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Too high costs: criticism of the race for reserve drivers

Too high cost
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E s is always the same. The big teams shy away from everything that they cannot calculate. They would prefer not to give chance a chance at all. It is exactly what makes sport so interesting. If you don't know beforehand what will happen afterwards. An example of the excessive caution of the leading actors is the discussion about a new qualification format.

Actually, the current knockout system is not bad. In any case, worlds better than the various forms of individual time trial that were practiced between 2003 and 2005. The only weak point of the current variant: Sometimes the drivers prefer to stay in the garage for tactical reasons. Or they have already used up all tire sets by Q3. The additional set this year helped a lot.

More action through sprint races for the reserve drivers

Nevertheless, there were considerations to upgrade Saturday a little. For the spectators on the track and on the TV screen. During the strategy group meeting on July 1st, an evolution of the current qualification mode was therefore discussed.

And it looks like this. The third free practice is not applicable. For this there is the qualification according to the knockout system on Saturday morning. Optionally in a more stringent version, after which the last one is eliminated every two minutes. Which would force the participants to always stay on the track.

The sequence of this training results in the starting grid for a sprint race on Saturday afternoon. The result of the sprint is then the final grid for the Grand Prix. The sprint should be so short that there are no pit stops. Depending on the length of the track, the drivers should be running 10 to 15 laps at the limit.

The spectators would get two exciting moments on Saturday. The tires would have roughly the same number of kilometers as the current format. And it would automatically run more on Friday. Because the work for 3 free training sessions has to be packed into 2.

A quick shot that only costs money

Bernie Ecclestone and the rights holder representatives liked the proposal. The big teams less so. Too many uncertainties, too great a chance of having a bad starting position in the right race. Officially, of course, the teams sold it differently. 'We don't want to devalue the Grand Prix on Sunday,' says Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff. Proponents disagree. The Grand Prix would still be the main event. Because only on Sundaythere are World Cup points.

The big teams came up with a counter-proposal. A sprint race for the reserve drivers. The fastest should then be allowed to participate in the race. The small teams wave away immediately. They think it's a red herring to get the real idea off the table.

'Who should pay for that? Everyone would have to bring a third car because there's a chance your driver will drive the race on Sunday Must. And does he get points or not? Do they only count for the driver or also for the team? That was another quick shot where no one thought about the consequences, 'criticized Sauber team manager Beat Zehnder


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