Coming off the back of a season which saw viewer numbers drop further and further with every win for a certain German, Formula One knew it had to deliver the goods in 2014 if it was to retain its old fans never mind win over new followers.
That job hasn't been made easy with the introduction of the biggest raft of changes in the sport's history, both Technical and Sporting, changes which have even left many of those on Planet Paddock baffled.
That, hours before the first practice session, a senior representative of the FIA has had to ensure that plans are in place should no car finish a race and that allowance will be made for drivers who fail to qualify, should tell us that there is something wrong.
Nonetheless, following the three pre-season tests, which indicate a change in terms of the old (2013) guard and the resurgence of former legends who had slipped down the grid in recent years, fans looked ahead to the new season with relish.
Make no mistake, had Red Bull dominated pre-season testing, were Sebastian to climb to the top of the podium on Sunday, the sport would be in serious trouble. Instead, we have the prospect of the German struggling in the opening races whilst Mercedes attempts to fend off McLaren, Williams and maybe even Force India, not forgetting that 'fire and ice' combo at Ferrari.
The stage was set.
Imagine the global disappointment therefore when fans switched on their TVs for the opening session, subsequently firing up their laptops, tablets and phones.
Where once the official Formula One website provided data on section times, weather and fastest speeds, fans were now confronted with dots.
Let's face it, other than the live timing there is little reason to visit the official Formula One website, a site that always appears to be a day or two late in terms of news and which only ever covers the 'positive' side of F1... after all, when was the last time you read about the (many) trials of Bernie Ecclestone there?
In the most cynical of moves, the live timing service formerly provided by the official website has now been stripped to the bone, fans given the most basic of information.
The cynic will have seen this coming however, knowing that, certainly in terms of F1, nothing is free.
Earlier this week, just days ahead of the season opener, it was announced that the paid live timing service was now available... and at a lower price than in previous years. However, the app was only available for IOS, Android users told that their version would be available "soon" whilst no mention was made of a Windows version.
So, if fans want more than the very basic info now provided by the official site unless they have IOS they are out of luck.
Let's face it, F1 fans are the most anal of sports fans, they want as much info and data as they can get their hands on, it is a sport driven by data.
To let them down this way, and with no notice, is entirely unforgivable but sadly so very typical of the sport.
Those within the paddock endlessly praise the passion of the fans but the reality is they use that passion and abuse it.
At a time the head of the sport is facing trials in various countries accused of paying a bribe of $44m, when its majority owner (one of twenty) is said to be only taking 8.4% from an annual pot of over $1.5bn, such flagrant opportunism, such obvious manipulation of its customers - the fans - is outrageous.
F1 fans might be anal but that not should be confused with being stupid. In the same way that the sport is undergoing major change so too are the fans, they are getting sick and tired of their sport being destroyed in the name of money... even worse the failure of the powers that be to even attempt to disguise the fact.
Where will the sport end up unless it begins showing its customers some real respect... join the dots.