Negative reaction to weight ballast

As expected, there has been some negative reaction to Bernie Ecclestone's suggestion of a weight handicap in Formula One to make it harder for anyone to get too far ahead. Changes have been put forward recently to stop F1 having another walkover...

As expected, there has been some negative reaction to Bernie Ecclestone's suggestion of a weight handicap in Formula One to make it harder for anyone to get too far ahead. Changes have been put forward recently to stop F1 having another walkover in the championship as Ferrari did this year and weight handicaps are already in use in some other racing series.

Williams technical director Patrick Head thinks it's up to the other teams to reduce Ferrari's dominance, not a weights system: "I find the suggestion of adding ballast to anyone's car distasteful," he said. "Will Arsenal have to field nine men when they play Chelsea - or Pete Sampras have two strings cut from his racket when he meets Tim Henman?"

"It is just a knee-jerk reaction because Ferrari have been so dominant. But it is up to the other teams to overtake them and that is something we feel we are more than capable of doing."

McLaren's managing director Martin Whitmarsh is also against the system: "We would not sign up to a weight handicap in Formula One," Whitmarsh remarked. "I understand the concerns about the lack of close racing at the present time, but this is largely due to Ferrari doing an excellent job. It is up to other teams to take steps to rectify performance deficiency, and we will. Nobody wants to beat Ferrari simply because their cars are carrying additional weight."

Eddie Jordan is in support of weights, saying the system is easy to put into place and manage: "I think weighing down the cars is an excellent way, which has already been proved, of leveling out the field," he commented.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Jordan , Patrick Head , Bernie Ecclestone , Martin Whitmarsh
Teams Ferrari , McLaren , Williams , Jordan