The fact that two of the most talented drivers in the world, both from Finland, stand no chance at all probably means Formula 1 needs changing, but what changes should be introduced?
The 2015 Australian Grand Prix was a bit of a damp squib, the two Mercedes rushing off into the distance leaving the rest of the drivers and teams to almost dawdle in their wake, and with Bernie Ecclestone already worried about how dull the sport has become this season has already begun to shape up as a bit of a borefest. Oh certainly it’ll be fun to see the gladiatorial battle between Rosberg and Hamilton but not all of us support them and watching a race you know your favored driver will lose is less than fun.
As it was Kimi Raikkonen was let down by his pit crew who forgot to attach his wheels properly and poor old Valtteri Bottas didn’t even start having injured himself in practice just by driving the car round the track. This meant people who like to bet on sport in Finland and had backed the drivers on sites like ComeOn! Sportsbook and its ilk were to be disappointed, and indeed some gambling sites now offer a “best of the rest” style book that ignores Mercedes entirely just to avoid this “foregone conclusion” issue.
A New Form Of Formula 1
• Arm the drivers, the cars and the crowd
• Landmines on the track
• Enforced drinking and driving
But Formula 1 can’t be made into a two-tier sport and remain the pinnacle of engineering and speed, and whilst other teams complain, drivers bemoan and some people mutter about quitting a sport that provides them no opportunities to be victorious, I think it’s about time we looked deeper into the problems of Formula 1 and instead of binning the whole sport introduced some new features and rule changes that would make it a more interesting spectacle and give other drivers a chance of winning.
Obviously any changes would have to be designed to make the sport more exciting, introducing elements of random chance that could level the playing field and return Formula 1 to being a racing season instead of a technically over-developed cure for insomnia that one can predict just be looking at the odds provided by Casino Websites UK Plc or whomever. So what should these changes be? Naturally I’ve a few suggestions but I’m not sure Bernie would approve, then again I’m not sure I approve of Bernie either.
1. Arming The Drivers
Shooting someone from a moving vehicle is by no means as easy as the movies make out, your aim is compromised by the vibration and movement, you have to accurately judge the angle and timing and you’re only ever a pot-hole away from blowing your own brains out by accident. Of course Formula 1 tracks are dead smooth but were each driver given a 9mm pistol and three rounds of ammunition the high-speed gunbattles between them would certainly make the sport more watchable.
2. Arming The Cars
Twin .50 caliber machine guns mounted on the front of a Formula 1 car would probably compromise the aerodynamics a little but it would certainly make overtaking a easier with drivers having to quickly learn how to power through the wreckage of their victims. Rockets too might be fun but I think we should draw the line there as guided munitions such as anti-tank missiles and smart bombs would make a mockery of the entire sport and we don’t want that, do we? Oh no.
3. Different Venues
At present Grand Prix are held on racing circuits with the obvious exception being the ever popular Monaco event that is held on the streets of the world’s favorite tax haven. Why not then hold all Grand Prix in cities? Indeed why not have the races at 8am on a Monday morning with the streets still open to every day traffic? Wouldn’t you like to see a Formula 1 car attempt to weave between buses and commuters as it tries to traverse the rush-hour traffic where you live? I know I would.
4. Mining The Track
Landmines litter the former battlefields of the world still injuring, maiming and killing people long after the conflict they were laid for are over, but randomly placing anti-tank mines under the track of a grand prix would introduce a random element of luck and chance that could easily prevent anyone getting bored watching. You would only need to see but one of the cars get vaporized in a hail of steel shrapnel and explosives to know this was a sport to keep an eye on.
5. Arming The Crowd
The paying public who have been forced to cough up ever larger amounts of money to go and see the sport live, or worse have seen their license or subscription fees wasted on television rights for the coverage, deserve to be more closely involved in the racing and a few lucky ticket winners being given the chance to shoot at the drivers with various weaponry as they whizz by the stands might just be what Formula 1 needs to keep it interesting. I’m gambling news of this facility would boost attendances massively.
6. The Alcohol Equalizer
With one team so much evidently faster than everyone else perhaps Formula 1 should introduce a system of handicapping whereby any driver pulling in for a pitstop well ahead of the rest of the field (like Mercedes this season) would be forced to drink a quantity of alcohol the size of which would be proportionate to their lead. Ten seconds ahead? Take a shot. A minute ahead? Swig a bottle. The same could be achieved with a random lucky-dip affair involving recreational drugs. Don’t you want to see Hamilton and Rosberg duke it out after having had to take LSD? I know I do.
7. The Half & Half Solution
Of course the addition of drugs, firearms and the general public might just be a little too radical for the posh-boy’s racing club so why not just start half the cars facing one way, and the other half facing the other so that they would be racing in opposite directions? The potential for a head on collision would be guaranteed to glue us to our screens and even Finnish gambling laws wouldn’t stop people betting on who would find themselves crumpled on an opponent’s car by lap 10.
These are all good suggestions but alas I doubt Bernie and his chums have either the bottle or insurance coverage to allow such manifestly obvious ideas to come to fruition in a sport that seems determined to make itself as boring as possible for as many people as possible whenever it possibly can. Formula 1 isn’t a dull sport, but it has been made so as safety has taken over from competition. This is a shame because anyone who enters a sport that involves driving a technically fragile car at over 200 mph probably doesn’t care much about their safety anyway.