THE new Formula One season is just hours away and it will start with the arguments over fake rain still rumbling on.
Bernie Ecclestone says that his idea of introducing sprinklers on certain circuits to simulate rain and spice up F1 races is not dead and indeed reckons his idea is gaining support, but it’s a little sad that a multi-million pound sport has to try and contrive circumstances to make the competition more interesting.
F1 purists will no doubt run a mile from the very notion of simulated track conditions, claiming that the idea is too artificial, while others backing Ecclestone see it as a legitimate skill challenge and ask what the difference is between sprinklers and tyres designed to wear at an artificially high rate in order to stimulate more on-track interest.
But the great thing is that at least those involved in the sport seem to be open to ideas of how to change what is all too often a procession into a spectacle once more.
Maybe if the sprinkler system doesn’t create enough interest, they could put the sprinklers on and then artificially drop the temperature on one section of the track and see how well the drivers can cope with unexpected ice patches.
Or maybe when they hit the streets of Monaco they could actually leave the zebra crossings and traffic lights active which should test the drivers even more.
To be honest my personal preference is for bike racing anyway and to be honest when it comes to cars I was only ever really taken with the famous Wacky Races.
Now maybe if the FIA threw out some of their rules and regulations about vehicle construction we really would be treated to some excitement on the track.
What could be better than having a Professor Pat Pending team whose car could actually change without having to go into the pits.
And you could always rely on Dick Dastardly and Muttley getting well ahead only to then stop to set a cunning trap for their rivals rather than just carry on to the winning line – although I could never understand why he did that.
Plus what could be better than watching Sebastien Vettel cruising to success on his home Nürburgring circuit only to pinged back to the start by a huge piece of elastic when just inches away from taking the chequered flag.