F1, as an all-around product, has improved drastically within the final decade. The racing is best, the competitors has improved, and at last, the game has cracked the American market. Drivers’ recognition has moved previous Europe, however they’re additionally well-known worldwide. Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen, Fernando Alonso, Daniel Ricciardo, Lando Norris, and others at the moment are world personalities.
A multi-pronged method has fueled F1’s progress. The introduction of DRS has improved overtaking capabilities (although it’s nonetheless considerably synthetic), new automobiles can comply with others nearer, and most significantly, Drive to Survive has achieved wonders to usher in new followers in droves.
Nevertheless, some areas want enchancment and potential adjustments that might make F1 a greater sport. The next part will dive into three adjustments that might take it to better heights. Whereas rather more could be achieved throughout the sport, we’re a marked enchancment if these three adjustments are made.
1) A extra clear and environment friendly FIA
The FIA’s proactiveness relating to the game’s security has been credible and worthy of reward. There was no compromise relating to human security, and audiences noticed a number of adjustments after Jules Bianchi’s tragic passing.
Even in the previous few years, FIA has stepped up relating to security, as seen with the halo’s introduction in 2018. The roll hoop shall be strengthened in 2023 after Guanyu Zhou’s horrific crash at Silverstone final season.
Whereas the group deserves reward in a single context, the FIA is inefficient and lacks transparency. This has been an enormous subject that blemishes the game’s picture.
The aftermath of the 2021 F1 Abu Dhabi GP was dealt with poorly and have become shambolic. The 2022 F1 season had its justifiable share of criticism with the ‘Jewellery-Gate’ saga involving Lewis Hamilton, and the FIA didn’t neutralize the state of affairs.
Off-track nuisance apart, poor stewarding was as soon as once more within the highlight. Many drivers, together with Pierre Gasly and Fernando Alonso, known as out the stewards for questionable selections made through the season.
The governing physique should be held to the best requirements for a sport to perform higher. That is not the case proper now, and it hurts the game’s picture most of the time.
2) Decreased efficiency gaps between groups
Anticipating Haas to battle for wins and championships is an virtually silly pipe dream. Nevertheless, a one-off podium win will not be too lofty of an ambition. One of many extra important points with the game for the time being is that the improved reliability of an F1 automobile has stopped the one-off shock wins and podiums that had been a staple of prior many years.
Within the turbo-hybrid period, wins and podiums have been dominated by the highest three groups on the F1 grid – Mercedes, Ferrari, and Crimson Bull. This could change if the sphere unfold within the sport could be decreased.
In 2022, Ferrari, Mercedes, and Crimson Bull had been in a category of their very own, adopted by two midfield groups (McLaren and Alpine) and the final group of 5 groups.
There’s a clear and outlined efficiency hole in all three teams, which is unsuitable for the game as a result of it kills the unpredictability issue. It additionally destroys the scope of any driver making a distinction with superior efficiency that beats the grid of higher automobiles. As seen with George Russell, a stronger automobile could make a podium driver.
If the gaps between these teams are decreased, similar to within the 2021 F1 season, audiences will get higher, extra entertaining, and crucially unpredictable racing.
3) Motion in opposition to F1 fan abuse
One of many largest menaces of the game has been the rising fan abuse and polarization. Whereas F1 followers have at all times had a wild nature, as has been the case with motorsport followers generally, the abuse in the previous few years has mushroomed considerably. One of many large causes for this sharp enhance stems from social media interactions.
If it had been confined to social media, it could be one factor, however the abuse trickles right down to the observe the place drivers like Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen are booed mercilessly, and their crashes are cheered. That is extremely demoralizing as a result of the game’s ethos is slowly being murdered this manner. There isn’t any motive to cheer when any driver crashes.
Whereas the FIA has made some statements relating to efforts to fight unruly conduct on observe, there must be extra readability on how the regulators hope to stem the issue on the supply. F1 followers deserve a secure house on and offline to cheer on their favourite groups/drivers and be essential of others. The game wants instant measures, as poisonous fanbases can alienate individuals.