at the same time as building their cars to a set of regulations that have been tweaked again.

Gone will be the double-diffusers which caused so much controversy at the start of 2009, as well as the F-duct that McLaren pioneered at the start of 2010, forcing everyone else to follow suit.

Blown diffusers - 2010's other defining technical tweak - will stay to an extent, though.

In come those Pirelli tyres, while Kers energy storage and power-boost systems return after a year away. There will also be a new technical trick in the form of moveable rear wings, an attempt to solve F1's perennial problem even in a season as great as this - the difficulty of overtaking.

The success of the teams' research into the effects of these changes will shape next year's title chase - and it is by no means a given that this year's big three will be the ones who get it most right.

There have been concerned whispers that the efforts of waging a season-long campaign have diverted attention away from 2011 development programmes at Red Bull, Ferrari and McLaren.

The strain of winning the 2009 championships certainly drained Brawn Grand Prix, which had a debilitating effect on them this season in their new guise as Mercedes.

However, with no championship to fight for, teams such as Mercedes and Renault, who stopped developing their 2010 car in September so they concentrate on next season, could make it a five-way battle for honours next year.

"It has been a special year," mused McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh. "Can there be more?

"We have to keep the focus on brave, fantastic drivers in great machinery; an even-handed regulator, stability and clear rules that are administered properly.

"We can't guarantee it but there is no reason the championship next year can't be as good - or even better."

Comments

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  • 1. At 4:13pm on 15 Nov 2010, Matt Leary wrote:

    The fans and the pundits keep saying year after year "this is best F1 season ever, next year won't match it", and yet the following season IS better.
    2011 will, as EJ pointed out, contain 5 of the last 6 world champions, who have between them a mind-blowing 12 world titles out of the last 17 seasons.

    Surely next season can't be better than 2010 - can it?

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  • 2. At 4:16pm on 15 Nov 2010, Paul Edwards wrote:

    Some parts of the season were good. Best news is that Alonso was more than 7 points ahead of 3rd place. Otherwise you would question if he deserved 2nd!

    My main concern is despite the importance of the final race and everything that depended on it, what a boring race it was. About as boring as the Hungaroring and Monaco. I just hope the changes for next year will work and keep races interesting, even inclding that unusual F1 event, overtaking.

    Due to being out yesterday I watched a recording and kept thinking I should fast forward to the action. If I had, I would have fast forwarded to the end!

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  • 3. At 4:23pm on 15 Nov 2010, robbo_racer wrote:

    Thanks Sarah for your blog. I agree with your observations, we had a very close season because all of the drivers made mistakes that kept it close through out the season.

    Mistakes, accidents and rain aside, we did not often see the top drivers actually race each other very often as the perennial "not easy to overtake" kept coming up. The jury is out with the overtake "gimmicks" they are trying for 2011.

    I too think that Mercedes should have a better season in 2011 (if they don't why did Mercedes make such an investment!) Renault too could show some old magic. So yes we could have 5 teams, 10 drivers all slugging it out!

    Now that would be a season to surpass even this one!

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  • 4. At 4:43pm on 15 Nov 2010, HackneyRed wrote:

    I thought it was precisely because of the errors and poor reliability that turned this season into a classic. God help us if everyone drives like Jenson Button next year. Zero mistakes, moderate pace, maximum boredom. The worst thing for 2011 is if a single team has a massive performance advantage over their rivals - like Brawn in 2009 and Red Bull this year. I'm not hopeful that the gimmicks planned for 2011 will help overtaking.


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  • 5. At 4:44pm on 15 Nov 2010, bob merrison wrote:

    Won't drivers just use the adjustable rear wings to disrupt the air flow even more thus making it even harder to overtake? KIRS should only be allowed from 11th on the grid back so it mixes things up a bit more. And I would love to see the back of these silly blue flags, overtaking back markers should be all part of the cut and thrust of a race.

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  • 6. At 4:55pm on 15 Nov 2010, CarlisleF1 wrote:

    Yes i agree a little more overtaking would certainly be a good thing, however im not sure why people are saying yesterdays race was 'boring'.

    The different strategies, wondering whether alonso could make it to 4th place and the possibility that vettel would have one final cruel blow to his seasonm with a car failure was enough to keep it interesting. I think over the last few seasons alot of new fans have come to the sport which is a good thing, but they dont realise that very rarely is formula one 'constant action'

    As for next season im not sure renault have the finances to be at the top, particularly for the entire season. Also im not convinced by mercedes, yes they did well last season but was that a one off? they did struggle to keep up with the other teams development over 2009. You have to remember that before the last year the same team as Honda were a joke. But maybe they will get it right in 2011 which would make it even more interesting.

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  • 7. At 5:06pm on 15 Nov 2010, joe strummer wrote:

    The final grand prix of the season in Abu Dhabi summed up why the 2010 season will go down in Formula 1 history as a classic year.

    There were super-fast Red Bulls, world champion drivers in the thick of the action, strategic errors, raw emotion and a final twist in an epic tale as Sebastian Vettel won his first world title.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    I'm sorry but I have to disagree with this. If you take away the championship situation and all of the manufactured glitz and glamour, then the Abu Dhabi race was the epitome of everything that is wrong with Formula One.

    If you look at the actual 'racing' in the last race it was dull beyond belief. One car streaked away, then everyone else ran around in a procession on a track that is impossible to overtake on.

    I think there were 2 genuine overtaking moves (not in the pit lane or through retirements) in the entire grand prix; that is not entertainment. Abu Dhabi is a boring track with supermarket car park run off areas that don't penalise mistakes in the slightest. At least in other new tracks like Korea drivers get punished for making a mistake (Webber).

    There must be something fundamentally wrong when faster cars cannot overtake or get close to a much slower car because of the nature of the circuit.

    Having said that, the season in general was good, although I'd argue it only ever really got truly entertaining when it rained. You can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times the 'top 5' actually passed each other for position in a race.

    My biggest fear for 2011 is that Red Bull are reliable and stop crashing into each other or dropping too far behind safety cars etc, because they will disappear into the distance.

    2010 was made more interesting and close because of their mistakes, but they're unlikely to make them twice. The season would have been over by 3/4 distance otherwise.

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  • 8. At 5:17pm on 15 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    Great season from my point of view, and all the driver mistakes just made it even more exciting.

    I still long for the days when the cars weren't complete carbon copies of each other. Don't get me wrong, I'm not asking for 6 wheel Tyrrels but at least let designers like Newey and Brawn go to town and design seriously fast cars. It needs a complete re-think f what is, and isn't heavily regulated to encourage better racing. At the moment the rules are too restrictive on all aspects of design, there's so little margin for innovation. Suggestions are:

    1. Allow turbo's again and let teams develop their own engines and dictate capacity to suit the car they've developed.
    2. Increase restrictions on aero parts (e.g. less rear wing) to encourage overtaking.
    3. Remove all driver aids such as launch control using double clutches.

    I'm not saying these ideas are perfect, and it certainly doesn't address the issue of excessive expenditure in the sport. That said I'd rather see RB or McC come up with a revolutionary car design for $150m than a regurgitation of last years model, spending the same amount trying to shave weight from the wing mirrors and wheel nuts. Different looking, sounding cars would make it much more interesting for the public.



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  • 9. At 5:26pm on 15 Nov 2010, p1mtl wrote:

    The only way F1 will get better is to stop Tilk designing tracks. Abu Dabi, rediculous that Hamiliton, Alonso etc can't overtake, most of the new tracks, whilst nice to look at etc, are pretty poor with respect to overtaking. He ruined Hockenhiem, one of the great tracks as well. Get rid of him and Ecclestone, and then we might get what we all want, some exciting racing....

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  • 10. At 5:33pm on 15 Nov 2010, fatClyde wrote:

    Yes, the closeness of the championship standings made it relatively exciting. But, come on, the racing itself is still pretty dire. Abu Dhabi needs a complete overhaul to make it a proper track. The flashy hotels and big yachts are all very nice, but it's a poor race track.

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  • 11. At 5:36pm on 15 Nov 2010, joe strummer wrote:

    8. At 5:17pm on 15 Nov 2010, kirbs1980

    I agree with the majority of this. F1 would be more exciting if it relied on genuine great racing rather than the championship just being close because the fastest team keeps making mistakes.

    As you say, design innovation is stifled to the point that the cars look, sound and perform nearly the same. While this makes for close racing, it does not make for great racing ie cars passing and repassing.

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  • 12. At 5:42pm on 15 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    @joe strummer

    I think re-introduction of open engine capacity could be superb. Entirely different performance aspects, turbo's v's normally aspirated v6's, v8's and v10's... drive out of corners is different, torque is different, brakeing points and weights of cars are different.

    This would allow designers to do what they do best.

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  • 13. At 5:46pm on 15 Nov 2010, usdeeper wrote:

    I found F1 to be boring when they stopped multiple pit stops for fuel and gas. That whole area added a huge unknown into the equation. How much fuel, how many pit stops, what type of tire. Even going with 1 tire supplier is boring.

    I don't know why they continue to take the fun stuff away and try to do the impossible on boring tracks.

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  • 14. At 5:57pm on 15 Nov 2010, joe strummer wrote:

    kirbs1980

    Yep, totally agree. Restricting revs to 18,000rpm and stopping engine development means that basically every car has identical engines with equal performance. Add this to the fact that there are only four engine manufacturers and the reason cars struggle to pass is evident - they're all the same.

    I'd like to see teams have a choice with engine, even if it wasn't a completely free choice, it would be nice if they could at least decide on a V8, V10 or V12.

    I know they want to reduce costs, but it would still be more interesting if say Mercedes went for a V10 and Ferrari went for their old V12 configuration.

    Failing that, just let engine builders develop their engines. What's the point in stifling them, it just leads to identical performance.

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  • 15. At 6:14pm on 15 Nov 2010, Tim wrote:

    I think it's fair to say that nobody really expected RB to be as fast as they were this season - pre-testing, all the talk was of McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes. Expect the unexpected again next year - Mercedes could be back, in addition to the two teams Sarah mentioned.

    Rosberg, Schumi and Kubica with decent equipment is an exciting prospect. However, we can't be lucky enough to have the fastest car being the least reliable for two years running, surely? If the RB had been reliable, this season would have been a procession, regardless of Vettel's mistakes.

    As for the technical changes, this moving rear wing is a ridiculous gimmick. The ludicrous spectacle of pairs of drivers swapping positions on every straight will soon put paid to it. If there are 4 drivers in a row, 3 of them will be able to use the "boost", and the middle two will be boosting in part to defend their position, but the front driver will not be allowed to defend his. I'm all for overtaking, but not at the expense of the dignity of the sport.

    Instead of gimmicks, or overly prescriptive regulations, there should instead be a rule that governs turbulence behind a car. As long as turbulence is within certain limits, engineers would then have a bit more freedom, and overtaking would automatically improve as the penalty for being in "dirty air" is reduced. Can anyone see anything wrong with this idea?

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  • 16. At 6:15pm on 15 Nov 2010, RED WATER wrote:

    The only changes necessary are to the aero rules and tire regs. smaller wings and more mechanical grip will liven up the on-track action.
    Unlimited engine development led to unsustainable costs and would have chased out too many teams.
    That being said you are all mad if you don't get a kick out of the enormous tactical effort needed to win in F1. This is still the ultimate combo of thinking mans sport and visceral thrill.

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  • 17. At 6:32pm on 15 Nov 2010, marco333 wrote:

    Can't agree that this was 'the greatest season ever'. It may have been one of the closest, but the lack of overtaking remains a major issue. I defy all but the most fanatical followers to name the best 3 overtaking manoeuvres of the season. 'The greatest season ever' would be decided by a sensational piece of driving not a botched tactical decision. Even after that Alonso could have charged back up the field, but from what I saw he never even got close enough to attempt a pass.

    Just because DC/EJ/MB talked about how great it was to generate ratings, this is a case of the 'Emperor's New Clothes'!

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  • 18. At 6:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, BlueNotBirmingham wrote:

    Only way next year could be better is:

    1. Kimi Raikkonen comes back makes it 6 world champions on the grid.

    2. Renault or whoever Kubica drives for in 2011, start to challenge the Red Bulls/Ferraris/Mclarens

    3. The new teams, mainly Lotus & Virgin, start to challenge some of the more established teams i.e. Force India. Timo Glock & Heikki Kovalainen (who have been invisible this season) really deserve much better cars.

    4. A new driver really starts to blossom (Bruno Senna (?), Kobayashi, Petrov, Hulkenberg).

    5. Schumacher has a swansong season and manages to get some podium finishes.

    If any of those 4 things happens, 2011 will overshadow 2010.

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  • 19. At 6:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, desertwalker wrote:

    For those people that accuse Formula 1 of being boring, are either new to the sport or don't understand the technical, political intricacies that make this sport so fascinating. I am a firm believer to allow designers as much flexibility without the regulations impeding their aerodynamic innovation, otherwise whats the point of the sport. You have to allow the sport to evolve, and thats the beauty of F1. You take that away, its not fun anymore as there is no room for technical maneuver.

    If everyone had the exact same guidelines in designing the car, it would be just about the driver and not the team. Thats boring as hell, there might be action on the track, but none off it... the Adrian Newey's and Ross Brawn's would have to seek a new trade. Hardcore, passionate F1 fans appreciate the need of a balance- between driver and machinery. Hardcore fans want F1 to be a design and engine war between teams, but we also want some excitement on the track- but it shouldn't come at a cost just to appease to the average mass consumer.

    The problem with F1 is if you allow teams maximum flexibility , you run the risk of one team dominating the season, with their revolutionary design (like Brawn with their double diffuser system) that effectively made them constructors and drivers champion. So the FIA come in and tailor the guidelines a little, to prevent clever designers from going crazy and potentially threatening the sport's commercial success. Thats fine! So I don't see a problem with the way its run now. I find it refreshing to see a team emerging from near bankruptcy to win the championship last year. I will never forget Ross Brawn's tears.

    There are a few things I disagree with, I am a staunch opponent of the refuelling ban for instance, but I accept it. I find the budget restrictions of F1 teams a great idea, a much better alternative than say the FIA deciding to tamper with technical design regulations as a solution to keep competition fierce. It gives an opportunity for the newer teams (not seen this season) to rubber stamp their entrance to F1, without stopping the F1 evolutionary process, and in the longer term you will get Virgin Racing and Lotus fighting for points.

    I for one, am looking with great optimism into the future- there are a few things the FIA get wrong, and I do get mad at them, but all in all, things are progressing. The Schumacher era, was a big low point for F1 in all aspects and it represented everything what was wrong with the sport. But these days are finally gone ;).....

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  • 20. At 6:56pm on 15 Nov 2010, invictajohn wrote:

    I have being watching f1 for many years and over the last ten years overtaking has got less and less, if they made the tracks better and allowed better overtaking places this would make the racing like it used to be when James hunt and mansell was racing.it is no good making the cars faster with better handling when the pole car if reliable is normally going to lead from start to finish,

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  • 21. At 6:57pm on 15 Nov 2010, Marantz wrote:

    I got into F1 when I was a kid at the tail-end of the 80s. Mansell, Senna, Prost and to a lesser extent, Piquet, made it a real golden-era of Formula 1.

    I then enjoyed watching Damon Hill and Jacques Villeneuve win more titles for Williams and of course the emergence of Michael Schumacher.

    However, I didn't watch F1 for ten years - post Villeneuve to the emergence of Lewis Hamilton. Why? First, with the greatest of respect to Eddie Irvine and David Coulthard, there was no longer a credible Championship potential British driver. Second, whilst I fully admire Schumacher's achievements it made F1 a deathly dull spectacle. This was exacerbated by the dominance of the Ferrari/Brawn axis and after Hakkinen's retirement a real lack of quality opposition for Schumacher.

    However, fast forward to 2010 and it's clear to see F1 is in the midst of another golden era. It began with Alonso's back-to-back Championships (seasons I now wished I had watched!), the emergence of young upstart Lewis Hamilton and inter-McClaren squabbling reminiscent of Senna-Prost days, thrilling conclusions to the 2007 and 2008 seasons, Button's quite unexpected triumph in the Brawn team and now the evolution of Newey designed Red Bull cars driven by another young upstart Vettel and a 33 year old Mark Webber who like a fine wine is getting better with age!

    Add into the mix the highly capable Robert Kubica, the potential of Felipe Massa to get back to 2007-2008 form, Nico Rosberg's inevitable race wins and the possibilty of Michael Schumacher turning back the clock should Mercedes deliver a front-running Mercedes in 2011.

    This really is a great, great time for F1. In terms of competitivness and number of quality drivers and former Champions F1 is at its highest quality since the aforementioned Mansell-Senna-Prost-Piquet axis.

    All I can say is sit back, enjoy, and savour it. Formula 1 won't always be like this.

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  • 22. At 7:01pm on 15 Nov 2010, Liam Catterson wrote:

    2011 F1 Season

    Massa to show Alonso he is not number two?

    Schumacher to return to the top?

    Webber winning the title?

    Next season is going to be a fasinating season, with have nearly a quarter of the field champions, it is going to be very intresting, Of couurse we won't know who will look dominant until the teams unveils the 2011 cars and test them but I expect Ferrari, Red Bull and McLaren to be battling for top spot once again

    I have a feeling Mercedes will join them, Renault might improve a tad bit and I expect Lotus to score points too.

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  • 23. At 7:07pm on 15 Nov 2010, mem_dori wrote:

    kirbs1980 wrote:

    I think re-introduction of open engine capacity could be superb. Entirely different performance aspects, turbo's v's normally aspirated v6's, v8's and v10's... drive out of corners is different, torque is different, brakeing points and weights of cars are different.

    This would allow designers to do what they do best.



    Yes Yes absolutely yes, couldn't have said it better myself. I also don't think it is a good idea to complicate the cars to much with adjustable rear wings or push to pass rubbish, but the suggestions made by kirbs1980 could be a possible solution to the overtaking problem.

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  • 24. At 7:13pm on 15 Nov 2010, sportmadgav wrote:

    I'm not really sure what effect the adjustable rear wing will have or the Kers, I hope that it makes for more overtaking and more entertaining racing. This season was luckily good because of freak weather and RB's reliabilty problems.

    I question 3 things about F1:

    1. Is it in the interests of competition to have same engines supplied to more than 1 team?

    2. Is it really feasible to keep the rule banning team orders?

    3. Is it fair to have such huge differences in budgets?

    Maybe number 1 could stay but 2 and 3 would make for a much more competitive and interesting season. Team strategy would make it more interesting and a budget cap would help the newer smaller teams become more competitive.

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  • 25. At 7:15pm on 15 Nov 2010, Rob wrote:

    I have to disagree with a few comments. In many other "formulas" they have the exact same engine, and there is plenty of overtaking.

    Aero obviously has an effect, and they should stop teams disrupting the rear airflow too much.

    But most of all I find it to be the tracks. All of the modern tracks are poorly designed, and just don't allow overtaking. Abu Dhabi was a clear example of faster cars getting stuck behind slower ones, with 2 overtaking opportunities, on one of the longest tracks.

    We've also added more, and more street circuits. Monaco, a classic I always enjoy. Singapore has the wow effect, it's ok. But why Valencia?

    Poor circuits such as Bahrain, Hungary, Korea, Valencia and Abu Dhabi are letting F1 down. Basically anything done by Hermann Tilke. They lack character and don't give drivers the chance to close up and over take. Instead they just sit "reasonably" close in the dirty air. We instead are sold on how amazing the facilities are (something I don't experience over tv!).

    It's the classic circuits such as Silverstone, Montreal, Spa, Monza, Hockenheim, Interlagos etc... that are exciting to watch. I personally like Montreal, was glad to see it back.

    Bernie seems intent on adding quantity rather than quality. Rather than building a track for F1. Let it get built, then and if it's good enough and suits F1 it'll get used. That way they at least have some incentive to produce something good!

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  • 26. At 7:18pm on 15 Nov 2010, Paul Edwards wrote:

    More overtaking wanted. Why not put 2 chicanes next to each other. One slightly slower than the other, and the drivers could select which one to use. With markings on the track like the pit exit so cars can't cross them in the run up to the chicane, the faster cars could try to get round the slower cars by taking a slower chicane faster. That would sort the men from the boys.

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  • 27. At 7:19pm on 15 Nov 2010, AEROFOIL wrote:

    This year Red Bull really have laid down the gauntlet. - We are the best!
    That being so Ferrari and McLaren in particular will be after a much needed comeback. Add to that the prospect of Mercedes ramping up to the next level should, despite the technical changes, make next year even more competitive for the front runners, and hence more entertaining for the spectators. I suspect that Red Bull are likely to lead again because what we are talking about here is the brainchild of Adrian Newey. He and his team simply have the talent and expertise to make F1 cars go faster. I also expect the current Lotus team to move up into the midfield although albeit under a different name. - I think we truly are in another golden age of F1 motorsport. - Next years winner? - Absolutely impossible to predict but I'm hoping Lewis Hamilton.

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  • 28. At 7:22pm on 15 Nov 2010, Amanbro wrote:

    Hopefully Kimi will return but I can't see it happening. McLaren will be happy with their pairing of a `safe' driver (Button) and the comfortably faster driver (Hamilton). Ferrari and Alonso are a match made in heaven and would not want a driver who will be able to challenge Alonso. Red Bull may want to replace Webber but I don't think they will go for Kimi unless Vettel leaves (possibly for Mercedes). The Renault situation didn't work out for reasons which have been well documented.

    In conclusion, I think that Kimi's only chance of a return will be with Red Bull. I hope it happens because a Vettel/Kimi pairing will be great to watch.

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  • 29. At 7:22pm on 15 Nov 2010, desertwalker wrote:

    @memidori- you will have to wait until 2013 for the engine freeze to be lifted. Forget turbocharged engines for the next couple of years, although thats definitely a good idea

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  • 30. At 7:27pm on 15 Nov 2010, BlueNotBirmingham wrote:

    Am i the only one who REALLY wants to see Raikkonen back on the grid???

    I mean come on guys, surely that's what every true racing fan wants to see in 2011.

    The man has been on the podium 80 times (18 wins + 62 podiums) in just 157 races! That's a podium finish every other race!

    Raikkonen is one of, if not the fastest driver for raw pace. If all the F1 drivers had a race in the same car, the only drivers close to Raikkonen for lap times would be Hamilton & Vettel and maybe Alonso.

    Bring back Kimi the Iceman!

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  • 31. At 7:32pm on 15 Nov 2010, G_K___ wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 32. At 7:40pm on 15 Nov 2010, G_K___ wrote:

    desertwalker wrote [19]:

    "For those people that accuse Formula 1 of being boring, are either new to the sport or don't understand the technical, political intricacies that make this sport so fascinating."

    ----------------------

    Well for my part I do understand a lot of it, but to be honest I don't find it "fascinating" so much as mind-numbingly boring. If I was interested in political intricacies I'm sure the ones that actually matter - the ones that actually determine the course of our societies - would be far more gripping to me. But I'm not that interested in politics at all, and I'd rather have a lot less of it in motor racing.

    Problem for me is, 2010 had so little to do with actual motor racing in the first place.

    The so-called "excitement" was all just about the closeness of the competition, the fact that no-one was actually good enough to put real distance between themselves and the opposition. Most of the actual races were decided by strategic and technical decisions, rather than people actually racing each other in cars.

    Abu Dhabi epitomises what is rubbish about modern F1. There's hardly any posssibility of overtaking. I'd be more interested watching kids go-kart racing tbh - at least there, drivers are going past each other. This was just like a procession, occasionally interrupted by a thrilling decision to change tyres.

    For me it's not so much a question of "Can 2011 get any better?", as "How much worse can it get?"

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  • 33. At 7:47pm on 15 Nov 2010, CanaryPower wrote:

    Whose to say that there won't be six world champions with the possible return of Raikonen to Renault.

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  • 34. At 7:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, ungifted wrote:

    This is not a sport (if it is sport) about which I care. However, given the BBC paying zillions to televise it, the one pleasure I have derived is watching (occasionally) Rosberg consistently outperform Schumacher.
    If Schumacher had driven as recklessly on our motorways as he did in his stunt with Barricello then he might have been banned for life.

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  • 35. At 7:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, Amanbro wrote:

    @BlueNotBirmingham I agree about Kimi but who do you think will take him? The top 5 teams have at least one class driver in their team so I can't see him coming in 2011 unless their is some surprising driver movement (e.g. Schumi retiring, Vettel going to Merc, etc).

    Just to let you know, Kimi was the reason I got into F1. Other drivers are talented and very focused but Kimi was capable of the ridiculous and is outrageously cool. He get's a lot of stick for being boring in interviews however I think it's because he doesn't like BSing which other drivers don't mind much. Just listen to his comment during Brundle's gridwalk before the 2006 Brazilian GP and then say he's boring :o)

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  • 36. At 8:13pm on 15 Nov 2010, James Brook wrote:

    There must be something fundamentally wrong when faster cars cannot overtake or get close to a much slower car because of the nature of the circuit.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    If you're talking about Alonso v Petrov - the Renault is faster in a straight line so pulled away comfortably on the straights. The track didn't have anything to do with that. (no not even the length of the straight)

    Plus I think that they got the gear ratio for 7th wrong on that ferrari anyhow.

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  • 37. At 8:26pm on 15 Nov 2010, joe strummer wrote:

    32. At 7:40pm on 15 Nov 2010, G_K___

    100% agree with everything you said.

    36. At 8:13pm on 15 Nov 2010, James Brook

    If you're talking about Alonso v Petrov - the Renault is faster in a straight line so pulled away comfortably on the straights. The track didn't have anything to do with that. (no not even the length of the straight)

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    But it wasn't just Alonso and Petrov, there were 2 overtaking moves in the entire GP. Hamilton couldn't pass Kubica despite being on much fresher tyres; no one could pass anyone because the track layout strings the cars out too much. Your explanation doesn't account for why overtaking happens on some tracks but not others - a week earlier there was much more overtaking at Interlagos for example.

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  • 38. At 8:47pm on 15 Nov 2010, BlueNotBirmingham wrote:

    @ 35

    I agree about Kimi but who do you think will take him? The top 5 teams have at least one class driver in their team so I can't see him coming in 2011 unless their is some surprising driver movement (e.g. Schumi retiring, Vettel going to Merc, etc).

    -------------------------------

    Williams? Seeing as Hulkenberg is leaving. I don't know, but I'd much rather see him on the grid than someone like Button, who has pretty much proven that his World Championship was down to the Brawn GP car.

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  • 39. At 8:55pm on 15 Nov 2010, tootsie323 wrote:

    Whilst Abu Dhabi may not be the best design of circuit the overtaking issue is much more down to aero-based design than circuit design. Is there not a move to bring in ground effects in the next few years? If more overtaking is needed F1 must set regulations such that cars may follow each other closely without relative loss of grip.

    Having said that I have enjoyed the strategy as much as the on-track racing... horses for courses I suppose...

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  • 40. At 9:02pm on 15 Nov 2010, garbol wrote:

    This year I am a returning fan of F1 after a few years of watching processions. (Sorry, but I hark on about the days of Senna, Mansell, Prost!). I'm afraid I do not go fully with the best season ever. How can it be with one manufacturer being obviously head and shoulders above the rest; races won or lost on pit strategies; not many new exciting circuits which allow for overtaking.
    I was bored with the procession on Sunday as very few overtaking manoeuvres took place. Unless you were specifically supporting Vettel or Red Bull, there was no excitement except the hope of a crash or breakdown.

    I say better tracks, please.

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  • 41. At 9:22pm on 15 Nov 2010, Amanbro wrote:

    @ 38

    Hmm ... We know that Kimi will only want to join a race winning team. It's not easy to pick who will/will not be winning races next season but it seems a safe bet that Williams won't be. There is also the issue about his massive wage demands.

    IMO, I think he was disillusioned with the direction F1 was heading (with all the cost reduction making F1 less glamourous I suppose) so he felt he should join the WRC while he is still young. It's obvious he has always had a passion for rallying and after a satisfactory first year he would like to continue next year and possibly even win a WRC rally.

    Can't blame him for losing his motivation for F1. The sport has been on a steady decline for a few years starting when the engines were reduced from v10 to v8's. I remember when the engine would reach 21,000 rpm now they only do 18,000 rpm (about 15% reduction). More recently, there have been aero restrictions making the cars look rather ugly compared to the 2005 cars (see rear wings and the banning of barge boards as well as `straighter' front wings). Brilliant tracks (e.g. Spa, Suzuka) are always under threat from Bernie where as tracks like Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Valencia, ... are never criticised by Bernie.

    Oh well, rant over.

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  • 42. At 9:25pm on 15 Nov 2010, Ginger wrote:

    The finale was tense due to what was at stake, aside from that it wasn't a great race, neither was Interlagos.

    The fact that Fernando couldn't get past Petrov was a little sad but I suppose the cars being so close make it difficult.

    All that said I can't wait for Bahrain. I do hope that RBR can be stopped, the car advantage wasn't healthy as it wasn't when MSC was winning every year.

    Ginger.

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  • 43. At 9:36pm on 15 Nov 2010, FoxesofNuneaton wrote:

    Well ditching Legard would be a start to make 2011 better on the BBC and getting in a PROPER FORMULA ONE COMMENTATOR!
    Apart from that, I dont want to see pit stops back as they ruined the race, this mandatory pit stops have thrown up all sorts of problems.
    Multiple Pit Stop[s would have seen Ferrari bring Alonso in from Petrov and fing space but as its shown, they blew it on the only 1 stop and thats the likeness of just 1 Manadatory Stop, it could cost you the race as it did with Alonso this weekend.
    Plus I wish some people on here would just be quiet about the tracks...ok Bahrain was dreadful but Korea was a suprise, Abu Dhabi was a great end (those calling is boring arent REAL F1 Fans!)
    Of course, Montreal was a good race, great to see it back and causing trouble but we need new circuits to keep F1 global, ok it hurts the traditional circuits but who shed a tear when Mangy Cours bit the dust? (Apparently a traditional circuit).
    Hockenhein was dangerous before Tilke slashed it and even the organisers admitted that despite the great racing, they couldnt get as many fans and therefore had to chomp the circuits long straights due to safety (we all saw that annoyed Mercedes employee on the track and it took up to 5 minutes to get him off the track didnt it?)
    Apart from that 2011 will not be topped by 2010, for this season to be as good we need the dramatic crashes, the silly mistakes the controversy and Montreal ripping the team strategys up in the air....cannot be topped, if it does then its all good for us!
    5 World Champs........1 Crown....2011 looks good!

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  • 44. At 9:56pm on 15 Nov 2010, SewerSide wrote:

    Could F1 2011 be even better?

    Easy. HD. Sort it out Bernie.

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  • 45. At 10:00pm on 15 Nov 2010, lebesset wrote:

    bridgestone were the biggest disappointment of the season , they went ultra conservative and that dictated the strategy for all ; if pirelli and the teams are bold and go for an aggressive strategy we have a chance for better next year

    and consider this ...the new tyres might provide more suitable for button and schumacher , enable them to be fully competitive !!!!

    even kimi back !

    and anyone notice that renault are back to their trade mark traction out of the corners ? we could be back to their starts in 2005/2006 when they seemed to gain places at every start ...yes , I know it was really the special michelin tyres that won them the championships , but that traction was important as well

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  • 46. At 10:28pm on 15 Nov 2010, MediaOverreaction wrote:

    It was a thoroughly enjoyable season that had me hooked from the start, mainly due to the unpredicatable leadership swings for the drivers championship. Many thanks to Red Bull for the many mistakes and reliability issues that stopped it being a 2 horse race throughout.

    I'm looking forward to next year, and the revival of McLaren which sees Hamilton show what he can do in a proper car. Here's hoping..........

    P.s. Agreed with #43, Jonathan Legard has had enough time to get to grips with the job now. I personally would rather Martin Brundle took the reins as sole commentator, he's more than capable.

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  • 47. At 10:37pm on 15 Nov 2010, Tamburello wrote:

    Yes, we need to encourage and facilitate overtaking. So now most tracks have enormous run-off areas and the cars are so, thankfully, strong in the event of a collision with a tyre wall or similar, let's outlaw carbon-carbon brakes. This will increase the braking zone by a huge difference. And if you say that's a technologically backward step, so is every limitation on moveable or fixed aerodynamic devices. Let's see drivers outbraking each other in manoeuvres that last over 100 metres - the solution is so easy I COULD CRY...

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  • 48. At 10:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, Dave wrote:

    Its just a shame in terms of entertainment the best car won. Alonso with the 2nd/3rd best car on the grid managing to beat the top car. It's David v Goliath, Turtle v Hare. Raikonnen beating Alonso/Hamilton was outrageous but brilliant.

    KERS will help McLaren as their last kit seemed to work pretty perfectly.

    Adjustable wings will surely just cause squabbling unless the car that overtakes can escape to over 1second ahead.

    More aggressive tyres would be good. Its nice seeing Button nurse his soft tyres for 30 laps, total respect. But we want to see quicker degradation. Tyres that reward the driver when they drive it like they stole it.

    On a side note, i still cant see why they pitted Alonso early. His times were ok at the time, could have got much worse, but it would have been the graining phase. They pitted him to cover off Webber yes, but they could see at the time that there was cars between where they would slot out that had already pitted behind the safety car. Ferrari should have seen that Webber would have had to overtake 2 cars to leapfrog Alonso. Having 2 cars in the way would mean no clear air, and lots of time wasted in attempting to overtake.

    Shame. If they kept Alonso out there would have been some actual racing on different strategies.

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  • 49. At 11:01pm on 15 Nov 2010, hackerjack wrote:

    The strain of winning the 2009 championships certainly drained Brawn Grand Prix, which had a debilitating effect on them this season in their new guise as Mercedes.
    ---------------------

    What a silly statement. BAR/Brawn/Mercedes/Honda have been a perenial "best of the rest" level team for years. Ironically it is largely due to Ferrari and McLaren straining to win in 2008 while HONDA decided after a couple of races to write off the season and prepare for 2009 that gave them their flash in the pan season. They were always likely to return back to the mediocrity from whence they came, indeed Mercedes have the biggest task of all the top teams in trying to weed out the under-performers from that infrastructure if they want to compete at the sharp end.

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  • 50. At 11:14pm on 15 Nov 2010, The United Way wrote:

    Apparently the Mercedes engine and KERS are incredible, according to early reports. Of course, the source is highly unreliable, but if so, are we looking at the return of Schumi?

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  • 51. At 11:14pm on 15 Nov 2010, dxj18 wrote:

    Schumacher with new tires, and a car suited to him - could we be in for an 8th title?

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  • 52. At 11:33pm on 15 Nov 2010, Gavelaa wrote:

    30. At 7:27pm on 15 Nov 2010, BlueNotBirmingham wrote:

    Am i the only one who REALLY wants to see Raikkonen back on the grid???

    I mean come on guys, surely that's what every true racing fan wants to see in 2011.

    The man has been on the podium 80 times (18 wins + 62 podiums) in just 157 races! That's a podium finish every other race!

    Raikkonen is one of, if not the fastest driver for raw pace. If all the F1 drivers had a race in the same car, the only drivers close to Raikkonen for lap times would be Hamilton & Vettel and maybe Alonso.

    Bring back Kimi the Iceman!

    He's been on the podium 62 times, not 80.

    As an aside, Lewis Hamilton has been on the podium in over 50% of his races.

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  • 53. At 11:46pm on 15 Nov 2010, Tim_1985 wrote:

    I've been watching F1 since 1988 (aged 3!) and I can honestly say that this season has been the most open I can remember for some time. I reckon the quality of drivers in the mid 80's was slightly better (Senna/Prost/Mansell/Piquet/K Rosberg/Lauda) but it was as close as the 1986 season (from my understanding a classic).

    It's funny but this season would have been close using any of the old point scoring systems; seems a shame the history has been lost a bit. This year it would have been Vettel 104, Alonso 101, Hamilton 100, Webber 97 on 2009 points.

    How can 2011 be better? Mercedes and Renault get podiums/wins (Schumacher adding to his 91 wins); tracks that encourage overtaking - Abu Dhabi is sooooo close to being good if they change some corners; and a Brit wins the title ;) (Lewis or Jenson - I am not fussed!)

    I don't tend to comment on stuff like this but I would like to see David Croft get a promotion to the TV gig. I am sorry but I have found myself shouting at Legard this season; he gets too many things wrong and not in a good "Murray Walker" way! Brundle is superb but Legard talks over him too much. Crofty for 2011 would improve the otherwise brilliant F1 coverage on the BBC.

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  • 54. At 11:51pm on 15 Nov 2010, Tim_1985 wrote:

    To add to the above, I would like to see "Mr Personality" Kimi Raikkonen back in F1 again. When he could be bothered, he was an equal to Alonso & Hamilton (who I regard as the best). Maybe if Webber decides to retire we could see Kimi in a Red Bull...

    It's more likely he'll be putting vodka in his Red Bull than driving one though! Haha

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  • 55. At 11:57pm on 15 Nov 2010, desertwalker wrote:

    Well for my part I do understand a lot of it, but to be honest I don't find it "fascinating" so much as mind-numbingly boring. If I was interested in political intricacies I'm sure the ones that actually matter - the ones that actually determine the course of our societies - would be far more gripping to me. But I'm not that interested in politics at all, and I'd rather have a lot less of it in motor racing.
    -------------
    @GK and Joe Strummer

    First of all read my entire comment (if you haven't) and then put what I have said into context. Secondly, when I talk about enjoying political intricacies that are a PART of the sport, that is not the same thing as saying I wish it to be the primary focus of it.

    The political lobbying and divisions within F1 have existed for decades now, that just adds to the extra spice of it. F1 is big business, and sponsors, companies are all involved in this (whether you like it or not and if you don't like it then maybe you should watch karting). So there is a lot of money at stake here, you agree? If you agree, then you will understand that those companies F1 teams can exercise all kinds of pressure on the governing body? If you agree, then you have agreed that politics can exist within the sport; and if it can it ultimately will.

    There are loads of examples where politics played a part (spygate scandal, the F1 breakaway threat, Briatore's influence on Piquet's crash, the TV money split). There is no way of getting away from it, its just part of F1 business. If you dislike that part of the sport- then I suggest you give it up- no point in hoping things will change when its impossible they will.

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  • 56. At 00:33am on 16 Nov 2010, smilingSpongeMuffin wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 57. At 00:34am on 16 Nov 2010, TheSecondStain wrote:

    OK, I'll admit I don't regularly follow F1 anymore, although I did watch last Sunday's race at the Abu Dhabi track. The reason I no longer follow F1 is that strategy has long taken over from pure racing. People in the media can suggest that next season will be better than this one, or that this season has been more exciting than the last, or that recent seasons have been better, but that is coming from a very low level in interest. Put simply, on the whole, F1 is boring to watch, and has been for many a year. Endless car following car, with very little hope that the driver behind can overcome the driver in front, unless the driver behind has pitted, and is then placed amongst genuinely slower cars, and is able to pass a few to get a better position. More often than not, the car in front takes their own turn in the pits and so the car behind is promoted. Where is the true racing..? The genuine overtaking..? I don't blame the manufacturers, the drivers or any individual. They are caught up in the very act. It must be great fun for them. I know that racing in sailboats is extremely exciting, but it is super dull for the average viewer. So I don't blame them individually, I blame them collectively, including the media, because they serve up what should be the most exciting 4-wheeled motorsport imaginable, and what we get is pretty much follow the leader. Sure, there are incidences of overtaking, but these are like little jewels to savour. There should be overtaking, and plenty of it, not pitting and strategy to obtain the major thrills. I get the impression that F1 is the Emperor's New Clothes. Everyone says it is wonderful because everyone says it is wonderful, but secretly they're wondering if it actually is that wonderful. The policy also seems to be that if the BBC and general media cover it with as much glamour and resources as they can, then we'll all be convinced. Well I'm not. I gave up the regular watching of F1 several years ago because I couldn't stop yawning. The day I actually went from wide awake to falling asleep, during the race, was the day I called a halt. Now I watch very much once in a while, and afterwards I wonder each time why I bother. I think it is an old wish that things will eventually get better. But I see little sign of it, and this in an era of very good British driver involvement. F1 was very entertaining 20 or 30 years ago, but nowadays it simply isn't, unless you never knew it before. It actually is a very expensive form of sleeping pill. It's time they stopped making minor fiddles with the rules and actually produced some that give the viewer some entertainment in the form of proper racing. At the moment, the margins are too tight for entertainment. What is needed is smaller cars, smaller tyres, little or no downforce, with barely a wing on the things. In fact, make them aerodynamically poor, so that slipstreaming returns as a proper racing weapon. Set a high minimum on the drag factor, and you can have as powerful an engine as you like, although it should prove unnecessary. Add KERS if you like, although this seems more like playing with optional toys than using a driver's skill to get past. Too extreme..? How else are you going to stop the fastest cars simply disappearing off into the distance..?

    Apologies for any offence caused to current F1 fans. Just remember, I used to be one.

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  • 58. At 01:00am on 16 Nov 2010, U14334741 wrote:

    Staring at my living room wall would be more exciting than that last race. How about some overtaking? Failing that bring back refuelling, at least it made things interesting. This season the only genuinely exciting races have sadly been the ones where the weather has played a part. This season has not been even close to the excitement of 2007 or 2008.

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  • 59. At 03:44am on 16 Nov 2010, STENDEC wrote:

    Whats the point of F1 without Kimi Raikkonen? He is the guy we like the most. He doesnt bitch about bias, gets away from politics, doesnt sugarcoat his answers and doesnt get involved in dumb mindgames that somehow fascinates the media and James Allen. Kimi is pure racing.

    The truth is, this season has been dull. After watching the start and half of the 1st lap, I have generally tended not to watch a procession.

    Come back Kimi!!! All is forgiven. The true racing fans miss you.

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  • 60. At 04:06am on 16 Nov 2010, Hammerdownunder wrote:

    Sort out the tracks - simple. All tracks, even the traditional ones, should be forced to design at least one corner where overtaking is achievable.

    Abu Dhabi has no where to overtake and most of the other new tracks are the same. Even the traditional tracks have had overtaking 'designed' out of them.

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  • 61. At 05:40am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    This is all very simple to sum up.
    The results were exciting - the racing wasnt.
    Looking back in 20 years people will go "wow", but let's be honest - it was dull, dull, dull.
    The new tracks are designed by my gran - safety first, no need to let people overtake.
    I've watched F1 since 85 when Senna and Mansell came on the scene. I really don't think i can be bothered anymore.
    Although, it is a good way of sleeping off a big Sunday brunch I suppose, before the footy starts.

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  • 62. At 05:50am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    #55 Desertwalker -
    if you are so keen on all the backroom shenanigans and politics in sport why not stick to WWE? It's also exciting until the action takes place, but is at least funnier than F1.

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  • 63. At 06:07am on 16 Nov 2010, Luke3650 wrote:

    Sarah, I would like to know how many times one of the top five drivers overtook another of the top five in racing (as opposed to pit stops) other than on the first lap. Have you seen any statistics on this?

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  • 64. At 06:45am on 16 Nov 2010, hackerjack wrote:

    The tracks are not the problem, The aero being so important is the problem.

    That said there is another very easy option to making the race more interesting and that's via the tyres.

    Pirelli need to make tyres that don't last 100 laps and thus ensure a one stop race every time. The softest should last no more than 25% distance and the hardest 85% with the others in between. Then bring all four compounds to every race and let the teams use any combination that they see fit, maybe then we will actually get differing strategies.

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  • 65. At 07:37am on 16 Nov 2010, William Selka wrote:

    Thanks for a stimulating conversation. What about this for an idea? If points are the output and fuel and money are the input, why not make the competition about efficiency? Score points divided by budget or points divided by gallons of fuel used or some combination? The points would mean its a race but if the price of winning is high in the Chelsea or Ferrari style, the points are worth less. Points could be awarded to all finishers.

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  • 66. At 07:38am on 16 Nov 2010, SCL wrote:

    Normally I don't side with these standard moaning "not enough overtaking" comments but I do think that this season throws up a bit of a worry in that its pretty much impossible to overtake.

    As a formula 1 fan, you know you're generally not watching for the overtaking, and thats fine. The problem arises when cars like the Ferrari get stuck behind cars they are clearly faster than, and it seemed there was a lot of that this season. It felt like there were too many situations where a faster car just couldnt do anything to get past a slower car on one of the many non-overtaking friendly circuits.

    If you look back to Suzuka 1998, Schumacher was able to slice through the field, including overtaking Jordans, which were I suppose the equivalents of today's Renaults pace wise - it made for a very entertaining race. It just seems to take away something from the excitement when you have situations like that in Abu Dhabi, where Alonso, one of the greatest drivers of today, isn't even able to put himself in a position of taking a massive risk to get by.

    Whether the rear wings are the solution I dont know, I heavily doubt it. I'm less sceptical about KERS even though I'm not really a fan of it either. Surely there is an easier way to sort the "dirty air" conundrum.

    A fantastic season overall but I think it glossed over a number of problems with the sport - if you're relying on the safety car to make races interesting as was the case so often this year, it just feels like something is being taken away from the contest.

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  • 67. At 07:43am on 16 Nov 2010, Richard wrote:

    At any level, most overtaking happens because of a mistake. In many series, overtaking is introduced artificially by rearranging the grid. That's OK for kid's entertainment, but it's not world-class sport. The only thing to do to get more overtaking without such silly distortions is to reduce aerodynamic grip drastically and increase tyre grip.

    Sorry, but if you only like motor racing when cars are going round corners three abreast and spinning off everywhere, watch touring car racing.

    One should also not forget that some of the increased overtaking at lower levels is because the drivers aren't as good and just mess things up more often.

    In soccer, at the top level, you get fewer goals. At the lower level, you get larger scores. That's people not being very good. It's entertaining because of the mishaps, but you know you're not watching the best.

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  • 68. At 08:47am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    #67 Richard -

    World-class sport must be boring then? Hmmm...

    You must be great fun at parties.

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  • 69. At 08:55am on 16 Nov 2010, BillFenner1967 wrote:

    How to make F1 more exciting? Get Bernie to invent a weather-controlling machine. The only way to guarantee excitement and unpredictability in racing is when the rain comes. Apart from that, it's all pretty much by the numbers.

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  • 70. At 08:56am on 16 Nov 2010, bignugly wrote:

    Erm....I thought that "motor racing" was all about blokes in fast cars passing each other to win?
    For me F1 is utterly pretentious and is a window for the obscenely rich to strut their stuff on a world stage and the formula "richest are the best" doesn't really cut the mustard.
    I would urge the BBC to bin this utterly boring non sport and try to get cricket back on the box!!

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  • 71. At 08:57am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    There seems to be two responses to this season - those people who grew up with F1 in 80s & 90s and those who think that this season was "brilliant".

    Why doesnt the BBC save some money by not showing the racing, but just the results? - I had a computer game like that in 1982 on my Commodore and it was "brilliant".

    How todays watchers would cope with Senna and Mansell finishing less than a second apart, or Di Cesaris smashing everything in sight or even Schumacher in the wet at Spa, is anyone's guess. Remember Mansell's overtake in Hungary? Yep. Remember anything that happened on the track this year? Nope.

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  • 72. At 08:59am on 16 Nov 2010, Ramilas1 wrote:

    Remove the rose-tinted spectacles and have a look at the last 2 seasons!
    2009 - Brawn waltz off with both titles courtesy of a technically dubious design feature making it, clearly, the fastest car. Despite a mid-season blip, including driver fall-outs, they are never really challenged for the championships.
    2010 - Red Bull, almost identically, were alone at the top with little chance of anyone matching them. The blips have been spread more evenly, and widely, through the season while the driver fall-outs came to fruition on cue. The logical conclusion to the championships had closer finishes than expected but were still the logical conclusion.
    If this were cricket the tabloids would be sending in their 'fake-sheikh' squads to unearth the 'truth' behind such coincidence.
    I am not, for a minute, saying it was fixed but my intelligence is insulted by any claim that the "2010 season will go down in Formula 1 history as a classic year" and I'm deeply depressed to read a wish-list topped by 2011 to supply another re-run.

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  • 73. At 09:25am on 16 Nov 2010, Alex wrote:

    Well hello all. I have also been an F1 fan for years now since Since, Senna, mansell, Prost and Schumacher we had amazing racing then always close and competetive and you always seen the top guys fighting for posistion which was excellent.
    Now we have Alonso, Vettel, Hamilton, Button etc.
    Great entertaining no holds barred drivers especially Hamilton and vettel you know they will always race as youseen them both crash out a couple of times this season when they did not need to be so risky, they go for it all the time it's just such a shame the cars do not let them.
    I personally think a limit of 1000 bhp per car as a limit.
    No car/driver weight regulations.
    No engine capacity limits, Turbo's, V8's, V10's and V12's all allowed but the only regulation would be simple stay within 1000 bhp.
    The style of the cars would not have to change dramatically well unless you were the team with a V12 lump stuck in the car, saftey now is excellent so what is the issue the cars are so safe now they could more or less drive into a concrete wall at 180 mph and the drivers just walk out with a smile on their faces.
    I would also reccomend bringing back refueling as that added so much more to Qualyfiying and the race and also I agree yes bring back Raikkonen a great driver when he wasn't to hungover from parties, but he was always in the mix and another championship winner to throw in there.

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  • 74. At 09:45am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    I'd change qualifying too - seems rubbish that you can set the fastest lap and not be on pole. (if you set the fastest lap in the first session). I hate the way the commentator says "P2", "P3" etc. whats wrong with "second", "third" etc?

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  • 75. At 10:08am on 16 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    @ Alex (Post 73)

    Fully agree with your comments on design of the cars, see my posts earlier in the blog. Why Bernie et al can't let designers do what they do best is beyond me. F1 is supposed to be the absolute pinnicle of motor sport and design innovation!

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  • 76. At 10:08am on 16 Nov 2010, Jack wrote:

    The best way to increase overtaking would be not to regulate aerodynamics, but terbulance. Say to designers you can do anything you want but limit how much cars are allowed to disturb air behind them. This will result in innovation, while allowing the cars to run closer, and therefore overtake.

    I also find it ridiculous that a track such as spa or brazil with brilliant corners and massive elevations could not be built now. If it isnt safe why can there still be grand prix there? it doesnt make sense, and the cars are so safe nowadays that if a modern track was built with modern barriers and such, then I don't see how that could any way be a problem.

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  • 77. At 10:14am on 16 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    @ FoxesofNuneaton (Post 43)

    Agree re: Legard, the guy is a complete numpty. Brundle constantly has to correct his obvious mistakes, it's painful to listen to.

    A friendly suggestion to all on this blog - put Radio 5Live on and turn the volume down on your TV. David Croft is a great commentator, and supported by Davidson and Chandook they make a knowledgable, insightful commentary team.

    I'd like the Beeb to keep Brundle as he really knows his stuff but for goodness sake ditch Legard!

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  • 78. At 10:14am on 16 Nov 2010, ndear wrote:

    #67- Richard. world class sport is boring? just a very quick question about 2 games of rugby, each featuring two of the world's top teams playing the best they absolutely could, this very weekend gone past. Wales vs South Africa for example, or even (and I realise that this might be a controversial issue as to whether it was a great game) England against Australia. Not only was there the pure emotion brought on by a good spot of Aussie Bashing but the sheer fact of the matter is that australia didn't play badly. England just played superbly and served up one of the greatest games I have ever watched. Put that in to a Formula One sense and a few recent races have served up equal excitement. It doesn't need overtaking all the time to make great races. a race with one or two overtakes IS as exciting as one with cars sliding and passing all over the place. Hungary 1990 where Senna couldn't get past Thierry Boutsen all race. One of the best races of all time is best known purely because of a LACK of overtaking. While it would be nice to see more overtaking, its important that it doesn't devalue the racing.

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  • 79. At 10:22am on 16 Nov 2010, theholyllama wrote:

    Some very interesting comments on this blog. I have to agree with the overall consensus that history won't see this season quite so positively as it has been spoken of during the year. That said, it was nice to see another season go down to the last race, and the close nature of the championship battle kept things interesting. I think that the new points system has helped in that regard, to some extent.

    But there's no doubt that F1 is suffering from too many races on too many identikit tracks where the comfort of the sponsors is more important than the enjoyment of the fans and drivers. As someone said earlier, it really doesn't matter to me, watching on TV, how great the facilities are!

    How to improve things? Less aero, no double diffusers, whatever it takes to clean up the turbulent air behind cars. More variation in engine regulations and the return of turbos and refuelling. The banishment of Tilke to somewhere he can't do any more damage.

    Oh, and I'm sorry to have to agree with other comments on this, but the BBC really need to replace Legard with a commentator who can see what's happening on the track and who doesn't get excited about a fastest lap being set on lap 2 or a back marker leaving the track to get out of the way of faster cars. My enjoyment of watching the sport is genuinely lessened by his terrible commentary, which I endure only because Brundle is eloquent and insightful. Why not give David Croft a chance?

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  • 80. At 10:30am on 16 Nov 2010, theholyllama wrote:

    One other idea; get rid of the requirement to use both tyre compounds. Button's ability to make the super soft tyres last more than half race distance in Abu Dhabi should have been rewarded with the opportunity to spend the whole race on the softer tyres, giving him greater grip and pace when all his competitors had changed to the harder tyre, which might have made for a bit more excitement. And if refuelling isn't going to return, then hackerjack is right when saying that tyres need to have more grip and less endurance. Let's give the teams a real dilemma when deciding how many tyre changes to make and which tyres to use.

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  • 81. At 10:42am on 16 Nov 2010, Gligs wrote:

    One thing I've noticed from watching the Classic GP's this season is tyre strategy pre 1993 (when they allowed refuelling).
    Everyone is forced to do one stop by the rules, and the tyres last well enough that even when the 2nd set "go off", its better to stick with them than pit.
    Someone else mentioned tyre degradation. We need something with the quality and durability of the tyres to make 2 and even 3 stop strategies viable again.
    Hopefully Pirelli (no disrespect to them as a company) will struggle to get to grips with F1 tyres and we'll have a bit more unpredictability and the need for better tyre management. But NOT where drivers just slow down to protect the tyres, but they use them at expense (and hopefully their gain) of another pit stop.

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  • 82. At 10:42am on 16 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    @ theholyllama - good point well made in #80.

    Particularly like the suggestion re: tyres. Make the teams run multiple sets of 'options' only (green line) which degrade quicker.

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  • 83. At 10:54am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    Overtaking in the pits because teams are forced to make stops to change tyres isn't racing.
    Let the designers and teams do what they want - F1 should show what designers can do - get rid of rubbish regulations.
    Turbos, traction control, skirts, moving bits all over. Am I the only one who wants to see what they could create if they were allowed?

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  • 84. At 10:57am on 16 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    Back markers should be forced to adopt a Ghinzani approach when being lapped. That would make things more interesting.

    But then teams would be fined and it would all be taken very seriously - just like a team having team orders was. Imagine a team acting like a team and team-mates acting like team-mates and following team instructions for the benefit of the team? Crazy, i know. The response to that summed up how rubbish F1 is these days.

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  • 85. At 11:03am on 16 Nov 2010, StJameshPark wrote:

    I can't see the point of taking away the f-duct to add in moveable rear wings. Surely it's safer and cheaper for smaller teams to have something that the drivers only have to cover a hole rather than adding moving parts. The end effect of the two systems is the same basically.

    I'm in favour of KERS (from a technological rather than racing point of view) but I think the design and manufacturer should be done by the larger teams. I think if several of the larger teams designed a KERS system each based on a different method of energy storage (e.g. flywheels, batteries, supercapacitors) and make the teams use each system (including no system at all) for a set number of races i.e. 5 battery, 5 supercapacitors, 5 flywheels, 4 with no system.

    For example, imagine Ferrari struggling to make the Mclaren supercapacitor system work for their car at a certain type of circuit like Monaco. They could use their efficient battery system at the first four races but then compromise the rest of the season.

    The rules on the tyres is completely ridiculous. If we still had refuelling it would make more sense, but when teams can come into the pitlane on a safety car then it renders the tyre rule completely pointless. The whole point in allowing cars to pit under the safety car was to allow them to refuel, which was stopped.

    I think even Indianapolis was more of a challenge than some of the recent circuits Tilke has produced. His output is very 50:50. For instance why have two massive straights in Abu Dhabi? Replace them with long S bends instead.

    HD and 3D would be amazing and Bernie does indeed need to sort it out. It would have been amazing to watch Hamilton taking out the camera on saturday in 3D!

    Finally, I agree with everything people have said about Legard. I really miss James Allan. Legard is hopeless. Croft is the obvious replacement. Other than that, the BBC's coverage is brilliant.

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  • 86. At 11:08am on 16 Nov 2010, formulaoneman wrote:

    I wonder if Hispania will still be racing next year, it's face it they've been rubbish but the most reliable new team it's quite embrassing to see the leading cars overtake them after like 10-15 laps, hopefully they might get more money to survive.

    Any predictions for F1 2011 Line-Up?

    Hard to see how Force India can get on the podium for the Indian GP for 2011 as their team-owner wants to as his prediction. They should change qualifying to three 10-minute session as the first qualifying session is quite longwinded and the second qualifying session. Maybe a point for pole postion

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  • 87. At 11:13am on 16 Nov 2010, theholyllama wrote:

    82. At 10:42am on 16 Nov 2010, kirbs1980 wrote:

    ... Make the teams run multiple sets of 'options' only (green line) which degrade quicker.

    ------------------------------------------

    Actually I'd let the teams choose freely from all four compounds. Then some proper strategy can come into play - do they go for the hardest tyres and try to last the distance, medium tyres and one stop, or soft tyres and two or even three stops? And while we're at it, let's get rid of the rule about having to start the race on your qualifying tyres. Let qualifying be a proper shootout on the softest possible tyres, then allow teams free rein for race strategy.

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  • 88. At 11:27am on 16 Nov 2010, Sebastian-Fettles-Teacher wrote:

    Just imagine next season: 5 champions. Ok, MSC is a bit past it, but still produces some top 10 placings. But the other 4 are most recent champs, that promises an even more entertaining season 2011 than 2010, never mind any technical hiccups. Yes, I am looking forward to Vettel winning his second championship (forecast total of 10). Probably by only one point over Hamilton, or Kubica, definitely a most serious contender, he drove brilliantly, to drive Alonso "up the wall", as it were....
    Not much to choose between Vettel and Hamilton in terms of skill and talent.
    Will Lotus come up with a competitive car? I clearly remember the beautiful Lotus 78's in JPS livery...
    Good luck to ALL drivers.

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  • 89. At 12:04pm on 16 Nov 2010, Rob wrote:

    Reply to:
    19. At 6:49pm on 15 Nov 2010, desertwalker wrote:

    For those people that accuse Formula 1 of being boring, are either new to the sport or don't understand the technical, political intricacies that make this sport so fascinating.
    _______________________________________________________________________

    How completely patronising!
    I haven't missed a single race for 15 years and have been a fan for around 20 years but every year in recent times, I find myself getting more and more frustrated at how unbearably boring the sport has become.

    I love the technical and strategic aspect of F1 but it is all for nothing when the only action on the track is a driver making a mistake or having a crash.

    Nearly every dry race has become a procession, and I don't agree with the general thoughts that the Abu Dhabi track was to blame for this. The track layout, for me, would make for a brilliant race with plenty of overtaking, if it were actually possible for the cars to get close enough to each other in the first place.

    If it wasn't for all the wet races and the RBs not being reliable and having a fast but clumsy driver (now World Champion) making lots of mistakes, this season would have been too dull for words.
    As it turned out, it was dull but I can still find the words.

    The only thing that was exciting about this season was the championship table itself. I could have taken just as much pleasure from this season as I did by simply reading the post race news and staring at the table.

    Bernie Ecclestone is doing nothing good for the sport.
    He has far too much power and control and is focused only on signing lucrative deals for new circuits in new markets where the commercial aspect can flourish. The on track racing itself has been forgotten about and in fact, does not seem to matter in the slightest to him.
    The FIA need to do a huge amount too in creating regulations that encourage on track action, and not by artificial means such as KERS or adjustable rear wings. This is just desperate.

    The question should be: How can F1 get much worse than 2010 and people like the one who I responded initially to are clearly in denial, or just have no concept of what motor racing really is all about. I'll give you a clue - its in the word 'racing'.

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  • 90. At 12:36pm on 16 Nov 2010, desertwalker wrote:

    @ Rob,

    see post 55 and read the entire comment of post 13. I can't make myself any clearer in the comments I have made regarding this.

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  • 91. At 12:57pm on 16 Nov 2010, Tractorlegs wrote:

    The movable rear wing will create artificial overtaking, which is really no better than what we already have. The restrictive regulations have encouraged aero-development and not much else. I agree with the majority who want a return to the 80's/early 90's where teams had more choice over engine size and configuration.

    All this talk of the effect on the environment is fine, but I'm sure the difference isn't material when stacked up against the impact of flying 12 teams to these far flung Tilke-domes. If they were really worried about the environment, stick Abu Dhabi and Bahrain next to each other on the calendar and save on the airline fuel.

    They should return to ground-effect cars for generating downforce - it would mean less aero appendages and therefore less turbulence for closely following cars. Combined with a nice V12 turbo...now that's a race car!

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  • 92. At 1:04pm on 16 Nov 2010, ngeze wrote:

    Whatever you talk about speed and diffusers, wings etc wont work if the circuts are the same and designed by the same Tilk. A circuit has the most say in entertainment. Away goes Tilk!

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  • 93. At 1:12pm on 16 Nov 2010, JonnyBaws wrote:

    Best f1 season? Probably
    Best race, so many, but I liked the Canadian GP, a track where overtaking is possible (Herman take note!)
    Will f1 be better in 2011? Hope so!
    Hope Mercedes step up, Renault continue to improve, five teams and 10 drivers (well, maybe not Petrov) going for the title would be immense!
    Who else thinks that Kubica in a RedBull would have won the title a lot quicker than Vettel finally did, IMHO he's just as quick but makes very few mistakes, future world champion, bet he's a decent plasterer too!
    Only 116 days to go!

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  • 94. At 1:29pm on 16 Nov 2010, Steve wrote:

    it's all about the tyres

    make them SUPER grippy but deteriorate RAPIDLY
    so u have maybe 10 laps before you pretty much have to pit or you have so little grip at that point you're going backwards

    reducing aero would help, but you can fix it purely with the tyres
    allowing tyres that can run the race distance is clearly not good


    another alternative is to heavily water the track before every race and then allow it to dry during the race - or have the sprinkers come on randomly mid-race

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  • 95. At 1:33pm on 16 Nov 2010, Sambo wrote:

    A thrilling end to the season with a deserving champion! He may have had the fastest car however, all the critism he has recieved this year (Button/Webber incidents), he has came back fighting stronger as the season went on. Although the Button incident was unquestionably Vettel's error, correct me if I'm wrong but did he apologise straight away to Button and take critism on the chin? He may get preferential treatment at Red Bull but I think that is truly justified as you can tell he is one of, if not the most determined driver on the grid along with Hamilton. He never gives up and in my opinion that merits a bit of preferential treatment. Look at his reaction in the post conference at Abu Dhabi - this championship meant everything to him!
    Go Vettel - I will be cheering you on in 2011!

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  • 96. At 1:34pm on 16 Nov 2010, Damien wrote:

    A lot has been said about overtaking in the pits not real racing. Overtaking in the pits is only really possible if teams are able to have different strategies. There have been far too many gimmicks brought in by the FIA in recent years basically to throw up a distorted grid. I wouldnt be too surprised if they eventually do away with qualifying and just start the race in reverse championship order, but where drivers which start higher than 11th can choose new tyres to start a race and the rest have to use the same tyres that they finished the last race on. The only exception to this being if you win the race, you can do what you want or if there is a full moon. The FIA are totally to blame for messing up F1!

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  • 97. At 1:35pm on 16 Nov 2010, Alex wrote:

    I think it is pretty simple really.
    One slick tyre whatever compound and if they need to pit to change then do so.
    One intermediate tyre as now and one fully wet.
    Bring back refueling definetly.
    Keep all cars identical front wings rear wings diffuser no diffuser etc.
    Change the internals the engines bring back the old days as I said earlier make that the only regulation a limit for all engines to a 1000 bhp whether they be turbo V8's naturally aspirated V12's.
    This way the cars although being the same aerodynamically will not matter a monkeys as we all know the performance in gears down straights out of corners etc will sharp solve all of this. Overtaking problems no more and it will give us the fans and drivers some real racing.

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  • 98. At 1:39pm on 16 Nov 2010, bazza750 wrote:

    Unfortunately another boring season in F1. Yes I know it is a team sport and I know that races can be won and lost in a pit stop or by making a mistake but lets be honest here, the watching public most probably watch to see racing and overtaking, not a train like procession around the track with commentators desperately trying to make it sound interesting and exciting. The last race was so boring I turned over to a rival channel and watched the MotoGP season highlights (I actually saw some overtaking!!).
    Come on FIA get a grip, stop the gimmicks and lining your own pockets, it's time racing came back to F1. Give greater flexibility to teams to develop engines, cut back on the aerodynamics so overtaking is easier and if one team starts dominating penalise them with extra weight / reduced power.

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  • 99. At 1:40pm on 16 Nov 2010, ricos_teeth wrote:

    My take on improving the spectacle: Leave it alone. I know that won't go down well, but look at it this way: F1 is a 200mph soap opera played out in high tech machinery by super-human drivers and (largely) without a script.

    Don't get me wrong, I like real 'racing' as much as the next guy - I've been to Brands Hatch many times and thoroughly enjoy euro-manufacturer cup races and classic shoehorn-a-V8-into-a-1970s-Trimuph-Herald challenges. It's all great stuff, but this is F1. Where would it be witout a controversy to debate on a Monday morning?

    As for some other suggestions for improvement - an open engine choice will result, eventually, in a single engine choice. We've been there before. When Ferarri had a V12 and Ford supplied V8s, Once the mould was broken with a winning V10, everyone had a V10.

    The Abu Dhabi track, I agree, is a little too Scalextric-like for me, but the saving grace is that the owners are actively promoting racing there all year round. The tracks (or rather locations) I dislike are those that host an F1 race with an empty grandstand and are then more or less idle for the rest of the year. If you throw out Abu Dhabi on the basis of limited overtaking opportunity, then Monaco has to go with it, and I don't believe anyone would take that seriously as a suggestion.

    Monaco brings me full circle. Why do we like Monaco as an event? (go on admit it - you do). Not because of the 'racing' - there isn't any. We love it because of the spectacle.

    Long may it continue.

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  • 100. At 2:58pm on 16 Nov 2010, Paul Edwards wrote:

    2 Comments:
    1) ricos_teeth I don't like Monaco. I am not interested in seeing a town and boats only rich people can afford with no real racing. Take the circuit off the calendar. But Bernie would not because of the money.

    2) Kimi Raikonen a great racer? Do I remember that he was soundly beaten by Felipe Massa, who was soundly beaten this year by the top drivers. Is it me or is he not such a great racer?

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  • 101. At 3:13pm on 16 Nov 2010, CaptainLightning wrote:

    Yes overtaking problems etc. a real challenge but I won't go on about that.

    The one thing I just have to mention that would make 2011 a better season would be to:
    GET RID OF LEGARD!

    Legard is more boring than the Abu Dhabi race, he makes some shocking mistakes, and gets excited about some really irrelevant stuff. Brundle is excellent in my opinion, but I feel sorry for him having to be in awkward situations with Legard.

    Does anyone out here like Legard as a commentator?

    My current solution, listen to Brundle, ted in the lane etc, but switch to Croft and co for the moments when Legard is talking. It gets kind of tedious but is worth it.
    Otherwise, bring Brundle to 5live, and then I can ditch bbc sound altogether.

    In conclusion, GET RID OF LEGARD

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  • 102. At 3:38pm on 16 Nov 2010, Damien wrote:

    100- I agree about Monaco, ive never like it as a race and find it dull. I disagree about Kimi though, in terms of fastest drive id put him up there with Vettel, Alonso and Lewis. Dont forget he won a world title and was beaten the next year by Massa who had his best ever season and was one corner away from the title himself. I expect a great season from Massa next year.

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  • 103. At 5:06pm on 16 Nov 2010, quirkyspider wrote:

    WELL FIRST OF ALL LET ME START OFF IN LEGARD STYLE BY GETTING OVER EXCITED ABOUT NOTHING - THE CLASSIC FOR ME WAS THE REPLAY OF AN OVERTAKING MANOUVER BY A MINOR PLAYER THAT HE MISTOOK FOR A LIVE EVENT HAVING NOT BEEN HALF AS EXCITED THE FIRST TIME ROUND, AND YES YES ITS AMAZING, I'VE REACHED THE END OF THE FIRST SENTENCE, NO NO I HAVEN'T, I FORGOT TO SAY IT'S DESPERATELY EMBARRASSING TO LISTEN TO, PERHAPS THEY COULD BRING IN WILLY CARSON AND GARY LINEKER OR PROMOTE EDDIE JORDAN TO CHIEF COMMENTATOR AFTER ALL THEY ARE CONSUMATE PROFESSIONALS AT STRINGING A BUNCH OF WORDS TOGETHER TO MAKE AN INTELLIGABLE SENTENCE WHAT DO YOU THINK QUIRKYSPIDER?
    Er, gosh, well, I think so many things that it'll be really difficult to put it all together in a logical way, but I'll try.
    First up, I think we have been conned by the media into accepting the numbers game as the excitement of a grand prix season. In the olden days, pre tinternet, we had qualifying and the race and that was it, I remember it as exciting. There was little pre race speculation or post race analysis and far less regulation.
    Nowadays what we have is what I call a 'decaffinated' society with all the excitement removed for our own good (in the same way that the BBC now produces comedy with the funny bits removed in case it offends someone).
    What we have now is an illusion, a 'show', a 'production'. - The actors are all multi millionaires who are mostly too scared to go out when it's a little bit slippy. Well that's understandable because who would want to risk their multi-millionaire good looks and lifestyle when they can have it all without any risk when it's dry.
    Of course, it's all about money now and Bernie Ecclestone is the big 'movie mogul' whom no one dare criticise because they'll lose their job. The media's job is to repeat to us lesser mortals over and over again that the show is exciting, with endless hype and 'sideshows'. This is to divert our attention from the fact that regulation has virtually killed the 'sport'.
    It was always my understanding that F1 technology and development was what drove the sport and in some way ended up as major advances in the cars we drive on the road. Now it seems that discovering something new is an unfair advantage! - Imagine that attitude had prevailed when the wheel was first invented.
    So, is anything going to change? - Not really, we the genuine race 'fans' have been replaced by the new 'fans' who hate everyone else who don't support their artificial idol. This is what the media want - the new fans have grown up in an 'x-factor' society, they are brainwashed into the media's hype game and don't seem to understand that you don't need to be a fan of anyone to enjoy the sport. I have appreciated the skills of many drivers over the years but have never been a 'fan' of any - after all what is fan short for? - Forgive me for being patronising, but I would guess that the new fans do not know it's short for fanatic. Anyway, they are the new fan base - gullible consumers!
    The future is mind numbingly predictable - countless tilke show tracks where countless parade laps are completed.
    To sum up - the 'champagne' moment on the podium at Abu Dhabi, damp sqibs anyone?
    That's it then, I'm giving up watching grand prix(s), in the same way I give up smoking... in between every cigarette.

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  • 104. At 5:36pm on 16 Nov 2010, junkmale wrote:

    @14 - "Yep, totally agree. Restricting revs to 18,000rpm and stopping engine development means that basically every car has identical engines with equal performance. Add this to the fact that there are only four engine manufacturers and the reason cars struggle to pass is evident - they're all the same."

    Well, rather ironically, over in the MotoGP world this season saw the old 250cc 2-stroke class replaced with the new Moto2 category, a formula specifically introduced to try and reduce the eye-watering costs of running a premier category race team.

    Moto2 bikes all have the same engine, and the same tyres, with a choice of about six different chassis' to mate them with... and it has been absolutely barn-storming! A grid of 40 bikes, with multiple world champions amongst it alongside relative rookies, has seen some of the closest and most amazing racing ever (barring of course the tragedy of Shoya Tomizawa).

    And there are plenty of other 'one marque' motorsport championships, on both two-wheels and four, that feature dramatic action on the track, so I don't buy the fact that the F1 cars are so similar as being the problem with lack of F1 action... there has to be something else.

    Still, at least Alonso didn't win - after Spain cleaned up in all three MotoGP classes if they'd got F1 as well they'd have been insufferable!!!

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  • 105. At 5:47pm on 16 Nov 2010, usdeeper wrote:

    I don't know why people want Schumacher back.. I wish he would retire and stop trying to rekindle his youth.

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  • 106. At 5:54pm on 16 Nov 2010, usdeeper wrote:

    Bring back refueling, multiple types of tires and multiple pit stops. It was exciting when one person was on a 3 stop strat and another on one stop. Watching the gap comes down.. or the front running having to go all out to get ahead for their extra pit stop.

    There was always more over taking when you had teams with different tires or fuel loads.

    I still don't know why they stopped all that..

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  • 107. At 5:58pm on 16 Nov 2010, Moo-Sah wrote:

    I can't believe the amount of people coming on here and criticising F1. if you don't like it, then lump it! Go watch something else!

    Yes there isn't a lot of overtaking - BUT IMAGINE if everyone was overtaking everyone else - then overtaking becomes the 'norm' and it will no longer be that exciting. Those moments that we remember are those moments, because they are rare (I wish they weren't quite so rare!) but I would rather have more quality overtaking than everyone just overtaking everyone else. I'm sure there are other motorsports that have this. SO go ahead and go watch these sports and leave F1 alone!

    Yes I would like a little bit more overtaking, but I find it fascinating how things change on the track - the strategies etc. There have been some fairly boring races but that's just like a 0-0 in a footy game...just got to live with it. Ups and downs and all that. Someone gave an analogy of overtaking as, imagine a football game that with every attack someone scores...the game ends up being 18-7 or something...after a few goals...it too will become boring. A 4-3 game would be much more exciting. Similarly constant overtaking won't be great BUT I DO AGREE that a bit more overtaking would be better. However, if 2011 is like 2010, then I am already looking forward to it! COME ON McLAREN!

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  • 108. At 6:01pm on 16 Nov 2010, usdeeper wrote:

    What would also make things a little more interesting is to return to tracks that mistakes effected lap times. You go off the track at Abu Dhabi and hardly lose any time. Fernando Alonso made several mistakes trying to get past the Renault and never lost time.

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  • 109. At 6:44pm on 16 Nov 2010, sadisticend wrote:

    Great Blog Sarah,

    I think this season has to be one of the best ever, I enjoyed every race this season and have seen some extremely memorable ones this year.

    There are several changes to the rules for next season which is gonna make it super exciting, really looking forward to seeing the new 2011 cars and can't wait to see whos gonna be strong for next year.

    I really want Mercedes to sort out a title contending car for next season, would love to see Schum and Rosberg fighting for wins :)

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  • 110. At 05:05am on 17 Nov 2010, artshade wrote:

    #107

    Shush please. You are telling a lot of people who have been following F1 for 20 - 30 years to suck eggs. If there was constant overtaking it would be better than what we have at the moment.
    I love your anaology - a 4-3 game of football is better than 0-0. What race have you ever watched (I'm sorry, I'm assuming you are 13 years old) where there have been seven overtaking manoeuvres? None this season, that's for sure.
    We criticise because we are entitled too, having followed the sport for so long. Can I let you into a little secret? If this season had gone without some poor errors and better reliability, it would have finished four or five races ago and everyone - including you - would be moaning about the standard of the sport. Welllll...that's what's going to happen next year and then you'll be saying "when I was 12 F1 was brilliant".

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  • 111. At 10:33am on 17 Nov 2010, andythetoonfan wrote:

    As far as I'm concerned I can't see Webber been in the title battle for the upcoming season,I've seen it before were older guys get a good car and nearly win the title but then the season after that it doesn't work out,now Vettel is the WDC he will definitely be number one driver unlike this season,so I think Webber can be a number two driver at Red Bull and do well or a number one driver at somewhere like Force India and only pick up some points every now and then.

    But still with Webber departing from the title race in my own opinion I think he will be replaced by Robert Kubica,if this guy gets a car that is slightly better than this years car then I think through his sheer driving skill alone he will put himself in to the title race,his took a car onto podiums on three occasions this season when really it's just a top ten car,also up until this weekend he qualified in the top 10 for every race which shows that with a slightly better car he could really get a few more top class results,if he was to get a title winning car or one close to it then I'll be certainly tipping him as the guy to win it,I'd also like too see how Rosberg performs next season,his drove really well at times this season but he always seems to finish fourth or fifth rather than be that little higher up the grid,whilst I don't think he will challenge for the WDC I think he could have a big role to play and with a slightly better car who knows he might get a race win next season.

    It seems to be intriguing but whether it can live up to the heights of this season I doubt it.

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  • 112. At 11:56am on 17 Nov 2010, Ill Phil wrote:

    A great season should be defined by great driving. This was an interesting season defined by one car lots better than the rest being kept close to the pack by reliability problems and some dodgy driving and hotheadedness.

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  • 113. At 12:48pm on 17 Nov 2010, Dr Robert wrote:

    As everyone else is giving there solutions to make F1 more exciting here are mine.

    1. Manual gearbox. Give the drivers something to do that might vary the time it takes to do it.

    2. Remove all the silly aerodynamic bits and pieces from around the car, this will reduce the down force and stop the flying around corners at full throttle. The drivers need to be able to make a judgement of how fast they can take each corner.

    3. Reduce the width of the front nose, reducing the amount of air able to flow over the wheels. This will stop them from taking each others off because the cannot see them.

    4. Remove all non-safety critical telemetry.

    5. Insist the fuel level at the start of the race must be able to take them to the end of the race at full race speed.

    6. Absolutely insist team orders are banned. Any team orders detected should penalise the team, not the driver.

    7. Stop Racing in Monaco. Yes I know it's where many of the drivers live, and the status and tradition is undeniable, but unless it rains it produces the most boring race of the season guaranteed. Alas money talks.

    8. Stop blue flagging back-markers. It should be up to the 'superior' driver to overtake them. They are an obstacle on the track that should be negotiated.

    9. Tyre stops should not be mandatory. If a driver can complete the race on one set, let them do it. If another driver thinks they will be faster using two sets, let them try it.

    10 Do not bring back refuelling! It used to be so annoying to watch races being won by pit crews and not drivers and cars.

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  • 114. At 2:14pm on 17 Nov 2010, CastawayCay wrote:

    I miss the drama of refuelling - it was a wonderful piece of television theatre. I remember someone (was it Bernie?) once suggesting that we should have the wild card of water sprinklers coming on and off at certain corners ... to me, refuelling was a far better wild card.

    I totally agree with the contributor who said "stop blue-flagging back markers - it should be up to the 'superior' driver to overtake them" ... if the lead driver can't overtake, it causes bunching, with consequent additional wild cards and potential for excitement and drama.

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  • 115. At 3:34pm on 17 Nov 2010, Joe wrote:

    The 2011 season will almost certainly be as competative as 2010. 5 World Champions fighting it out from march in Bahrain. Fernando Alonso will be as hungry as ever to claim his 3rd Word Title after just missing out this year. Vettel, Button, Hamilton will be going for it aswell but ever since seeing Mark Webber so disapointed in Abu Dhabi will he really be at Red Bull next year? I wouldnt be suprised to see a new face in the 2nd Red Bull next year. And think Massa and Smedley could leave Ferrari in the winter break. Im not just saying this cause I support Alonso, but I think Fernando will be gunning for glory in 2011! :)

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  • 116. At 09:28am on 18 Nov 2010, Josh wrote:

    It really gets on my nerves when people complain that some F1 races are boring, just because they lack actual overtaking.

    At Abu Dhabi, you had Alonso all over the back of Petrov, running wide out of corners and really intimidating him, and Hamilton doing the same behind Kubica - both for nearly 20 laps!

    The pit stops of Hamilton and Vettel were tense and exciting, and the strategies of Webber and Alonso dismal and race-destroying.

    If people don't get that these are things that make F1 extremely exciting (yes, subtle things) then they're missing out.

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  • 117. At 10:59am on 18 Nov 2010, Scooby wrote:

    The old chestnut of making cars that can overtake in F1!! Why not just qualify for the first race of the season & then start races in either reverse order of finishing the previous race or in reverse championship order. The designers would then have to make cars that could overtake. No need for rules to try & make them overtake, just leave that to the designers!

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  • 118. At 6:50pm on 18 Nov 2010, AdamPerkins wrote:

    2011 IS going to be better than 2010. 5 world champions next season and about 10 people who could be competing for the title. This is what I think the grid is going to look like:

    Red Bull: Seb Vettel and Mark Webber
    McLaren: Lewis Hamilton and Jnson Button
    Ferrari: Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa
    Mercedes: Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher
    Renault: Robert Kubica and Vitaly Petrov
    Williams: Rubens Barrichello and Pastor Maldonado
    Force India: Nico Hulkenburg and Adrian Sutil
    Sauber: Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez
    Toro Rosso: Sebastian Buemi and Jaime Algersuari
    Lotus: Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli
    Hispania: Bruno Senna and Tonio Liuzzi
    Virgin: Timo Glock and Jonathan D'Ambrosio

    With 20 races on the calendar, 2011 could be the greatest season ever!







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  • 119. At 9:00pm on 18 Nov 2010, MGUK82 wrote:

    It's way too early to even think about predicting how 2011's going to play out. There are three big unanswered questions.

    1. Will Massa stay at Ferrari having been shafted this season?

    2. Will Webber stay at Red Bull where he doesn't feel appreciated?

    3. Will Schumacher stay in F1?

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  • 120. At 2:25pm on 21 Nov 2010, tuscan1969 wrote:

    You cant have your cake and eat it.....

    if we want close races and overtaking then all cars needs to be pretty "standardised" in order tobe close enough to let the drivers do the talking....

    if on the other hand you want f1 to have meaningful developments then letting engine desiners go for 4,6,8 or 10 cylinders, turbos, kers etc etc will only ensure that one gets it "right" one year only for the herd to follow the next.

    Personally to try to make it relevant and exctiting I'd limit the fuel allowance and allow the designers to try any engine configuration to obtain the best power from that limited amount and remove the rear wings meaning MUCH less downforce so longer braking distances and less distrurbed air for those following...

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  • 121. At 2:53pm on 24 Nov 2010, Silverdog wrote:

    I am not necessarily a fan of the new Formula 1, I enjoyed fuel strategies and how they played into both qualifying and the race, even overtaking.
    My question though is how the results from this year's championship would have been with the old scoring system... my other pet peeve, it will likely take the modern F1 driver about half the number of races to catch up with Michael Schumacher's points record, will they rewrite the record books so that the Vettels and Alonso's big numbers do not overshadow the Senna's and Schumi\s of past glory

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  • 122. At 01:12am on 28 Nov 2010, Stee_vee_E wrote:

    @103 quirkyspider

    Crikey, someone who wears the same glasses as me - metaphorically speaking of course.
    Well spoken sir.
    My personal pill, taken to avoid part of this tabloid approach, is a simple & relatively effective one...
    Turn on just before the race starts, avoid Legard at all costs by listening to 5live, switch off once the race has been completed.

    By adopting this approach one can just about capture the atmosphere of Formula 1 car racing - bypassing the media circus that exists either end, where the commentators, or the BBC now appear to believe the commentators, to be just as, if not more, important than the race itself.

    The F1 Factor.

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  • 123. At 11:45am on 30 Nov 2010, Nigel Cliff wrote:

    This season was not a classic because it only got exciting whe drivers or teams made errors and because of the new points system,until aerodynamic rules are changed that will allow Overtaking (You know when a better driver passes another one on the track) then F1 will continue to be the same procession it has been for years

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  • 124. At 1:08pm on 01 Dec 2010, JoeMarshall wrote:

    Can someone explain to me what the fuss is about having 5 or 6 former champions racing simultaneously?

    In almost every other individual sport, multiple champions competing against each other happens on a regular basis, see golf and tennis as examples. In those sports, this is generally not regarded as attainment of some pinnacle - true excellence is achieved when one participant dominates all others - like Schumacher, Federer , Woods, Phelps, Johnson, came as close as is possible to doing. The fact that there are so many Champions racing in F1 indicates a combination of 1) none of them is that outstanding, and 2) performance is dictated far more by the engineering than the individual. I mean, where does this end - would 20 Champions be even better?

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  • 125. At 3:59pm on 01 Dec 2010, dyrewolfe wrote:

    According to Ross Brawn in an interview for Professional Engineering, F1 IS an engineering competition, with the racing almost a side-show.

    The difference between the guys at the front of the grid and those at the back is 90% to do with how good (or bad) the car is and 10% how good (or bad) the driver is.

    As for 2011, I think it will be about as good as this season. If it turns out that the Red Bulls, Ferraris and McLarens are close in terms of performance, then we should see a great scrap between Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton and Button for the drivers' title.

    If one of the teams comes up with a clever interpretation of the rules, which gives them an advantage, they will walk away with the first few races, while the others scramble to catch up.

    Whatever, for most F1 fans (those that appreciate its about more than just overtaking) the technological aspects should be interesting, even if the on-track action proves to be predictable. The only thing I'm not excited about is the re-introduction of KERS. We all saw before that it didn't really help much...especially if both the overtaking and defending cars were equipped with it.

    I do agree with a comment posted earlier, which is that overtaking won't really improve until the aero regs are re-written to ban all but the most basic aerodynamics...i.e. plain, straight front and rear wings, with no end-plates, fins, winglets, slots etc. Some of the newer tracks could do with re-designing too, as short straights followed by tight corners just turn laps into processions (like the infield section at Abu Dhabi).

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  • 126. At 10:36pm on 02 Dec 2010, eprune wrote:

    all the commentators and pundits keep saying that this was the most exciting year yet.
    the championships may have been close, but that's just the end result. i don't wake up early to see who is leading the championship, i wake up to watch racing. now all i see is a procession. f1 used to be exciting. now i usually go to sleep after a few laps. it's rarely surprising, and never exciting. so no, this was the most boring yet yet! anyone watched any gp2, superleague formula or a1 when it existed, or even club races...sometimes even cart manages to exciting!
    f1 used to be about racing - now the cars can't overtake - therefore can't race. how come alonso couldnt get past petrov? and more to the point why did he throw his toys out of the pram because petrov (well done) was in front of him. it is a race. well, supposed to be.

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