Ross Brawn has hinted that a more open future for F1 by adopting a NASCAR style model of open scrutiny. At given intervals throughout the season the teams will have to open up their cars and other teams are allowed to poke about and see the magical hidden bits. This means that a Force India can copy a Mercedes widget fairly and the big money teams don’t have a massive advantage.
Of course the big teams (cough, Mercedes) will be against this as anything that diminishes their advantage is obviously terrible, and wait Ferrari are storming out the sport again until Chase Carey starts crying and then gets to meet Kimi Raikkonen.
But, like every State of F1 we have to deal with the fundamental question of what the hell is F1 anyway. Is it to be the best of the best, with teams putting screens up around their test cars like an arm wrapped round your desk in an exam. Or is it about competition and that if you’re truly the best you’ll always be one step ahead of the rest. Either way it’s a rule that will appeal to the have nots and horrify the haves. How do we square this circle?
Don't worry, I have a solution
As ever, these wishy washy debates never go far enough. I say if we’re going to take rules from fucking NASCAR let’s go the whole hog and bring in the running Le Mans style starts, only with all the pieces from all the cars all over the road. Whoever can pick up enough bits and bolt them on quickest gets to go first. The cars will be all different colours and it won’t only be about driving skill but also how many episodes of scrapheap challenge you’ve watched. Win win.