The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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A shakeup in F1 rules

London: Formula One officials announced two more drivers would get points in every Grand Prix and a shake-up in qualifying among changes designed to spice up the sport next season after a year of Ferrari domination. Team orders, when a driver is instructed to let a team mate pass, will be prohibited from 2003.

FIA’s Formula One Commission considered several proposals, including a weight handicapping system for dominant drivers Monday, but stepped away from radical reforms.

The axing of the Belgian Grand Prix in a row over tobacco advertising was confirmed, but the race might be re-introduced in 2004.

The top eight drivers will be awarded points in Grand Prix next season compared with six at present.

There will also be a new qualifying system from next year. There will be two qualifying sessions compared to the current one, with one qualifying lap for each car and cars to run one at a time. Falling TV audiences after a season of Ferrari domination — they won 15 of 17 races, Michael Schumacher won the world championship and his teammate Rubens Barrichello was runner-up — caused much soul-searching within the sport.

At present there is one hour of qualifying on a Saturday at GPs. Fans complain that drivers do not drive flat out on Friday and many cars stay in the pits for much of the Saturday qualifying with little excitement on the track. Next season there will be qualifying on Friday and Saturday, with the fastest driver on Friday racing last on Saturday. (Reuters)

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