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General F1 Discussion / Re: F1 may be dead to true enthusiasts - problem is; nobody cares
« Last post by Monty on December 22, 2021, 09:30:16 AM »
It is so easy for these hateful; self-opinionated morons to send out abuse to anyone that has a different point of view to them. Keyboard warriors type all sorts on nonsense that they would never say in a face to face meeting. What really worries me is that these people have such closed minds that they do not even consider that a differing point of view might have some merit. We have become aware of the intransigent, border line insane, views expressed by some people when discussing Politics (or more recently vaccinations & what are reasonable protection measures) but you would have thought Sport should somehow be above such nonsense  :fool:
Can't win online, ever.
And now I've received abuse on social media from a former F1 journalist for believing the FIA is imperfect - hours after the same journalist was among the many who lauded Nicolas Latifi's astute and diplomatic observations about online hate getting out of hand and needing collective work to remedy.
Off Topic / Re: Christmas songs 2021
« Last post by Wizzo on December 21, 2021, 05:14:54 PM »
Well according to Sky Sports Germany, who've done the calculations, the top 8 have each managed to mount up over 2mil each in repairs and the suprising No 1 notched up over 3.5mil.  :swoon:
Off Topic / Re: Christmas songs 2021
« Last post by John S on December 21, 2021, 02:21:31 PM »
Might be showing my age with this one but just love the big bearded one's voice.

General F1 Discussion / Re: 2021 Abu Dhabi Heroes and Zeroes
« Last post by Alianora La Canta on December 19, 2021, 10:09:35 PM »
Michael Masi and whoever in the FIA pre-selected a champion are zeroes for obvious reasons.

This rendered all else about this race irrelevant.

The only heroic move was not to play.
I believe the FIA cheated us out of any champion at all.

The FIA has simply put on a little masquerade for the sake of the cameras and moneymakers. The FIA has broken its own rules so much, and so comprehensively, that I cannot consider either Max or Lewis to be FIA champion. On two separate occasions, both of their lives were endangered in service to the FIA's misconduct. Both were cheated out of their rightful desert and several drivers including both title aspirants nearly got injured as a result. From my reckoning, Max is not World Champion because the moment the FIA decided to pre-select a champion (something that, on retrospective evidence, appears to have happened after Silverstone and before Spa), there was no longer a championship to win in the legal sense of the word.

At this point, any fan who believes a driver (recognised aspirant or otherwise) was champion purely because their heart said so has more credibility with me than the FIA (or anyone who cites the points table as evidence). Fans can write their champions on their own law, don't need or benefit from the FIA's say-so... ...and are in no way bound by the FIA's misconduct. However, that's champion with a small "c", not a capital "C"; any other fan has equal authority to declare a champion on the same basis.

This is what the FIA did to F1 - apparently in cold blood.

Quite a lot of people care - several people I know face-to-face (generally the ones who switched off during the latter stretches of the season, a few of whom admitted to watching the last race anyway) have told me they're done with F1. The only F1 fan I know face-to-face who was unmoved by the whole mess was someone who hasn't watched any F1 races (only Drive to Survive) and hasn't been persuaded to watch any by what she saw on social media. This probably doesn't help the moneymakers much ;)

The audience came, saw F1 faceplant... ...and mostly are going. It's Indy 2005 writ large.

Incidentally, John S, Masi handed out a 2-place grid penalty to Max Verstappen in Qatar, which should have been reversed. (Granted, I feel Max should have been black-flagged for cumulative infractions elsewhere, so probably not much help to him, but even in futile situations, governance integrity is vital). Not to mention his precedent for Mercedes' protest being thrown out at the end of Abu Dhabi of "play on" meaning that he's apparently allowed to do whatever he wants now regardless of what the regulations say he must do.

I don't get to walk away like most of my face-to-face friends that were into F1 have. If the FIA continues like this, drivers will get injured or die from the misconduct. Already, there's the risk of F1 teams quitting and billing the FIA their exit fees. In any of these situations, lawyers may end up contacting me as witness, given precedent - and I must make sure I know enough about the situation to not waste their time.
General F1 Discussion / Re: New FIA President.
« Last post by Alianora La Canta on December 19, 2021, 09:48:50 PM »
I'm more concerned that Mohammed's first move was to criticise something that was not only required due to legal actions happening at the time (and still happening - the FIA is supposed to be running an inquiry), but something the FIA started through its own conduct. It comes across as excessively power-drunk and possibly racist (he didn't criticise white event-skipper Nyck de Vries, nor entrant Mercedes).

Every colour can be attached to fanatical hordes. This one, however, prefers navy blue rather than orange or green.
General F1 Discussion / Re: F1 Christmas wishlist
« Last post by Alianora La Canta on December 19, 2021, 08:44:17 PM »
Warning! Long post alert!

At this point, it's hard for me to take seriously any series whose governing body thinks it is acceptable to pre-select a champion (let alone several races in advance) and outright break the rules to make it happen (let alone in a way that endangers the lives of the drivers, including the driver they pre-selected, on two separate occasions), and then bully and lie to anyone who objects. The only person I've met who is not completely upset with F1 to the point of trying to avoid all mention of it is the vaccine observer I met today... ...whose entire knowledge of F1 derives from Netflix and social media, and has never attempted to watch an actual race on TV (live or highlights... ...though she knew a lot about F1 despite this, and we spent a good 20 minutes discussing a pro-vaccine video F1 released shortly before the final round).

Measures that will be needed for me to be able to take F1 seriously again as anything other than a liability to its participants:

1) Either replace the FIA altogether, or put an independent body above it in a supervisory capacity with power to prevent the FIA from doing its more dangerous/disreputable behaviours. I wish I could believe fixing the FIA's integrity problem (now potentially fatal to F1 as soon as early 2022) was as simple as replacing Michael Masi or even Jean Todt (the latter has happened due to a conveniently-timed election), but for reasons I won't go into here, I don't.

Replacement is viable if the EU breaks the monopoly, which is reasonably feasible if a court demonstrates what I have stated above - that the FIA was willing to endanger participants in its desire to be derelict in its duty (safety is the reason the EU has heretofore allowed the monopoly, per the 2001 settlement). This is because the F1 part could be split off the main element of the FIA and put under administration - not something the EU has done before, has never proposed before in regard to a sporting authority, but very much in its powers if it thinks lives are at stake and that doing so is the course most in the interests of those involved.

The FIA, of course, has the power to impose an independent supervisory body over itself any time it feels like it. It's just too drunk on power to realise the necessity of doing so in its situation.

(Note: I am assuming that whichever arrangement prevailed, the Liberty lease, thus access to the F1 name, would remain; to my knowledge, no legal cause exists for any judge to attempt to remove Liberty, only the FIA. I regard this as salvageable - provided 1) was done. Otherwise, the teams being allowed to walk and bill the FIA would leave Liberty with a whole bunch of nothing as well, since the teams would be in no way obliged to involve them in whatever - if anything - replaced F1 either).

2) Shorten the season - to a much more dramatic extent than I've previously advocated. It's clearly 8 races too long for the governing body, so the season needs to be shortened to 14 races or fewer (with no increase in intensity) until such time as the replacement governing body arrangments prove they can successfully govern for that length of season. Simply because all involved in NASCAR can do it does not mean F1 can, and at this point the governing body has shown it can't handle F1 for more than about 6 months of mostly-fortnightly races. No functional governing body, no sport.

(Note: once competence was demonstrated, a careful and gradual increase of championship length/intensity could be explored).

3) Ensure there is an effective route of protest is teams or drivers catch the FIA in misconduct in future.

Until these things happen, all other reforms are futile, and F1 will not be able to regain credibility. We've lost one championship entirely because of it (note that the pre-selection appears to have happened after Silverstone but before Spa, which is plenty long enough that both protagonists would have radically changed what they were doing in the presence of governance compatible with a sport in the legal sense of the word). I don't want to lose any more - nor do I want teams to walk out and bill the FIA, which as far as I can see, every single team, including Red Bull, is now entitled to do (after all, they signed up for a sport, not a pre-selection).

Assuming F1 manages to save itself by taking those three measures, here's what I think about the issues so far raised:

DRS - It wasn't needed in 2011, it's even more of an impediment to good racing now. Bin it.

Qualifying - There are two problems with qualifying: Q1 and queuing.

Q1: With two teams clearly behind everyone else at most races (but not always the same two), it tends to become clear most of who will be out of Q1 in the first 5 minutes. Single-lap and 12 minutes, with a minimum delta for out/in-laps in dry weather of best free-practice time +20% (otherwise the time is lost and the driver starts from the back of the grid; mechanical force-majueure will of course be accepted). Drivers whose lap was spoilt by a yellow/red flag may re-run, provided they return themselves to the pits. I'm inclined to also allow voluntarily aborting laps, provided drivers pit safely and don't swap to new tyres (drivers with punctures can swap to used tyres from practise).

Queueing: Q2's only problem is the queue. It's silly and I reckon the FP + 20% rule would help here. Oh, and a minimum speed: apart from Station/Loewes/Grand Hairpin and wet weather, no F1 car ever needs to do less than 30 mph on a green-flagged section of standard race track!

Q3 is a little different. You see, the powers-that-be are obsessed with sprints. If we cannot clear the obsession through the above measures, perhaps we can accommodate it by having a 3-lap sprint for Q3, rolling start from the pitlane in Q2 order?

This has the benefit of making the pole-sitter excel in a variety of disciplines, none of which acts as too much of a spoiler for Sunday.

(I don't like one-by-one as it favours whoever happens to be on track last on most occasions - barring someone messing up - sometimes encourages gaming the system and bored a lot of people. I'm happy with 12-lap, 1-hour qualifying but again, many people were bored).

Forced compound change (and indeed forced pitstop) is indeed silly. I liked Turkey and its "can they, can't they, make it on one tyre set" race. Drivers actually had to think, which is often something they don't need to do if forced to change compound by an artificial rule.

I think there are several possible solutions/partial-solutions to the cluster of problems around times when yellow flags aren't enough, and rmassart's is well worth testing. I think Safety Cars could be worked into a solution, but they don't have to be. More important is that there is a willingness to use the tools when there is appropriate amounts of danger, and that such occasions are handled well when deployed. Nobody needs another Canada 1973*.

(* - Short version for anyone who hasn't seen it: to quote F1 Magazine in 2003: "Canada 1973 was the first time a Safety Car was used in F1 and boy, did it show!" The race started and all was well until it rained. Eventually a collision between Jody Scheckter and Francois Cevert caused a Safety Car, a jolly Porsche 914 which former Canadian F1 driver Eppie Wietzes piloted. He eventually collected the car Race Control told him was leading... Howden Ganley's Iso Williams.

The only point on which everyone outside Race Control agreed on was that even Frank Williams did not think Howden was actually leading. Largely because he'd been lapped by this point. A large argument ensued. At one point, 5 teams were showing one of their drivers a pit board that stated they were P1, which was clearly impossible. A more credible order was eventually established, the race resumed and eventually Peter Revson was declared the winner. We'll never know who should have won (though Peter was at least a plausible candidate, unlike Howden).

Sadly, other high-level motorsport series seem to be heading towards "more spectacle", even when they discover this produces the opposite effect. (WEC, Formula E and W Series, I'm looking at you). There's a reason series with fewer cameras elect not to pull such stunts...

Don't impose rules one cannot enforce. By all means require entrants to give as much help as appropriate in doing the enforcement, but don't impose rules that aren't enforceable.

I think there should be at least 1 wheel in the white line at all times (standard international rule). All 4 wheels in the white line (standard British national rule) would also be acceptable. Both are easy to enforce with current tech if people wish to do so. I'm in favour of having 4 lights on the car which light up with infractions of "crossing the white line" (primary sensors for which should be in each wheel hub; the current centre line sensor plus corrective measurements can be used as a backup). Stewards would manually delete "false alarms" (such as times drivers were pushed off by rivals) and if all 4 are lit at a time, that would be a drive-through penalty. Stewards would be able to separately issue place-swapping instructions (with drive-through penalty if ignored), or flat issue penalties, for situations where an advantage was gained - regardless of the light situation. Hard to imagine Max shoving Lewis off the road if he believed he'd get a trip through the pitlane for his efforts.

Fixed rules of engagement matter. On several occasions, key rules were changed 3 times in the same weekend. Drivers respond to shifting incentives as best they can - especially if they sense they'll be given more leeway than others.

I've heard enough "car to car" radio in 2021 already (Leclerc's radio somehow picked up other driver-engineer combos in two separate FP3 sessions this year. Nobody involved was happy). I don't want drivers arguing with each other during races, it's tedious and would probably encourage bad behaviour that was inconsistently enforced (note that drivers don't have an option to turn the radio off, let alone mute specific voices, these days). A "hot button" from Race Control to all drivers would be a good move, and I'd cautiously accept Race Control -> driver with "acknowledge" button response (but no voice) enabled (the driver radios already have an "acknowledge" button that doesn't require voice). At this point, I'm inclined to take away all other Race Director communication with entrants, to avoid further backroom dealings...

Refuelling seems to be a concept that has become obsolete; the engines already run on less fuel for a whole race, plus margin for non-race elements, than some teams used for a single stint some circuits, and every year that becomes more the case.

The way to deal with Verstappen is to have consistent rules of engagement and strictly enforce them, on a strictly equal basis. Many configurations for those rules are possible, but the key for F1 is to pick one and stick to it no matter what. I think he deliberately acts in a manner that any sensible series would consider misconduct - but is only doing so due to responding to incentives F1 has provided for him (and him alone) to break rules. Max has been schooled in the F1 approach to rules, which as Eddie Jordan memorably said, goes "the set of rules in Formula 1 goes like this: you print them, and then you see how you can circumvent them, and you find a different way around the rules to make the car go quicker, hopefully, than somebody else, but always just about inside the rules and the law."

I think that if Max was given a solid, consistent set of rules, he'd dance on the line and occasionally fall over it, but no more often or severely than other F1 drivers with a high-risk approach.

I am against minimum stop times in F1 (unless it's literally for the amount of time stationary in the pits - that could be set to, say, 4-5 seconds without problems) because of the difficulties in accounting for the effects of others in the pitlane. I've seen a lot of unnecessary bother about this rule in series that have it (I'm thinking of Blancpain Endurance Series in particular).

I'd rather have races finish under Safety Car than forcing Race Control to either continue or red-flag - that's going to encourage too many restarts when it is unsafe to do so (simply due to knowing that waiting will cause fuel problems for the teams - no race director worth their salt wants to imitate the Formula E race in Valencia where half the grid ran out of fuel due to a badly-applied fuel removal rule, which is a different way of forcing teams to do more efficiency than originally advised by the rule-makers).

Multiple tyre manufacturers is fine, though I'm not sure how other tyre manufacturers would be convinced to join F1 until the governance proves itself again.

No fixed stewards. Too much scope for bias - that's how we ended up losing the "fixed steward" last time - the FIA deliberately picked one of the most reliable stewards they could find, with a reputation among the teams for fairness... ...and still that steward was caught being repeatedly biased against one particular title contender over the course of two seasons. Maximum changeover of stewards (it's not always been possible this year) is much more beneficial to ensuring fairness and justice. (We might even be suffering for having a fixed race director...)

Either don't unlap the lapped cars or unlap them all. Don't unlap some but not others. Probably needs to be a fixed rule of engagement one way or the other.

Red flag - repairs and tyre changes need to be allowed without penalty because otherwise, teams can and have sent drivers out without needed repairs and tyre changes, plus it disadvantages those who were going to swap them anyway (vs doing so under yellow flags/Safety Car or, indeed, under green-flag conditions).

I'm not a fan of the pole position point, but it has precedent and is compatible with a good ruleset.

Fastest lap for anyone is interesting but most likely, will only encourage pitting 2nd drivers in leading teams out of the points to sabotage a championship rival.

Tyre blankets have been attempted to be banned since 2008. I'm mystified as to how a successful ban has not yet been achieved despite considerable will in this direction from governing body and sole tyre supplier alike (every time they try, the proposed tyre turns out to be unusable in that format, thus getting vetoed on safety grounds).

Car-shrinking is a good idea, one I agree with, but difficult to achieve in practise. Worth investigating though.

I like wings, but please stop them from running beyond the wheels. (Maybe even stop them going in front of the wheels). Simplification is a good idea too.

If anyone wants my full opinion on the Masi call and why it was wrong, I'll put it in a separate post.
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