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TC Or Not TC? That Is The Question

Jan 5, 2008
Next year's F1 season should prove to be the most exciting for decades. Further rule changes by the FIA outlawing the use of traction control (TC) systems will create more excitement and harder races for all the competitors. After the recent F1 revival, sponsors and merchandise companies will be thanking their lucky stars that FIA officials have taken this course of action.

The reason the move away from TC will bring increased revenues in merchandise and sponsorships to F1 is because it will take away the computer element and put yet more pressure on the drivers.

Since 2001 TC has been a part of F1 racing and the drivers have been thankful for the help, launch systems have created faultless starts and driver errors have been limited to a minimum. Unfortunately for those in sponsorship and merchandise this has led to a downturn in profits as fans abandoned F1 for more exciting forms of motor sport.

This year should see the Grand Prix starts of the nineties recreated as the smallest error will allow drivers to capitalise on rival's mistakes and create the situation where pole position will not ensure a podium place. Unfortunately for merchandise producers and sponsors the automatic starts had led to F1 becoming rather uninteresting and a simple procession of cars from beginning to end.

Fans are not the only ones looking forward to the changes that promise to bring the excitement back to F1. Nick Heidfeld of BMW has stated the changes will create more drifts and greater overtaking opportunities, leading to a more thrilling season.

Sponsors and merchandise producers of teams such as Renault and BMW will be licking their lips after the announcement of the changes. Whilst their cars will still be subordinate to the Ferraris and McLarens, the increased chances will offer podium places to skilful drivers.

Not all the drivers however have welcomed the changes. Some Grand Prix drivers have questioned the viability of having no TC systems during wet races. It must be remembered F1 cars are hard to control in perfect conditions and understandably drivers want their fears allayed in the event of driving a powerful machine on a wet track. This has led drivers to request a reclassification of which conditions will be determined as 'too dangerous' to race.

F1 bosses have characteristically told drivers not to worry; in an amazing statement the FIA surmised that driving in the wet is dangerous anyway and drivers are good at what they do and should be able to handle the cars in almost any conditions. This stinks of pressure from sponsors and merchandise companies who want to dispel any fears that races will be cancelled. What is certain however is that last years Fuji race would not have gone ahead if the cars had not had TC technology.

Other drivers have not been so ready to rubbish the FIA's plans, Lewis Hamilton has been recorded as saying that the change will be 'cool,' although he has not driven the car without TC he is ready to relish the challenge. As a man who loves challenges it will surely be interesting; as the F1 prodigy has stated, 'we are the best drivers in the world so we should be able to deal with it.'

Whatever the drivers opinion, the FIA, merchandise companies and sponsors all stand to make money from the rule change. After last years exciting end to the season that gripped motor sport fans across the world and brought many fans back to the F1 fold, the 2008 season promises to capitalise on the widened fan base.

The dominance that characterised F1 at the turn of the century and turned so many fans away will be reversed. With competition between teams at a high, the pinnacle of motor sport is set to enter a new phase of unrivalled entertainment.
About the Author
Formula 1 Expert Shaun Parker is eagerly awaiting the new season and has purchased much of the F1 merchandise range already. To find out more please visit http://www.official-merchandise.com/
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