Two or three car teams?


Staff Member
This thread came about after a discussion in the 2013 pre-season thread about the minimum number of teams required under the Concorde agreement.

Apparently, if the number of teams drops to eight or fewer, they are all required to run a third car.

So whereas today there are 24 cars from 12 teams, 2 cars per team, under that scenario there would still be 24 cars, but only from 8 teams, 3 cars per team.

That would fundamentally change the team dynamics, how teams approach races, driver preference, etc.
Even pit stops would become problematical as three cars running one behind the other in close order would require stacking in the pits or making the other driver(s) go around.
Unless of course each team had two pit boxes, but then that opens up even more issues with regards to two crews, etc.

Running three cars would give teams the opportunity to lock out podiums, use a third driver as a "spoiler", utilise them to test out tyres under changing conditions, etc.

So which would be your preference? Twelve teams of two or eight teams of three?
Running three cars per team would open up some very interesting opportunities. I'd like to see three car teams as an opportunity now. Maybe if the teams could only run two of them for constructor points and they had to specify that before the GP weekend. Maybe this could get around the ban on testing as a team could run their test driver in the third car and get some really valuable data in race conditions.

I know this would be more advantageous to the bigger teams with more funds, but surely we should celebrate success.
You'd have to have even more points paying positions. We're currently in a situation where Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari can take the first 6 positions. If we had three-car teams, those three teams could take 9 positions, meaning that unless they cocked up, there'd only be one place in the top 10 left to fight for. 6th in the Constructors Championship could be fought along Caterham/Marussia like conditions...
But on the other hand, with 8 teams with 3 cars, there would be more opportunity for more drivers to be in competitive cars! At present, if you aren't in one of the top 6 cars (2 x Red Bull, 2 x McLaren, 2 x Ferrari) then realistically, you don't have any real chance of the WDC (generalisation I know, but you know what I mean)... However, with 3 car teams, suddenly there's 9 drivers with a realistic chance...
It's only when you actually start thinking about this you realise there are as many positives as there are negatives.

It would be fascination to see a couple of seasons with three car teams, just to see how they compare.
Realistic chance of playing 3rd fiddle to Vettel/Alonso you mean. ;)

I don't like the thought of seeing a podium locked out by one team and I like that even less if a dominant car meant we saw that for the whole season. I like the diversity of F1 and I think that would start to be lost by the time you're down to 8 teams. Personally though, I don't think I'd introduce 3rd cars until the grid was down to 7 teams, but by that point F1 would pretty much be dead anyway.
It would be a lot like cycling I feel, where you have a team of riders all out for one man. Cycling is rife with dirty tactics and, due to this team approach for the benefit of one, often the results don't refelct the individual talent. there would be too much opportunity to manipulate results.

If we were to drop either the WDC or the WCC and have a single championship then there may be a way to make it work, but to introduce a third car in the current format would open a very stinky can of festering worms, IMO.
I'd like 1, 2, and 3 car teams, with only the top driver scoring for the constructors. That way little teams can survive easily and pootle around at the back, and there are more drivers who would have race winning cars, as the big teams would have 3.
tooncheese - I'm not sure that 1 car teams would actually help the small teams that much... The marginal cost of an additional car isn't that much compared with the fixed cost of getting a car to the grid in the first place, and would lower the amount of advertising space available....
Definitely 3 car teams. Higher quality of teams and with three guys in identical cars even the 2011 season would have been exciting. And it definitely would make it easier to get some of the young guys into top rides.
Three car teams may seem to hurt the sport as it would mean fewer teams but I don't think that I agree with that assumption. I like there being a full grid, and I also like there being lots of teams. However, I feel that all the teams need to be competitive to make this a viable route for the sport. Caterham, Marrussia, and HRT (while they were in the sport) just made up the numbers over the past three years. They didn't really add anything to the sport. Toro Rosso barely gave anything to the sport either with a grand total of 26 points on the season. Would the world of Formula 1 really be that much worse without those four (three if you think that HRT are already gone) teams?

If we took the reamining eight teams and gave them all three cars think of the amazing opportunities there would have been for the rising tallent. Williams would have been able to field Bottas (HammydiRestarules would be happy I think). Teams could also generate more advertising revenue from their sponsors now having three cars. The lower number of teams would also have a possitive impact on the amount a team can charge for advertising space. With there being fewer teams to sponsor it falls into the old supply and demand scenario.

Yes, I am sure that the bigger teams would benefit more from this (as they normaly do from everything). However, the benefits seems to far outweigh the drawbacks. As I said in a previous post teams could nominate two of their cars to score championship points on a race weekend. This would help prevent the top three or four teams just locking out the points every weekend.
3 car teams is a big yes from me :).

I have been pro 3 car teams for a long time. I think the likes of HRT, Marussia and Caterham have tried to get to grips with the sport however I think it's about time we said goodbye to them and let teams have 3 cars each. That way we get to keep talented drivers in the sport and it'll be easier to move good drivers like Hulkenburg and Di Resta up the field into bigger teams, meaning we can bring more talented drivers into the sport or save careers. :).

Why would it?
It's not as if the bottom three teams are pushing the boundaries of the allowed technology.

Besides, it already is anyway, and has been for years.
I bet if I posted silhouettes of all the cars you would be hard pushed to identify them.
IMHO F1 should be harder to get into, if you can prove that you've got the finance to take the team up with grid without relying too much on drivers sponsorship money. If it means for about 2-5 years we have 8 teams with 3 racing drivers then so be it. What we've learnt from the mistakes of Super Aguri, Caterham, HRT and Marussia is that it is a hard sport to break into. But you need teams at both end of the grid closer than they have been in the last few years, as Qualifying and to some extent with the the new teams the racing hasn't been that great with backmarkers getting in the way of faster cars. Plus Q1 has become the joke of the weekend, you have the same 6 cars been knocked out and then either a Toro Rosso, Williams or Sauber fails to make Q2. What I wanna see is a much more competitive F1 where all the teams are put under pressure throughout the weekend and that Qualifying and the race is alot more better.
Three car teams for me. I'd much sooner see quality over quantity. The biggest plus of course is very good young drivers having the opportunity to learn their craft from leading drivers in a top team, rather than being relegated to one of the second tier teams. What a fabulous classroom McLaren, Ferrari and Red Bull could provide for them. It would lift the quality of the grid dramatically.
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