Formula 1 returns to old qualifying format
Formula One governing body, the FIA, and Formula 1 Management decided to return old qualifying format, starting from Chinese Grand Prix next weekend.
New qualifying format used in Australia and Bahrain in the opening two races of the 2016 championship was widely criticized by the teams, the drivers, and the fans after failing to meet expectations and make qualifying more interesting. A change was necessary and authorities finally decided to return old format.
“At the unanimous request of the teams in a letter received today, Jean Todt, President of the FIA, and Bernie Ecclestone, commercial rights holder representative, accepted, in the interests of the Championship, to submit a proposal to the F1 Commission and World Motor Sport Council to revert to the qualifying format in force in 2015,” says a statement released by the FIA and F1 Management.
It is still unknown what will be in 2017
A change needs to be approved by the other F1 governing bodies and after that it will come into effect, starting from next Grand Prix and will apply for the rest of the season. After the end of the 2016 campaign, the teams and the FIA authorities will evaluate possibilities for the 2017 qualifying format.