Sprint race start, Red Bull Ring, 2022

Reverse grid sprint races under consideration again – Domenicali

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In the round-up: Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says the idea of having reverse grid sprint races is under consideration again.

In brief

Domenicali floats reverse grid proposal again

Stefano Domenicali, Zandvoort, 2022
Mixed-up grids have “beauty”, says Domenicali
Domenicali expanded on his desire to see more competitive sessions and less practice during race weekends in future. Speaking to Corriere della Serra the F1 CEO suggested “each session should be giving away either points, or single qualifying laps, or a qualification for a different and shorter Saturday race, instead of the third free practice, perhaps with the mechanism of the inverted grid.”

The disrupted grids caused by multiple penalties at races such as this year’s Belgian Grand Prix show “the beauty of having reshuffles in the race, more overtaking,” said Domenicali. “We have an obligation to try.”

F1 repeatedly tried to introduce reverse grid races without success before Domenicali replaced Chase Carey as CEO at the beginning of last year. The proposal was blocked by some teams, including Mercedes, whose team principal Toto Wolff described it as “not something we should even come close to in Formula 1.”

Latifi criticises ‘slow’ stewards

Nicholas Latifi said the Italian Grand Prix stewards were too slow to penalise Kevin Magnussen for cutting the Rettifilo chicane on the first lap of the race.

“I got really compromised in the first corner, just got sandwiched between cars and tried to avoid getting crashed into,” he explained. “One of the Haases cut the corner with no consequence at all. It came from behind me, because it was behind me into the first corner, and then he exited two or three places in front of me. So I think the stewards were a bit asleep there because it was multiple laps and they didn’t do anything.”

Latifi said the setback compromised his race as he spent the opening laps “stuck behind the Haas.” Magnussen was eventually given a five-second time penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage.

“In clean air I think I was quicker than them but the problem is we have no grip through the corners,” he said. “They’re pulling like a second through the corners and we gain maybe some of it back in the straights. And the race was compromised from there.”

Zhou pleased by points return

Zhou Guanyu was relieved to score his first points finish for seven races after taking 10th place at Monza.

“It was quite an intense race but we had the pace to keep the Alpine behind, also the Aston at the beginning,” said the Alfa Romeo driver. “So my focus was always to get into the points, I think it was very close the whole race. So it was happy to be finally back to where we were after Canada.”

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Comment of the day

Mark reflects on yesterday’s alarming, though ultimately encouraging, news about Alexander Albon:

So sorry to hear he’s sidelined with something like this. They say its a simple surgery, but I say its only simple if it is happening to the other guy.

I’ve had major surgery and just waking up and getting your bearings can be very difficult. Recovery post op is different for everyone depending on how the anesthesia is metabolised out of the body.

I’m just glad they caught it and were able to get him on a ventilator him in time. Hopefully he’ll be back soon. He always seems like a very nice young man. Get well soon!
Mark in Florida

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Frantz Guns, Jackysteeg and Nick!

On this day in motorsport

The all-conquering combination of Ayrton Senna, McLaren and Honda took their final win together today in 1992
  • 30 years ago today Ayrton Senna won the Italian Grand Prix at Monza while Osella and Fondmetal started their last races – and new champion Nigel Mansell announced his retirement

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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104 comments on “Reverse grid sprint races under consideration again – Domenicali”

  1. As i said when i mentioned that points for practice, reverse grids and more were been discussed a few days ago.

    The thinking is that they can throw more artificial things and outright gimmicks at Friday/Saturday and still argue that the sporting integrity of F1 isn’t been harmed because the main GP on Sunday will remain untouched.

    Essentially catering Friday/Saturday to the younger more casual audience who are more likely to enjoy the things been proposed while telling the more hardcore fans who see such things as artificial gimmicks that they still have the GP and they can just ignore Friday/Saturday if they don’t like the gimmicks.

    And the overall gamble is that the longer term, more dedicated hardcore fans will watch no matter what they do anyway. The fact that opposition to the sprints was as high as it was/is yet the people who don’t like them still watch those weekends with ratings and overall engagement remaining similar to normal weekends has given them further confidence in that belief.

    If you value F1 as a sport then I hate to say this but you may want to start looking at watching something else because the F1 you knew and love won’t exist in a few years. And again I hate to say this but nobody in any position of power cares so long as the new target audience keeps watching.

    1. Final thing & it’s something I said this last year which I’ll repeat.

      If you don’t like sprint races or whatever else they do to the format of weekends or sessions they you really do need to not watch and not engage because a drop in TV ratings & A drop in engagement on social media etc.. is the only way to tell them you really don’t like these things as its that more than polling and opinions in comment sections that they are looking at.

      1. 100%. The one thing Liberty are interested in is making money. They see the sprint races as a way of doing that through increased viewing figures. If more people watch Friday quali than would have watched FP2 then that’s a win for them. If the people who would have watched Saturday quali all tune in for the sprint race, then they’re up overall for the weekend.

        The only way this idea will get dropped is if people don’t watch the Sprint races and Sky request that they go back to Saturday qualifying.

      2. I don’t expect reverse grids to fly with the teams any more than it did the last time they tried to get that through, so I’m surprised and disappointed with SD for that. I suggest the smart thing to do would be as F1 has told us, which is to give these new regs…the overhaul of F1…a few seasons to settle in, and the cars and teams will be closer as will the racing and the action. I’m just, again, surprised and disappointed that SD doesn’t seem to have that patience or belief, and that he thinks engine penalties to top cars/drivers makes for anything other than token passes that attempt to put quantity over quality. Let’s just give the regs at least through next season and see where things stand, and I predict even SD will no longer feel compelled to convince the teams (and us fans) to go beyond the massive reg changes into manipulation territory.

        As to those who want to make a statement in protest yes I have held the opinion all along throughout the years that the best way to make the point to F1 and get their attention is to stop watching.

    2. 100% this. I hate what modern F1 has become and yet i still tune in every weekend. Why? Is it habit? Am i afraid of missing something? I dont know. Although i will admit that Zandvoort and Monza i only watched the first 10 laps and then went to sleep. No genuinely, i did fall asleep.

    3. I found this brilliant article by Keith from 2015 recently:


      How many will be introduced under Liberty Media?

      1. We already have:

        – races of unequal value (sprint races, a much weaker version of Chase for the Cup)
        – points (well, a point) for fastest lap
        – fines for (some) technical infringements (albeit usually – but not always – accompanied by another penalty)

        Success ballast has been discussed but not yet implemented in the past. Random grids don’t seem to have any current appetite (it got briefly suggested in the early 2000s), but I feel like we are one more problematic grid assembly off it being proposed.

        F1 circuits tend not to be suited to joker laps, but I could imagine Liberty implementing them at Las Vegas and/or Miami as circuit-specific gimmicks. It’s not hard to imagine the winner of Driver of the Day getting Fanboost as a reward (further encouraging gaming the system and fandom-based voting), though that’s not been discussed as far as I know.

        Split qualifying is unlikely to be discussed while the grid remains at 22 or fewer cars. At this stage, split pit stop windows seem more likely. Car changes are completely against F1’s current zeitgeist and I think the FIA would laugh at Liberty if it proposed that.

    4. I make a point of not watching the sprint races, not even the highlights.

    5. In the future F1 championship could be decided at Friday or Saturday rather than Sunday..

      1. It’s the logical conclusion, isn’t it. Races already are now.

        Looking at the bigger picture – races, and the season holistically, are largely decided before the season even starts…

        1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          13th September 2022, 15:34

          yeah why bother?

    6. Ask Derek Warwick about reverse grids he did it for years in hot rods the fastest men at the back with the world champion starting last great racing

    7. Yes please reverse grid sprint races on Saturdays, regular grand Prix on Sunday. Qualifying on Fridays. 👍🏽

    8. Sadly I have to agree with you there @gt-racer, @petebaldwin – they will only stop introducing more and more of this once/if they see viewing numbers decline.

      I guess we can be “happy” the backlash from fans and especially from the teams (largely over how much money the teams would get) stopped them from expanding things to 6 sprint races. The owners are surely asking for growing numbers every quarter and this is a key part of “growing the revenue”

    9. I’m afraid you are right. I’m a long term F1 follower, since the 60s, and it is now going a direction that will lose me. I’ve already decided that really, just waiting for a suitable breakpoint.

      However it may just be that what attracted me in the first place has inevitably gone, just the march of progress. It is too scientific and predictable now, because knowledge, instrumentation and modeling is so advanced.

      The gimmicks that try to replace that unpredictability do nothing for me, but I feel there is no obviously better way.

    10. @gt-racer After discovering this weekend that the FIA considers Abu Dhabi 2021 to be a feature not a bug and appears to be trying to make Race Control race-spoiling rule-breaking more common, it is becoming increasingly difficult to justify watching. Unfortunately I don’t get much choice about watching due to the chosen direction running increased risk of lawyers… …but let’s say there are weekends when I wish I was allowed to simply catch up via Twitter and not bother with the TV coverage.

      I’d also point out that 2021 figures for F1 were lower than for 2020, especially for most of the latter part of the season. So clearly viewing figures aren’t what’s motivating Liberty here.

  2. I really wish they’d just leave the sport alone. If you take away all practices then races will just become unpredictable for half a season until the teams figure out how to model setups better for their cars then we will back to square one with the rich teams doing best because they have the best modelling and processes.

    Reverse grids are the stupidest idea in motorsport ever, especially when some teams have sister teams that could influence such races easily.

    If they want to level the playing field then introduce ballast. They’ll soon see nobody watches F1 to have teams and drivers artificially hobbled.

    And I’ll continue to complain about stupid ideas up until the point I no longer watch the sport.

    1. If they want to level the playing field then introduce ballast.

      Sorry @slowmo, but I find ballast the ‘stupidest idea in motorsport ever’. Ballast would penalise the best car builders and turn F1 into something like a spec series.
      I’m not fighting for reverse grids per se, but I would like to see an alternative to lining up cars fastest to slowest before the ‘big event’. I don’t just want only Latifi and Stroll to show me how they can start from the back, manage the first corner, and overtake others. Verstappen and Hamilton should show me those skills as well.

      I would love to see something like a qualifying session to start the race weekend, two sprint races – of which one is a reverse grid – counting towards a sprint cup; and, a normal GP race on Sunday for the World Championship.

      1. I don’t like the idea of ballast having looked at other series that used it but it would certainly be more effective at what they’re trying to do with these gimmicks and also fairer.

        Your idea sounds great, how about you start another series where they have sprints and endurance races then, instead of changing what many fans love about F1 now and have for decades. That’s the crux of the matter with these ideas of adding sprint races is you’re spoiling something other people love for the sake of it, ultimately because it might make a bit more money.

    2. then races will just become unpredictable for half a season until the teams figure out how to model setups better for their cars

      Sounds a lot like the 2012 season, which almost everyone loved and still look back on with fondness to this day.

      Reverse grids are the stupidest idea in motorsport ever

      I don’t think so at all. I think they only affect the starting order, and the races themselves remain as pure as any stubborn, hardcore F1 fan could want them to be.

      If they want to level the playing field then introduce ballast.

      That’s even more controversial in F1 than reverse grids are – given that F1 is mostly about the engineering and which team makes the fastest car.
      However, I don’t think it would have the effect you suggest. I think a lot of people would like to watch it that way, as the racing would undoubtedly be more close and competitive, and any dominant streaks would be very short indeed.
      F1 audiences show time and time again that they are against the idea or principle of something, but actually really positive about its effects when it is put to use in reality.

      1. I didn’t like 2012, I thought it was a joke and made Pirelli look ridiculous such was the lottery week to week of those tyres. But you’re right that it is likely a similar scenario but it has been seen with other new innovations in F1 too in the past whereby eventually the teams adapt and the randomness is removed.

        No point arguing with you about the stupidity of reverse grids, pretty sure we’ve done that one before and you’re not going to change my mind.

        Ballast is indeed controversial but it would deliver what people claim they want in the sport in a fair way. The problem is what people are asking for is neither a sport nor fair. Most F1 fans before sprint races were introduced were against them, guess what, they still are after all the trials. What’s hilarious is the fan surveys that F1 put out after the sprint races basically had no way to actually say you didn’t enjoy the sprints and never wanted them again. Every part of the survey was manipulative into trying to spin any positive. It about sums up Liberty and why I refuse to engage in their fan feedback now as it’s a joke.

        1. I think a lot of people want their sport to be fun and entertaining – not just stale and dull.
          I don’t see any harm in that.

          I really like success ballast – and I don’t find it at all anti-sport and unfair. It’s merely a condition that participants are aware of and accept when they compete.
          If I win a race, I’ll get a tougher challenge next time. Nothing unfair about it as it could (and will) happen to everyone else too. I’m still racing and performing at my highest level, so there’s nothing unsporting about it either.
          From the team’s perspective – they’ll be motivated to make a car that is still superior even with the ‘handicap.’ That drives the technical competition even further and faster.

          It’s not to everyone’s taste, obviously but it’s certainly still a fair, sporting competition.
          It’s also not to everyone’s taste to have a fundamentally faster car that wins the championship because it’s faster right from winter testing…

          As for fan surveys – there’s three choices. Either play their game and just be as honest as you can be, or play it smarter than them, or don’t play it at all.
          Not that it really matters, anyway. They know that fan surveys really only show what the most dedicated fans want, as they are the ones who go looking for fan surveys to fill in.
          If they don’t like the answers, they won’t release the data. Their decision making is not actually based on what fans want, it’s based on what fans and sponsors will pay for.

          1. @S:
            They already have ‘ballast’ in the form of wind tunnel time and budget caps. That’s enough. Almost all other forms of motor racing are, are close or closer to being spec series. Anyone who likes that have a plethora of series to choose from. I want the technical warfare. It’s about the cars first. And what the drivers do with it second

          2. You fail to acknowledge that the ‘technical warfare’ would continue even with ballast – perhaps even intensify.
            Anywhere that technical development is allowed, it will occur – because if you don’t engage in it, you’ll certainly lose.
            All it does is reduce the gains big teams get from it on the track – while potentially increasing the gains they get from it off the track (in terms of engineering solutions applicable to other areas of their business).
            If you are someone who thinks that F1 produces ‘relevant tech’ then success ballast is only a positive.

  3. Good way to distract from the fact that the cost cap, and all the efforts to level the playing field, leave the championship at risk of being decided with 5 races to go.

    Last season was far more competitive than thisone– because once again, Stop Changing the aero rules every freakin’ season!!!!!

    Outside of the top 3, no one can keep up with the regulations changes– cost cap or not.

    1. It’s almost as if you have no idea of the actual reason that last season was more competitive (among only two teams…..) than this season.
      It wasn’t the changing of the rules ruining this year, it was the abandoning of the old rules helping last year.
      That’s the side of the pattern people should be more aware of. This year has had loads of development resources spent on it, where last year didn’t.
      Either never change the rules, or change them substantially every year. The year before any major change will always be closer.

      1. It’s almost as if you’re being deliberately obtuse.

        You’re splitting a hair that doesn’t exist– Consistent rules from year to year, allows the teams to converge in terms of performance. Every time there’s a major change to the aero rules, only Red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari can compete– and frequently, one of those teams hasn’t really been competitive either.

        2021: 5 constructors won races. 8 different drivers had podiums (9 if you count Russell at Spa). Two drivers fought it out for the driver’s championship until the final race.

        2022: 2 constructors have won races. 6 drivers have podiums. Both championships are effectively over with 6 races to go.

        1. Consistent rules from year to year, allows the teams to converge in terms of performance.

          Has never happened, and will never happen.
          It’s never happened in any other series either, unless it was through technical or sporting regulation.

          Both of your examples are perfectly explained by my comment above.

        2. I think you may have misunderstood the point S was making. I believe what he’s saying is that because the new regulations were so different for 2022 it meant the big teams transitioned away from developments on their cars in 2021 to focus on 2022 with them only pushing enough to keep level with each other. A direct consequence of moving from one big set of technical regulations to the next is development is slowed down by the pace setters as they don’t need to push the development race down a path that will be irrelevant in the new rules thus allowing the field to compress.

          It’s also worth noting the sheer number of incidents between Hamilton and Verstappen last year contributed to some of the extra winners.

    2. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
      13th September 2022, 15:35

      S is deliberately obtuse. He’s a contrarian troll and he’s been doing it to me for a while

      1. Now, now. Let’s not resort to name-calling, @sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk.

        If you are saying that someone can’t put forward an alternative opinion (regularly) then you are condoning shutting down meaningful conversation and debate.
        Every opinion has equal validity – even if you don’t like it or agree with it.

        Even if I just do it for fun, doesn’t it help you to see how other people might be thinking about things sometimes?

        1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          13th September 2022, 18:59

          Its the manner of your discourse, which is apallingly provacative and blunt to the point of rudeness… perhaps we are alike and that is why we clash.

          But you admit to taking enjoyment in deliberately winding people up. Im not the only one to have noticed this. Just don’t do it! Be nice.

          As for all opinions having equal validity thats simply not true. I know people who are of the the opinion that we didnt land on the moon and think they can prove it.

          Here’s the best I can do in terms of an olive branch. A truce. I wont comment on your posts if you dont comment on mine.

          Happy F1 watching.

          1. provacative and blunt

            Yep. That’s sometimes what it takes for people to stop and consider that their opinion isn’t the only one.
            Anyone who is interested in learning welcomes being challenged.

            As for all opinions having equal validity thats simply not true

            Of course it is.
            The content of an opinion may be questionable, but a person’s right to have it certainly is valid.
            There’s absolutely nothing wrong with people having the opinion that the moon landing was fake – but that’s just an opinion, isn’t it… Valid, but you can disregard it if you wish.

            There’s no need for any truce, because we aren’t at war. At least I’m not, anyway.
            This is essentially a public forum, and only the administrators get to decide how it is run.

            A bit like F1, really.
            You don’t have to like everything about it, but it’s ultimately your choice to engage with it.

        2. Every opinion has equal validity

          Until it collides with the facts

          You may live in a tenth floor and have the opinion that jumping out the window is as good a way to exit home as going through the door and walking down the stairs.

          Well, Darwin takes good care of that sort of opinions

          1. As above – the content of that opinion may turn out to be unproductive, even untrue – but nevertheless, it’s valid to have it.
            Look at how many anti-vaxxers there are, despite all the medical evidence to the contrary of their opinions about it.
            Look at how many religions and religious followers there are, each denying the ‘truth’ of the others.

            As someone once said: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

        3. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          14th September 2022, 8:22

          I think its valid to say everyone is entitled to express their own opinions. As for the criteria when it comes to the actual validity of an opinion, I say is its has to be backup up with facts and examples. Others say is it just has to exist… the latter criteria is pointless methinks.

          Read this

          1. I think its valid to say everyone is entitled to express their own opinions.

            Indeed. That is a valid opinion.
            Although, it would still be your equally valid personal opinion if you proposed the opposite.

            As for the criteria when it comes to the actual validity of an opinion, I say is its has to be backup up with facts and examples.

            I say facts and opinions are two completely separate things that may or may not intersect.
            What you are describing is, IMO, not the validity of an opinion, but the value of its content to the receiver.

            I read the article. It’s an opinion piece…..
            Which is totally valid – however I don’t necessarily agree with much of it. It has a low value to me….
            But good on the author for expressing it, as is their right.

  4. Coventry Climax
    13th September 2022, 1:54

    Costcap result with the people that take care of Dementicali; they don’t throw away his old reminder sticky notes anymore.

  5. When you’re competing with all the streaming platforms, PC/handheld/console gaming, movies, music industry and hundreds of other pastimes…. you’d probably have to look for such changes to increase viewerships. Unlike football, cricket, basketball etc… motorsports aren’t something that’s mass adopted, although certain simulation games are somewhat addressing that. Still, F1 can’t only depend on being a sport and attract such massive numbers like those other things.

    We don’t have to like it or accept it, but the long term fans or purists make up a small portion of the whole(intended) audiences. These changes aren’t geared towards us.

    1. purists make up a small portion of the whole(intended) audiences.

      And are the ‘purists’ really ‘purists’ or merely self proclaimed?

      1. Either way, it’s a means to making their individual preferences seem most important.

      2. I usually differentiate between long-term fans vs purists by their resistance to any sorts of changes (necessary or unnecessary).

        I myself was fairly resistant to changes years ago, perpetually stuck on the late 90s (Häkkinen championship years in particular). My opinions changed largely because of two different occasions in F1 recent history… the aftermath/impact of the 2008 economy crash and the Jules Bianchi accident in Suzuka.

    2. These changes aren’t geared towards us.

      By your words, I’m not sure you yourself qualify as ‘one of us’.
      I am sure though, that if these changes do continue take place, I’m no longer ‘one of you’.

      Again, what you say and most posts about this and other changes, imply ‘the purists’ are always opposed to change. That is a gross generalisation if not a plain mistake. It’s not the change itself, but the direction of the change that is being questioned.
      My generalisation is that that direction is quickly chopping away anything that has to do with sport or competition, and solely introducing new things for the sake of entertainment. It’s shortsighted and cheap, like anything that is solely run commercially. And it brings hypocrisy and false reasoning (e.g.: ‘public surveys and the interpretation of the outcome’) and inconsistency and straightforward, plain lies (e.g.: Race ruling, the 2021 finale and scapegoating Masi as the sole culprit).

      1. I don’t have much to disagree with you here. However, people who are in charge of this entertainment business called F1 have different priorities, the intended audiences now are different that what you are.

    3. @praxis Absolutely. I am not too fussed about change generally and it’s fair to say that F1 isn’t the most accessible sport. In that regard, trying various things and evolving is also what makes F1 survive.

      For sure, it is not often the right call, but I feel F1 as a whole has been relatively able to adapt and keep the essential. And maybe if a major audience grows around new principles it is relevant from a business point of view. We’ve seen the effect of drive to survive. I have lots of friends who came talking about F1 and began watching it so they can get it right sometimes.

      Reverse grids is something common in F2/F3 and is not totally uninteresting in my opinion. I doubt it could work in F1 though as the pace delta between teams is too big, especially if they only reverse the 10 first places. In this case I’m not sure it is a good idea but wouldn’t mind if they try as long as it remains FAIR (no fanboost thank you).

      1. ……but I feel F1 as a whole has been relatively able to adapt and keep the essential.

        Well said, @spoutnik. Let’s hope the reverse grid is something that works for the better. Personally I am more interested in regulations and technologies to bring the teams’ performance gap down. But, that’s not as easy to implement, as we’ve seen throughout F1 history.

    4. @praxis If what I’m seeing is anything to go by, they’re not geared towards the average new viewer F1’s picked up recently either.

  6. Im convinced this guy hasnt got a clue. Last week hes on TV saying “We dont want more teams”. This week hes on this reverse grid nonsense again. The sprint races are pointless anyway because the fastest cars just cruise past with DRS and end up at the front of the grid for the GP. STOP adding gimmicks because you need Netflix story lines.

  7. Imagine a world where F1 was attractive because it didn’t pander to the latest audience grabbing idea and remained true to it’s original format: practice, qualifying, the Big Race.
    Constantly chasing seemingly novel ideas to gain even more profits is endangering the sport I love. Not to say we don’t tweak the details to perfect the product but these proposals would simply dilute the essence imho. Recently it seems like change is for changes sake.

    1. Imagine a world where F1 was attractive because it didn’t pander to the latest audience grabbing idea and remained true to it’s original format: practice, qualifying, the Big Race

      It does have those things, and will continue to. It is just getting other things, too, which are optional for each individual viewer.
      However, I get your general vibe….
      To be what (I imagine) you suggest would make it a niche product – only attractive to a very small audience.

      But in reality, F1 is a business. A marketing medium. All elite sport is now.
      If you don’t want it to be that way, you’ll have to buy it yourself – and even if you managed that, the (current) teams would probably all desert anyway, as they want the money too.

      1. How can things be ‘optional for each individual viewer‘ when we’re talking of a series of events, during a season, that makes up a championship, with points increasingly being awarded awarded for every sub-event, fart and wave during the weekends for these events?
        Should they -god forbid, but don’t count out Domenicali- ever come up with the silly idea to have the main race start with a reverse grid, would that make it ‘optional’ to view too?
        It’s ridiculous and you know it.

        1. PS : They’ve already got me so far that I started writing the words ‘main race’, which is a ridiculous concept in itself.
          PS2: @ S: The whole idea behind this ‘points for anything we can think of and get away with’ nonsense is exactly that it is NOT optional, but attracts higher viewer counts = income.

          1. The whole idea behind this ‘points for anything we can think of and get away with’ nonsense is exactly that it is NOT optional, but attracts higher viewer counts = income.

            I believe the phrase you were searching for is “income stream consumer units, with the attention span of a lobotomised goldfish”
            Which of course requires short events and allows for putting someone who qualified first in last place because the consumer unit can’t recall who did what in a previous event without checking what their smarter-than-them phone says.

            I’d switch off my cynical mode, but apparently it’s been overused and is currently broken, so you’re getting the real feed.

        2. Perhaps you could ignore the championship points. They only really mean anything after the final race of the season – a description that is true for the championship itself. A championship is just the combined results of a series of individual events anyway – each of which should be the best they can be on their own.
          Just enjoy qualifying for the standalone time-trial event that it is.
          And appreciate that if the grid order is different, then the race will be a different, perhaps more difficult, challenge for the competitors. Ultimately, the person/team who wins will be the one who comes up with the best combination of strategy, solutions, luck and performance on the day – and that (to me, at least) is the right winner.
          But it’s not just about the winner anyway – it’s about all the actions, consequences, choices, interactions, conditions and circumstances that play out along the way that eventually lead to those results.

          I honestly don’t see anything fundamentally wrong with most of the changes they are proposing – some will be to my taste, some will not. That’s been true of F1’s evolution for the whole 35+ years I’ve been watching it, and was the same prior to that.
          F1 is a business and it is being run as such – that which achieves a set goal or target is deemed to be successful. That which doesn’t changes again and the evolution continues.

  8. I wouldn’t mind having FP1 as the sole practice & non-competitive session as he’s suggested, but the reverse-grid format idea is once again unappealing.

    Getting stuck behind MAG doesn’t change the embarrassing fact he got outperformed despite a considerable advantage in car familiarity.

    I fully share COTD’s sentiments.

  9. I’d be happy to see Monza drop off the calendar forever if it meant we’d never have to be subjected to reverse grid chat again because some fast cars decided to take penalties at a very unique track to minimise their losses.

    Not Spa though <3

  10. The fact someone can win a championship on a Saturday and potentially on a friday, is ridiculous. It takes away everything from the sunday race.

    On top of that it proofs Ecclestone right when he made the suggestion of sprinklers and what not.

    Again, the striving of F1/FIA to reduce costs by increasing mechanical reliability also means an increase in predictability of race outcomes.

  11. F1 doesn’t listen what people tend to say. They do first and then listen, after they have already make their minds about the thing. Like that elimination qualifying thing..

    1. @qeki – They don’t care what people think – they care what people do. More people tune in to Friday qualifying than they would for FP2 and clearly at least the same amount of people are tuning in for the Saturday race as would have to Saturday qualifying… Because of that, they count it as a success and want to do it every weekend.

      If they were losing viewers, they wouldn’t have any interest in progressing with this but clearly Sky want it – you can hear that by what their pundits and commentators are instructed to say. If it’ll make them lots of money, Liberty don’t care about the reaction from fans.

      1. @qeki @petebaldwin Almost. They care about what people pay them for. We got the sprints because someone was willing to sponsor them. This talk makes me think they believe they can earn more money off that sponsor or a replacement one. That much direct money could take a considerable number of fans quitting to compensate for it.

  12. Reverse grid is just great (I respect the majority view against it). It will test the true best of the best. HAM won six championship titles starting ahead and finishing ahead (obviously there were exceptions). He is a great driver but that doesn’t show that he was the best. He just had the best car. I am not saying he was not the best (he probably was). Simply that winning in those conditions doesn’t show a driver’s worth. Starting from the back and being able to win races shows a lot more. Your race management, your ability to overtake, etc. At the end, you might still win because you have the best car, but you showed that there is more to it.

    1. I agree. I don’t see the issue with reverse grid races, I’m an advocate of starting each race in reverse championship order. Frankly, Saturday qualifying is quite boring (never mind whatever the teams do on a Friday) & the resulting grid has little bearing on the outcome of the races (see Leclerc’s season so far). F1 needs to move with the times, those who are against such ideas are just resistant to change (regardless of how exciting that change could be).

      1. It’d definitely be more exciting. But for me it is a way to see more from drivers. Putting them to the test. That the champion truly owns it and that later in history nobody said that he won because of the car.

    2. I’m also a fan of reverse grid race, so good to see someone who has a say in the fia push for it like domenicali; let’s be honest, most of the sprints have been terrible, so why not try to make them more exciting? Reverse grids can do that, and even if drivers in the top cars tend to slice through the field, remember hamilton only made it to 5th in the brazil 2021 sprint: there’s too few laps to make it to the top generally, so if you get to battle with the other top guns, it will be special.

  13. Reverse grids are such a thing of the past…
    How about this: You have 20 cars and 20 drivers. The last driver in the standings must drive the car which stands first in the standings.
    Or there will be a draw before every race weekend… always a surprise which car you will get 😊 😊
    Financial side of things still needs some thinking though…

    Stupid you say ?? Probably… That’s why I’m sure F1 will consider the idea 😉

    1. That would be awesome, except that all teams would live in fear of finishing first because it would mean that Latifi crashes yor car next race 😄

    2. My first reaction was, Oh no, not again.
      But thinking about it, it’s not such a stupid idea after all.
      First set of Positives and Negatives I can think of:
      – It would benefit the attention to the constructor’s champonship, and they would still want to make the best car
      – It would make the driver championship more valuable, stressing the driver’s ability to adapt to and win with any car,
      – And -@Moi- it would most likely make F1 a pay-driver unfriendly environment, as 1) it would take the drivers off the team’s payroll and directly eliminate the need for pay drivers and 2) all teams would want a driver that can actually race and give valuable feedback, which will be made evident independent of the car a driver races,
      – It probably sees to it that driver championship seasons are no longer decided early on.
      – Who would be the driver’s employers?
      – What would be the impact on driver sponsorship?
      – We still have the FIA, Liberty and the lot to mess up even the very best of ideas. How else would we have gotten in this mess and the discussions around it in the first place?

      I’m sure there’s more P’s and N’s.

    3. I’ve been toying with this idea for years, to have a “proper” constructors championship by making the pilots race in all cars – thus clearly splitting both championships.
      Who pays who, engine secrets and the loss of specific car development (as tens will go for generalist setups Rather than catering to a specific driver) are the main obstacles I think. But I love the idea still !

  14. The thing I find funny about the constant discussion regarding reversing the grid for sprint races is that they’re basically admitting the sprint as it is isn’t very interesting…. They’ll never say that out loud but it’s clear that’s what they mean.

    They also know that casual fans are more likely to tune in for sessions that matter so they desperately want qualifying on Friday, a race on Saturday and a race on Sunday. With that, they can charge the broadcasters more in order to cover it and that’s their primary goal – to make more money.

    Luckily, despite the nonsense that Domenicali routinely spouts, it seems like enough people are against his plans that they’ll always be massively watered down. I can’t see the teams or the FIA ever agreeing to have every race be a sprint race with extra points for the nicest haircut and for telling the best joke during the press conferences.

    1. Hahaha, nicest haircut and best joke during the press conference… very funny although the sad thing is that we’re not far from it…

    2. I don’t understand the resistance to the reverse grid idea? The only good season under the current format in the last decade, was last year (2021 season – an all timer). That’s an indication that the conditions for an interesting season just aren’t present often enough – which leads us to ideas like this one. You could say the front running teams might be closer together in pace next year (& I mean race pace which red bull has dominated throughout 2022) but history tells us that is unlikely & so more than likely we’ll have another borefest like this season + 2013-2020. I don’t think a true reverse championship order grid would ever be described as boring & every race would be an event.

      1. Maybe because you are looking for different things when watching F1. For me personally for instance the 2021 season was my ultimate low point since I started watching F1 way back. Heavily scripted, working to an artificial ridiculous cliffhanger. Lewis totally undeserved brought on level points going into the last race. Liberty and FIA manipulating the sport for the sake of the show. It was Senna Prost Suzuka, lets change the starting grid all over again with in season tyre regulation/compound changes & ridiculously lenient penalties and well timed red flags. But it did deliver a show and controversy and therefore revenue for them, which after all is what this is all about for Liberty. Make no mistake: there will have been a few lovers of the sport when they decided to buy it, but they are probably long gone from being employed and Liberty regards this as every other investment they have made. I rather would like to see athletes competing. Diminishing team performances by drs or reversed grids or what have you, has little to do with sports but everything with entertainment and the desire for more money. I am in favor of a new governing body that is not allowed to make profit and sets up a fair talent program so we get to see the best drivers in the best cars.

  15. So, Latifi is complaining about other people being slow. Interesting…

  16. These things are experements.

    1. I’ll forgive you the typo, I make them too. Although percentage wise, typos over the number of characters used, you score isn’t that great. Plus your avator does not bode much good.

      In the professional world, experimenting is done in a controlled experiment environment.
      Think FIA coming up with a (/ an idea for a) Covid vaccine. Would you want that injection, untested? The only advantage I can think of, is that it would end all conspiracy theories about the vaccine instantly. And make them all true.

      1. mmm, but still: you score = your score

        1. I dont know what you mean but I am basically a very friendly person.
          I know I should improve my language.
          I am a big fan of Red Bull energy drink and watched Sebastian Vettel when he came to India and won here thrice.
          I only want to be specific here I did not post anything about really until Vettel criticized his own Ferrari lacked speed and it proved right actually and whole year went off.
          I know Vettel is going to retire and I hope hope he gives back to the sport something in return.
          I know Mercedes was only dominating F1 for several years and then what happened Red Bull car showed speed and it did turn out to be true in end. We did see things change after a long time.
          I know Red Bull is only winning anytime. I only went by the reports here that Ferrari and Mercedes had the importance it need. Ferrari and Mercedes were in the podium several times this year.
          I think FE is here to stay.
          I dont watch other events like F2 and F3.
          I dont know other races.
          I dont own a console right now because there are too many to choose.

  17. Its painful to over and over again hear this crap about more overtakes=more entertainment, and nothing else seem to matter. Its no fun if they dont mean anything, just like the easy DRS overtakes, which can be a snoozefest on tracks with very long straights, even though its technically an overtake.

    1. @maisch Quite. For me, all three of the last triple-header were damaged by excessively powerful DRS, and not for the first time this season. It was obvious that DRS was a push-to-pass button on many occasions.

  18. And here we were celebrating an ex team boss to become Liberty’s front man. He is a slave to money just the same as all these men in those roles. Disgustingly spitting on this sport, sacrificing integrity over shareholder value. I have nothing but disrespect for him.

    1. +10

    2. And there’s another ex team boss to whom applies the same.

      Both ex Ferrari. Makes me wonder what future role Binotti ends up in.
      Maybe allowing incest isn’t such a good idea after all.

    3. The original ex-team boss leading Liberty was not so bad. Unfortunately this one appears to be too interested in chasing money.

  19. One of the problems for me is that Some fans, Stefano & others pushing for things like reverse grids seem to be of the view that more passing automatically means more excitement & therefore a better race but that simply isn’t true.

    He says that fast cars starting at the back in Spa & Monza created more overtaking which is of course true, But would anyone really argue that those were good races because of that? Same with Interlagos last year with Hamilton, Does anyone even remember any of the overtakes he made as he came through?

    I saw someone else say something like this recently but more overtaking doesn’t automatically mean better racing and more action doesn’t automatically mean more excitement.

    1. @stefmeister Agreed. I mean, I suppose it is fine as a novelty once in a while due to engine penalties ala Spa and Monza, but to have this on a regular basis I think would just be artificial and predictable. Of course if it was done differently and you had all the top guys at the back instead of select ones that are there for a penalty, that would be interesting, but I think no more interesting than just having the top guys duking it out at the front where they belong. Is anybody really that impressed otherwise, seeing top cars pass mid to low level cars? Especially if it became the norm? I’d like to think not. SD thinks this deserves looking into at least, but hasn’t it been looked into for decades? Why now when we finally have clean air independent cars and are only 2/3 of the way through the first season of this hugely new chapter?

  20. reverse grid = backwards thinking?
    Why bother?
    May as well do:
    Friday practice
    Saturday race 1
    Sunday race 2.
    Grid positions are drawn from a hat on both days. Each race is worth ‘full points’.
    If you want to mix it up further then run Saturday on “Wacky Races” rules and Sunday on “Classic GP” rules.
    Some other series have “double header” races, why not F1?

  21. So Stefano was lying when he said this a year ago then?

    “Reverse grid is over – that’s something I can tell you,” Domenicali told journalists this week. “I think that it’s important to think maybe of new ideas of being more attractive or interesting – [but] we don’t have to lose the traditional approach of racing.”

    1. I guess so.

  22. Domenicalli’s statement shows that Liberty are only interested in the number of position changes as opposed to what one might call passes/overtakes/racing. Sure Max overtook numerous cars at Spa but no one fought him for position so he could just as easily have been driving to work in the fast lane as racing in the pinnacle of motorsports. In my opinion this does not bode well for the future of F1.

  23. The business model is presumably the same as most tv shows/film series/”reality tv” etc. Whereby you get a hit, then squeeze every last drop out of it by flooding the space with content constantly. Milk it, milk it, milk it, til eventually the majority is bored of it by which time the execs have made their money and will go on to something else.

    Sport is sport – it is dramatic by it’s very nature. But the moment you start creating drama to attract people who normally don’t like motor racing then you lose the fabric of the sport. We’re in danger of going that way with this need to increase tv audiences.

    You don’t see the tennis authorities massively changing the rule book or format to try and attract more football fans to watching it on tv.

  24. Last year, I would have said no to reverse grids. This year, I have seen it partially in action with Spa & Monza and I will say it added to the show to see people coming up through the field. However a reverse grid in Monaco would be an awful idea.

    1. Mmmm, I’m not sure monaco would be bad, we’ve occasionally seen good recoveries with top cars, more recently verstappen who started from the back with the best car at that track in 2018.

    2. @blueruck I found it added a lot of predictability to the mix because it was obvious people would simply be let through until they were about where they belonged.

  25. These rules have proved to be great for close racing and will surely only get better as the team’s performance level out. We don’t need any gimmicks or novelty sprint races, just leave the rules as they are and let them close up to each other. Any more drastic changes will only open up the possibility of another Merc era which will ruin the sport. They should also experiment with weakening DRS with the aim to get rid altogether.

  26. Great idea! Qualifying, then apply all the penalties, then reverse the grid…

    1. Coventry Climax
      14th September 2022, 2:28

      ;-) +10
      But too ‘complicated’ for most here to appreciate, I’m afraid.

  27. Liberty media are just confirming all of the fears many had when they brought F1. That been that American owners will just Americanize the sport and fill it with horrid artificial gimmicks aimed at creating constant action for the low attention span viewer. Basically turning it into an American style sport akin to nascar.

    But when we raised those concerns in 2017/18 we were told that wouldn’t be the case, Heck Liberty themselves in the form of Chase Carey reassured fans that they cared about the long term, dedicated & knowledgeable fans & would respect our opinions and not force any gimmicks through.

    I remember Chase in the Sky commentary box during a practice session discussing this and making a point of saying they didn’t want to change the sport, They didn’t want to Americanize the sport, They didn’t want to fill it full of artificial gimmicks…… All of that has been proved to be nothing but lies because that is basically all they have done.

    They don’t care about any of us here, They care only about the American fans who want that constant action regardless of how rubbish it is from a racing/sporting/actual entertainment view. They just want more of everything rather than better quality racing. They just want to get the low attention span Netflix crowd, They care nothing about those with actual passion for the sport and it’s history. If you have knowledge about it, If you have a passion for it & if you care about the sport rather than the show they would obviously rather you be gone.

    In 5-10 years it will be just like nascar. A gimmick ridden show pretending to be a sport with all of the knowledgeable, passionate and long term fans gone struggling to sustain an audience full of low attention span casuals who won’t watch it in the way many of us do because they don’t care about it in the same way many of us do.

    You see it in the way fans are acting now, It’s not about the sport or any passion for the sport, It’s just about following the cool new thing and picking sides depending on who’s the cooler person to follow. It’s about trends rather than passion or dedication & that is going to do more harm to the sport than anything else.

    Mark my words in 5-10 years the decline will have set in & they will be begging us fans they are going to drive off in the meantime to come back!

    I won’t swear but blank Liberty media! And if they do these horrid proposals then ‘Blank’ F1 as well!

    1. Coventry Climax
      14th September 2022, 2:40

      Mark my words in 5-10 years the decline will have set in

      That’s an easy prediction as the decline has already set in quite some time ago.
      Similar to: Russia will have invaded Ukraine within the next year.

      I do share your sentiments though. Oh well, six more races and I’m very likely out of here.

  28. F1 has a problem with its cars. Not with sprint races or qualifying. They are the only premier series that holds to the old idea that participants can make whatever car they want (within regulations) and that it’s of no concern to the regulators if one team is significantly better (unless someone complains, I guess). Every other premier series has either scrapped custom cars altogether, or has made them effectively cosmetic by balancing them out behind the scenes.

    F1 then adds to this problem by both extending the seasons, and trying to save costs by banning most in-season development. The result is obvious: it’s pretty clear which one or two teams have a chance to win the title by race 1, and usually it’s quite clear which of them will win it after the first couple of races. That leaves F1 with every other race from say May through November to sell to their audience. Some people won’t care about the championship and just enjoy it race by race, but the championship adds an additional dimension to even boring races that many fans appreciate.

    If you’re in the ‘let’s just watch racing’ camp, then Sprint Races with reversed grids can be very fun. Especially without DRS. But if you care about F1 as a whole process from building cars, optimizing every track-specific setup, and the Grand Prix as the moment where all that preparation comes together then this will seem like a terrible idea. Given that most F1 teams are pretty bad at making competitive F1 cars, the former position has an obvious appeal.

  29. I’d trade the eradication of DRS for some reverse grid sprint races tbh. But as we know they’re not even interested in attempting weaning off of that sticking plaster, they won’t have a receptive ear here.

  30. Why not, just please keep the points separate; at the end of the season there can be a trophy for pole positions, a trophy for sprint races, and the drivers’ and constructors’ championships.

    I’d honestly love if the sprints/reverse races were Friday afternoon and they do not impact parc ferme so the inevitable carnage can be repaired in time for Saturday morning practice.

    Let’s try:
    Friday morning: practice
    Friday afternoon: sprint
    Saturday morning: practice
    Saturday afternoon: qualifying (determines the grid)
    Sunday afternoon: Grand Prix

  31. Perhaps im old school i prefered the old qualifying format which as far as i’m concerned the new format has ruined the go for pole on a saturday…and as for the sprint races they are a joke and a gimmick to F1…

  32. but when there is a reversed grid and you take an engine penalty what will happen? Back to the front penalty?

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