F1 tweaks rules but double points set to stay

Thu Jan 23, 2014 4:33pm EST
 
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By Alan Baldwin

LONDON (Reuters) - Formula One looks set to go ahead with a controversial decision to award double points for the last race of the season after the governing body announced various rule changes on Thursday but not the one many fans had hoped for.

The International Automobile Federation (FIA) said in a statement its World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) had met in Geneva and approved several amendments to the 2014 sporting regulations.

There was no mention of double points and an FIA spokesman could not say whether the subject was even discussed.

The BBC reported earlier that the proposal was raised at a meeting with team bosses and Formula One's commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone on Wednesday but no attempt was made to overturn it.

Red Bull's quadruple champion Sebastian Vettel, who won his fourth successive title last year with three races to spare, has called double points "absurd" while a significant number of fans have derided the idea as a gimmick on social media.

Caterham team owner Tony Fernandes told reporters this week that the change, designed to keep the championship alive for as long as possible, was a "fake fix" for greater problems troubling the sport.

Those include the financial troubles afflicting many competitors, with a number of drivers having to race for free or bring sponsorship to secure a seat, and rising costs.

AFFORDABLE FUTURE   Continued...