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Formula 1

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The sport of Formula 1 is often dismissed when considering high action games. Surprising, considering the immense amount of skill required and life threatening situations that come about every time you jump in the car. It is possibly one of the most competitive sports around today, with the huge amounts of money that is being poured in for technological advances and drivers that are inch perfect.

The format and rules of Formula One racing alters slightly every now and then. As of the 2013 season, there are 11 teams, each with 2 drivers. These drivers compete for 20 races throughout the season, battling to earn points for their team and also for themselves in the driver’s championship.

Formula 1 itself is a highly complex sport, with rules and regulations governing nearly every area of the car’s performance. This includes the tyres, fuel, design configurations and others. Despite all of these regulations, the general format of the races themselves is relatively simple.

Each of the 20 races, called a Grand Prix, is run over a weekend. They consist of a series of practices, a qualifying period and a main race. The qualifying period has three sessions, where drivers aim to set their fastest time in order to progress the next session. The result is a rank of drivers, or a ‘grid’, which is the order in which the drivers line up for the final race, which usually takes place on the following day.

The final race is not just a dash to the finish. With rules regarding the number of tyres a driver can use, along with the amount of fuel, it is just as much a tactical battle as it is a race. With races being approximately two hours in length and speeds of over 300km/h, the level of concentration required for the drivers is phenomenal, especially with the penalty of any fault being serious injury or possibly death. This can be seen by the regular instance of 4 or 5 drivers not successfully completing the race.

The points gained from each race are dependent on where a driver finishes. In 2013, first place gains 25 points and only 1 point for a tenth place finish. Placing 11th onwards earns no points.

Formula 1 is an incredibly fascinating sport, and arguably one of the most dangerous. It is unfortunate that there is a general stigma against it from parts of the population labeling it as ‘dull’ or ‘boring’. Anyone that understands the sport, however, will beg to differ.