The season is scheduled to take place over 17 rounds, starting with the Australian Grand Prix on 29 March 2009 and ending on 1 November 2009 with the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, which is included on the race calendar for the first time and will be held at the new Yas Marina Circuit. The French and Canadian Grands Prix, which were both included in the 2008 championship, have been dropped.
Several rule changes will be implemented by the FIA, in a bid to cut costs due to the global financial crisis and to improve the on-track spectacle. New rules governing tyres, aerodynamics and Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems, among others, are some of the biggest changes in the Formula One regulations for several decades. It is unclear how the champion will be decided as the FIA initially declared a change in deciding the World Driver's Championship, with the driver winning the most races to be declared as the champion, whereas in previous seasons, the driver with the most points was considered the champion. However, they then offered to postpone the change untill 2010.
The 2009 Formula One season will be the 60th FiA Formula One World Championship season. There are a total of ten teams signed up to compete in the championship.