F1 points scoring systems: 1950 - 2008

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
A lot has been made recently about Bernie Ecclestone's claim that he is going to replace the current points system with medals.

Inevitably that has led to discussion on what is the best points system.
Below is a list of all the various scoring systems that have been in place since 1950.

I expect most of us will be surprised at just how often the scoring was changed.


1950 - 1953
Points awarded for the top 5 finishers: 8, 6, 4, 3, 2
1 point for the fastest lap
Only the best 4 scores counted towards the world championship
Points for shared drives were divided equally between the drivers, regardless of who had driven more laps

1954 - 1957
Points awarded for the top 5 finishers: 8, 6, 4, 3, 2
1 point for the fastest lap
Only the best 5 scores counted towards the world championship
Points for shared drives were divided equally between the drivers, regardless of who had driven more laps, unless one of the drivers was deemed to have completed "insufficient distance"
Drivers who shared more than 1car during a race received points only for their highest finish

1958
Points awarded for the top 5 finishers: 8, 6, 4, 3, 2
1 point for the fastest lap
Only the best 6 scores counted towards the world championship
Points for shared fastest laps were divided equally between drivers
Points were no longer awarded for shared drivers

1959
Points awarded for the top 5 finishers: 8, 6, 4, 3, 2
1 point for the fastest lap
Only the best 5 scores counted towards the world championship
Points for shared fastest laps were divided equally between drivers
Points were no longer awarded for shared drivers

1960
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 8, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 6 scores counted towards the world championship

1961 - 1962
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores counted towards the world championship

1963 - 1964
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 6 scores counted towards the world championship

1965
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 6 scores counted towards the world championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1966
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores counted towards the world championship
Drivers who were not classified did not get points even if they were in the top 6

1967
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 6 races and the best 4 scores from the remaining 5 races counted towards the championship
Drivers who were not classified did not get points even if they were in the top 6

1968
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 6 races and the best 5 scores from the remaining 6 races counted towards the championship

1969
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 6 races and the best 4 scores from the remaining 5 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1970
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 6 scores from the first 7 races and the best 5 scores from the remaining 6 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1971
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 6 races and the best 4 scores from the remaining 5 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1972
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 6 races and the best 5 scores from the remaining 6 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1973 - 1974
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 7 scores from the first 8 races and the best 6 scores from the remaining 7 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1975
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 7 scores from the first 8 races and the best 5 scores from the remaining 6 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1976
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 7 scores from the first 8 races and the best 7 scores from the remaining 8 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1977
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 8 scores from the first 9 races and the best 7 scores from the remaining 8 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1978
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 7 scores from the first 8 races and the best 7 scores from the remaining 8 races counted towards the championship
Points only counted for the top placed car for each constructor

1979
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 4 scores from the first 7 races and the best 4 scores from the remaining 8 races counted towards the championship
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance

1980
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 5 scores from the first 7 races and the best 4 scores from the remaining 8 races counted towards the championship
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance

1981 - 1984
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance
Second drivers of teams that officially entered only 1 car were not eligible for points (1984)

1985 - 1990
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 9, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Only the best 11 scores counted towards the championship
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance
Second drivers of teams that officially entered only 1 car (e.g. Lola) were not eligible for points (1987)

1991 - 2002
Points awarded for the top 6 finishers: 10, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance

2003 - 2009
Points awarded for the top 8 finishers: 10, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance

2010 - Present
Points awarded for the top 10 finishers: 25, 20, 15, 10, 8, 6, 5, 3, 2, 1
Half points were awarded for races stopped before three quarter distance
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff member
Premium Contributor
Top work Bro. :thumbsup:

As regards what is the best points scoring system, its no suprise that in the 11 years between 91 and 02 not one of those seasons would have been effected by retrospective application of dear old Bernies medal system. (with thanks to Teabag for the figures).

For me it has to be a bigger gap between first and second to restore the award for coming first and then additional points for poll and fastest lap.

Fortunatly it looks like the medal thing will never get off the grid however we keep our fingers crossed.
 

Boyle

Race Winner
Contributor
I never realised how many times the points system has been changed - but were they to encourage consistency, wins or fastest laps...?

Nice article, but I really hate the idea of a medals system. It's like saying just because Chelsea won more games than Man Utd, even though United had more points, Chelsea deserve the title more.

I agree with the concept of making a win more valuable but if that's the case then go back to what most people would agree is the best way to go - the 10-6-4-3-2-1 system!

Mind you, it's not like Bernie or Max is gonna listen to us plebs...
 

McZiderRed

Champion Elect
Supporter
Good article Brogan. It is interesting how many changes have been made.

I agree with Boyle. Make 1st 10 points & only the top six winning points. Drivers just outside the top six will push harder for a points paying position, and drivers that are 2nd or 3rd would push harder to win. Everyone's happy! :)
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
I don't know, I like the 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 system. I can see that winning might warrant a bigger advantage, but hey, I'd prefer to points up with that:

ie. system of 12-9-7-5-4-3-2-1

This ensures that the winner gets the added reward, whilst races down to 8th place can have a point or that the points are not usually locked off to an exclusive club of McLaren, Ferrari & BMW any race, ie. at least 4 teams will get them!

I wonder what the best car only Constructors' Championship did for that particular Cup? Surely it meant that, say 2008, McLaren would gain an advantage comparitively because it would gain a hell of a lot of points via Hamilton and lose the 3,2,1 range points Kova was turning in!

Just imagine though, if Bernie's system had been implemented in the past... [See "The Points System" for details]
Remember the FISA/FOCA war. In 1982 FOCA pulled all its teams (bar Tyrell) out of the San Marino GP, leaving Ferrari, Renault & Alfa. That GP was won by Didier Pironi, after effectively mugging Gilles Villeneuve. This was, of course, made more contentious by Villeneuve's death at Zolder 2 weeks later. Since Pironi was also able to carry off the Dutch GP, and due to the fact that 1982 was the weirdest year in the history of F1, and no-one won more than 2 GPs, Pironi would have won the Championship due to the whole San Marino affair! And, who would therefore have cost FOCA the title? None other than its leader at the time, Bernie Ecclestone!

How history has its ironies!
 

bogaTYR

Points Scorer
lots of work bro!

actually, one thing is missing from your otherwise immaculate piece of work, and that is the circumstances. the main shift in my view being the fact f1 is now an international TV event with a worldwide appeal.

i myself really wish it would be different but its not. so f1 needs to adapt to these changes. and i for one have real doubts if a points system suits this situation. thats the whole issue.

ok, a driver can win a GP but at the end of the day, there is only one prize: the WDC. one winner and number two is the first of the losers. mr lauda calls this playing the numbers game. in theory a driver can become WDC without even winning a GP or maybe even without having a podium finish.

this might work in a situation where you go from country to country and the only spectators are the people at the race or maybe the fans reading the specialized magazines and it did have one interesting side: we had cars participating in just one race, their local one and the team was never heard of again. but we live in another world!

part of the interest of the past season, to me at least, was the fact we had several winners of races. at the same time, i am fully aware of the fact this was mainly due to other teams underperforming but ok. if you take this principle: it makes sense to make winning a race in a situation where the whole world is watching, actually more important then it would be in a points system simpy cos having multiple winners makes for more interesting racing and a better chance for drivers to give it their all (be it for only just one race), then maybe more teams would try to win at least one race. probably their local one.

i think, in the world we live in today, this makes sense.

any race can have another winner for whatever reason. and it would make a difference. GM gave an example that this would mean people trying to win their local race, a vague memory of these one race teams. true, but at the same time, instead of fighting 'just' the other big team, this means that the team who wants to get the WDC not only has to fight their 'natural' competitor for the whole season and at the end we see who wins, but they would also have to race a team set to win their local race. so instead of just two main competitors, there would be at least three! and to me this sounds like a situation leading to more racing.

i am all for racing, and to me having at least three teams per race fighting to win sounds a lot more attractive then having just 2. and if that third team, changes per race... even better. cos then the other two teams will have to try even harder.

a points system is great, but it means one can win with playing the numbers. and that is something else then racing.
 

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff member
When you look back through the seasons you can find some interesting results.
Arguments both for and against medals and points systems can be made.

In 1958 Mike Hawthorn won the WDC despite winning only 1 race.
Stirling Moss won 4 races and Tony Brooks 3.

The same thing happened in 1982 with Keke Rosberg winning only 1 race.
Five other drivers won 2 races each in that season.

So 2008 isn't unique in the respect that the WDC won less races than other drivers.

teabagyokel made a good post showing how the WDC would have been affected if a medals system had been in place.
See here
 

slickskid

Points Scorer
Supporter
At the rate things are going the whole points scoring system could be irrelevant anyway if you can only put a few cars on the grid. LOL

Personally i'd go 15,10,8,6,4,3,2,1..

Medals smedles bernie has finally lost his mind :popcorn:
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
bogaTYR said:
any race can have another winner for whatever reason. and it would make a difference. GM gave an example that this would mean people trying to win their local race, a vague memory of these one race teams. true, but at the same time, instead of fighting 'just' the other big team, this means that the team who wants to get the WDC not only has to fight their 'natural' competitor for the whole season and at the end we see who wins, but they would also have to race a team set to win their local race. so instead of just two main competitors, there would be at least three! and to me this sounds like a situation leading to more racing.

i am all for racing, and to me having at least three teams per race fighting to win sounds a lot more attractive then having just 2. and if that third team, changes per race... even better. cos then the other two teams will have to try even harder.
Sorry, I can't agree with you on the whole "local race" stuff. Maybe some teams will pour all their resources into one race... well, the car still won't be good enough. Remember, McLaren and Ferrari won every race in 2007! And they were never beaten by sheer pace all season...

  • Canada - Hamilton took out possible winner Räikkönen, Massa double stopped
  • Monza - Rain
  • Singapore - The least deserved Grand Prix win of all time™
  • Fuji - Ferrari & McLaren all outbreaked at corner 1

All the :1st: :2nd: :3rd: system will do in this respect is make Ferrari & McLaren more conservative, based on the fact that losing a place will be worse under Bernie's new system (no points deficit to fall back on), and leave Renault and Alonso's disgusting win in Singapore (he won it because his car broke down in Q2, because he couldn't overtake and because Rosberg was hob-tied by the stupid "pit-lane open" rules!) being more important than actually consistantly "taking on" the big 2 as BMW Sauber spent the year doing! Any system where BMW could lose to the much worse Renault last year is not to be encouraged!
 
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