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Rewriting Formula One’s rules

The new Formula One rule book will add excitement to the sport in 2014

Formula One fans, and particularly those in this country, have plenty to anticipate in 2014. The International Automobile Federation (FIA), the sport’s governing body, announced on Monday its intention to award double points in the Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix next year, in an attempt to keep the title race open until the season finale at the Yas Marina Circuit.

This innovation, combined with wholesale technical changes to the specifications of the cars – including the introduction of new smaller, quieter and more efficient 1.6L engines, fuel restrictions, exhaust changes and bodywork modifications – will require each of the teams to radically rethink their approach to the sport. The new rule book is intended to make racing much more competitive next season and break the monopoly that Red Bull Racing and its world champion Sebastian Vettel has enjoyed over the sport since 2010.

Even so, few would seriously expect Red Bull to fail next season, but history suggests there might be some surprises in store. The last time F1 drastically redrew the rules in 2009, those changes ushered in a new champion, Jenson Button, from the unfancied Brawn team. Many F1 fans will hope for something similar this time around.

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