Formula One has probably never had a less popular rule than Bernie Ecclestone’s plan to offer double points for the final race of this season.
It has come under intense criticism from fans – 96% of F1 Fanatic readers opposed it – journalists, team managers and drivers past and present. Few will be disappointed that Ecclestone – however grudgingly – now intends to drop it.
But how should Formula One structure its points system? It’s a subject which tends to provoke a diverse range of opinion.
The point of a points system
‘The DNA of Formula One’ is an increasingly well-worn phrase. But the means by which points are distributed certainly qualifies as one of the sport’s fundamental characteristics.
It translates drivers’ and teams’ performance in the races into a final championship position. If any F1 rules deserve to be etched in stone, surely it should be this?
But the points system has importance beyond deciding who wins the titles. The constructors’ championship is linked to F1’s prize money distribution – a major bone of contention at the moment. Last year an eight-figure sum turned on which driver finished in 13th place in one round.
Drivers’ contracts often contain clauses based on their performance and that of their teams, which are measured by what position they occupy at different stages of the championship.
A lot of power is therefore invested in who finishes where, and that is decided by the points system.
The points system also shapes our perception of how well each driver is performing. For example, here’s how Lewis Hamilton’s championship position would differ under the past four points systems given the same results over the first 18 races:
|Points system||Hamilton’s lead||Value of a win in final race||Notes|
|2014||17 points||50 points|
|2010-13||17 points||25 points|
|2003-09||1 point||10 points|
|1991-02||13 points||10 points||Hamilton would already be champion|
Data from the F1 Fanatic Points Calculator:
What should a points system do?
Formula One cannot resist tampering with its points system. Since 1950 the value of a win has increased from eight to twenty-five points. Sixth place used to be worthless – it’s now valued the same as a win was in the first year of the championship.
At different times Formula One has awarded points for fastest lap, only allowed drivers to count their scores from a limited number of rounds, and offered double points for the last round.
This tinkering has usually been done with some goal in mind. But instead of making constant reactive changes, Formula One should have a goal in mind – a sense of which priorities matter when it comes to setting a points system. Here’s a few examples of what a points system should do.
Decide a worthy champion driver and team
The first thing a points system is expected to do is crown the correct champion. Of course this is subjective, but there have been past occasions when the circumstances of a championship outcome has raised questions over whether the points system is fair.
In 1958 and 1987, the world champion scored three fewer wins during the course of the season than one of his rivals, leading some to suggest that winning was undervalued by the points system.
Contrarily, in 1988 some questioned whether winning races was over-valued compared to scoring consistently. In that season each driver could only count their best 11 results from the 16 rounds. The runner-up in the world championship scored 87 points but had to drop 18. Had all the results counted, the runner-up’s tally of 105 points would have beaten the actual champion’s 94.
It’s unlikely that a points system will always be able to avoid these kinds of criticisms. But deciding a worthy champion has to be the first and most important thing to get right.
Ranking the drivers and teams
Behind the champions, does anyone care who finishes second, third and so on? Does it even matter?
These two questions may have different answers. The contest for second place in a championship is unlikely to inspire much public interest. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter. When it comes to questions of contracts and prize money, it certainly does.
And it’s an area in which the current system arguably falls short. With points only being awarded to the top ten finishers, it’s become common to see some drivers and season end the year point-less.
As a fall-back, they are then ranked by who has the ‘most best results’, which was how last year Marussia took a lucrative tenth place in the championship by dint of having a single 13th place. This creates a ‘two-tier’ effect, where drivers who regularly finish near the front are rated based on the sum of their achievements throughout the year, and the rest simply need one good result to rank more highly.
The simpler a points system is, the easier it is for new fans to grasp. This is particularly important when it comes to motor racing because sports which take the form of one-versus-one competitions inevitably have simpler points systems.
A football fan watching his team knows they can only win, draw or lose, which in the English Premier League means three, one or zero points respectively. Motor racing points systems are almost inevitably going to be more complicated. In a football game there are three possible scoring combinations. Assuming Sunday’s race features 20 cars, there will be 2,432,902,008,176,640,000*.
There is therefore something to be said for not complicating the potential outcomes any further. The old ‘dropped scores’ system, for example, was a constant source of confusion – and continues to be, as this comment in response to a recent article demonstrates.
Keeping the championship alive
Should the points system be designed in such a way to ensure the championship is decided late in the year? This is a concern for television broadcasters, as they can expect to attract larger audiences the longer the championship remains in the balance.
This has become an increasing problem in recent years. More and more races have been added to the schedule – with a record-equalling 20 planned for next year – and mathematically the more races there are, the greater the chance the championship will be decided before the last race.
However skewing the points system too far in this manner can lead to accusations of unfairness. Double points for the final race of the season for this reason, but was strongly criticised by fans, which has to cast doubt on whether the anticipated gains in television audiences would actually happen if a down-to-the-wire finish were perceived to have been rigged.
NASCAR has taken the idea a stage further this year, introducing a complex knockout-style tournament at the end of the season, to ensure the title goes down to the final race every year. The results is a system which takes a lot of explaining.
In NASCAR, after the 26th race of the season, the 16 drivers who have won the most races go into contention for the championship (the 16th of these will be the points leader if they haven’t won any races). Each driver’s points total is re-set to 2000 points plus three points per win. After three more races the four lowest-scoring of these drivers are eliminated (unless they win one of those three races, in which case they continue). This process is repeated after two further sets of three races, leaving four drivers in contention for the championship at the final race.
NASCAR’s system guarantees every year will finish with drivers fighting for the championship at the final round. But as well as being very complicated, it leaves little room for the championship narrative to change from year to year, and makes the bulk of the early portion of the season irrelevant, particularly for drivers who score a couple of wins early on. It also still potentially undervalues winning – yesterday Ryan Newman came within two points of clinching the title without having won a single one of the season’s 36 races.
But given F1’s current obsession with gimmicks it would be no surprise if it devised its own version of this plan in the near future.
Example points systems
Before we get on to designing some points systems, let’s start by making a few assumptions. We are going to ensure each finishing position is awarded a different number of points, and to future-proof it we will assume that a race will feature 26 cars – the maximum currently permitted in Formula One.
Several other championships operate different points systems. For examples of these, and to see how the current F1 championship would look under them, see the Points Calculator:
The most basic way to fulfil this would be for each successive position to be worth one point more than the preceding place, like so:
By coincidence, this leaves a win still worth 25 points, as it is under the current system. The reduced gap between the different finishing positions also increases the possibility of the championship being decided later in the season.
This is the philosophy behind NASCAR’s points system, which gives 43 points to the winner down to one point for 43rd (and last) place. But significantly NASCAR does not have F1’s rule which prevents a driver from scoring if they fail to complete 90% of the race distance.
In F1 the high value given to lower finishing positions under this system could penalise a driver who wins a lot of races but also suffers several car failures.
So let’s see what happens if we progressively increase the gaps between each position.
In this points system the value of each place is worth one more than the preceding position:
This shows the limitation of even fairly simple mathematical systems – a win is now worth a rather cumbersome 325 points. And although the relative value of lower finishing positions has fallen, second place is still worth more than 92% of a win.
Let’s try to take the advantages of this system but smooth out the rough edges and restore the value of winning to something closer to what we have under the current system.
The following points system has simple round numbers for the top points positions, makes a win worth slightly more relative to second place than it is today, and gives points for every finisher barring the driver who comes in last on a full grid:
This seems like a good compromise. But I still think we can do better.
Let’s return to the original question – what should a points system do?
To me, the most important thing it should do is give the title of ‘champion’ to the most deserving driver. The definition of ‘champion’ is a person who “has defeated or surpassed all rivals in competition”. Therefore I believe it’s wrong to give the title to anyone other than the driver who wins the most races.
Having a points system is an obstacle to doing this, because it will always involve ascribing a value to a lower place finish which makes it comparable to a portion of a win. Giving each finishing position a points value is therefore always going to be arbitrary and open to criticism. Instead of trying to calculate how much finishing second, third and so on should be worth compared to winning, we should only consider the lower finishing positions when they become relevant.
Fortunately, F1’s existing rules and regulations already does exactly that in the event of a points tie between two drivers:
In the event of a tie the holder of the greatest number of second places will be taken into account and, if there is still the tie, the holder of the greatest number of third places and so on until a winner emerges.
FIA Sporting Regulations
For me, the solution to the question of which points system to use is not to have one at all. The true champion is the driver who wins the most races – so instead of giving points, we should use use the ‘tie breaker’ the FIA has already devised.
Every driver who finished a race would be ranked – behind the drivers with the fewest wins would be those with the most second places, then the most third places and so on. For example:
Of course under this system one driver or team who scored a lucky result may end up slightly higher in the championship order than they arguably deserve to. But that’s a sacrifice worth making because in exchange we will be certain that the champion will be the driver who’s done the most winning.
This system also does nothing to increase the chance of the championship being decided later in the year. I don’t care about that because I know whether the championship is decided or not is no impediment to great racing – look at the 2005 Japanese Grand Prix for an example.
And I know that by weighting the points system to make sure that the championship is decided at the last race every year will only make the spectacle of motor racing increasingly derivative and predictable. It’s better to let it happen naturally.
If there must be a points system, I think the ‘stepped’ one above offers some worthwhile improvements over the current system. And of course the nonsense of double points deserves a place in the dustbin of history.
But I say let’s make it simple. The champion should be the driver who wins the most races. End of story.
*i.e. 20 factorial, which is over 2.4 quintillion.
Over to you
What should F1’s points system set out to achieve? Pick which criteria matter most to you.
What are the most important things F1's points system should do?
- Be clear and simple to understand (7%)
- Award the same number of points per round (14%)
- Weight the points towards deciding the title at the final race (1%)
- Rank all the drivers and teams (30%)
- Decide a worthy champion driver and team (49%)
Total Voters: 333
How would you change F1’s points system? Would a NASCAR-style elimination system be an improvement? Have your say in the comments.
An F1 Fanatic account is required in order to vote. If you do not have one, register an account here or read more about registering here. When this poll is closed the result will be displayed in stead of the voting form.
2014 F1 season
- Fear of rules change led Mercedes to run dominant 2014 engine in “idle mode”
- Bianchi’s fight for life ends nine months after Japanese Grand Prix crash
- Mercedes’ Bahrain battle “too dangerous” – Warwick
- Streiff’s comments on Bianchi crash investigation prompts legal action from FIA
- Is stewarding improving? Analysing 2014’s penalties
Images © Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Honda, IndyCar, NASCAR/Getty, FIA
220 comments on “How to design a better points system for Formula One”
17th November 2014, 11:57
The stepped example needs fixing; 7th currently gets 8 more points than 6th :)
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 12:05
@raceprouk Sorry, typo!
17th November 2014, 13:32
so @keithcollantine you are essentially agreeing with bernies medal idea that got completley slated iirc?
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 16:49
@mike-e I can’t remember exactly what Ecclestone’s proposal was off the top of my head, but wasn’t it just that only top three finishes would count?
What I suggest would take account of all finishing positions, not just the top three. I wrote about this back in 2006, two years before Ecclestone’s ‘gold medals’ suggestion.
I think this also highlights another point of the article – that Ecclestone doesn’t have a plan for things like the points system, he just reacts to things. Double points was a reaction to the poor television figures last year. His medals plan a few years earlier would likely have had the opposite effect, showing the lack of consistency in his thinking.
17th November 2014, 18:34
I’m not sure Bernie ever explained what would be done with drivers finishing below third in his system, but applying the existing tie break rules seems reasonable enough — they’d all be tied on 0-0-0 medals. This would effectively be a system without any points at all, similar to the one you suggested.
I dislike the idea, as it puts too much value on having one good race. Does anyone really think Magnussen has outperformed Button this year, just because of his P2 at Australia?
Vishal Trivedi (@nomadindian)
18th November 2014, 9:33
I agree, I too think Keith’s suggestion is similar to Bernie’s idea of medals, with most Gold medals deciding the winner…
Most wins could encourage some/midfield teams to focus on just a few races and simply make up the numbers in others..
I for one feel a driver who has been scoring most consistently should win, even if he has a couple less wins then some one else…
I think the current points system is fine enough… just do away with the Double points…
17th November 2014, 18:41
I like the finishing position method, one way of eliminating fluke results would be to disregard each drivers best score.
18th November 2014, 7:27
In my opinion that’s unnecessary complication. “Fluke results” are part of the sport and I don’t see why we should be “eliminating” them.
17th November 2014, 21:36
Bernie has a lot of consistency in his thinking, however limited it is: He always tries to maximize the amount of money he can squeeze out of F1. Ecclestone would try to turn F1 into a media-show like Wrestling, if he thought it would turn out more money.
17th November 2014, 21:40
@keithcollantine ok yeah that makes much more sense now. The table didnt pop up the first time I read it. sounds like a pretty decent solution, so by f1 logic it will never happen.
17th November 2014, 21:53
@keithcollantine also tho, saying that, the medal system would have relied on the tie breaker rule for the rest of the places surely? so essentially, it would have been the same right?
18th November 2014, 15:20
“[…] showing the lack of consistency in his thinking.”
There’s also a lack of consistency in your article @keithcollantine :P
In the beginning you say:
“When it comes to questions of contracts and prize money, it certainly does.
And it’s an area in which the current system arguably falls short. With points only being awarded to the top ten finishers, it’s become common to see some drivers and season end the year point-less.
As a fall-back, they are then ranked by who has the ‘most best results’, which was how last year Marussia took a lucrative tenth place in the championship by dint of having a single 13th place.”
This is the reason for showing us different point systems where points are awarded until the very last driver (if I understand it correctly). You point out that the ‘most best results’ is not really fair because one good result is enough to compensate a bad season.
But at the end, you say we should use this ‘most best results’ rule because “the true champion is the driver who wins the most races”.
It isn’t clear too me why you say that “it’s an area in which the current system arguably falls short” in the beginning and at the end you argue for extending this rule to the entire field and dropping the points system.
The ‘most best results’ rule is the same as the ‘driver who wins the most races’ rule (again, if I understood this right).
17th November 2014, 16:26
The stepped system can be smoothed out as following with an up-adjustment for winning the race.
Here is the fairest stepped system I would like to see implemented from awarding points to finishing positions in a race from last (26th) place to first (1st) with a 1.13 step factor:
0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 19, 22, 25, 29, 33, 38, 43, 49, 56, 64, 73, 83, 94
and with up-adjusted winner points:
0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 19, 22, 25, 29, 33, 38, 43, 49, 56, 64, 73, 83, 100
Car reliability is alway awarded fairly by determining the finishing position based on who lasts longer before failure so the failure order is important too.
If less or more than 26 cars start a race, still award finishing positions as if there were 26.
Max Jacobson (@vettel1)
17th November 2014, 17:51
I quite like this proposal, though I was wondering if it is really necessary to have points down to 26th, since you can pretty much always expect some retirements. Points to 20th say may be adequate, and shouldn’t skew the results at the lower end too drastically.
I have to say that I’m not a fan of the medal system however. Consistency should be rewarded, and having say 5 wins but no second places to me is less impressive than having 4 wins and 4 second places. That’s why I prefer points systems.
I do not believe that points make it unduly complex, either. The broadcasters make a big deal out of going through the permutations anyway so I don’t see why a viewer would struggle to grasp the situation at the crucial stage.
17th November 2014, 21:19
I like the concept of only 10 cars being eligible for points, it makes ‘getting into the points’ valuable. I agree that a win is undervalued, but I believe that the higher the numbers, the harder it is to calculate what will happen after the race. 25 points for a win is the upper limit for me here. A good system would be:
A win would be worth more than twice as much a a third place, handsomely rewarding winning. However, it would still encourage racing for the lower positions of the top 10, ensuring the best of both worlds.
John H (@john-h)
17th November 2014, 23:59
Agreed. This points system would be a good one.
18th November 2014, 6:23
I like Keith’s proposal with 100, 70, 50. Those are easier for me to think about than 25, 17 or whatever. The odd numbers only affect the low order positions so they aren’t as important.
I could also be convinced that a 2nd place should only be worth 60. Or even 50.
I’d also be tempted to add a discard-lowest-result system to that, perhaps one for the first half of the season and one for the second. Just to help divert the huge swing effect of random DNFs, and encourage consistency in the whole year.
18th November 2014, 7:43
It’s slightly simpler and the numbers are smaller. This system it’s incremental from 10th to 4th place and stepped only for the top 3. Also, “twenty-twelve-nine” is fairly easy to remember.
And if we go with the idea of awarding points to the whole grid, then I’d suggest something like:
Again, only the top 3 places are stepped.
19th November 2014, 0:55
A long time ago, when changing to this points system I proposed this, which is somewhat simmilar:
Which is what we had up to 2009, but with the addition of 20 and 14 for 1st and second. It’s easy to remember, and it’s in the middle of 10-6-4 and 10-8-6. Divide it by 2, and you get 10-7-5. Today, 10-point-per-win, it’d be 10-7.2-0.48, which is about the same, but messes everything up to remember the values.
Don’t like 2nd position for having 70% of a win? brind it down to 13 or 12.
The thing is I agree with Keith somehow, a win should be worth a lot more than a second place. The best way to achieve this with a points system, is in an exponential law-like, a place behind is worth, way 70% of the preceeding.
But that’s not practical, because of non-integer points.
18th November 2014, 11:05
We already have a decent stepped point system, the answer is “MotoGP”. For 22-26 cars, MotoGP point system is perfect.
1st 25 points
2nd 20 points
3rd 16 points
4th 13 points
5th 11 points
6th 10 points
7th 9 points
8th 8 points
9th 7 points
10th 6 points
11th 5 points
12th 4 points
13th 3 points
14th 2 points
15th 1 point
I would like to see MotoGP Point system in the points calculator and also compare Lewis and Nico points with Marc Marquez :-) as the motogp guys ran 18 races, and it’s the same for F1 so far until Brazil.
18th November 2014, 11:29
Or if one wants to award only top 10 cars instead of 15, then
20, 16, 13, 11, 9, 7, 5, 3, 2, 1 is ideal
18th November 2014, 15:06
I calculated according to MotoGP point system
LH – 342 points
NR – 338 points
It’s close enough,
M.Marquez (motoGP champion with same no. 18 races) – 362
This shows how much competitive Merc were with both cars.
I also don’t believe a driver who won most races should win the championship in general case.
But this is specific case with equal opportunity to fight except for the “spa controversy”, but c’mon it was expected both team-mates will collide at-least once in this season with such competitiveness and dominance, so I’m surprised it only happened once, so they kept it clean since then.
Although I was rooting for HAM almost whole season, I just want to become neutral and enjoy the drama in final race.
I just don’t want both drivers on podium in Abu Dhabi, it’ll be horrible to see both reactions (imagine the situaton NR -1 , LH-3 on podium!). Get decided by reliability without double points coming into play, but then media and fans will get chance to create conspiracy theories about German/British thing and what not from the team! In any case (double points or failure) it’s messed up situation. Unless one of them crash due to mistake which is OK (as the driver himself will throw away championship).
From the whole season I’ve watched, Lewis has got this already. (Nico didn’t capitalize when he had chances – Bahrain was one of them leaving aside the controversy of spa)
But his father Keke Rosberg also got a championship in 1982 with only single win, whereas others had more. So, you never know what’ll happen – if the son gets his father’s LUCK!
25th May 2016, 19:44
There is no respectable F1 Scoring System rather than 10-6-4-3-2-1 awarded to the only the fastest six finishers , with having 2nd place worth only 60% of a Win , While 3rd place only 66% of 2nd place & only 40% of The Winner
, This gives the race the heat it needs , competition for the win , more overtaking attempts with more difficulty , today F1 becoming look like an Endurance Rally rather than Speedracing , few & easy overtakes , no fight spirit , no ambitions , no entertainment , that makes F1 alot more boring (Watch the GPs every season to recognize what I mean) .
That Scoring system is the most fair point system & closest to the nature of any competition depends on points …. to determine the best .
& the best in all speed racing is the most winner in most cases
17th November 2014, 11:59
One questoin: Why do people need a championship not to be decided to watch a motor race?
What’s up with that? My indicator of a good season is: Are most of the races memorable, interesting and exciting?
If every place in both championships were decided four races before the end of a season, I would still watch the rest if the racing had been good all year.
And vice versa: if every plce was still up in the air for the final race and we had had a year full of Sochi’s, I probably wouldn’t watch, and just check the results?
Surely I can’t be the only one to enjoy each race for the racing? The championships are secondary to that, although they are still fascinating and briliant and I love the drama, if they didn’t even exist, I’d still watch F1!!
I watch WEC for goodness sake, and I haven’t got a clue who is winning in each category there. I just like to watch Aston Martins trailing ferraris for 15 laps with les than a card length between them. Top racing is it’s own reqard I think.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 12:06
I have a lot of sympathy with this point of view. I’ve seen great races with no championship at stake (Suzuka 2005 again) and close championship fights with few memorable races (2007 springs to mind).
17th November 2014, 13:34
I have a question for you, keith. Was Brasil 2008 a memorable race in your opinion?
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 16:51
@for-unlawful-carnal-knowledge Of course I do – your point obviously being that this was a race which was largely exciting because of the championship situation. Likewise Brazil 2012. But I’m not saying these things are mutually exclusive.
18th November 2014, 14:14
I agree. There’s nothing much to say really except that, if Brasil 2007 and 2008 were midseason races, i would not rate them a 9 or 10 ,but 7.
That’s my view
18th November 2014, 14:27
Let me add one more thing. Suzuka 2005 was probably the best race I saw in my 30 years of watching F1. Perhaps reversing the grid wouldn’t be such a bad idea? Of course there would be, let’s say, half the race points for the first 10 qualifiers.
It would be pretty interesting in the first few laps, I think.
17th November 2014, 12:09
The problem isn’t with the dedicated fans, who probably don’t really mind the 2002(?) season being decided in July(!); the problem is the greater mass of casual fans, who are only interested in who’s winning. And if those fans see that someone has won, they don’t bother with any more races until the following year.
17th November 2014, 12:09
There should have been a ‘for example’ in that post… oh well, too late now :)
17th November 2014, 12:12
In the old days, when F1 was still a sport and received little of the corporate influence it now gets from the teams, sponsors, and the commercial rights holder, things were as you described. Winning individual races was the most important thing. The driver’s and constructor’s championships were just extras. Nowadays, the very survival of drivers and teams depends on the seasonal results, due to commercial factors that weren’t there in the beginning.
Here’s an idea: award bonus money to teams and drivers after every race! The way it was at the beginning of motorsport. Before it became corrupted.
17th November 2014, 12:19
Say what you say, 2014 is a solid season.
17th November 2014, 23:55
I love a dead rubber. It’s great being able to watch everyone do whatever they like without a title right to worry about.
17th November 2014, 12:01
Nascar systems requires a PhD in Points System! F1 should avoid complications and go for a simple system without any gimmicky variation.
Heskin Radiophonic (@heskin-radiophonic)
17th November 2014, 12:03
I’ve often thought it should be a reverse incremental system – if you finish first you get one point, two points for second, nineteen points for nineteenth etc. The driver with the lowest score at the end of the season wins the title.
17th November 2014, 12:07
What about DNF’s? They’re either too massively penalised under this system if they are the heaviest points, 20 say, or if it’s a 0, then it offers teams a mechanism to skew results if a car is running down in the high points.
Steve Webb (@s-w-webb1)
17th November 2014, 12:50
This is how sailing races are scored using a low point scoring system.
In order to promote winning, often first place is given 0.75 points, second 2 and third 3, so on a so forth. This system helps decide if there is a tie break and weights it towards the person with the most wins.
Agreed with your point for the massive penalty for DNF’ing (which in sailing is usually the number of competitors plus 1). In order to get round this, discards are offered, usually 1 discard per 4 races.
It’s not a faultless system and it requires for points to be awarded the full length of the field. It would get around the issue with teams retiring cars early as they aren’t in the points and would promote racing throughout the field.
17th November 2014, 12:07
Question: why do we need to award points at all? Simply collate the placings. The one who wins most races wins the title (thus rewarding winning races most of all). If there is a draw the one with most second places wins. Etc. This is repeated down the grid and you get a final read out based on precisely where people finished in the season’s races. No complex maths needed. And let’s bear in mind that when you try to reward this or that in a points scoring system all you do is skew the final outcome in one way or another. Keep it simple you say. Well it can’t be any simpler than this.
18th November 2014, 8:51
That is Keith’s favoured solution as outlined above.
It’s worth looking at how it might have effected past results. In general, it doesn’t massively alter what happened, but I’ve listed some of the more noteworthy changes, and I have to say I’m not unhappy with them at all…
Moss would have won in 1958, rather than coming 3rd – and similarly Clark would have won in 1964 and 1967
Denny Hulme would have dropped from 4th to 7th in 1970
Ronnie Peterson would have come 7th rather than 2nd in 1971 (but would have beaten Fittipaldi to 2nd in 1973, and jumped from 5th up to 2nd in 1974).
Andretti would have won the championship in 1977 (rather than finishing 3rd); ditto Alan Jones is 1979.
Prost would have jumped from 5th up to 2nd in 1981
Rosberg would have gone from 1st down to 6th in 1982 (with Pironi moving up to win)
Prost would have beaten Piquet in 1983, and Lauda in 1984 – but lost to Mansell in 1986, with Mansell winning again over Piquet in 1987.
Senna would, of course, have beaten Prost in 1989
Kimi would have fallen from 2nd to 5th in 2003, but jumped from 7th to 3rd in 2004
Massa would have beaten Hamilton in 2008 (except, of course, for Spa… :-), and Hamilton would have gone from 4th to 2nd in 2012
17th November 2014, 12:11
For me, there are some key elements that need to be sorted in the points system.
Firstly, I think all finishers need to score points. That allows for the smaller teams to have their seasons decided by their finishes instead of being in the right place at the right time in a freak race.
Next, all races need to be weighted the same. Winning the first race should mean the same as winning the last one.
Finally, the points need to be designed with enough of a step between positions to encourage teams to push on instead of holding position.
17th November 2014, 16:33
Exactly and a step of a factor of 13% increase seems to produce a nice system with the winner getting extra 7% to 20% increase with even non-finishers awarded points based on how long they lasted.
0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 19, 22, 25, 29, 33, 38, 43, 49, 56, 64, 73, 83, 100
17th November 2014, 19:34
I like the current system(without Abu Double) and the 03-09 version.
I think there should be no allowance for points past tenth. If there were, teams would then have every motivation to keep cars on track that are physically wounded or have a mechanical ailment, trying to grab that 1 or 2 more points that might prove crucial for the championship. That puts the driver, other drivers, marshals, and spectators at risk for dangerous conditions by continuing to operate these slower cars on track. This was and still is a problem for NASCAR (Indycar acknowledges this situation a little bit with their points scheme – same points for the last 9 finishers, but it’s not a far enough step for me). Limiting points to the upper half keeps teams from being tempted to take that risk.
For teams that have not scored points, we already have a way to track their place in the standings even though the ultimate result is still zero. For those of us that love the back half of the grid, we know the score anyway and new fans that may be attracted to these teams also can quickly figure out what is going on.
17th November 2014, 20:40
@reg – Good point about damaged cars driving around. It would be something they’d have to control somehow.
I’m one of those who love the back half of the grid and that’s exactly why I suggested what I did. I hate the fact that Marussia could beat Caterham at every single race but still lose the position because of a first lap pile up or some freak weather… When so much is riding on the position they end up in, it just feels they should earn their position by consistency and pace like the rest of the teams do rather than by being lucky…
17th November 2014, 20:08
I personally dislike the idea of the person coming last scoring more than 1 point.
17th November 2014, 12:13
Interesting read, for me I don’t think it need tinkering with any further. A point for pole and fastest lap are the only things I’d possibly add as both are an achievement of some kind. I think most would agree you’d want the drivers championship to go to the last round or close, and we’ve seen that with the points system more often than not.
17th November 2014, 12:15
While I see where you are coming from @keithcollantine, I disagree with your conclusion.
Consistency and reliability are just as important in motorsports as overall speed. If drivers are purely ranked using the tie-breaker rules, someone who finished 2nd in every race would be outranked by someone who scored a single lucky win, while finishing low down the pecking order in the rest of the races. This is unacceptable, and they certainly wouldn’t deserve that.
I believe the current system is fine (excluding the double-points abomination), except for the fact that the lower places score no points. It seems to be roughly correct in ratios. I would suggest that it needs, at most, a little tweaking.
Personally, I think simplicity is overrated in motorsport. It is such a complex sport that nothing will every be simple.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 12:22
I agree completely. But that’s extremely unlikely to happen. I’m struggling to think of an example of something like this ever happening in F1.
Whereas the opposite scenario where a driver who wins a lot of races gets pipped by someone who’s won far fewer but picked up a lot of second and third places, perhaps by dint of having the good fortune to drive a more reliable car, is much more likely to happen.
I think it makes more sense to structure the championship in a way that guards against the undesirable and likely scenario I describe than the undesirable but unlikely scenario you describe.
Perhaps ‘simplicity’ isn’t the best word – ‘accessibility’ is maybe more what I was driving at. Why makes things unnecessarily difficult to follow?
17th November 2014, 12:45
I guess it depends on how you view the championship.
The current system ranks the driver and car/team as one in the WDC. This is fair and right, in my view. The driver will get the benefit of a faster car, allowing him to win more. But if he is hit by car trouble, he looses out. Similarly, the driver who consistently scores well, but never wins, will often be hampered by a slower car. As it is impossible to separate the 2, this needs to be reflected in the scoring system.
If the WDC & WCC were decided using the tie-break system, I am fairly certain we would see some teams pushing their rigs to the extreme, trying to score more high-placed finishes. There would be much less of a penalty for DNFs, and we would see more clouds of black smoke, especially from the mid-field and lower. They would game the system. This means it would become more likely for positions to be decided in the “unlikely” scenario you describe.
This is the issue that seems to be lost at times. We could look back over all the seasons so far, and determine that very few would be affected by double points. However, altering the scoring system would alter the way the teams approach the championship.
I believe using the tie-break would adversely affect the race. Some would disagree, saying they would prefer to see people battling tooth and nail, blowing up their engine, trying to get that 1 extra place for an extra position in the championship.
I certainly don’t think the WCC should be judged in this manner. Maybe using it for WDC only would be possible, as the WCC would hold manufacturers in check to some extent. This may be a good compromise, but I still don’t like it.
17th November 2014, 16:45
I see your point @drmouse, but I have to say, I wouldn’t actually mind seeing more teams going for a glory run that ends in smoke. Sure, it twists ‘to finish first, you first have to finish’ a bit, but for most drivers I think it would be much more enjoyable than trundling about hoping those ahead might make a mistake or have a problem, which is what consistency rewards (WEC is different, there you have to go x hours – that is main goal still, getting the furthers while doing that is 2nd …)
17th November 2014, 19:04
Hm @drmouse, I do agree with you and @fer-no65 (for example) that rewarding consistency and reliability as well should be a target of the points system in F1.
On the other hand, the picture you paint with cars going for win or bin does feel like imminently more thrilling for someone watching the race as @bosyber points out. Its a bit like how we view someone who wins a grand slam, even though they are below the top 10 in the ATP ranking.
In the end, I agree with those that this is what we have a championship for – to reward season long effort. And for race cars, reliability is just (or at least almost) as important as being fast, as much as its important for a driver to sometimes think before doing a risky move.
I do think that the win should be rewarded that little bit more than it is currently. And the system should be easy enough to follow without too much study.
Lets propose something completely different – we make a system where money is the prize instead of points – lets say you have to still run at least 90% (or maybe 70% for half?) to be classified. And then we start with a million or 3 for winning, getting 2,1 for second and 1,5 for 3rd, then from there down to the last finisher.
That would have the additional benefit of cleaning up the whole debate over pay driver / fast driver as well as all the murky agreements and behind closed curtains of who actually gets what!
17th November 2014, 12:50
Heidfield would have been lower than Vettel when it is clear Heidfield was much more consistent.. in fact almost double the points of vettel… which would have been true in most systems anyway….
The current system and the 2003-2009 actually get very close to what you propose and most of the time the one that has more wins actually wins… but then again, it needs to be also about consistency, a smarter drive will be a better one, same as in football or any other sport… Statistically speaking one extraordinary win has no value in the ranking of anything… one good song doesn’t make a band better, one good investment doesn’t make a bank better and so on. The best are the best because they always are.
Leonardo A. de Souza (@leonardo-antunes)
17th November 2014, 12:53
Fisichella had a lucky win in Interlagos in 2003 only to score one more time in the rest of the season plus 2 other races where he finished 10th when that position gave 1 point.
Using the Tie-break rule he would finish the season in 8th place instead of 12th but Jordan (that finished 9th) would be 5th tied with Renault with 1 win, losing 4th for Renault because of a 2nd place, so if Renault finished the season without a victory Jordan would be 4th in the constructor instead of Renault that had a much better car and were way more competitive than Jordan trough the season.
Fer no.65 (@fer-no65)
17th November 2014, 13:44
@keithcollantine well, in 2012 Maldonado won a race and hardly scored the rest of the year
I really don’t agree on the most wins makes a champion. I prefer a points system, where every place has a prize and we don’t need to wait until the very last day of the season to see how good everyone’s chances are.
Fer no.65 (@fer-no65)
17th November 2014, 13:49
@keithcollantine Also, such a system (wins per year) would make it easier for the guy with the fastest car. In 2003 Kimi almost won the championship after winning just 1 race. In 2012, Alonso came close with 3 to Seb’s 5. And Alonso would have been a worthy champion that year.
17th November 2014, 13:56
Indeed, it would almost rule out a possible better driver in inferior machinery winning over two teammates that are not so good but have a faster (and possibly more unreliable car), who have really bad days in between wins. But as Keith said, no system will be complete enough to be deemed fair in every possible scenario.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 16:55
But he didn’t win the championship – this is my point.
No disrespect to him, but I’m glad we didn’t have a situation where one driver with a single win won the title instead of Michael Schumacher with six.
Surely you agree Schumacher was closer to achieving the ‘champion’ definition of “one who has defeated or surpassed all rivals in competition” than Raikkonen, and therefore more deserving?
17th November 2014, 17:07
In 2003, the Ferrari was both faster and more reliable than the McLaren. Therefore, Kimi would have been a very, very worthy champion had he managed to pull it off (and he would have, if MSC wasn’t pushed back on the track in Nurburgring). Whether Schumi had 6 wins as opposed to Kimi’s 1 makes no difference.
Wins are not the most important thing in deciding a champion. Season consistency is.
Fer no.65 (@fer-no65)
17th November 2014, 17:40
@keithcollantine TBH, no. I don’t rate Schumi’s season above Kimi’s in every way. He had a faster and more reliable car than Kimi and yet he almost lost it.
My point is that consistency also has to play part. Oterhwise, mistakes are forgotten because you won a good number of races too. Wins are good in their own right, and mean a lot in terms of championships (ties for instance), but I’d rather have someone that finished every race in the podium as champion than someone that won plenty of races and retired from the rest of them.
Kinda like 2005. Kimi could’ve finished the season with more wins than Alonso and he’d not have been a more deserving champion than Fernando.
Fer no.65 (@fer-no65)
17th November 2014, 17:47
@keithcollantine Also, in 1982 for instance. Keke won 1 race, and the next 5 guys behind him in the championship won 2 races each… and he could’ve won the championship without a single win because of his consistency.
I think the definition of a champion must not be taken literally. Afterall, you have that in every single other championship. From tennis (anyone can be number 1, regardless of the number of tournaments won during the year), football (doesn’t matter if you are the one with the most wins during a season), rugby, whichever kind of sport that doesn’t rely on just 1 event (like an Olympics).
17th November 2014, 14:42
Ranking drivers by number of wins is a system for drivers who have a “win it or wreck it”-attitude. I never liked those, especially since they also have a tendency to wreck other drivers races as well.
Also, I really struggle to see any reason for changing the current points system (again), apart from doing away with the double points, of course. If it has to be any of those mentioned in the article, I´d go with the triangular, maybe slightly more skewed for the top-3-positions.
Oh, and considering Nascar: I like and watch Nascar, it´s entertaining, but it´s not much closer to being a sport than Wrestling is. F1 is and should be very different, as I want F1 to be a sport, not a show. It should remain possible to consider it as something serious.
Arkady English (@arkady)
17th November 2014, 17:24
> I agree completely. But that’s extremely unlikely to happen. I’m struggling to think of an example of something like this ever happening in F1.
It’s not going to decide championship winners, but some drivers would make considerable jumps.
Paster Maldonado in 2012 would go from 15th to 8th, and in 2013 Nico Rosberg would go from 6th to 3rd. Rubens Barichello in 2003 would have jumped from 4th to 2nd. Petrov and Heidfeld both get kicked way up the field in 2011, Gerhard Berger loses a lot of places in 1990.
There are not insignificant changes.
17th November 2014, 20:57
Panis in Monaco?
17th November 2014, 20:58
That’s right. The guy that keeps coming second certainly is NOT championship material. He doesn’t deserve to be champion! As the definition goes, a champion is one who defeats others.
17th November 2014, 22:26
I side with @drmouse and against @keithcollantine on this, and here’s why.
I think that promoting a Most Wins = Champion would encourage a Team Brawn situation where teams will throw all their development money at a dubious, tricky, ingenious, and/or risky solution with the hopes that it will provide them a cushion to ride the rest of the season. Button and Brawn were able to do it successfully under the current-ish points system. Given the system put forth by @keithcollantine, all one driver has to do is win 6-8 races and in any competitive year, he has locked up the championship.
I’m not saying that just anyone can jump the whole field and do that. I understand the circumstances with tons of pre-season Honda money and Brawn’s experience, etc. But even if a team is unable to jump the field (a la Brawn, Mercedes, Ferrari in early 2000, Red Bull in recent years) early, this sort of championship scheme could easily lead to teams getting it wrong, getting their trick device banned, or getting disqualified from some races. Justice is fine and all, but that could lead to teams dropping out because their risk didn’t pay off. A situation most of us want to avoid.
Another reason I don’t support such a championship scheme, is that it benefits top teams and drivers to abandon races they are doing poorly at and then turn up the engines in races where they are doing well. This is destined to lead to fewer great races, in my opinion.
Lastly, and in continuation of the point above, if FIA/F1 cares about reliability, keeping costs down, etc, then the Most Wins plan is not the best option. Under the current system, teams and drivers are not vastly benefited by flouting the rules on numbers of engines. You can burn through as many as you want so long as you get a new one on a “bad for the team” race weekend. If the FIA decides it no longer cares about reliability and costs then this will be a non-issue, but everything else above remains.
All that said, @keithcollantine, I do like that you have explored various options and appreciate the opinion pieces regardless of whether I agree or not.
17th November 2014, 22:28
should say, “…early 2000s…”
17th November 2014, 22:30
also should read.. “Under the current system, teams and drivers are not vastly benefited by flouting the rules on numbers of engines. **But under the Most Wins system, you could** burn through as many as you want so long as you get a new one on a “bad for the team” race weekend.”
18th November 2014, 8:28
it benefits top teams and drivers to abandon races they are doing poorly at and then turn up the engines in races where they are doing well
I hadn’t even thought of that, but you are right.
If the team determine their driver will only score, say, 6th, but they have lots of wins & 2nd places, they would be likely to abandon the race. Why put miles on an engine with no benefit?
Currently, as long as they are going to finish in the top 10, it is worth completing the race.
This is where points down to the last completing competitor helps, too. Currently, a driver from a top team running in 18th near the end may as well retire. If he were to score even a few points, it is still worth completing the race, as those could be the difference between places in the championship.
18th November 2014, 8:29
Oops, the blockquote didn’t work there.
We need an edit feature on here!
17th November 2014, 12:15
To be perfectly honest I don’t think there’s much wrong with what we have got, Wins are still important but so is consistency & I think what we have is a nice balance.
If I had to change anything I would however award points for every position so that positions 11th down actually mean something & where the constructors championship for those last few teams better reflects there season as a whole.
Right now if you fail to score a point all you need is 1 result in a race with high attrition & that could put you ahead of your rivals in the championships even if your car over the season was not as good as your rivals.
17th November 2014, 13:43
I agree @stefmeister, maybe give 25, 20 & 18 points for the top 3 then 17 – 1 points for the others (assuming we have 20 cars on the grid).
Fer no.65 (@fer-no65)
17th November 2014, 13:44
Iestyn Davies (@fastiesty)
17th November 2014, 15:57
If we had 26 cars with a fairer prize money distribution, I could see points to 15th (25, 20, 16, 13, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1) working well. I think this would be the next logical extension of the points system, with 45 for a 1-2, and a consistent points increase (+1, 2, 3, 4, 5) for the top 5 places. But with 18 cars, points to 10th is the first time that more than half the field gets points in every race.
PS. This sounds ridiculous, but what about cumulative ‘time elapsed’ in every race, with retirements scoring the same as the last place finisher? Or, their average speed to that point, scored to the end? This usually improves as fuel loads come down, so a retirement still hits hard, and there might need to be something to safeguard against a late shower (last place finisher).
Under this system, the champion has literally completed the season faster than his rivals :D.
Iestyn Davies (@fastiesty)
17th November 2014, 16:01
@stefmeister @fer-no65 @beneboy For this year, that would give Nico more points for consistent 2nd places, but also more points for Lewis’ comeback drives to 3rd and 2nd place.
Further dissuasion of retirements however, might also lead to more Perez-Malaysia situations (i.e. hold station for 20 points). But, at the same time, at the odd place like Monaco, we might see some points not being awarded.
Iestyn Davies (@fastiesty)
17th November 2014, 16:13
Not to mention, as the amount of retirements decrease, a natural inflation in the points system is valid, which has the side-effect of increasing the points for a win. It does affect the record books, but so does many older races being ‘non-championship’.. thus leaving us with a win count already favouring recent times.
Scoring most of the finishing drivers is thus a more valid approach than points for all runners, historically, along with scoring all finishers and not retirements, even under a ‘points for all’ system. But, I’ve raced with both systems, and originally it took me a while to get used to points only for finishing (50% distance in my case) under the latter.
17th November 2014, 12:17
I think it’s better if points don’t go all the way down to last place. “Getting a point” can be a good goal, and it simplifies the issue of big numbers being hard to work with.
I also think a good drive should be recognised in the season summary number even if it doesn’t end in a win.
A win feels twice as good as second. Second is kinda 3/2 as good as third and so on.
Lemme go off and spreadsheet a bit….
17th November 2014, 12:45
@lockup – I know what you mean about a point being a goal but for teams like Caterham and Marussia, there has to be something better to decide who had the best season than basing it on who was there at the right place at the right time when there was a big pileup or late safety car.
17th November 2014, 13:48
Yeah @petebaldwin, I do see the issue. For me I’d like to have it less crucial, so that the last team doesn’t get cut off at the knees with zero prize money and all the shipping costs.
Also of course a system that enables teams to offer sponsors good value and climb the ladder, if they’re well run, while still allowing weak teams to fail so that new teams can come in.
I dunno. Maybe points awarded down to 12th? 14th?
17th November 2014, 15:56
I would suggest that my previous comments (on other articles) regarding a second-tier championship would be a good way. We could have 6-7 teams in each, with the top 8-10 cars scoring points, and the top & bottom teams swapping championships (promotion/demotion). Tighter restrictions to keep down costs in the lower championship, with bonus prize money for the promoted team to help them be competitive.
It must be aweful to be a team at the back, getting no points all season and no glory. A 2-tier championship would help in so many areas IMHO: It keeps costs down for the lower teams, while still encouraging the pinnacle of technology at the top. It aids new entrants, gives smaller teams something to compete in, gives them some glory (their own podiums), and may even help promote new talent in drivers.
17th November 2014, 21:50
Yes I’d like to see GP2 being more of a Division 2 to F1. Atm the step is massive, and when an F1 team fails it too often just ceases to be instead of having a future in another series.
18th November 2014, 10:10
@lockup I wouldn’t suggest changing GP2. It works well as it’s own championship.
My suggestion is that we just create a B-spec F1. Most things are the same, and they take part in the same race, possibly even the same qualifying, but there are tighter restrictions on development (and anything else reasonably managable, like pit crew) to keep costs down. They still have to develop their own cars, use the same spec engines, etc.
My original suggestion was, for example, to homologate the entire chassis at the start of the season, with 2-3 aero configurations, so there is no in season development. It isn’t easy, but it is an interesting idea.
17th November 2014, 20:51
@lockup – As an alternative, keep the points as they are but instead of the tie breaker being the highest finish, add the finishing positions together for everyone with 0 points and whoever has the lowest total comes top.
That keeps the idea of a point being something that you have to work hard for but doesn’t just leave the cars at the back to a lottery…
17th November 2014, 21:47
@petebaldwin Yeah I can see that being an improvement.
I’d still like to see bigger gaps between points for the top positions. I like the idea of @heskin-radiophonic ‘s inverse system with 1 (or 0) for a win, 2 for 2nd etc. The problem of a dnf not being too catastrophic can be handled by everyone below 10th (say) getting 11 can’t it?
I’d prefer a positive system but can’t see how to invert that! Surely it’s possible, anyone?
18th November 2014, 11:39
I dunno @drmouse, I always think having multiple classes in a race is confusing and something you only do if you can’t raise enough entrants. F1 ought to be able to field a full grid, if they’d just be a bit less corrupt.
GP2 is fine I agree, I was only thinking there should be a series between it and F1 perhaps. Something between GP2’s $2m and F1’s $100m.
18th November 2014, 12:37
I would agree, except that it ends up meaning that the top teams have much more restrictions put on them than is necessary. By implementing a 2-class system, the upper class can be less restricted, which is a good aim in my view. It should allow more work on other parts of the car, rather than the hideously inefficient twiddling with winglets and vanes which make up the most common development areas in modern F1.
It also opens up the lower end of the field, and allows teams to progress just as drivers do. Running a GP2 team, for example, is no preparation for F1. You need to develop the engineering talent etc. or buy it in.
I like the idea of having the 2 classes racing at once. It could make for much more interest in the lower end of the field, which many forget about today. It may be a little more complicated, but it would be fun to watch, especially when we get races (which we would) where the lower class start mixing it up with the big boys!
17th November 2014, 13:34
Try a Fibonacci sequence, unfortunately the numbers get ugly.
17th November 2014, 12:23
In theory there is nothing wrong with assigning the title of champion to the driver who wins the most races.
In practice, however, such a rule would destroy competition between team-mates. Let’s take Mercedes this year as an example.
Round 6 of the World Championship, Monaco, in a season where the most wins takes the driver’s title. Hamilton has 4 race wins under his belt and Rosberg has just the one. Nico takes pole position with Lewis 2nd, and they stay in those positions off the start and dart away into a comfortable 1-2.
Mercedes could let them race fairly, and Nico would win the race. However this is a wasted victory for Mercedes in their pursuit of the drivers title. From a drivers title perspective, they entered the race 4 wins ahead of their nearest competitor, and will leave it 4 wins ahead. Net benefit is minimal (they have slightly improved their prospects for their backup driver should Lewis become unable to race in future events).
Alternatively, they could choose to employ team orders and have Nico let Lewis win. If they do this, Mercedes extend their lead in the drivers title. Net benefit: maximal. It’s a long season and, as the Brackley team found out in 2009, dominance can evaporate very quickly in F1. Mercedes would owe it to their investors, shareholders and fans to destroy the racing and bank the win for Lewis.
Of course, if a team orders ban were in place and strictly enforced (somehow), it would be another matter. But, as it stands, if you don’t want Hockenheim 2010 to happen every other weekend, wins-take-all is not a viable solution.
17th November 2014, 12:56
For the WCC, they would use the total number of wins, I would suspect.
In either case, Mercedes would start with 5 wins and end with 6.
As I have already posted, I disagree with using this system, but this argument doesn’t really stand up to scrutiny.
17th November 2014, 13:40
For the constructors’ championship, yes the win will still count. The prize money differences in the WCC are of some importance to the biggest teams. But for the big teams, for their marketing goals, which is the biggest reason Merc, Red Bull and Ferrari are in F1, it is all about the drivers’ crown.
Only the F1 hardcore remember, or care that Ferrari won the 2008 constructors’ title. Everyone remembers Hamilton, of the McLaren team, winning the driver’s championship.
And the wider point is that by employing team orders as previously described, it doesn’t hurt their WCC tally. It is simply choosing whether or not to take a big step towards the WDC crown for one of the team’s drivers.
17th November 2014, 12:32
Why points at all? All race stats are measured in time. I suggest a time based ranking system. Winner scores 0. Every driver after that scores seconds off pace. The champion is the driver that has the lowest time scored at the end of the season.
Simple, efficient and a perfect reflection of the truth. Point system will always be a compromised representation of time.
Let’s just use time to tell the champ.
17th November 2014, 20:14
That essentially makes every race a stage in a rally though. And dealing with retirements or even lapped drivers is incredibly difficult.
17th November 2014, 20:55
That’s your problem with the time idea… I do like the idea of drivers and teams being rewarded for driving faster though. It would remove the concept of drivers controlling the race from the front and protecting the car etc.
Not sure it would be workable though as you say.
18th November 2014, 8:41
Actually, this could work. It would also stop the guy in front cruising to victory: They would push to the end to keep their time low. I also doubt we would see as many championships finishing early.
Bernie could also keep his “double points” idea by doubling the length of the final race.
DNFs and being a lap down are the areas I can see a problem. I would say a DNF would need to have a specific, slow lap time afforded it per race, and this could be used for laps down, too. It would be tricky to come up with the right balance, and may need to be calculated based on the winner’s average lap time plus a percentage.
I also think we would have to do away with (or severely limit) blue flags.
All in all, I’m liking it. If you wanted, you could also reward the top finishers with time deductions: say 2 mins for a win, 1 min for a 2nd and 30s for 3rd.
17th November 2014, 12:35
I would reward podium finishers much more. Giving every driver points takes away the ‘exclusivity’ of scoring points. Yet it may make racing more interesting. But still I don’t like the current system where almost half of the field gets points. I would go back to the top8 scoring system:
1 point for the pole (a pole position is worth as much as finishing 8th, in most cases and being the quickest driver on a single lap is part of racing and should be rewarded)
1st: 30 points
2nd: 20 points
3rd: 14 points
4th: 9 points
5th: 6 points
6th: 4 points
7th: 2 points
8th: 1 point
17th November 2014, 12:36
1 point for each (provisional) pole on Friday & Saturday (bring back 12 laps/ 1hour Q)
17th November 2014, 13:39
Why would you want to bring back the old qualifying system ?
What was so great about listening to the commentators talking about an empty track for 40 minutes then seeing everyone trying to put a decent lap together while every other car was out on track for the last 20 minutes ?
17th November 2014, 15:11
I don’t know if there was a particular season you are refering to but I remember the backmarkers going out first and everyone following them after a short while, going for 3 or 4 qualifying stints. So there was constantly someone capable of driving a pole lap on track.
With the current format, for me personally, qualifying starts at the 02:00 mark in Q3. Everything before that is a repetition of the previous race weekend.
17th November 2014, 16:13
From memory (admittedly poor at the best of times) for most of the period when we had the 12 lap, one hour qualifying system the first 30-40 minutes were spent looking at an empty track with the only ‘action’ being the odd backmarker going out to try and get some air time for their sponsors. Unless it was wet there was very little happening on the track.
Of all the qualifying systems used since the 80’s I think the best one is the one we’ve got now.
17th November 2014, 15:08
Why do people insist on the point system where only 6 cars get points, when reliability rates are extremely high compared to the time when that point system was in effect?
17th November 2014, 17:35
Well, that’s next on the agenda. Down with reliability ;)
17th November 2014, 15:28
As it’s been said on here before though, having points for qualifying and fastest laps could ruin the title fight. Can you imagine the title being decided on a Saturday? Or the driver who requires just one point goes out with just enough fuel in the race to do a storming lap and then comes back in?
17th November 2014, 15:35
Well, the saturday decision might not be optimal but for me, that would still be okay.
If it depended on the fastest lap, that might become an amazing showdown between two teams where one driver is pushing qualifying laps in the race to win the title while the teammate of the other driver has to do the same. And it won’t be decided until the very last lap. Epic stuff.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 16:57
@dh1996 I’m completely against giving points for pole position and fastest lap for the following reasons:
17th November 2014, 17:46
I’ve read that article and I understand your position. Still, when it comes to that 1-point scenerio what’s most likely to happen is that the guy who needs that point is simply cruising to secure that point anyways. So there won’t be much excitment taken away. The other way around, imagine my scenario above.
Or, to fantasize a little, imagine Lewis DNF in the previous race and both of them colliding at the start in the next race and falling back 2 or 3 laps due to repairs. Both clearly out of the points and Nico would win the championship with a 1 point advantage. As far as I’ve read, nobody here wants that because Lewis has so much more wins. Wouldn’t a 10-lap showdown at the end with multiple stops for fresh tires be much more exciting?
There’s always positives and negatives depending on the situation. I would like to see the introduction of those extra points and I doubt it’ll come to a disappointing finale anytime soon.
Hey, at least it’s not double points, amiright? ;)
James Brickles (@brickles)
17th November 2014, 20:17
Could have separate championships for pole and fastest lap?
Paul Gawne (@foolishyouth)
17th November 2014, 12:42
Lets go back to bernie’s medal system? Surely that makes a lot of sense in reality?
17th November 2014, 15:58
The only issue is that this system would take away points for the midfield and backmarker teams, basically only rewarding the top teams for racing… I suppose a system could be made where wins are what’s counted first towards the championship, then if drivers are tied on wins, then the champion is decided by points. A hybrid of this medal system and the regular points system seems okay to me, at first glance…
It certainly would’ve decided this year’s champion much earlier than before, and probably would’ve led to more heated battles between the Mercedes drivers.
17th November 2014, 17:49
“I suppose a system could be made where wins are what’s counted first towards the championship, then if drivers are tied on wins, then the champion is decided by points.”
I seem to remember that’s exactly what Bernie wanted. Gold medals decide the championship. If tied, number of silver medals will decide. If tied, bronze.
And everyone outside of the top 3 would simpy score points.
17th November 2014, 20:18
A confusing amalgamation of points and medals? Where only the champion is ranked on wins and every other position is decided by the standard points system? The worst thing about Bernie’s idea was that it was complete drivel whether or not you approve of the ‘most wins wins’ idea.
17th November 2014, 12:43
At last! I thought i was the only one who liked Bernie’s idea back in 2009. I mean look at past champions decided like that: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/73069
Seems more like it doesn’t it?
17th November 2014, 12:50
I really like giving the title to the driver who has won the most races. When I watch F1 I want to see drivers racing to win, not driving to pick up the most points. Perhaps decide the WDC on wins and the WCC on a stepped points system – one (as Keith shows) which awards points to every finisher, to prevent fluke results from disrupting the proper order in the lower half of the table.
17th November 2014, 13:01
Panel of judges decide at the end of the year.
17th November 2014, 13:02
I think I’m joking. I like the idea of ‘most wins’ but in 2008 Massa would have won due to Spa, which would be a flipping crime.
17th November 2014, 15:18
@f1bobby I would blame that on the stewarding, even Nick Heidfeld(!) complained –
The whole season was littered with inconsistent decisions. In a normal season (and stewarding has much improved under Jean Todt) I think it would work well.
17th November 2014, 15:41
Heidfeld ist talking about Japan in that article. Clearly, everyone would agree that the Spa penalty was 100% justified. If they hadn’t punished that, we’d see drivers shortcutting every chicane to get a run at their opponent in the next corner.
17th November 2014, 16:46
The drivers actually had been doing so for years up to that point. Alan Donnelly single handedly changed that “unwritten rule”.
17th November 2014, 17:22
He gave the place back, repassed him, which was inevitable, pulled away at ridiculous rate and then Kimi binned it. Massa did diddly squat in that race and inherited ten points. It was a disgraceful decision.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 16:58
@f1bobby I agree that would have been wrong, but the wrong would have been on the part of the Spa stewards, not the scoring system.
17th November 2014, 13:06
OK here is my proposal:
This rewards all drivers in a linear fashion up to 10th, then uses the current ratios between points up to 1st. They could be rounded off a bit, I guess, like:
17th November 2014, 13:06
I like the stepped system, it’s simple and it’s the way things have been done. Moving to a new points structure breaks from the tradition, and makes it harder to compare previous seasons, as you’re using two disparate systems, as opposed to merely different numbers.
One thing I have thought of before is dividing the season into multiple “Cups.” Five mini-championships divided along geographic or historic lines (Asia Cup [Australia, Malaysia, Japan, Singapore], American Cup [COTA, Canada, Brazil], Classic Cup [Silverstone, Monza, Spa, Monaco] and two others containing the rest. The driver’s championship is decided by whoever wins the most cups in a season. You’ll have the drivers fighting regularly, as they try and win each cup. You’ll have moments throughout the season where drivers have won something more than a race. Each little part of the season is compartmentalised and easier to remember.
That’s just my thought.
17th November 2014, 18:08
Well thought out @DavidS.
I think we have a winner :)
17th November 2014, 22:53
@Davids yeah I remember you saying that long time ago and I thought it was a great idea. The only problem would be that a driver could win the first 2 minicups for just a point and then be terrible on the other 3. Let’s imagine that then other 3 different drivers win a singlw minicup each AND were competitive on the first 2… but none of them could be champions.
Maybe as a complement to your idea, the winner of a minicup is awarded the same points of a victory, 25, the same for the second gets 18 and the third 15, nobody else, to reinforce the value of getting into the minicup “podium”.
Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
17th November 2014, 13:15
For me it would be the medals system. Its the simplest system by far, decides fair winners, and weighs all the races equally.
17th November 2014, 13:27
For drivers championship, top six only. Usually these places are taken by the top 8 or 9 driver/car combinations, so others don’t actually mean anything.
Classify all cars for team championship, so we can actually see who is going to be tenth team etc.
17th November 2014, 13:30
a few of the point suggestions (win totals and incremental) do not address a very important issue, in that drivers outside the podium have little to no incentive to “drive the wheels off” try to gain places throughout the race
17th November 2014, 13:35
I can’t agree that the driver who wins the most races should necessarily be champion. In a scenario where, for example, there are several race winners in a season, yet no one dominates, and a given driver wins no races but consistently places second while others are on again, off again, I have no trouble rewarding consistency with a championship.
17th November 2014, 13:43
“Few will be disappointed the Ecclestone…”
I never knew that we must refer to Lord Ecclestone as THE Ecclestone Keith!
Craig Woollard (@craig-o)
17th November 2014, 13:47
I do not see what is wrong with the ‘old’ points system of points distributed the same at every race, no points for pole, fastest lap, leading a lap and so on, no chase system, no double points for no reason at all, no nothing. I think when you begin to have drivers score points in the hundreds, thousands or tens of thousands, it starts to look a little bit silly and makes working out the permutations a nightmare. Just take this year’s IndyCar finale as an example. Prior to the weekend five drivers had a chance at taking the title, once Will Power took to the track in qualifying that became four, and once he started the race it became three. And even then working out the various permutations was an absolute nightmare due to points being awarded for pole, leading a lap and leading the most laps. I wouldn’t like to see points awarded for every position because that begins to devalue what it means to score points. I do not wish to see half the field eligible to score points before the race has even started as we have seen over the last two weekends – points for a backmarker team should be something just as special as a race victory for a top team.
As for a solution, I’m not too fussed if we have a 9-6-4-1 (some may recognise that from the older Mario Kart games) system or a 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 (provided we have more than 20 cars) system, as long as we don’t start including silly things like double points, points for fastest lap, pole and so on.
I do not believe that the champion should automatically be the driver who has won the most races. The have been instances in the past where a driver has not won the most races but he has definitely won the championship on merit (1986 springs to mind immediately) through consistently collecting those important points finishes. It is fine to have a system where a win is worth a decent chunk more than second place (even with this system as opposed to the originally proposed 2010 system we have a case where 10 wins does not guarantee the championship) but when it comes down to winning a championship – I always feel that collecting consistent points (especially when your car is not on par on certain days) is equally as important as picking up race victories.
17th November 2014, 13:58
What about a reverse of the incremental system? You score 0 points for a win, 1 for 2nd etc and 25 (I guess) for a DNF. Effectively a drivers score tells you how many places back they’ve finished from the leader over the entire season…just trying to think of something different…have I gone mad?
17th November 2014, 14:03
The more I read into what Keith is saying, the more it makes sense. It is by far the better point system there is. Because it should be consistency is important, but never should a “consistent” second-place, beat a a single race win. For some this is unfair, but I believe if you are “consistently good”, rather than just consistent, than you should get at least some race wins… So yes, the guy that wins on a “lucky win” should be rewarded better than the guy who always gets second. That is because if something disastrous happens to the forerunners, the “second placer” should be able to take advantage of the same opportunity as the guy who got the lucky win.
Ayrton said it best: “…if you no longer go for a gap that exists, you are no longer a racing driver…” or the saying that goes: “Second place is the first loser”.
However… If a reform has to be made, and points, as they are, need to be there to calculate winnings, then every place should be worth double (or triple?) of what the previous result is worth. In other words, you should have to get second place twice (or 3 times) to equal a driver who won once. And a second place should be worth two 3rd place wins (or 3, respectively). This of course would result in ridiculously high numbers, first place being worth around 16 million points (if you give points to every race driver, except 26th, which gets 0). But then again, this is just a ranking system, and it shouldn’t matter if its hard to count, just that racing drivers get awarded for pushing that little bit extra to get that next higher position.
And yes, drivers who DNF should get no points. This might be harsh, but I again, remember Ayrton’s quote: “By being a racing driver you are under risk all the time. By being a racing driver means you are racing with other people. And if you no longer go for a gap that exists, you are no longer a racing driver…”
There should be risk, and if you crash out you should be penalized, but then again the reward for pushing is equally rewarding, as it will be worth double of what your current position should be worth…
17th November 2014, 14:04
what about this:
WDC is decided by “tie break” rule. That would ensure that every year the champion is the guy with most wins, or for similar wins, the most second places and so on. Almost never a champion has “just one lucky win” (Maldonado got a win in 2010 but during the second half of the year the real WDC contenders appeared naturally), and the WCC gets a point system that rewards all positions, I think a stepped and rounded one would be ok.
If you want some “consistency rule”, you can add, to all what I said. the following, just regarding the WDC: (I got this idea from the musical notation system :D )
– Only podium finishers apply for the WDC.
– A win equals 2 second place results
– A second equals 2 third place results.
So if a “lucky” winner has only one, it is surpassed by a guy with no wins but 3 second places. All that without mentioning “points” so the rule can be “written in stone” even if the points system is tweaked over and over for the WCC.
Sorry for the loooong post.
18th November 2014, 6:37
How is this different to a 4 2 1 points system?
17th November 2014, 14:04
I strongly disagree with simply giving the title to the driver who won the most races. A champion should have a blend of wins and consistently high finishes, so a points system of some kind is necessary to reward that.
18th November 2014, 4:13
Hear hear! I was surprised to read it from Keith. Consistency is a virtue worth rewarding. A fast but crash-prone driver may not be the best.
18th November 2014, 8:45
Keith disliked the old “dropped points” system, but his own solution effectively drops the points of every race the contender didn’t win!
The WDC list would still be ordered via “countback of results that did not score a point”, and that is not dissimilar to the system we have now for tiebreaks… but for the contenders, non-victory results are typically “pointless”. We currently don’t put points on very low placings because they have little or no bearing on the championship, there would be no need to put points on 2nd in this scenario.
I have created a points system that should yield the same WDC results as Keith’s suggestion*
* in this system, 10 2nd places = a victory, not so in Keith’s system, so I should maybe add a few more zeros? ! ;)
18th November 2014, 8:47
accidently put 2 extra zeros on the 1st place, but you get the gist, it’s silly.
18th November 2014, 8:50
Or put 1st twice even, sorry ’bout that!
17th November 2014, 14:10
Current system’s good for the top three. 8 points is a good advantage for winning. And It’s worked really well, ebbed and flowed, in recent years when more than two drivers have been in contention for most of the year. But it hasn’t stuck in my mind – I can never remember how many points for 5th or 6th, or where a driver finished if he got 8 points, or whatever.
I also think 10’s too many scorers – a mediocre result like 9th or 10th place is celebrated and back-slapped too much these days. Top 8 would be better (Top 6 was a long tradition but not enough for current reliability) Also, the F1 system always gets applied to other FIA championships and in each class of the WEC, for example, where there are rarely ten starters, it’s ridiculous.
17th November 2014, 14:26
How about something like this:
17th November 2014, 14:47
I actually like the “drop your worst results” system, 3 is enough. Encourages teams to be more reckless with designs in terms of reliability, allowing them to push the envelope further technologically.
It also further adds a strategic element for the drivers, do they risk that ballsy move knowing that it can be written off? Or do they want to save those write-off’s in case their car fails? The difference between a more calculating driver and a reckless one would be more readily apparent. Also there is possibility for intrigue between driver/team decisions in regards to risk taking.
I dunno, I just really like the idea myself, not sure why everyone seems to dislike it so much.
17th November 2014, 14:55
Current system is fine: simple, clear, and rewarding for the winning driver.
Just drop that stupid double points rule.
Simpler is often better.
17th November 2014, 17:34
17th November 2014, 15:05
A proposed scoring system can be:
Driver receives the same points as his finishing position (1 point for 1st, 2 points for 2nd, 3 points for 3rd, etc.)
Then at the end of the season, the total points will be multiplied by
0.9^(- # of wins)
Driver with lowest points is champion.
total pts. * 0.9^( – # of wins)
17th November 2014, 15:44
I quite like the current system, as I did the 2003-09 one. The changes I’d make those are ditching the dreaded double points rule and reducing the points-scoring positions down to the top 8.
Just a thought though: say we have 18 cars on the grid next season, will the points system change? Because I always believed (and assumed) that the majority of the grid should not be scoring points, and of course 10 out of 18 is the majority scoring rather than not.
So here’s mine for an 18- or 20-car grid: 20-14-10-8-6-4-2-1
Uzair Syed (@ultimateuzair)
17th November 2014, 15:50
I personally think that we should revert back to the simple 2003-2009 points system with no stupid double points.
Darryn Smith (@darryn)
17th November 2014, 15:51
I still don’t get what was wrong with the 9-6-4-3-2-1 system. I don’t even mind the 10 for the win variation. It may just be my age, but when I see Hamilton with 343 points or whatever he has I just look at the 3 and tune out. It was the same with the old Nascar system with guys getting thousands of points. Why not give 100,000 points for a win? I just don’t get the need for anything other than single digits.
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 17:02
@darryn It says in the article.
Darryn Smith (@darryn)
18th November 2014, 8:18
Do you mean the payout of the prize money at the end of the season? Sooner we have an even distribution the better or a separate point system for the constructors championship which to me is as meaningless as the glorification of mechanics or the guys on the pit wall. I promise that I read your articles.
18th November 2014, 4:39
To me, the points system was perfected in 1991.
No more confusing dropped points. Simplicity!
10 for a win. How clean and logical!
Only top 6 scored. Ok, Keith writes of the problem that causes, I think that’s a worthwhile compromise. Points are hard to come by and precious.
As I recall, they started tweeking with it when Schumacher in F1 and Groholm in WRC started to dominate. What a fool’s errand. If a driver dominates a championship, let the results reflect the truth.
I don’t even really buy the argument that viewership drops because the championship is decided early, nor the idea that only 1st place matters to tv viewers. There are fascinating stories and battles up and down the field all the time.
A compromise. Standardisation is another way to simplify. FIA adopt the same points as used by FIM in motogp and world superbikes. A proven system that consistently lead to tight championship battles with its small differences between positions, points paying down to P15 or so?
But really, I had been threatening to do it for a while. If only I had the skills and patience, I’ll draw up my own spreadsheets and tally my own results for my own champion based on my own criteria.
17th November 2014, 16:07
The dropped scores came to counter-balance mechanical failures, I believe. If a driver had, say, four retirements to his rival’s zero, then those four extra results could tip the championship in favour of the “least deserving” driver, the one who would’ve been second without those four races. A compromise to delete your worst scores, therefore, also gives more value to your best scores, wins if there are any, which is slightly like the “medal” idea, where only wins count.
The points systems used in the early years had so many retirements and so few races to deal with that dropping scores couldn’t have worked. Instead, that meant some underdog could easily enter the points-paying positions, under certain circumstances (like Baghetti’s debut win). No doubt the lucky driver could therefore finish higher than drivers who usually beat him but out of the points, but there were no other real options. Probably no one wanted points to be “lost”, i.e. have more points-scoring positions than the actual number of finishers, otherwise we’d have the points go down to 26th place every time, and that would make no difference to the top teams.
Nowadays it’s unlikely that teams like Marussia and Caterham will score points, it took a great drive in incredible circumstances for Bianchi to finish 9th, but most times the two teams are battling between them with no hope for points, and as @keithcollantine says, all it takes is a lucky result to change the balance. With zero points, dropped scores mean nothing, the only viable option is extending the points-scoring positions to more fairly rate teams who finish at the back. But, more importantly, the money prize should roughly follow the points system, it should be spread out fairly between each position without “leaps” from zero to millions.
17th November 2014, 16:17
I don’t totally agree with the overall winner is the one who wins most races. If it’s like this season, sure, I don’t mind that Ham is the winner. But in a tight season where one driver won 5 races and the other driver won 4, but got a lot more 2nd place finishes (like 5 vs 10), then the other driver should become WDC, otherwise it wouldn’t be fair.
Encouraging only race wins counts only cause an attitude where a driver just want to stop driving because it is useless for him.
What I would like to see is point being given to all the participant so every position counts. I’d rather try to increase the gap in the top than just giving the title to someone that has the most race win.
Derek Raycraft (@djrlife)
17th November 2014, 16:20
I voted determine a worthy Driver and Team.
I don’t think the driver and team need to use the same system. To me wins are more important to drivers, constancy is more important to teams. A metals system for drivers and a points system for teams would quite interesting. I do think team points need to cover the full field, not just down to 6th or 8th or 10th.
17th November 2014, 16:51
“For me, the solution to the question of which points system to use is not to have one at all. The true champion is the driver who wins the most races – so instead of giving points, we should use use the ‘tie breaker’ the FIA has already devised.”
So if I understand this statement correctly, you are essentially saying that the winner should get 1 point and the rest 0? In the event of an end of year tie then the tie breaker system kicks in?
Felipe would have agreed at the end of 2008 ;)
Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine)
17th November 2014, 17:07
No that is not what I’m saying at all.
I’m saying that at the end of the year we look at who’s won the most races, and that person is the champion. Second places is the person with the next highest number of wins. Ties are broken by whoever has the highest number of the next highest finishing positions.
I’ve added an example to the article to clear this up.
18th November 2014, 3:52
Thank you sir.
18th November 2014, 3:55
A bit like the Olympic Games. I could live with that.
18th November 2014, 10:33
Actually, @keithcollantine, what you are saying works out exactly the same as what @glennb describes.
A driver gets 1 point for a win, 0 for any other position. Therefore the guy at the top of the table is the guy with most wins. After that, it goes on the tie-breaker (number of 2nd, number of third).
17th November 2014, 16:58
The scoring system should reward drivers (and teams) for fighting for position. The decrease of the points should therefore be proportional and not linear.
That was the biggest blunder they made with the ‘Schumacher’ points system designed to stop the Ferrari dominance. FIA thought that adopting a scoring system with only minimal score difference between positions would keep the championship alive till the last race.
While in theory this was true in a mathematical sense, what it really did was reward drivers for not taking any risks. Finishing the race became much more important than trying to gain a position. Better not risk overtaking and crashing since it was pretty much impossible to make up a deficit from a DNF. If you gain only 2 points from finishing in P1 ahead of your competitor it takes 5 races to catch up one win.
To promote fighting for position, the scoring system should decrease in points by the same percentage for every position lost. Just like the 9-6-4-3-2-1 system once did. In that system a driver gained 50% extra in points by taking a position.
I still feel that’s the best system and if I convert that to a 10 position scoring system it would be:
48, 32, 21, 14, 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
That looks a bit silly, so a bit more rounded to the decimal system and as a result with a bit more separation between P1 and P2 I’d say the following would be perfect:
50, 30, 20, 15, 10, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Or perhaps for 12 points scoring positions and starting on a nice and even 100 points:
100, 65, 45, 30, 20, 15, 10, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Of course the problem with that is that a dominant driver can wrap up the title well before the last race of the season.
Daniel Akerman (@jeangirard)
17th November 2014, 16:58
Being an American, and longtime fan of NASCAR and American open-wheel series’, I am perhaps biased towards some of our scoring systems, (I was NOT a fan of this year’s NASCAR system, though) and I think F1 could greatly benefit from some of our ideas. I am a proponent of rewarding performance and consistency, rather than simply rewarding wins. Jimmie Johnson has won 6 NASCAR championships by being the best all-around performer, regardless of wins. I have no problem with that, as it rewards good strategy, and good racing, besides just being quick. And I am also a fan of awarding points “bonuses” as a way to keep smaller teams involved and reward performance along various metrics. The problem with F1, as we’ve seen this year, is that the rich teams get richer, while the poor teams go out of business, and there is virtually no way, within the current points system, for a small team to get a piece of the pie big enough to grow their team and become better performers. So, I think it would be great if we could see F1 award points to ALL the cars (including the DNFs, based on laps completed), just as in NASCAR, and give small points bonuses for fastest lap, leading a lap, most laps led, etc, and then distribute the pot PROPORTIONATELY, based on each team’s final points. This would do all the things a points system should do: reward driver consistency and car performance/reliability, penalize poor driving and poor reliability, and reward winning as well. Incidentally, it would also make for incredibly exciting race-strategy decisions. Crucially, however, it would give smaller teams more avenues for scoring some points and getting a little bit of the cash pie at the end of the year, and hopefully parlay that into future performance, bringing more parity and competition to the field as a whole, and making the racing far more exciting.
Alec Glen (@alec-glen)
17th November 2014, 17:02
It’s an interesting idea and I think it has the potential to produce better racing as teams will be more likely to push the limits to get a win instead of sit and nurse comedy tyres in 3rd. I’d be inclined to think there would be more use of alternative strategies also if single race wins had much greater value. If they opened up the tyres to let the teams choose which compounds they brought to each event you’d see a lot more variance in raceday strategy.
As for the sailing style system going from .75/1 point and up, I’d give the non finishers a score of the number of finishers and not competitors. This wouldn’t be as harsh a punishment and tbh I’d rather see 10 cars finish a flat out race than 26 finish an open-top tour of Sochi.
17th November 2014, 17:10
1 – 12 points
2 – 8
3 – 6
4 – 5
5 – 4
6 – 3
7 – 2
8 – 1
Pole – 3 points
Fastest Lap – 1 point
Rewards Saturday’s Qualify.
Pushing teams to be in top half of the grid.
Gives value to every point earned.
Gives value to point finishers.
18th November 2014, 10:36
Pole is already rewarded by starting in front of everyone else. It needs no more reward than that. It also doesn’t address some of the other concerns.
17th November 2014, 17:14
I’d look at a somewhat reversed system…
Points are awarded in any progressive manner from the rear to the front (for example, but not limited to, 1 point for the last place, 2 for second-last, etc. until the winner gets 26 points). However, if 1 car does not finish, then the last car gets 1 point… until the winner gets 25 points.
This makes the points obtained dependent on the number of finishers also. If you’ve not actually beaten a car (but instead that car broke), why should you get the points benefit.
Is this a silly system? Yes. No sillier than Abu Double.
Stephen Crowsen (@drycrust)
17th November 2014, 17:22
I think regarding the Constructors’ Championship, it should be changed from a total team points to average team points per car, so that when three car teams turn up those teams don’t have an unfair advantage over the two car teams, and also it will make it easier to compare results one year from the next. I should add that an average team points per car could actually favour two car teams because the third car driver will have to drive as well as their team mates to ensure they don’t pull the average down.
Regarding the drivers’ championship, maybe you could have it so, like the world champion driver has the option to use the number “1” on their car, so you have, for first place, the most wins, and then use the current points for second and subsequent places, and also use the points if there is a need for a tie-breaker.
Regarding team payments, I think it should start by getting rid of this stupid “Have to wait two years before we’ll bother paying you a cent” nonsense. Brawn GP nearly went bankrupt when they were leading the racing series, and then they won the series and still didn’t get a cent. It was hardly surprising that they struggled for the second half of the season: the other teams were able to use their handsome TV rights payouts to fit their latest technology to their cars while Brawn GP had to make do with what they had. Doesn’t that seem unfair? Isn’t that like adding weights to a horse that keeps winning races. Didn’t anyone blush at the handing out hundreds of millions of dollars to the “also ran” teams but not a cent to Mr Brawn? Presumably if three car teams turn up at the grid, the “third cars” will be funded from TV rights money right from the first day they appear, so why not fund the current teams correctly now? For example, will Mercedes get any money for winning the Constructor’s Championship this year? I think Caterham could have avoided going into administration if they had been paid correctly.
17th November 2014, 17:43
I think what we have at the moment in terms of wins is fine, since there’s a good incentive for winning (an extra 7 points).
However, depending on the number of drivers, I’d like to see 10/18, 12/20 (and 22) or 15/24 (and 26) scoring points (just over 50% of the drivers). I think this might help the situation in the smaller teams a bit, where they may score a few points each using these systems.
For example, say there’ll be 20 cars next season. 4 point systems I think would work are:
I wouldn’t want too many points awarded (like Nascar for example) where many drivers have 100’s of points because it just looks complicated upon the eye, so maybe the last example might not be suitable. These 4 examples do keep the high incentive of winning as opposed to finishing 2nd though.
17th November 2014, 17:45
To be honest the points system we have now is fine, just get rid of the double points. It makes a win more valuable in points terms and 10 points paying positions mean back markers have a better chance of scoring than they did in the past.
17th November 2014, 18:32
One point for a win.
17th November 2014, 18:43
Simplest, but the best points system that values both winning and strong overall season performance fairly.
Drivers that didn’t score points would be sorted by their average finishing positions.
After all, all drivers are here because they want to win championship, not to finish eight or twelfth in championship.
For example, with this points system Bianchi wouldn’t have scored his two points in Monaco. But would it really mattered? I immediately knew it was a special performance, like every other F1 fanatic did, points or no points scored.
Teams: 25-21-20-19-18-17-16-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 (for 11 teams)
Each team is guaranteed to score points, win is worth a bit extra, points are scored even if car DNF. It is a system that would fairly sort out teams based on theirs performance throughout the season.
17th November 2014, 18:56
I’d honestly keep the points system the same for the race. (Except double points of course).
The only change I’d make was to add points for Pole and Fastest Lap (if the driver finished in the top 10), only like 5 points or something as I think both are great achievements.
Red Andy (@red-andy)
17th November 2014, 19:03
One proposal I’ve seen mooted is to ditch points altogether and aggregate drivers’ race times across the season. The driver who finishes the whole season fastest is world champion. Obviously there would have to be some correction for lapped cars and drivers who fail to finish (maybe adding on an average lap time multiplied by the number of laps they failed to complete, perhaps with some “non-completion” penalty as well).
Depends how much you want to see a title decider where, for example, Rosberg needs to finish 33 seconds ahead of Hamilton to be champion.
17th November 2014, 19:14
With probably 18 cars next year we can safely go back to 10, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1.
17th November 2014, 19:20
I have not thought this through with all of the many ramifications but by the definition of a champion driver maybe only the winner of a race gets a point….. Then a different point system could be used for team championships and the distribution of bernie beans… like in euros. Some race enthusiasts think that second place in just the first guy to lose…………… Thanks, Norris
17th November 2014, 19:34
The points systems never seems to be an issue when it comes to the constructors championship where who ever does the best job wins, it’s black and white and beautifully simple . Now it’s that very black and white nature of the constructors championship that clouds the drivers championship grey to the point were no points system will ever truly be fair when drivers are handicapped according to their car potential. I personally would like to see a one off F1 race with half points for qualifying and half points for the race but with a reverse grid at a track that conducive to passing
17th November 2014, 19:43
Assuming there are 18 – 20 cars competing next year, similar to some others, I would go for:
20, 16, 13, 11, 9, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. I would then have an extra bonus point for being first in qualifying.
This rewards the teams down to 12th (so 6 teams at least) and gives an incentive for being top in qualifying. Simple and effective.
17th November 2014, 20:11
@KeithCollantine I didn’t read all comments as I don’t have the time, but my propositions are very simple. Points schema number 1: points correlate directly to the amount the hosting fees are paid. Most money paid = most points. Sadly, Monaco is zero points for everyone.
Proposal 2: The points scheme from each race are different and kept a secret until after the race. Picked at random like lottery balls so it’s not biased.
17th November 2014, 20:16
Have points matrix for fastest qualifying lap time (which is not necessarily the grid order lap) and the race, which is multiplied by a coefficient of the grid position to arrive at the total points for the weekend. The most points at the end of the season wins the championship weighted in the favour of the driver that makes up the most grid positions to arrive at race wins over a season. The strategist will have to select races where they are prepared to compromise grid positions on saturday’s to maximise points for the weekend by the ability to overtake to arrive at a win. e.g. chances of getting a win from 7 place on the grid in monaco is rear, so the best cars will pursue pole position on saturday to secure he race win. On a track like Silverstone, Spa or Austin, the strategist may opt to qualify mid to back of the grid with the possibility of overtaking increases the chances of winning on Sunday.
17th November 2014, 20:17
I think it’s important that 1st place gets a lot more than 2nd. However the difference between 4-5 and 5-6 etc. shouldn’t be that great imo.
This system is made so that 2nd place gets 1/2 of 1st place, third place gets 1/3 of 1st, 4th gets 1/4 of 1st, 5th gets 1/5 of 1st and 6th gets 1/6 of 1st.
From 6 to 15 this correlation stops and it’s just 10, 9, 8 ,7…..1.
The system also has a bit of matematical “beauty” built into it (if you are into that sorta thing). 3rd is 2/3 of 2nd, 4th is 3/4 of 3rd, 6th is 2/6 of 2nd etc.
1 – 60
2 – 30
3 – 20
4 – 15
5 – 12
6 – 10
7 – 9
8 – 8
9 – 7
10 – 6
11 – 5
12 – 4
13 – 3
14 – 2
15 – 1
Ian Bond (@ianbond001)
17th November 2014, 20:22
The current points system is good enough; without the double points, of course; it did not fail to give us the right champion in the recent years; actually i don’t think we had the wrong champion in the last 20 years.
However i am tempted to strengthen the points system by discarding a small number of results; like the worst 2 or 3 out of 20 results would not counts towards the drivers championship.
When we had this system before, like 25 years ago it was best 11 results out of 16, but with the improved reliability today, i think it should be more like 18 out of 20.
17th November 2014, 20:39
Or perhaps, considering there is likely to be less teams next year, then:
20, 16, 13, 10, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1 with the point for Quali,
17th November 2014, 21:16
I’d love to see a system in which the fastest were rewarded in the championship fight. It would be something to decide the champion rather than to order the whole field, so we’d probably need to use countback for the remainder of the positions, but my points system is as follows:
On Saturday, the fastest man will get a point. I can understand why people don’t like the idea of a championship being decided on a Saturday, but F1 is about being the fastest driver. If they prove that they are the fastest by setting a blistering lap time to get pole position, then so be it.
On Sunday, the race winner gets three points. Second will get two, and third will get a single point. This will mean people will be battling to get to the podium, and nobody will be content with a fourth place, and a podium will become even more valuable in Formula One – a single third place will be worth more than 20 fourth places – so if someone is in the position to attack for third, they will need to otherwise they risk being overtaken in the standings by someone who can put it all together on the day.
Finally, the introduction of a point for fastest lap would continue the trend of the points system rewarding the quickest drivers. I can understand how this could be complicated, so at all times on the TV graphics, there will be something to say who has fastest lap, when they set it and how fast it was. Then, every lap it would be compared to the fastest time on the previous lap – who’s on a charge looking for that final point? And if a title contender falls down the order, they can pit for fresh rubber and go all out for the fastest lap, and the TV cameras will be told to concentrate on them – it won’t just be the race that wins them the title, it’ll be the lap that wins them the title.
Again, this might not be the most pure of points systems, but it rewards the fastest drivers.
For the 2014 championship, going into the final round:
1st: Nico Rosberg: 50 (10 pole, 5 FLap, 5 Win, 10 Second, 0 Third)
2nd: Lewis Hamilton: 49 (7 pole, 7 FLap, 9 Win, 3 Second, 2 Third)
3rd: Daniel Ricciardo:14 (0 pole, 0 FLap, 3 Win, 0 Second, 5 Third)
4th: Valtteri Bottas: 8 (0 pole, 1 FLap, 0 Win, 2 Second, 3 Third)
5th: Sebastian Vettel: 5 (0 pole, 2 FLap, 0 Win, 0 Second, 3 Third)
6th: Felipe Massa: 4 (1 pole, 1 FLap, 0 Win, 0 Second, 2 Third)
7th: Fernando Alonso: 3 (0 pole, 0 FLap, 0 Win, 1 Second, 1 Third)
8th: Kevin Magnussen: 2 (0 pole, 0 FLap, 0 Win, 1 Second, 0 Third)
9th: Sergio Perez: 2 (0 pole, 1 FLap, 0 Win, 0 Second, 1 Third)
10th: Jenson Button: 1 (0 pole, 0 FLap, 0 Win, 0 Second, 1 Third)
11th: Kimi Raikkonen: (0 pole, 1 FLap, 0 Win, 0 Second, 0 Third)
This system gives Nico Rosberg a one point lead with up to five on offer. Looking at the trend of the year so far, if Rosberg got pole and fastest lap, then Hamilton won the race, the season would end level. Hamilton would win on countback with 10 wins to 5. I think that accurately reflects the nuances of each man’s title challenge: Rosberg being rewarded for his consistency over one lap in qualifying, while Hamilton gets the edge in the race.
Paul Carr (@forzaf1)
17th November 2014, 22:42
Flaw: fastest lap=1/3 of a race win= 3rd place… So a driver needs 1 point to secure the championship (or a small team wish to score a point… Under fuel car for 15 laps pit for fresh tyres after 12 get tyres up to temp do a qualy lap, set fastest lap, win championship.
17th November 2014, 21:19
I thought we had a points system in place. Thats one of the problems with F1 and their “fans”. They want to re-invent the wheel every year. Every fan and their dog seem to know it better. It is exhausting…
17th November 2014, 21:58
To me, the current points system (minus the stupid double points scheme) is just fine for the drivers’ title. Realistically, only the top three positions will be remembered anyway, but you need to be able to earn some points from more humble race finishes too. So points down to 10th place is fine with me.
However, it doesn’t really work for the WCC, since in that competition being able to accurately separate the lower positions is much more important. So I’d have a separate points system for the WCC, with points (even partial points) awarded at least down to 15th, if not to 20th place.
17th November 2014, 21:59
P J Squeak (@pjsqueak)
17th November 2014, 22:15
Let’s take a tip from the Tour de France where there are lots of prizes sponsored by lots of different companies bringing revenue into the sport event. Some prizes represent winning in the mountains, some winning sprints others for all kinds of things. Clearly yellow is what really matters but the other prizes add to the spectacle. There could be a prize just for the street circuits with a different sponsor plus prize money. There would not be extra points just added incentive for teams to do well at the street events.
There could also be time bonuses instead of just time penalties. Rather than penalise those that use one too many parts there could be time bonuses for the team that used the least.
People play video games where all kinds of interaction improve your score/XP. Why can’t a sport be a bit more like that with points given for fastest laps in practice, qualifying and the race? The computer keeps score.
As per Keith’s idea – who wins most, wins the championship – think of it as the Yellow Jersey in the Tour de France with a plethora of other prizes.
4th September 2016, 19:58
Oh – I read this after I wrote my old and new testament for a new ranking system in F1.
I agree on your suggestion to take the Tour de France as an example for something new in the F1.
17th November 2014, 22:25
Said this for years ….
Pole – 3 points.
Fastest Lap – 1 point.
1st – 15
2nd – 10
3rd – 8
4th – 5
5th – 4
6th – 3
7th – 2
8th – 1
Only points for top 8. Pole and FL points are something that should’ve been introduced long ago imo.
Jorge H. (@kobe08)
17th November 2014, 22:37
I would bet on the finishing positions system to rank drivers and keep points to rank the teams.
Theo Parkinson (@theo-hrp)
18th November 2014, 0:15
6 points for pole
3 points for fastest lap.
1 point for getting in Q3 except for Pole qualifier.
ColdFly F1 (@)
18th November 2014, 0:46
I voted ‘Rank all the drivers and teams’, but that does not mean that I disagree with the other statements.
‘Decide a worthy champion driver and team’ is extremely important, but I see this as a subset of the above. If the points would only point out a winner and nothing else, then I think it would not be good enough.
And also ‘keep it simple’. I can accept points for Pole and FLap, to reward those achievements, but the rest of last year’s point system seems to work.
jelle van der Meer
18th November 2014, 2:47
Below is the point system that in my opinion solves all problems:
1st = 50, 2nd = 25, 3rd = 22, 4th = 19, 5th = 16, 6th = 14, 7th = 12, 8th = 10, 9th = 9, ……….17th = 1
Is greatly values a win, so unlike this season it would have just take 2 races for Hamilton to lead champion after not finishing Australia instead of now 4 races.
It prevents a lucky winner to be rated higher than a consistent podium finisher.
Points are given all to way to place 17th so lower teams are not just depended on 1 good result but still punishes really bad teams by them not getting points unless lucky circumstances. Points are ONLY awarded if the car sees the finish flag and is classified.
And due to 50 points for a win it makes it more likely for the championship to go to final race unless there is a real dominant winner like Hamilton this year or Vettel in 2011 and 2013.
Current standings based on above point system. (Hamilton champion after Russia)
1st Lewis Hamilton 619
2nd Nico Rosberg 519
3rd Daniel Ricciardo 369
4th Valtteri Bottas 266
5th Fernando Alonso 260
6th Sebastian Vettel 255
7th Jenson Button 212
8th Felipe Massa 188
9th Nico Hulkenberg 180
10th Kevin Magnussen 162
11th Kimi Räikkönen 161
12th Sergio Perez 137
13th Jean-Eric Vergne 101
14th Daniil Kvyat 90
15th Romain Grosjean 62
16th Pastor Maldonado 56
17th Adrian Sutil 41
18th Esteban Gutierrez 37
19th Jules Bianchi 27
20th Max Chilton 26
21st Kamui Kobayashi 21
22nd Marcus Ericsson 16
18th November 2014, 3:49
I liked the NASCAR system this year (although the fist fights were nasty!!!!) . It was really interesting to watch the championship go down to Homestead. Some how it provided the same excitement as the Football or Tennis championships of Quarters, Semis and Finals. I would not mind that. In fact while my heart says I want a worthy champion my head puts me as a part of the 1% minority who would like to see the championship go down to the last race :)
Isn’t it what all the sports do ? Tennis, Football, American Football, Athletics, Rugby. Everything gravitates towards a championship finale. There might be great players and teams who might just have a bad day and that ends the championships. Brazil played bad football this year but they managed to get to Semis. No system could stop Roger Federrer or Rafel Nadal !!! Few years ago New England Patriots won almost 90% of the games in the season and went on to lose the finals (super bowl) to New York Giants that was struggling through the season with around 55% wins but made it to the finals. Wasn’t Patriots the actual worthy champions. But then that is what cruel fate and the grand Finale all about. After all sport is part sport and part entertainment too.
Having said that I did not like this years double point system . It is neither here nor there. The system was too weak that there is a high chance that the winner could wrap up the series before the last race even without the double points.
18th November 2014, 6:06
I have always been a fan of averages when it comes to ranking teams and athletes. To me, I think that the most deserving driver for the championship is the most consistent driver. Therefore I believe the most accurate way to rank drivers is by their average finishing position.
Should there be a race where they crash out, that race counts as a last place finish. If they driver fails to finish due to mechanical ffailure, then that particular race is just won’t be included in his average, but will count as a crash out to the team average.
This way also rewards the driver with the most wins, so long as he is consistently in the top. @keithcollantine I am sure you appreciate that aspect.
An average cannot lie, where as a point system can lie.
18th November 2014, 7:33
How about this
1st – 100
2nd – 50
3rd – 25
4th – 13
5th – 6
6th – 3
7th – 2
8th – 1
18th November 2014, 9:52
let’s work with decimals too!
:P just kidding.
18th November 2014, 8:01
Points for everyone = incentive to go faster everywhere + maybe 20 points for the best dressed driver?
Place P1 P2 P3 Q1 Q2 Q3 Race Fast Lap potential
1st 2 2 2 2 2 10 100 10 130
2nd 1 1 1 1 1 5 60 5 75
3rd 3 40 3 46
4th 2 30 2 34
5th 1 20 1 22
6th 15 15
7th 14 14
8th 13 13
9th 12 12
10th 11 11
11th 10 10
12th 9 9
13th 8 8
14th 7 7
15th 6 6
16th 5 5
17th 4 4
18h 3 3
19th 2 2
20th 1 1
total points 427
18th November 2014, 8:03
That didn’t work – pasted from excel – just ignore me! (nil point)
18th November 2014, 9:40
It is an interesting article, but i do think that the last option you mention, based on result, and therefore the ‘one with the most wins’ will be champion, will not work.
Take a season like this. (or last year with Vettel for that matter) say Lewis wins the first 10GP’s. Merc will stop fielding him. He is the champ anyway. no one can prevent that. They will just field Lewis to be rear-gunner for Rosberg so he can win the other 9 to ensure the 2place also, and thus the most earnings.
Or if Lewis wins 10, but DNF in 9 races, and Alonso takes lets say all the other 9wins, and has less dnfs, wouldn’t that be unfair?
maybe, they should separate the systems for the 2 championships. Because the WCC has very different requirements than the WDC.
I would say for the WDC the current system is good. It rewards winning the most, but consistency is not under-appreciated also. (an F1 season not just about the most wins only)
For the WCC it would be good to have a system that prevents the ‘fluke-result’ (like Marussia had last and this year) to influence the position too much.
18th November 2014, 12:21
I like the ATP Tennis idea of not all races counting towards points, contrary to @keithcollantine. Senna was a deserving champion in 1988, Prost would have won it otherwise. That season alone is a good indicator for me.
With a 20-race season, I’d love to see only 16 count toward the championship for each driver – it gives teams and drivers the possibility of risking without losing too much, in some races.
And if we MUST have double points, I would suggest each driver picking their double-point race at the beginning of the season, after conferring with their teams; this would then be revealed at the beginning of the season, and would add a little bit of extra for most races.
In terms of points, I actually like the very old 9-6-4-3-2-1 system, with only the Top 6 cars in the points. So I would alter it to 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-12-20.
So what about it?
18th November 2014, 12:22
By the way, I have nothing against a not-so-simple points system. The sport is not simple to watch in any case. If people tune out because “its a bunch of cars driving around the same circuit a ton of times”, that shows us that F1 is complex to really be enjoyable. Part of the sport.
18th November 2014, 13:01
The system I’d choose, if I had the power, would be based on primary and secondary points.
Primary points would be awarded for the first six places:
1st – 10
2nd – 6
3rd – 4
4th – 3
5th – 2
6th – 1
Secondary points would be awarded from 7th to 20th place:
7th – 20, 8th – 18, 9th – 16, 10th – 14, 11th – 12, 12th – 10, 13th – 8, 14th – 7, 15th – 6, 16th – 5, 17th – 4, 18th – 3, 19th – 2, 20th – 1
One primary point would be more valuable than any amount of secondary points. So once a team or a driver gets their first primary point(s) their secondary points become meaningless.
Is the idea of primary and secondary points confusing? Yes, but it doesn’t matter because the audience is mostly interested in the championship battle. Secondary points wouldn’t be shown on championship table and the championship position of those teams and drivers that have only secondary points would be calculated “on the background”. Thus an average fan only needs to know how primary points are awarded.
The benefits of a system like this would be:
– Winning a race is valuable enough
– The championship battle (which is based on primary points) would be simple to understand
– Backmarkers have a real battle throughout the season and it isn’t down to their best result
18th November 2014, 14:07
yes, it is also a bit what i said, to have 2 separate point-systems, 1 for the WDC and 1 for the WCC.
I would still like to give the first 10 ‘real’ points. Since we have now 4-6 teams eligible for race-wins,
(MB/RB/WLMS/MCL/FRI/LTS) there should be more than 6 spots on the table.
I actually think the current point-system is good.(bar the double-Farce) the only ‘flaw’ is that a team like Marussia with a fluke result can beat a Sauber just by that one result. (or more like how Marussia took 10th last year, by the grace of a single 13th position, as mentioned in the article)
But looking at that from the bright side, it is a strong incentive for the minor teams to try reach there every once in a while.
I personally love the underdogs. That is one of my main motivators to watch, to see a Herbert win in a Steward, or to see Fisichella? come 2nd at Spa, or to see Bianchi grab the first points for Marussia.
From the frontrunners we all know it is going round in cycles as they keep chartering each others best employees. (that is why everybody kind of knew 2 years ago that MB would be champ this year, they started gathering all the right people, and you know then it is just a matter of time. We also saw it with RB 7-8 years ago.. the recruited good heads, and the ascend started) So i like the battles at the front, especially the close-wheel-combat on the knife-edge without crashing, like true titans, but for me the real thrill will be when Bottas bags the Final next week, or if the Hulk wins it. So they need to provide a bone to run after for the minor teams in some way.
18th November 2014, 13:19
We’d been using 10-6-4-3-2-1 for years and it worked fine. Don’t see why they felt the need to meddle with it.
18th November 2014, 15:39
Given there are always at least 10 cars who finish the race, it wasn’t a bad idea to extend the points system to the top 10 finshers IMHO. But yeah I agree, it was the best points system we’ve ever got.
18th November 2014, 13:26
All of the mentioned points systems are wrong.
To prioritise the winner is the best way. Then the unfairness (on the driver) of reliability is less of an issue.
Two second places should never be as good as a win. This is my preferred point system.
300, 146, 72, 35, 17, 8, 4, 2, 1
If this were used Hamilton would already be champion.
18th November 2014, 14:08
Under points system(91-02) Lewis would already be champion of 2014, but Felipe would be champion of 2008
I think there are more than one example like this.
18th November 2014, 15:37
In fact Massa would have been champion in any point system used until 2002.
18th November 2014, 15:32
I don’t understand the point of extending the points until the 20th or the 26th driver … Why award points to drivers who don’t finish the race? If there’s one thing ‘fair’ about the current point system, it is that every driver that fails to finish the race gets the same amount of points (0).
I think the current points system isn’t too bad IMHO. But we should award more points to the winner of the race, why don’t go back to the 1991-2002 point system?
“I believe it’s wrong to give the title to anyone other than the driver who wins the most races.”
In many cases I would agree with you, but not every time. There’s something to be said about consistency too. It would be a shame if teams who build more reliable cars are penalised because the award system only takes into account the best finishes.
An ideal situation would be an extended version of the 1991-2002 points system where the best 10 finishers get points and winning a race is worth a lot more than finishing second.
My proposition: 15-10-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1.
It’s a compromise but I think it’s pretty ‘fair’.
18th November 2014, 16:06
I propose a system with points for the first three places only, slightly incrementing the values with each race. Like this:
AUS (1st race): 1st place: 33 points – 2nd place: 22 points – 3rd place – 11 points
MAL (2nd race): 1st place: 36 points – 2nd place: 24 points – 3rd place – 12 points
GER (10th race): 1st place: 60 points – 2nd place: 40 points – 3rd place – 20 points
JAP (15th race): 1st place: 75 points – 2nd place: 50 points – 3rd place – 25 points
Applying the system to the current season, positions would be:
HAM: 759 – ROS: 667 – RIC: 281 – BOT: 144 – VET: 102 – ALO: 56 – MAS: 51
with 87 points remaining for the winner of ABU.
I think it’s a fair compromise for the objectives Keith specified.
18th November 2014, 17:00
One further thing. A poster previously held up Moto GP as an example of a suitable points system, but I would comment that Moto GP is in a far bigger mess than even F1 as far as rules are concerned, and I wouldn’t recommend adopting anything at all from that messed up series.
18th November 2014, 16:26
If the World Championship is decided solely on the highest number of wins in a year with a dominant car, the season might well be over after it has just started, especially if there is a favoured No.1 driver. At least with a points system such as we have now, there is an opportunity for a driver who has flogged a dead duck around the circuits for a season and gained points finishes well above the car’s capability, to become champion.
To me, he would be a worthier champion than the guy in the dominant car with race wins.
I therefore vote for the status quo.
Keith Campbell (@keithedin)
18th November 2014, 19:31
Have to say I disagree with the conclusion from the article. I think it swings the system too far towards best results only and may mean that there is little to no difference from 2nd place downwards (for championship contenders anyway). It also reduces the chance for the underdog in a season to compete for the championship because usually the fastest car will have the most race wins even if they fail to finish in a few races (through mechanical failures or driver errors). Take 2012 for instance – I don’t think alonso would have mounted a realistic title challenge in a relatively slower car if only wins counted. I think a count back system would also reduce the chances of a championship decider and increase the number of ‘dead rubbers’
My only problem with the current system (after removal of double points) is that the non-points scoring teams are subjected to pretty much a ‘best result lottery’ which usually involves finishing highest of your competitors in the race which had most retirements. My suggestion for this would be a ‘secondary points system’ which could follow the main points system but only for those who haven’t scored a championship point. So scoring a top’10 finish would still be a huge result, but if several teams fail to do this then consistency and season long performance would decide the order rather than just 1 result.
19th November 2014, 3:47
The points should be at 25 20 15 10 8 6 4 3 2 1 with 22 to 26 drivers. WINS and poduims would be
an important factor of each race.
19th November 2014, 11:33
I have to say I think that when designing a points system, specific examples (case studies, if you like) should be found to see the outcome of the potential points system on that year’s championship. I will pick a season that provides an interesting example of this, although perhaps surprisingly I will not focus on that year’s championship battle:
This is the season I want to look at:
I chose the 2003 season specifically because I think one of the most important things any potential F1 points system should decide is whether to favour a driver who has one race win, or even a podium finish, but precious few other results of note (in this case, Giancarlo Fisichella) or to favour a driver who doesn’t have so many eye-catching finishes but was a more consistent points scorer (Mark Webber). The former also applies to a lesser extent for Heinz-Harald Frentzen and the latter to a lesser extent for Jenson Button. I personally believe the points system should favour the latter although then again I also like to see the drivers with the most wins compete for the championship – if the champion has won one race less than the runner-up like Hamilton in 2008 against Massa I’m not bothered, but if you have a season like 1958 where Moss won four races to Hawthorn’s one I don’t think that’s quite right (oddly enough I don’t have a problem with Piquet’s 1987 championship because Mansell’s six wins were accompanied by few other points scores whereas Piquet was a consistent podium finish albeit a less frequent winner).
Under the 2003-09 points system (10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1) Button and Webber both finished on 17 points, with Frentzen on 13 and Fisichella on 12. Under the 1991-2002 points system (10-6-4-3-2-1) Button would have 6 points with Webber gaining only 3 as 7th and 8th placed finishes did not earn any points under that system, whereas Frentzen, whose points scores came exclusively from top-six finishes would have had 7 points and Fisichella would have had 10 points from his race win, and his race win only, and would have placed highest in the championship out of the four. Under the current points system, Button would have scored 52 points, Webber would have 50 points, Frentzen 37 points and Fisichella 33 points, the exact same order as in the 2002 championship although with slight differences in the points gaps.
Overall then I would say that the 1991-2002 system favoured race wins too heavily and the 2003-09 points system didn’t reward winning sufficiently (I think Hamilton being only point ahead of Rosberg this season with that system is a good illustration of this). The current points system leans the same way as the 2003-09 points system in the lower reaches of the points although the relative differences between places at the top have increased so on the whole I think it’s better even though I don’t really like the somewhat inflated points tallies compared to championships produced by 9-10 points for a win, which has rendered the all-time F1 points scoring figures irrelevant – not that’s a big deal in the grand scheme of things.
I’ve often wondered about a points system along the lines of 15-10-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 down to 10th place, I’ll try that for the four 2003 drivers. I get:
Button – 35 points
Webber – 33 points
Frentzen – 23 points
Fisichella – 21 points
The gaps are actually quite similar to those for the current points system, although with smaller points totals – Frentzen is a bit closer to Webber actually, and Fisichella slightly closer to Frentzen, but Button and Webber are again separated by 2 points.
I thin the current regular points system isn’t too bad, I’m definitely not alone in my view on ‘Abu Double’ though – hope this never happens again, I think it took a lot of the tension out of the Brazilian GP as it was clear that the championship could not be decided at that race (even a Hamilton victory with Rosberg retiring would have meant Rosberg would still have been able to win the title by virtue of a win at Abu Dhabi with Hamilton not scoring).
30th November 2014, 11:57
There are two heating elements in the toaster ovens. Simply open a box of
baking soda and set the open box on the middle rack in your oven. If you are in a similar situation, read on and I will explain the process I went
through to wire my new oven.
Download rage patch without steam
1st December 2014, 9:43
Generally, a blue screen of death error code indicates a major issue using a
piece of hardware or software. When discovcer the type of
your computer, you have to go to there to if you wan to drivers.
17th December 2014, 21:44
The obvious system for me uses powers of two rounded to nice neat numbers, for the top ten finishers. That way two second places equals one first, two third places equals two seconds and so on. Would look something like this: 500-250-125-60-30-15-8-4-2-1
Keisoglou Alexandros (@)
5th January 2015, 22:02
Not sure if someone has already said this(haven’t gone through all comments yet, but, screw it, i’m gonna write it whatever.
“For me, the solution to the question of which points system to use is not to have one at all. The true champion is the driver who wins the most races.”
But, isn’t that system effectively eliminating a drivers’ consistency throughout a season, @keithcollantine?
Say, Driver A could have get 6 wins, whilst Driver B gets only 2 or 3 wins. Dr. A, however, has many DNFs, whilst Dr. B has finished almost every single race in the top 5. And, without a Points System, all the consistent year B had, goes blown up. But with a Points System, everything could change!
But all your proposed systems are very good. But, i still prefer the ’03-’09. Win to 2nd place diff. was way too small.(Which is good to my eyes, keeping both titles alive longer). On the other hand, car reliability has improved much since the ’00s.
Meaning that a NASCAR-like system would have to be adopted(NOT with the elimination thing, however!)
One more thing: At least way i see it, there’s no real way to pick the best of the best, a way that would see absolutely no controversary. Only God could pick No.1 from Senna-Prost in 1989 and ’90 and see everyone happy.
If i would have to pick a points system, i would choose the Stepped one, with some minor changes-mostly pts. diff. between the first 3 or 4 places.
29th March 2016, 16:49
what about the following:
points for qualifying: 5,4,3,2,1
points for race: 20,16,14,12,10,8,6,4,2,1
4th September 2016, 19:53
I have an idea – I’m sure I’m not the first one and I did not take the time to read all of your great idea’s. So my apologies if this a double thread to you as a reader. But as I quickly scanned, I mostly saw a discussion about points for place. In my opinion, the system of giving points is just a simplification of the driver and team performance during a race. Does it have to be that simple? The public isn’t scared of a few numbers.
The problem – as I see it the last few years – is that dominating drivers and teams pretty much secure their titles after about 7 – 10 races, some exceptions like the small difference between Hamilton and Rosberg in 2016 excluded from my statement. Maybe more important: driver and team individual race performances are not reflected in differences in points at the moment and will never be with most variations on the same system. Also there is no serious result visible in overall driver and team performances. I think a connection between different racetracks and overall performances should be made. The medium could be the endtime driven on every racetrack.
An outcome in the F1 championship more true to the overall performances and at the same time a more interesting season could be achieved by counting the driven times of the race, something like the system of the Tour de France. Every race, a driver’s end time counts and is added to the overall time driven. And if a driver can’t drive to the finish in a race, a significant amount of extra time can be added (different from cycling race, because otherwise there are too a few drivers left in Abu Dhabi).
The result could be a more true outcome of exact performances – the media are more than ably to show the viewer a clear picture of what’s going on, so that can’t be a problem. And smaller teams that start performing better during the season have more chance to climb up again – especially when the number one driver has a bad day. Much more interesting to watch the F1. I think the strategies in a single race and regarding other racetracks develop more.
And last – to get a more interesting F1 Championship – it’s never just in the ranking system. It’s also in simplifying the endless mechanical rules. Start at the end of the track just because you have a new engine is a joke for Mercedes. More budget, better car. They don’t care, Hamilton drives a few rounds in traffic and he’s back up again. No harm anyway, because there’s enough money to spend even another full car. Those things are history when overall time is of the essence.
Comments are closed.