By Neil Halligan
Toto Wolff makes comments on decision to award double points for final race in Abu Dhabi
Mercedes F1 Toto Wolff has said the double points system introduced for the final race of the season will be unfair to the drivers competing for the championship.
With Mercedes winning all but one of the ten races so far this season (Daniel Ricciardo won in Canada), the likelihood is that either current leader Nico Rosberg or second-placed Lewis Hamilton (behind by 14 points) will be crowned world champion in Abu Dhabi on November 23.
However, a new rule introduced before the start of the season will see double points awarded for the F1 race in Yas Marina means that the tight title race will more than likely go down to the wire, much of the delight of F1 organisers and sponsors.
Wolff, however, says the drivers have not been too happy about the prospect of so much riding on just one race.
"I would be very surprised if it didn't come down to Abu Dhabi, to the very famous double points, Wolff told the Daily Mail newspaper.
"It means even if you're 30 points behind then you can turn it around in Abu Dhabi if the leading guy retires.
"So maybe Bernie was right, that double points is going to keep the championship open until the last race.
"But I don't think it's fair. I don't think we should have done it.
"The reason we did was because the commercial rights holder is head of sponsorship and he cares about the TV audience and the need to keep the excitement until the end, the last race.
"As I said, it looks like he might be right, that the last race is going to be the decisive one, and I would be very surprised if the audiences weren't considerably higher than they would normally be."
Wolff said while neither driver will care about winning via the double points, the one that loses through the new scoring system “will need some psychological treatment".
The title race has been incredibly tight between Mercedes two drivers. Despite winning more races than his rival, Lewis Hamilton (5 wins), finds himself trailing Nico Rosberg (4 wins) by 14 points – largely down to early retirements in two races.
Rosberg’s failure to finish the British Grand Prix on July 6 narrowed the gap to just four points, but Hamilton’s disastrous qualifying in last weekend’s German Grand Prix saw him start the race from 20th on the grid. He managed to battle back to third by the chequered flag, but the advantage is clearly with the German driver as the season moves on to Hungary this weekend (July 27) before a four-week mid-season break, resuming in Belgium’s Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on August 24.For all the latest lifestyle news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
Following Formula 1 since 1978 but this is indeed the most stupid rule they ever made. This doesn't help to make the sport more exciting.
What they need in F1 is drivers with charisma like in the 80's with Prost, Lauda, Villeneuve, Pironi, Laffite, Senna, etc. Not youngsters who only have a seat because they bring in money to drive. Who will recognise guys like Kobayashi, Kvyat and Chilton when passing by in the streets.
And bring back the real turbo charged engines which produced 1,200hp and spitting fire out of the exhaust. And the huge tyres. Or the screaming Ligier-Matra and Ferrari V12 engines.