Newly recruited Liberty Media Managing Director of Motorsports Ross Brawn, has revealed how he would like to host an annual non-championship F1 event in the future.
The idea would be to allow the testing of different race formats, a way to try out new concepts for enhancing the F1 show, but in an off-calendar event, that would mean no adverse effect would be felt on the world championship.
Speaking to Sky Sports during the current pre-season test session in Barcelona recently, Brawn explained his thinking.
“My dream actually would be to have a non-championship race once a year, and in that non-championship race you could experiment.
“So you could try a different format for one race and see. It would enable us to vary the format and try something different and evolve it.
“Like everything else you’d tune it. Then you could make it better and say, ‘actually now, this is better than what we have. The fans love it, everyone loves it. Let’s swap.’”
The event would ensure that if a different way of doing things was to be implemented, those in charge could make sure they had got it right before ploughing ahead, and could avoid debacles such as the change to the qualifying format seen last season, something Brawn would never consider trying.
“You can’t take a risk in a championship of swapping the format and getting it wrong. I’m a bit nervous about that.
“When we start changing the format, we have to be very sure that we’ve got it right. Because when you start a championship with one format, you can’t change it during the year – or you shouldn’t change it during the year.”
Non-championship events used to be a regular occurrence on the F1 calendar, with the International Trophy running from 1949 until 1978, and the Race of Champions, which took place from 1965 until 1983. Keke Rosberg won the final race of both events, which brought about some outstanding performances and are missed by many racing fans.
They also had the same kind of appeal back in those days as well, with F1 teams using them as an opportunity to shake-down their new cars and conduct some extra testing before the world championship got into full swing.
If Brawn gets his way then, they could be about to make a much welcomed comeback.