Racing Point’s team principal Otmar Szafnauer spoke about an idea which he proposed in one the meetings which didn’t get through but F1 is monitoring it still.
Among all the ideas of qualifying races, reverse grids and other things to add more excitement in F1 and do things differently to eliminate the redundancy and have more podium finishers and race winners, Racing Point’s Szafnauer proposed his idea as well.
He reckons that the sport maybe can use some elements seen in NFL or NBA, while which can be also seen in MotoGP with some of the teams getting extra test days. Szafnauer feels F1 teams finishing lower should be given more time to work on aerodynamics.
The basic idea would be to help the team finishing, say second in the championship, give some aerodynamic development over the team finishing first. It could be say 10 percent extra and in that order, the third placed team gets 20 percent extra and so on.
He feels that this will allow for differentiation in the order while staying within the budget limit and the field is more competitive year on year. It will also help the F1 teams be more efficient, knowing the advantage his rival may get for the new season.
“How about this for an idea? With the budget cap which is to come out, to make the grid a bit closer, we are already limited for the work we can do on the aerodynamic front on the windtunnels unlike before where it could be run more, so how about where you finish in the championship, you’re allowed a little bit more aerodynamic development the following year. So a top team gets nothing and the last team gets 10 percent more.
“That will bring, a) it will allow differentiation, b) it will still have a cost cap, but c) it will bring the grid closer together. If you fall from first to second, then the guys in first gets nothing but the second guy gets something. Or you could do a Top 5 or a bottom five with the same situation.
“There is got to be some formula where we can bring the field closer together. It’s no different to the NFL or the NBA where the worst team gets the best player coming out of college, so why not do that here?
“I proposed it in the meeting and a lot of people liked it but eventually it fell out, we are not doing it [for now]. The process is in place to monitor it [though], we can only use half a windtunnel, so somebody is got to say, you are using only what you are allowed to use.
“If you give the guys who are a little bit slower more development scope, it then forces the guys who aren’t slow, who are winning, to become efficient because they know the guys below them are getting a little bit more.
“But for this to happen we need unanimous agreement. It’s hard to get unanimity in F1. We have to make sure we make good decisions for the sport and not for our own selfishness,” summed up Szafnauer to the media including FormulaRapida.net/IndiaInF1.com.
With only days left for F1 to publish the final details of how the sport will be from 2021 onward, there is a sense of urgency certainly and maybe a lot still on the table to finish off. It remains to be seen what comes out on October 31 of this month.
Details of the qualifying races on reverse grid formation