Although the 2017 cars are likely to be the fastest of all time, former F1 driver Alex Wurz wants to see Formula 1 cars made much faster and more exciting to watch in the future, with fewer confusing rules and a dramatic increase in safety.
Wurz retired from racing at the end of 2015, but he scored three podiums in his Formula 1 career, has won Le Mans twice and, coolest of all, he hand paints his own helmets. He’s also the current chairman of the GPDA and has said he’d like to see cars have even more downforce and more powerful engines so that the cars can go up to 450kph.
Yep, you read that right – 450kph! That’s almost 280mph, which is around 45mph more than the top speed reached by current F1 cars.
Speaking to Motorsport.com, he said “If I am a visionary for F1, I would make the cars ever safer, but I would than make them way faster. But I talk of way faster, because we can make cars which go 450kph and have way more downforce. We can then, when the cars are safer, race on the most extreme race tracks, city tracks.”
Sounds pretty exciting, though whether or not it would make the racing better is up for debate. Wurz has thought about though and reckons that it wouldn’t really matter because it would be such a spectacle anyway.
“The sole underlying aspect is that the fan at home needs to sit and think: ‘I could never do that. Only the most courageous, talented drivers can do that.’ Then I don’t care about the rest. Because then my [inner] fan is excited. And we’ve moved so far from excitement.”
For all this to happen though would require a massive advance in safety, and Wurz believes the Halo device is a step in the right direction.
“My opinion is – make the cars safer and go very aggressive with the rest, because then we can, because a human life is less likely at stake.”
Wurz later took to Twitter to mention some of the other things that could change if the cars were made significantly safer.
+ tracks more xtreme + no unreasonable asphalt run offs + let the boys race hard, so the viewer is “impressed” ‼️+ better TV production etc. https://t.co/iy69GL2bCg
— alex wurz (@alex_wurz) January 4, 2017
No asphalt run-offs? But track limit discussions are the highlight of any weekend! Seriously though, it all sounds fantastic, but chances are it’ll never happen – or at least not for a long, long time.
That said, it’s good to see someone of prominence actually offering ideas for how F1 could be better – from both a driver and fan point of view – and not just moaning that things aren’t very good without giving any constructive criticism. Good on ya Alex!