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Driver rotation/Dodgins Article (merged)


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#101 Makarias

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:11

But isn't the WDC as it is now just a gimmick? We knew well before the season start last year that Jenson Button had pretty much no chance at all to beat Lewis Hamilton to the WDC, simply by virtue of being in a lesser car. This year however, by divine intervention presumably, Button has done a much better job than Hamilton in developing the car. Seems like Hamilton has lost his ability in that regard lately, quite a shame... Button, on the other hand, developed the Brawn into a rocketship presumably on his first installation lap on his first testing day! Awesome!

Perhaps the obvious thing to do to find out who the best driver is, indeed is to have a spec series. But what's totally not obvious to me is why the hell there are so many around here that don't want to find that out? It's completely perplexing!

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#102 Bruce

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:18

Originally posted by Makarias
But isn't the WDC as it is now just a gimmick? We knew well before the season start last year that Jenson Button had pretty much no chance at all to beat Lewis Hamilton to the WDC, simply by virtue of being in a lesser car. This year however, by divine intervention presumably, Button has done a much better job than Hamilton in developing the car. Seems like Hamilton has lost his ability in that regard lately, quite a shame... Button, on the other hand, developed the Brawn into a rocketship presumably on his first installation lap on his first testing day! Awesome!

Perhaps the obvious thing to do to find out who the best driver is, indeed is to have a spec series. But what's totally not obvious to me is why the hell there are so many around here that don't want to find that out? It's completely perplexing!


The only reason you are saying this, Makarias, is because BUTTON is winning.

If Lewis were winning, would you be arguing that we need to find the BEST driver?

Yes, it's "perplexing".... but I'd rather be challenged, than be spoon fed the same driver year in year out in the best car to preserve some sort of comfortable belief that that driver is the best bar none....

#103 Rob

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:18

The WDC has never been about finding the best driver. It's been about who's done the best job over the championship season.

Traditionally entry has been free. A team should be able to choose who drives for them. If we have rotation then who picks the drivers? Also, can you imagine Alonso being forced to drive a McLaren? Lets keep things simple.

#104 Lazarus II

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:39

Originally posted by peroa


"Don`t fix it if it ain`t broken" seems to be a well ignored sentence in F1 and an awful lot of fixing has been done in the last decade, 90% for the worse.
But hey, I guess some people never get it ...

OK now I understand where you're coming from. You are correct, there have been far to many changes in the past couple decades, however that doesn't mean all change is bad. Max has pressed through many of these changes on the grounds of safety and the teams have only themselves to blame.

Changes were always going to happen with the advancement in technology.

#105 Phucaigh

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:39

They should have something like NASCAR where some of the drivers race more than once on a weekend.

Maybe F1 kart - equal karts for all the drivers. Kubica, Trulli and whomever else that have a kart brand could use theirs to the set spec.

It would be fun.

#106 tkulla

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:40

Originally posted by Rob
The WDC has never been about finding the best driver. It's been about who's done the best job over the championship season.

Traditionally entry has been free. A team should be able to choose who drives for them. If we have rotation then who picks the drivers? Also, can you imagine Alonso being forced to drive a McLaren? Lets keep things simple.


But the current system doesn't measure "who's done the best job over the championship season" at all. Just among the few guys in the best couple of cars.

And the teams could still be involved in a sort of "draft" where they pick what driver they want for each race (bearing in mind they'd have each driver for two events). Draft order would be determined by the previous season's constructors championship. I know I'd be tuning in for that too.

And for the record, I root for Jenson Button but would still prefer the rotation system for this season. I may root for a driver, but more importantly I'm a fan of the sport. I watch all the races live no matter what time (Malaysia was on at 4:00 a.m. here) they are televised so that I can watch the live timing.

As a fan of the sport, I would love to be able to compare the drivers directly and see a championship come down to the final races with 5 or 6 drivers in the mix.

#107 tkulla

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:49

Originally posted by Phucaigh
They should have something like NASCAR where some of the drivers race more than once on a weekend.

Maybe F1 kart - equal karts for all the drivers. Kubica, Trulli and whomever else that have a kart brand could use theirs to the set spec.

It would be fun.


That would be fun. But it wouldn't mean much. Better than nothing though. I'd like to see drivers compete in other series, as they used to back in the day. I'd love see them at Le Mans and the Indy 500. And an appearance in A1GP would be cool too. I suspect these would also happen if the drivers were all "free agents" rather than contracted to specific teams. Yet another benefit.

#108 Broadway

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:51

I read the "The Greatest Ever to never win a WDC" thread and for sure there is names there that would have been worthy champions. But for some curious reason the championships is usually one by a driver that deserves it. There was times during the Ferrari/Schumi era when it felt that it was a bit too easy for Schumi and a bit too hopeless for anyone else, but that is rare. Swapping cars is senseless and it would NOT ensure a fair chance for everyone.

If it is so important to find out who is the best driver, let the F1 drivers do the Saturdays GP 2 race.

#109 flyboy

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 22:56

Time for Tony to take it easy on the cheap wine... oh wait, it's not the wine, he's a Brit and Hammy is nowhere this year...

#110 Makarias

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 23:11

Originally posted by Bruce


The only reason you are saying this, Makarias, is because BUTTON is winning.

If Lewis were winning, would you be arguing that we need to find the BEST driver?

Yes, it's "perplexing".... but I'd rather be challenged, than be spoon fed the same driver year in year out in the best car to preserve some sort of comfortable belief that that driver is the best bar none....


Obviously the only reason I bring up Button as an example is because he's winning all of a sudden, pretty much a no-brainer that. But I liked the driver rotation idea the first time Dodgins wrote about it online already, so it's not at all about Button or Hamilton for me.

As for you last paragraph, I simply don't understand what you're trying to say.

#111 wewantourdarbyback

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Posted 13 April 2009 - 23:48

Originally posted by Bruce


LATELY???

He said today not lately Posted Image

#112 Bruce

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 00:19

Originally posted by wewantourdarbyback
He said today not lately Posted Image


Same diff - try responding to the matter at hand - it's actually more interesting than the back-biting....

#113 Kooper

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 01:49

Dodgins has already lost me. TD seems to be right on schedule as it was 7 days ago I posted on his article (basically was a McLaren press release) at the time here.



Instead of rotating drivers, why don't we rotate team principals or mechanics? :wave:

#114 IMHO

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 03:41

Originally posted by tkulla


Oh, I'm not saying F1 isn't entertaining now, and the last couple of seasons have been highly entertaining. Except that the WDC has been contested by the two Ferrari and two McLaren drivers, and that's it. Four guys. So for all we know the best driver (or even the best three) were simply not involved in the WDC.

The fact is that people root for drivers and root for teams, and usually they are joined. With the rotation, you could have a favorite driver and a favorite team to cheer on, which would be at least two and more often three cars to support.

But considering the logistics involved and what appears to be a majority that doesn't like or doesn't get the idea, I doubt we'll ever see it.


I think you mean to say two Frrari drivers and one McLaren driver. Kovalainen didn't really compete for the title last year did he? Only time in the few years there has been competition in the McLaren team was with Alonso and Hamilton driving together.

#115 peroa

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 04:36

Originally posted by tkulla

But the current system doesn't measure "who's done the best job over the championship season" at all. Just among the few guys in the best couple of cars.

Never was different and I don`t see why that should change. It measures the best engineering and the best driver. There is a trend in the last seasons that the grid is becoming increasingly tighter and this year it seems like there are spec cars out there, especially in Q.
The only thing I would change right now (regarding the sporting side) is Q3. Get rid of the fuel there and let them drive.


As a fan of the sport, I would love to be able to compare the drivers directly and see a championship come down to the final races with 5 or 6 drivers in the mix.

How could you compare them fairly?
10 cars on the grid with different characteristics, 17-18 different tracks, where every of these 10 different cars perform different and it all comes down to pure luck, if you for example get a Ferrari in Monza or a McLaren in Monaco.

These system introduces so many variables that its` not even funny anymore, not to mention the sponsor side.

#116 Rogue

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 08:40

Originally posted by Gilles4Ever


and who hires the drivers and at what price?
Good drivers/favorite drivers end up in shit cars - live with it!


Not that I support the idea of rotating drivers, but hiring dedicated test drivers is nothing new. You would, however, have to stipulate that a hired test driver could not be a stand-in for a regular race driver, due to their obvious advantage behind the wheel of the particular machine they have driven many miles in. This in turn would probably mean that younger drivers would no longer wish to be test drivers and instead you may see older drivers filling this role, or drivers from other series with no real F1 prospect.

#117 HP

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Posted 14 April 2009 - 10:22

Originally posted by DOF_power

If drivers are cruising why the Kubica - Vettel crash ?!

That was more the exception to how races are developing these days. Kubica was on different tires, that's why he was closing in so fast. Nobody would expect Kubica to hold station in such conditions, and Vettel defend. But, why where they close anyway? Kubica would have been nowhere close, if not for the SC car period, and he having used the softer, worse compound already.

We have to wait a few races under normal conditions before we see a clearer picture emerge, but it would F1 do wonders if Kubica could have make up for his poor first part of the race with his driver skills alone. That's what I really want to see. The importance of the drivers being highlighted again. Instead of swapping drivers, they will have to go for a spec series. That would mean the final end to F1 as we know it. Or they make cars more difficult to drive so that the skilled ones shine again. But driver swapping makes it nearly impossible to judge drivers against each others, unless they drive 20 times on the same track under same conditions. Won't ever happen, so? For the time being we at least have the fight between teammates.

It is often said that changing weather conditions separate the best from the rest. Simply because driver skills will show, apart from wrong or even lunatic tire choices. As soon it's dry however, the fastest cars are ahead, and drivers having over and over admitted to go into cruise mode in thiose conditions. Isn't that an interesting pattern?

Kubica vs. Vettel even though in the dry, had some other reasons to be so close and still being in a fight. I hope it's not lost on you that in other times, at least one of them would have been seriously hurt. Which is not commending their skills as drivers. 90% the car, and with the remaining 10% they still manage to mess it up that terribly? That's going to be interesting if the used means to even further equalise the fields. Sure with a positive spin to it, it could be said that cream always raises to the top.

To that I'll say it still was more fun to watch when driver could make a bigger impact in a race. And the bad drivers were much quicker out of the sport than they are these days, except obviously for those fatal accidents in the past. I don't want those back.

To sum it up, driver rotation is a concept that IMO royally sucks. It dilutes the sport called F1 even more. It's so much diluted already that they come to the place of suggesting driver swaping.