Are casual viewers ruining Formula One?

Are casual viewers ruining F1?

  • Yes

    Votes: 11 30.6%
  • No

    Votes: 25 69.4%

  • Total voters


Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
After reading a letter which was sent to F1 Racing and after watching todays grand prix, I began to think whether the person in mind had a point. After all the 'purists' to which I include the vast majority on this site would agree that the championships 2003 and 2006-8 and 2010 were exciting and dramatic (and all share the fact that the championship wasnt decided until the final grand prix). Except you couldn't help avoid the shouts of boring racing, no overtakes etc etc. So the Overtaking Group and FOM listen to the viewers and thus the 2009 spec regs were born which arguably made things worse, with even less overtaking than the year before. They tinkered the rules again for 2010 to boost overtaking, which theoretically worked, just look at the stats, except that they were inflated because of the new teams, and despite another fantastic season, the casual viewer could still be heard bemoaning the lack of overtaking. Which leads us on to this seasons proceedings, I think we can all agree that overtaking figures will reach new highs this season, but the big question is, is it artificial. If Turkey is anything to go by, the answer is yes, with a few scraps (Hamilton/Button, Webber/Alonso). The fact that Webber said he didnt get that much joy from a 3rd place in China because the overtakes were easy speaks volumes and frankly I think we have gone too far in the other direction, DRS is completely unncessesary and coupled with KERS and the Pirelli tyres we are seeing cars breeze past each other like cars on the M1. Really we only needed the addition of the Pirelli tyres to increase overtaking and more importantly on track fighting, (just look at the headaches it causes the team strategerists) and KERS is a helpful addon. But, without trying to sound like DOF_Power, it seems as if at least half , if not more, of the overtakes we saw today or in Malaysia were too easy. Australia was the best example when DRS only served to get the trailing car alongside the leading car and the driver still had to do a lot of work to complete the move, but personally I think that the loud voice of the 'casual' viewer is negatively affecting F1 and arguably is a big cause of the DRS/KERS situation
Elitism is not a good thing; Webber is miserable sod at the best of times so if overtaking is so easy I would like to know why he didn't get anywhere near seb and why it took him 15 laps to come back to alonso and retake second.

My answer is the same as to those who complained of last year being a procession, change the channel if you don't like what you see.
Part of the problem - and I think his applies to most televised sport - is that the casual viewer is being mollycoddled rather than educated. They are having the sport dumbed down for them instead of being taught the finer points. This is the responsibility of the commentators, pundits and journo's. Just compare a copy of Autosport to twenty or thirty years ago. These days it's getting to be like a teenage fanzine ... all about celebrity's and less and less about the complexities. That's fine for athletics where the men and women are the machines but it's crap for F1 which (as I probably say too often on this forum) is supposed to be the pinnacle of motorsport.

I'm starting to rant so I'll just say this to the powers that be:

Please, please, please,
Teach the punter and bring them up to speed,
I'm begging you on my knees,
An evolved and learned public is what we really need. :givemestrength:
Personally, I don't like the fact that now drivers take it in turn to go past each other, but i accept that maybe the 'casual viewer' does.

'Are casual viewers ruining Formula One?'

I think is a question asked in most sports. or in fact anything where marketing of a porduct happens.
That's because the 'puurist' values are often comprimised What some poeple need to reaslise is that the 'casual viwers' are the most important viewers, they provide a much larger percentage of the fans of any sport.

'Casual veiwers' could easily ask 'Are purist F1 fans ruining the sport?'
They could then follow that with what i'm sure we've all seen/heard during a race - 'whats that for? why's that? etc

And who's to say what the sport is or should be really?

You caould easily say that they 'casual' fans are ruining it for the 'purist' or the 'purist' is ruining it for the 'casual viewer'

By the way, what makes an F1 fan a purist?
While I agree that the sport is in danger of being 'dumbed down', I disagree that the 'casual' fans are to blame. They are not in control, the FIA are.
Most, if not all, would probably agree that something needed to be done about the extreme difficulty of overtaking; it's just that at the moment the measures taken seem to have over-compensated. I am sure that tweaks in the DRS zones and the tyre compounds can be made to fine-tune things over time.
The FIA said even before the season started that the DRS zones could be adjusted to ensure the desired result was achieved, so I have no reason to believe they won't listen if there is an overwhelming call for a reduction. Come to that, they could probably even make an adjustment in the maximum opening angle if they wished.

Likewise with the tyres; Pirelli have already developed a modified, slightly more durable hard tyre which should be debuted at Barcelona and they are also looking into modifications to the compounds to try to reduce the amount of marbles. So it's not as if the FIA are ignorant of the issues.
I completely agree chad, although it's the casual fans and I suspect the majority that are required to keep viewing figures up and sponsors in the sport. Without this income would the sport survived? I don't like the rules - not all together and I blame the need to appeal to the casual fan for this but they may be a necessary evil.

I would like to meet all these fans that Brundle was talking about that are pleased with the new rules.
I would like to meet all these fans that Brundle was talking about that are pleased with the new rules.
There's at least one that I know of, and he stands right next to Martin during the race. ;)

I'd go back to what dave asked; what makes one fan a purist and another one casual?
For the knowledgeable fans such as we are yes.
But without them we would not have F1 as we know it today.
Yes, they are. This is not what I signed up for. I got into F1 when there was very little overtaking going on and I liked it. Today's F1 is just not the same. It's like getting married to a person who's alright at the beginning, but then turnes out to be a complete idiot, just because some people think that she's better that way.

I hope that we see a traditional Spanish GP with "Trulli-trains" and drivers being pissed for not getting past. I miss those days.
Ah, yes I remember those days at Catalunya. The thrills of the processional car killer. I used to love those blown engines and the occasional mayhem in the rain. But then those nasty old men at the FIA brought in all those rules to make cars reliable! Ruined the whole show. :D
I won't vote because I in both minds here. On one hand DRS I like, and that was introduced because of casual fans. But on the other the tyres im not a fan of, couple that with all the poetic crap that Brundle has to spill at the start of the GP is annoying, especially when the BBC keep explaining stuff that is obvious to anyone who has watched more than a few races. So to summarise, I will theoretically click the not sure option.
The FIA is mostly to blame. DRS is far too contrived. It would be much better to reduce the permissable size of those hideous front wings. Reduce their maximum allowable width to the inside edge of the front tyres. That would greatly reduce front downforce and therefore reduce the amount they are affected by "dirty air". It would put a premium on mechanical grip, not aero assisted traction.
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