OneFormula: A Competitiveness model for Formula One Driver Championship and Driver Performance

This paper presents a model for the Formula One Driver Championship and Driver Performance 1950 - 2020.


Driver Championship


Purpose

Develop a format that upgrades the battle for pole position, intensifies close racing and increases genuine overtaking in Formula One races.


Methodology

OneFormula uses both race and qualifying results as criteria for the Championship format (a); introduces a modified points system to reduce points dispersion (b); adds a compensation for car related DNFs* (c). In addition, two recommendations are made in technical regulations: elimination of DRS** and adjustment of a car's front wing.

* Did Not Finish
** Drag Reduction
System


Result*

With the modified format, standard deviation for the points dispersion between competitors is reduced by 33%; the standard deviation between the first three drivers is reduced by 45%. The changes make both the battle for the Championship and racing on the track more attractive, as overtaking on the track will lead to position swaps in the Championship more often instead of battles for points alone. With a modified front wing design, changes for surviving the first lap without damages increases considerably, which in turn will encourage close racing. In combination with the elimination of DRS, this will bring genuine overtaking back in F1.
* Results as per GP Russia, 2021


Driver Performance


Purpose

Develop a format with objective, plausible and statistically justifiable criteria for an all-time driver performance ranking.


Methodology
For the historical ranking of F1 drivers, OneFormula uses multiple criteria: "Wins", "Pole positions" and "Podiums" -second and third place- with weighting factors (a); replaces absolute figures with relative by exposing the criteria against the total number of a driver's career races (b); converts six different points system -as used in F1's entire history- into one uniform system (c); adds a compensation for car/team related DNFs (d); assigns a personal factor to drivers to offset differences in levels of competition per season using absolute average deviation as statistical tool (e).


Result

For the period 1950 - 2020, Fangio emerges as the best driver, followed by Prost; Hamilton is in third place (December 2020).