There is a hell of a lot of Formula One news, and because there is no Top Gear on this week and because I haven’t written in a while, there may be more F1 posts than there have been in recent weeks. There is a lot of stuff flying around about Michael Schumacher still as well as some new points system and the Lotus team has their driver line up all secured.
Schumi, for all intents and purposes, is going to be driving for Mercedes GP next year. That is the word that Speed Channel has given, though no official information has been sent out yet. However, it is pretty much a given knowing that he has bought a new neck exercising machine and that Ferrari has said they won’t try and stop him from making a comeback. Luca di Montezemolo doesn’t seem to be extremely happy with the decision, obviously, but he has stated that he is not a team member and is only a consultant for the road cars. Also, Schumacher’s manager, Willi Weber is talking up the fitness level of Schumacher and how he is ready to be back in a Grand Prix car. Plus, I don’t think that Schumacher can resist being able to work with Ross Brawn again. They are extremely good friends and know exactly how to get the job done. Will it result in an eighth World Title, no one can really tell. Come the first of the year, I expect there to be an official announcement of this.
There is also talk of a new points system. It would essentially double the number of points the drivers score and give points back to 10th place. This would be the new break down, should it happen: 25, 20, 15, 10, 8, 6, 5, 3, 2 and 1. I really don’t care if this system is implemented or not. Actually, it could end up making for more interesting races. With the field of cars now at 26, there are going to be many more cars vying for points and if there are points that are going to be spread all the way back to 10th, there is more of a possibility for points to be scored. However, this also means that winning a race will have more benefit than it used to, with five points separating the winner from second place. Newly crowned World Champion, Jenson Button, says that he would back the new system, as would Bernie Ecclestone and FIA president Jean Todt. I say that as long as there are still points and not some stupid medal system, then all will be fine.
It has also been announced that Lotus F1 has some new drivers. Well, I guess they are not really new, as they have been around for a bit, but they are new to Lotus. Both Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen have signed on to drive for the new mark. Both drivers realize that new teams won’t be competitive at the beginning of the year, but they seem to be under the impression that they team will be competing for points come the end of the season. While this may seem to be unrealistic given that they will be up against some stiff competition from other teams like Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes GP, McLaren and others, there are not many points left to be had. With the points being handed out down to 10th place, they may have a shot, but realistically, they have a long, long way to go to be able to see any points come their way. Perhaps by the end of the season, but that will require a lot of development work and dedication.