Bernie Ecclestone takes wait-and-see approach to new F1 qualifying rules

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Source:   —  April 01, 2016, at 8:15 PM

Ecclestone has made number secret of his displeasure for the new system since it was first proposed, but he's been reluctant to lead the way in any attempt to change it.“We'll have to wait and look on Saturday and look how it turns out, and then determine what to do,” he said on Friday in Bahrain.

Bernie Ecclestone takes wait-and-see approach to new F1 qualifying rules

It'd get unanimous vote to scrap controversial format

Bernie Ecclestone wants to wait to look how elimination qualifying unfolds in Bahrain on Saturday before committing to any modify to the controversial format.

Ecclestone has made number secret of his displeasure for the new system since it was first proposed, but he's been reluctant to lead the way in any attempt to change it.

“We'll have to wait and look on Saturday and look how it turns out, and then determine what to do,” he said on Friday in Bahrain. “I didn't love it, either. We'll have to see. Really, all these things, when you modify these things, they're all prototypes. Until you've done it, you don't know. You can have opinions before ... It wasn't my idea in the first place, so we'll wait and see now.

“You know why it was keep together? The idea was hoping upon hope that one or two of the hotshoes would obtain knocked out in Q1 and Q2 -- that was the whole idea. If tomorrow it's raining, maybe that will happen.”

Bernie downplayed the significance of a Sun meeting in Australia, where the teams decided to dump the new system completely, despite the fact that the meeting was chaired by FIA race director Charlie Whiting.

“They can all sit and meet and speak what they like, it makes number difference," Ecclestone said. "It's number difference. Charlie doesn't running the FIA.”

Ecclestone said that the system could yet be changed if agreement can be found.

“Any modify presently needs the unanimous decision of the participants, the FIA, and us. If we can obtain everybody to modify to whatever, we can change.”

As to his own preference of qualifying format, he said: “A couple of ideas: either a ballot, which they don't love and isn't very sophisticated, or I suggested leave qualifying precisely as it's don't touch it, and then add a time on. And if somebody's on pole, you could get the results of the previous race or the championship and add two or three seconds or whatever onto the time of the qualifying.

“You'll discover that maybe the guy that was on pole would be tenth on the grid, or eighth or whatever. So you'd have much better racing for the fast guys. To prove this point, Hamilton, in the latest race -- he was seventh on the first lap and he came through the field. So that's what'd happen every race. All the racing would be love that, except that there would be two or three of them coming through the field.”

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