The 2022 regulation changes introduced into F1 came with the promise of closer racing by making it easier for cars to follow each other. In case you hadn’t noticed, we’re now into 2023, which means a whole season has gone by with the new regs. But have they actually worked?
Opinion is defined as a ‘view or judgement formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge’, which I’d like you to keep in the back of your mind while reading this.
Personally, I’m a bit of a fence sitter. But I can always count on the F1 Twitter community to provide their takes on anything. Although, in this case – the result was almost a three-way split.
Do you think the new F1 regulations have worked? 🤔
— WTF1 (@wtf1official) April 17, 2023
One thing I will mention is that these new regulations were ridiculously overhyped. At the end of 2021, I remember making (stupidly bold) predictions that Nicholas Latifi would end up on the podium and we would have 12 different winners. Absurd.
It was the biggest overhaul of the rules in F1 history, expectations were high heading into the 2022 season for this huge shake-up, and I think it was hugely misunderstood instead.
There are a few key points that make me the fence sitter that I strive to be:
1. Statistically, there have been more overtakes. You could argue that this is a crucial part of determining whether the new regs have been effective. In 2022, we saw 785 recorded overtakes, which is a 30% increase on 2021. So, YAY for that.
2. Red Bull are dominating, so although the regulations knocked Mercedes off the top spot, we still have one team sitting at the top who look untouchable, and because of the cost cap, there’s less potential for other teams to catch them. So – did the rules really work as intended?
3. On the flip side, and perhaps most symbolic of the regulation overhaul, teams like Williams and Haas are now bringing McLaren and Alpine into a much closer fight rather than being solid back-of-the-grid teams.
4. Again, cars are already struggling to follow each other again. The 2023 technical rule tweaks to the floor heights to remove porpoising and the added theory that engineers are finding more ways to interpret the rules and find more performance has equalled dirty air already becoming a problem this season.
But what did the fans think?
Anyone voting no has a fundamental misunderstanding of what the regs were meant to achieve
— Røb//Danke Seb🖤❤️💛 (@someRobguyidk) April 17, 2023
Anyone saying yes doesn’t know what they are talking about.
Have they removed Mercedes dominance – yes. But have they closed up the field or improved racing? No. It was the latter that they were brought in to do, so they have failed.
— Stuart C (@sc1874) April 17, 2023
Look at how far the backmarkers were a few years ago, now look at them. Just because Red Bull have aced it doesn't disregard the other 9 teams who are a whole lot closer to each other than before
— Buzz Lightyear (@YearLightBuzzy) April 17, 2023
We're still in the gray area where one team has nailed the regulations and are seconds ahead.
In fact that one team has pulled even further away despite it being the second year of the new regulations.
It's like 2014 Mercedes all over again.
— Marshall t Wright (@marshallwrigh14) April 17, 2023
no, last year they could follow but they changed the rules this year which killed concepts and also ruined the ability to follow, it can be fixed but this years regs changed has gone right back to 2021 levels of dirty air
— david (@Mackorous) April 17, 2023
Ahh, the duality. Isn’t that what we love about F1? Also, who knew Buzz Lightyear was such a fan!
If you think they haven’t worked – what would need to happen for them to be a success?