Formula 1 has confirmed that it will change its scoring system by giving bonus points to the driver who sets the fastest lap in a grand prix. Drivers will only receive the extra point if they also finish in the top 10 in the race.
F1 bosses and the FIA have been in discussions about introducing new initiatives, and awarding a point for the fastest lap is one which has received backing. The Strategy Group gave it the green light, as did the Sporting Working Group.Approval from the F1 Commission and ratification by the World Motor Sport Council followed, meaning the new rule will be enforced from the season-opening Australian Grand Prix on Sunday. It was formally confirmed on Monday after the FIA’s world motor sport council (WMSC) approved it last week.
F1 managing director Ross Brawn said the idea could “improve the show while maintaining the integrity of the sport”.
Brawn, the former Mercedes team boss and Ferrari technical director, said: “We have been considering this solution – which represents a response to detailed research carried out with thousands of our fans around the world – for a number of months.
“How many times have we heard the drivers on the radio ask the team about who holds the fastest lap?
“Now it will no longer be only a matter of record and prestige, but there will be a concrete motivation that will make the final part of the race even more interesting. Sometimes it is useful to remind ourselves of the heritage of our sport to move forward. ”
It will be the first time a point has been awarded for the fastest lap since the first 10 years of the F1 world championship in 1950-59.
Last year, Valtteri Bottas won the DHL Fastest Lap Award, after securing the most fastest laps – seven – during the season.