After years of having Bridgestone as the tire supplier for F1, this year the world's 2nd most popular sport switched to Pirelli. Apparently Bernie Ecklestone knew what he was doing.
The softer option tires don't last very long & when they start to degrade the cars lose speed & traction, meaning more passing by quicker cars with newer tires. I have already seen more passing in the first 3 races this year than I saw all last year. The lead changed hands in Sunday's China race 5 times. On the track!
This, along with the re-introduction of the KERS system & the new DRS rear wing system causes more position changes in a series most of us think lacks action. (I like to say formula one means the car in front at the first turn of the first lap wins. That is always the case , not Sunday).
Lewis Hamilton moved up from 5th in the last 20 laps to win. That has never happened as long as I have been watching. Even better, Mark Webber started 18th & finished 3rd! That wasn't pit strategy, that was passing on the track.
How did this happen? Like I said, when the tires get laps on them they degrade, causing the car to lose speed. Not a lot-F1 cars are super fast, but enough that the car behind can pass if the driver has the skill. Formula One races used to be parades. Now they at least have as much action as an Indy Car road race. In fact the China race was probably better than Sunday's Indy race at Long Beach, & that's my favorite series-no redneck taxicabs for me.
Of course this won't make F1 popular here. The China race began at midnight pacific time. I recorded it & watched it this afternoon (Monday-my day off). Anyway Indy Car ran at 1pm PT, 4pm ET & probably had few viewers because "too many furriners". Actually the reason is dumb race fans aren't really race fans, they just like to see cars slamming into each other. You know "rubbin' is racin'". Actually it isn't. It's just wrestling on asphalt.
I'm not saying every F1 or Indy race will be exciting, but things are looking up & strategy is very important & I'm into that.