An F1 chief has said that impending rule changes are what has made this season the most exciting in years

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An F1 chief has said that impending rule changes are what has made this season the most exciting in years
Brawn said salary caps had helped to this season's competitiveness. Robert Cianflone/Getty Images
  • F1's managing director says upcoming rule changes and a salary cap are what has made this season so exciting.
  • This season's title race between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton has been the tightest in years.

Formula One's managing director has said impending rule changes and a salary cap have contributed to the most exciting season for years.

Mercedes has won the past seven drivers' and constructors' championships, but this season, fans of the sport have been treated to some much needed competition with Red Bull's Max Verstappen and Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton locked in the closest title race in recent memory.

Verstappen currently leads Hamilton by just six points with only six races remaining.

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An F1 chief has said that impending rule changes are what has made this season the most exciting in years
Hamilton and Verstappen are locked in the tightest title race since 2016. Andy Hone - Pool/Getty Images

At the start of the campaign, teams were restricted to a budget cap of $145 million, which is again set to drop to $135 million in 2023.

Teams are also preparing for a drastic overhaul of the regulations next season which are designed to encourage closer racing. Some of the changes include bigger wheels, a redesigned front wing and nose, and more sustainable fuel for the cars.

One of the sport's most influential figures, Ross Brawn, said that these changes are one of the reasons for this year's excitement.

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"There is no doubt in my mind that the cost cap and the rules changes that were implemented are having a positive impact on the closeness and intensity of the championship," Brawn, who rose to fame as the technical director at Ferrari during Michael Schumacher's seven title wins, said in a column on the F1 website.

"There is no capacity for a team to pour massive resources into a championship and try and run away with it.

"The resources are now limited and the teams are also focused on next year's car, which is requiring a lot of time and resources.

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"We still want a meritocracy. We still want the best team to win. But we don't want them to win by a country mile simply because they've got a bigger budget than anyone else.

"It's pleasing to see the way things are developing."

An F1 chief has said that impending rule changes are what has made this season the most exciting in years
Lewis Hamilton leads Max Verstappen at the Portuguese Grand Prix. PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images

The 66-year-old added the 2022 regulations were still needed despite the competitiveness of this campaign.

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​​"This weekend I heard some comments around whether the 2022 regulation changes are needed given we're currently enjoying such a golden season," he said.

"While the 2022 rules won't change the situation overnight I think they are a much better platform to improve the racing on the track."

Hamilton almost caused "disaster"

An F1 chief has said that impending rule changes are what has made this season the most exciting in years
Hamilton initially ignored his team's request to come in for new tires. Andy Hone - Pool/Getty Images

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In his column, Brawn also commented on reigning champion Hamilton, who was angry with his team after a strategic error cost him a place on the podium at the Turkish Grand Prix.

"The driver is in a bubble," said Brawn. "They need to give you information, but what they can't see is all the data being fed to the pit wall.

"In Lewis' case, if he didn't box and the tires had gone away or there had been a light rain shower, he would have tumbled down the order and that would have been a disaster.

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"Once again teams were faced with a very difficult strategic decision. In these scenarios, you're trusting your judgment, experience and feel.

"As we saw with Lewis, there was a fair bit of initial resistance from within the car about pitting.

"When these situations are not clear-cut and you get a push-back from the driver, it's easy for a team to back off what they feel was the right decision."

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