Eric, on Nov 4 2007, 04:18 AM, said:
Make it more interesting? Race on dirt ovals. That'll get fun.
Okay, seriously (when the hell does Eric say seriously?), here's what I've got.
In theory, Formula 1 is a spectacle, not a race. The spectacle part is crap. Let's get the **** away from celebrities, roast gooose, wine, whiners, and Peter Windsor and go racin'. Thanks. For F1, it's all going to be about balancing racing, technological innovation, pleasing governments and hippies, and most of all making money. There's a theory out there, some sick twisted mind thought this up, that racing sells, and covering racing up with business is like trying to call images of fully-clothed hot women porn. Granted, it's taking it a little far, but is racing really in the blood of Formula 1? F1 never was moonshine drinkin' hillbillies on a dirt oval.
With that said, can you break from tradition? Can you de-evolve? NASCAR's gone to a big business, luring in big names and most importantly, big money. Can F1 go from sophisticates to down in the dirt racin'? Should it? Where's this happy medium? Where do you please everyone? Where do the dirt Late Model fans, Indianapolis 500 diehards, F1 fans, and Le Mans fans all go together as one big happy family?
What exactly is great racing? Is great racing banging fenders fighting to the finish line? Is great racing a high-speed chess match, the hunter stalking the prey, a la Imola 2005? Is great racing a strategic war and a demonstration of technology? Is it constant slip-stream passes?
ALMS is great racing. 1980s and 1990s NASCAR is great racing. 1990s CART is great racing. Midgets, sprints, Late Models, Street Stocks on dirt and pavement is great racing. So what do all of those have in common? What determines the great racing?
Consider this: ALMS has a huge amount of innovation. 1980s and 1990s NASCAR was before the common templates and spec-car COT, when each manufacture had an identity. CART had a few different chassis and engines, and even when it went to all-Lola, it wasn't spec until the DP01. Midgets, sprints, Lates, and Streets are all different...chassis are many years apart in age, and teams are very separate in wealth.
Variation in cars. So is variation what we need? Don't we have variation?
Eliminate winglets. Eliminate aero. Bring back slick tires. Take away Traction Control and Driving Aids. Keep the innovation, but not the road car relevant kind, just the kind to go racin'. Dumb the cars down in computer tech.
Winglets and aero make it hard to overtake.
Slicks and no TC make it harder to drive, and enables the better drivers to shine. The best driver should win, and they should be pushed to the max to win. Tony Cotman wants Champ Car to be the biggest, baddest racing machine. F1 should want that, too.
Road car relevant tech is dumb. Focus on tech to make the racing more competitive, not tech to fix the world's problems.
I agree that it should be more about the driver and less about geeks pushing buttons. Bring some real racing back into it.
1] To being with GP/F1 is a Circus. Witch implies it will never be fully restricted to the Sunday race.
2] And what does racing mean ?!
Every series has its definition.
Endurance/sportcar racing isn't about wheel-to-wheel battles, it's conserving the car-tires-fuel, pit stops, strategy, and profiting from the attrition rate to make it to finish in the best position.
This on the other hand for sprint racing is blasphemy.
Stock car racing is guided by rubbing is racing while the GP formulae/series always had written and/or unwritten laws/agreements against such behaviour.
Rally racing is a battle against time and the terain.
GP/F1 racing is man-machine pushing the limits to get the edge over the opposition. It's not a driver's sport like spec and monomarques series, nor is a pure machine series such as DARPA Challenge where the cars drive themselves.
And it's relative to the men with talking about too.
For for designers/team bosses/managers like Janno, Porsche, Champan, Murray, Neubauer or Ferrari, building a car that's 2 seconds per lap faster vs. the opposition is what they understood by racing.
3] Why eliminate aero ?!
The ultimate aero/downforce monsters where Group C sportcar/endurance racers.
The produced ,thanks to ground effects, up to 2.5 tonnes (metric) of downforce vs. "just" 1.5 tonne produced by today's F1 cars.
Yet they gave some wheel to wheel battles (Le Mans 87 or 88 between Porsche and Jaguar) that F1 can only dream off today (not counting wet races).
And for the simple reason that what matters is how you produce the downforce not how much. A lot more downforce can mean a lot better racing if done proper, whereas a lot less downforce could mean dissastrous racing if done wrong.
The ground effects F1 racers also produced a lot of downforce, but overtaking was possible/racing was better.
4] TC, driver aids and so on, help those who can adapt to them better.
Neither rookie Michael Andretti/1993/McLaren nor veteran Patresse/1992/Williams could adapt to the active ride cars. Their team mates Senna and Mansell on the other hand were driving like mad men, capable of extracting every ounce of performance from these cars.
For someone driving/atending GP races in the 1930s the cars from the early 1970s with their wings and wide slick tires and electric starting could/might-have seem like they were driving themselves.
I can just image such a person yelling "bring back the skiny grooves and cigarrete shaped cars and get rid of the electrics".
5] GP technology should be allowed to pass onto road cars the natural way, not being forced upon.
Besides GP technology does pass on. F1 teams have partnerships with universities and aero-space&defence companies.
For example, Renault F1 gave their partner Boeing and aero solution witch helps reduce drag by 3%. EADS anounced that the batteries used by partner McLaren F1 ( to power the electronics ) are to be used into their upcoming tanks.
Jet fighters and upcoming carriers (787) have gone down the path of using a lot of composites just like GP racers have been doing for 2 and 1/2 decades.
So GP racing still improves the breed, only that it's a different type of breed.
6] Dirt ovals.
Well before WWII the top GP drivers/european-champions like Nuvolari, Caraciolla and Rosemeyer were invited and thus attended the Vanderbild Cup dirt race. Nuvolari won in 1936 and Rosemeyer in 1937 and have made quite an impression, particularly Rosemeyer.