Lewis: F1 needs 'shake up'

Lewis Hamilton has said that the “incredibly boring” practice sessions before the Russian Grand Prix prove that the race weekend format needs to be changed.

Hamilton told reporters on Friday when asked about the prospective changes to the format the below:
“I’m sure it was [boring] for whoever tuned in – and if they did tune in and nothing happened. And for you guys and for us, the mechanics, engineers, it’s dull,” “It’s one day less of Formula 1 driving for me in my life, so trust me I’m not happy about it. I count every day as a real blessing and when you don’t get to utilise it, it sucks.”

This is in relation to the rather fragmented practice sessions throughout the Russian Grand Prix weekend with Friday practice delayed due to a diesel spillage the night before, and the constant rain showers left very little time for the drivers to do any running. There can never be a fix for the weather that is even out of the control of Bernie Ecclestone, but Hamilton feels a shake up to the structure of the weekend would be beneficial for the teams, drivers and most importantly the fans who pay a lot of money to have a full weekend experience. How we go about this is a cause for debate with various people having their own ideas on how it can be improved.

 With all the talk in the paddock on how Formula One can improve the experience and spectacle for fans the FIA have been proactive, they confirmed during the summer break they had discussed several new and exciting changes to the weekend structure. Two of these changes were believed to be a Saturday sprint race and a reverse grid for the Sunday but the FIA have yet announce any concrete changes.

There have been various changes within qualifying sessions over the last 60 years with tyre restrictions and different length sessions to name just two, but there has never been a change to the entire structure of the weekend, if they were to add a second race during the weekend it would be new ground for Formula One and something I think fans old and new would really be drawn to. We already have 2 races in a weekend from other Formula’s so it is certainly possible but whether all of the teams would agree is a matter up for debate. I believe a lot of the top teams would be keen for this to come in, any extra laps in the car benefits them further down the line but with the extra costs involved for teams if we were to have two races some of the teams lower down the pecking order may feel having an extra race just adds to the ever increasing costs they already have to battle with.

I myself as an avid Formula One fan would love to see a change to the weekend format, with one team seemingly dominating qualifying consistently this would add a bit of spice to the weekend and make the Saturdays far more enjoyable. We will have to wait and see what the FIA decide between now and the publication of the final rules for 2016 but changes are needed sooner rather than later before the bubble bursts.

By: Chris Laker
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