Formula One’s governing body has announced a series of changes aimed at making the motor sport more competitive and crowd-pleasing.
These include awarding double points for the final Grand Prix of the season, which next year takes place in Abu Dhabi on November 23, and a numbers identification system for drivers which they will retain throughout their career.
There was also an agreement reached to bring in a long-discussed budget cap from the 2015 season although the final details of this have yet to be decided.
The decision to award double points, counting towards the drivers’ and constructors’ championships, at the final race of the season was made “to maximise focus on the championship until the end of the campaign”, according to a statement from the International Automobile Federation (FIA).
The move reduces the possibility of a championship being settled before the final race by increasing the number of points available to a driver from 25 to 50.
For the new numbers system, drivers will be able to choose any number they want from 2 to 99 and they will retain that number for the duration of their careers.
The exception will be number one, which will be awarded to the reigning world champion unless he opts to keep his original.
Red Bull’s four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel has branded the rule change as ‘absurd.’ “You can hardly imagine that on the last match of the Bundesliga season, matches are suddenly worth twice as many points,” said the German.
“It’s absurd and it punishes the drivers who have worked hard through the whole season.”
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