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Formula 1 follows NASCAR’s lead

What do racing series do when interest — think viewership and attendance — starts to drop? Simple: they resrt to gimmicks. We saw that in NASCAR, with the Chase, and even more so, with its recently tweaking of the Chase. Well it seems that NASCAR isn’t alone: the powers that be in Formula 1, that other really successful racing series, are worried about losing more casual followers. Their solution? Well, a gimmick. As Autosport reports:

The idea is that from next year, once lapped cars have been allowed to unlap themselves, cars will form up on the grid once a safety car period has ended.

There will then be the same procedure of a standing start as happens at the beginning of races.

The hope is that there will be more chance of positions changing, with the spectacle of a standing start producing more drama than rolling starts do.

This is not the solution. These sorts of enhancements merely highlight how little faith series organizers have in their core product. Gimmicks won’t keep fickle viewers with little attachment to a sport for long but risk alienating those that are currently more deeply committed to following the sport.

One Response to “Formula 1 follows NASCAR’s lead”

  • Jun

    Don’t believe it until it happens. The teams are not aligned on the standing start after safety car idea (and it only takes the Prancing Pony to say no for it to die). Ironic that after a safety car, the least safe part of an F1 race, a standing start, might be considered.
    As for the ‘lucky dog’, with only 22 cars (24 next year) and anyone out of the top 15 at half distance with any chance of even scoring points, I don’t think the unlapping idea will matter one bit.
    Vettel went a lap down last Sunday within the first 3 laps, was never competitive and parked the car at about half distance. If you’re a lap down in F1, you’re there for a reason.

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