Fast cars. Glamourous locations. Champagne Showers. The appeal of F1 is understandable, but it seems people spend more time complaining about the sport than actually enjoying it.
Social media has a large part to play in this. Gone are the days when something bad happened and it could be swiftly forgotten. Now, it goes viral and the backlash is normally worse than the incident itself. There’s a constant stream of negativity, with people actively telling you how bad every single race was, breeding a nostalgic feel for the yester years which isn’t exactly based on reality.
Is F1 bad? Is F1 boring? Sure, there are certain races which make you feel like you would rather have watched paint dry, but that’s the case with every sport. And with every bad race comes one full of excitement. Just look at the 2018 Bahrain Grand Prix as an example.
The sport has certainly undergone numerous transformations along the years and in an era where safety and reliability has understandably been at the forefront, there will inevitably be less adrenaline-filled, edge-of-your-seat moments. But the silver lining is that no one is getting seriously injured or dying and that can only be a good thing.
Within that framework, there is still plenty of scope to make the sport more exciting. Despite its prestige, the Monaco Grand Prix offers little more than a grand procession around a narrow track. Replacing this and similar circuits, where overtaking is beyond impossible, with ones designed more for racing would help significantly, as well as potentially inverting the previous race’s final positions to nullify the tremendous superiority of the ‘top six’. That would definitely add a new dimension and, who knows, we may end up with a title race as close and as nail-biting as 2007.
If, however, the racing gods don’t answer our prayers, all is not lost. Reddit has a ‘Formula 1.5 championship’ which excludes the ‘top six’ drivers from the final result and rankings. Thanks to the incredibly tight midfield, which features great scraps between Haas, Renault, Force India and sometimes even Sauber, their championship is wide open. So much so that the top five racers are separated by just 16 points with four weekends to go – something that can’t be said of the official standings this year.
So, if you are a car fanatic who enjoys the technical evolutions that are being developed each season, or you just love the pure competition of the sport, either at the top or midfield level, then there is still plenty to hold onto with Formula 1. Don’t give up hope based on the unrealistic perceptions and opinions that accumulate on social media. With new regulations set to be implemented in 2019 and 2021, hopefully they can even out the playing field and provide a higher proportion of unpredictable races for many years to come. I, for one, will certainly be watching.