Sidepodcast // All for F1 and F1 for all

What a result? // The wait for confirmation of the 2007 World Champions is embarrassing

Published by Mr. C

Brian Vickers driving in the NASCAR Nextel Cup 2007 at Talladega, Alabama, USA

Every once in a while Formula 1 manages to trip over itself in a such a spectacular way that you begin to question the validity of such a sport.

The championship finale yesterday was one of those occasions. After a thrilling on track showdown, the likes of which fans haven't experienced for many a year, came the news that the results may be in question and the World Drivers' Championship once again hung in the balance. Thankfully, after much delay, the Stewards in Brazil decided not to impose any sanction and the original finishing order remained.

However, less than an hour later, McLaren notified the FIA of their intention to appeal this descision. This means fans will now have to wait for this to be heard before anyone will know for certain who the 2007 World Drivers' Champion actually is.

Madness.

It's worth reminding ourselves that none of this needs to have happened. NASCAR, the premiere racing series in the USA (and a sport currently making rapid inroads into F1's core fan base), run a system that in the event of any post-race infringements or appeals, teams and drivers may be fined, teams may even be docked points but the original driver results still stand.

This means all race fans understand that the time and money they've invested watching the event, the race long agony and stress they've been through and their post-race celebrations aren't entirely wasted. The driver who won the race when they left the track, is still the race winner when they arrive home later in the day.

Formula 1 still has an awful lot to learn about good publicity and respect for the paying fans.

Bootnote: McLaren, are claiming that they are only appealing, in order to gain an understanding of how cars can be found to have broken the rules and yet not have had any punishment applied. One only has to think back to the WMSC descision in July where the team were found to be in breach of article 151c, yet at the time received no punishment. Back then McLaren were quoted as saying such a descision was "very balanced and fair".