First earns $250k more than second. Better take it when you can.
But coming 2nd then doing another year, which is likely to yield more prize money, could well be a better overall result. Not guaranteed of course, but some drivers might take the gamble.
Isn't this the standard rule that every "junior" series earning FIA super license points has to follow? I haven't heard of graduation rules causing issues in other series
At the moment I feel the talent/experience spread is quite large across W-Series entrants so a 2nd placed returning driver would be very likely to do well in the following season. In FIA F2 & F3 the competition is a lot closer so a returning driver is far less certain of success.
I'm not saying the 'battle for 2nd' would occur, and maybe I'm just being cynical about it. Perhaps the competitive nature and desire to win a championship might overcome such long term tactical thinking.