The FIA has confirmed it will revise the rules on awarding reduced points for shortened races following the confusion which arose in the championship-deciding Japanese Grand Prix.
Red Bull and several other teams did not initially believe Max Verstappen had won the world championship due to uncertainty over which points system was being applied. As only 52% of the race distance was covered, teams expected the FIA to apply the points system for races which cover 50% to 75% of the scheduled distance.
However due to a widely-overlooked quirk in the wording of the regulations, full points were handed out instead. Verstappen therefore clinched the championship, to his surprise.
The FIA confirmed today the rule, which was introduced in reaction to last year’s shortened Belgian Grand Prix, will be amended in order to serve its intended purpose.
“At the Japanese Grand Prix, Article 6.5 of the Formula 1 Sporting Regulations which covers race time limit and points distribution was applied correctly,” it said in a statement. “However, the wording of the Regulations will be revisited with a view to bringing further clarity during the next review of the Sporting Regulations.”
Following the race several teams expressed the view that the regulation needed to be corrected. Yesterday Verstappen’s championship rival Charles Leclerc said F1 “needs to get better at this” in future.
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