Formula One 2009: It's Looking Bleak
Many people would be forgiven for still being on a high after the excitement of the final laps of last season's Brazillian Grand-Prix and the way in which Lewis Hamilton was crowned the World Drivers' Champion.
However, those of us who have managed to get over that, or at least put it to the back of our minds, will notice that the sport we love is evaporating into thin air right before our eyes.
This isn't going to be an article in which I bash Bernie Ecclestone or Max Mosley; I have already written several of those. Instead, this is going to be a look at the season ahead and a preview of the potential dire straits that our sport is facing.
With Honda expected to release a statement to the media within hours telling us that they have retired from the sport, there are many questions on my mind, and no doubt the minds of the 750 or so employees at Honda Racing.
We were told right up to the final Grand-Prix of last season that Ross Brawn's boys were working on the 2009 project and had given up on last season's car early on. Doubts have now arisen in my mind as to whether there ever was a 2009 car or whether the Honda boys knew that they were up the creek without a paddle.
Another question: why have they had Senna and Di Grassi testing for them? Surely a team that is as professional as Honda wouldn't lead people on—or was this all part of the illusion?
What will Jenson Button do now? Surely there isn't enough time for him to jump from one ride to another and be ready for the start of the season? Well, there might be, but he surely won't feel comfortable doing this.
So, that sees the grid down to nine teams for next year. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that to be a complete farce and the lowest number of cars on a track in modern day F1 racing.
In addition to Honda retiring, we have also lost Canada, France and probably Germany from the race calendar for next season. This leaves a short 16 race season which includes the brand new Abu Dhabi circuit. Furthermore, China's Grand-Prix is expected to be pulled by 2010.
Now we get to the "ugly" side of things: the cars. Some fans have said they like the new-look F1 cars, some have said they hate them. I have to say I am with the latter group of people on this one.
The cars for 2009, in my opinion, look disgusting. The rear wing is far too high and too short, the slick tyres look appalling and just to add a small novelty, we have nice big yellow stickers on the sides of the cars warning mechanics of "Electrical Hazards."
Excuse me if I'm speaking out of turn here, but surely the people who built the cars are going to know what the hell is inside them—that is like telling a Chef that there is chocolate in his, or her, chocolate brownies!
My final point, and one that I wont be covering in much detail as I have already covered it, is the prospect of the "medal scoring system" being brought in by His Royal Shortness, Bernie Ecclestone, who, by the way, is probably my least favourite person in the World at this moment in time.
Surely a scoring system that has been used for many, many years and is tried and tested is something that we should keep. Fair enough, as Sheiban Shakeri has mentioned in his article, this system may need looking at and changing slightly—but for the love of God, I can't see what is so wrong with it that we need to change it completely.
As I said at the begining of the rant, or article, as I prefer to call it, the 2009 season is looking as though it is in complete tatters. Nine teams, sixteen races, crappy looking cars and a new scoring system. I ask again, where the hell is the sport that I loved going?
Until next time I get on my high-horse I will leave you with this thoughtl last season's Brazillian Grand-Prix was, without doubt, one of the most exciting season climaxes in F1 history with a record-breaking number of viewers in the UK. Can you honestly see this ever happening again?
I, for one, can't!
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