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Sport targets new points system

NEWS STORY
24/04/2024

Not for the first time, the sport is looking to change the points system in a bid to generate greater interest for fans and greater incentive for teams and drivers.

Currently the first ten drivers are awarded points on a basis of 25 for the winner, 18 for second, 15 for third, 12 for fourth, 10 for fifth, 8 for sixth, 6 for seventh, 4 for eighth, 2 for ninth and 1 for tenth.

Under the system being proposed, the top seven finishing positions would continue to win the same amount of points, however there would now be 5 for eighth, 4 for ninth, 3 for tenth, 2 for eleventh and one for finishing twelfth.

The proposed change, which will be discussed this week, is being pushed by the smaller teams who feel that with five teams currently dominating the sport - Red Bull in a league of its own and then Ferrari and McLaren, with Mercedes and Aston Martin spearheading the midfield - a greater allocation of points would offer hope to the rest of the field.

However, the various changes to the system over the years has made the historic value of points almost worthless.

From 1950 to 1959 race winning drivers scored 8 points with 6 points for 2nd, 4 for 3rd, 3 for 4th, 2 for 5th and a bonus point for fastest lap. Furthermore until 1957 points were shared between drivers who drove in relays, as was often the case.

In 1960 the points system was changed so that the 6th placed driver received one point with no points awarded for fastest lap.

The following year (1961) the system was changed yet again with race winners being awarded 9 points rather than 8 - this system was retained until 1991 when the 10-6-4-3-2-1 system was introduced. In 2003 a new points system has been introduced by the FIA in an effort to 'spice up' the sport - the new system awards points to the first eight finishers: 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1.

Furthermore, between 1950 and 1989 drivers didn't 'keep' all the points earned - sometimes only their best 4 results counted while at other times the season was divided in two with the best score from each half counting towards the final score. Indeed, had the current points system been in use from 1950 the history of the championship would have been altered significantly.

The system currently in use was introduced in 2010, though from 2021 an additional point was awarded to the driver posting the fastest lap of the race, providing they finished in the top ten.

Lando Norris, who as Sky Sports keeps reminding us, has yet to win a race, has 693 points to his name, while Ayrton Senna has 614. George Russell (496) recently moved ahead of Nelson Piquet Snr and Nigel Mansell, while Esteban Ocon has 2.5 points more than Niki Lauda and 3 more than Mika Hakkinen and Alex Albon is just 7 points shy of Jacques Villeneuve.

Of course, in the current, 'everyone gets a prize era', such a move surely makes perfect sense, maybe a few more of those nice shiny medals as well.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Schrodinger's cat, 25/04/2024 13:39

"A simple fix for comparisons is:
Points per race
and, seasons completed, expressed to 3 decimal places."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Max Noble, 25/04/2024 3:58

"@TokyoAussie - indeed so… your humble scribe feels an article coming around this topic…"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by TokyoAussie, 24/04/2024 3:03

"It isn't just the points comparison that is pointless. There are so many races in a season now, compared to previous eras. We're getting to the point where the number of races participated cannot be compared either."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by BillH, 23/04/2024 20:11

"Perhaps this is the start of a deal being cut to have Andretti in as an additional team, i.e. The teams agree to have them in if the points (cash) goes further based on the results.
The only "hope" that should be offered to the teams is their investment in research, design and build etc. as that is what formula or prototype racing is about."

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5. Posted by Mad Matt, 23/04/2024 17:22

"I don't really mind, in my opinion you already can't compare the different eras as the rules have changed so much. I like following some of the middle to lower teams and giving them points makes it more interesting.

The best are still rewarded."

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6. Posted by ChickenFarmerF1, 23/04/2024 16:59

"If you're going to compare points, you have to use the same scoring system. Though, with things like points for fastest lap that didn't exist over certain eras that will slightly skew results because some drivers would have made an effort for the fastest lap had the point been available. Plus, when only the top 5 or 6 got points, and you're in 10th you won't put as much effort into moving up to 9th or 8th, or even 7th knowing there no ... ummm ... point. Incentives matter to outcomes."

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7. Posted by Chester, 23/04/2024 16:30

"The comparisons of Senna and Norris deflated my balloon for the new point system. Like a punch to the gut."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by Superbird70, 23/04/2024 14:41

"No need to strive for excellence anymore.
What next? A point for fastest pitstop (sorry Sauber), fastest off the line, fastest through the speed trap, most expletives during a race.

This has to end unless they expanding to 12 teams, then maybe one or two more poihts paying places."

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