Formula 1

Fernando Alonso Advocates for Revamp of F1 Qualifying Format

In a recent interview, Fernando Alonso called for a significant change in Formula One’s qualifying rules, suggesting a return to a ‘single lap’ format to address congestion issues. The veteran Aston Martin driver expressed dissatisfaction with the current system, highlighting safety concerns and unfair advantages.

Key Takeaways:

  • Fernando Alonso, the experienced Aston Martin driver, has raised concerns about the current F1 qualifying format. He suggests a switch to a ‘single lap’ qualifying system to avoid congestion and provide a fairer competition.
  • Alonso pointed out the problems with the existing format, including driver behavior leading to safety issues and impediments in the last few races. He believes that none of the current measures effectively address these problems.
  • The existing qualifying system has been in place since 2006, with a brief, unsuccessful attempt at modification in 2016. Alonso highlights how the format is outdated, considering the technological advancements in F1 cars, including hybrid engines and tyre management.

Fernando Alonso, a seasoned Formula One driver currently with Aston Martin, has voiced his opinion on the need for a revamp in the F1 qualifying rules. His main contention is with the current format, which he feels has been exploited unfairly by several teams. This exploitation, according to Alonso, not only affects the competitive integrity of the sport but also raises safety concerns.

In recent races, especially in Italy and Singapore, the behavior of some F1 drivers, such as impeding, has raised issues. These practices have been obstructive to others’ performance and, critically, posed safety risks. The measures taken by the sport’s governing body to prevent clustering of cars, particularly in the final sectors of the lap, have proven ineffective in Alonso’s view.

Speaking to Autosport, Alonso articulated his solution: adopting a single-lap qualifying format. “They have a very difficult job in terms of managing traffic on street circuits and all the other things like that. As I have said several times, there is only one way to find a solution, and that is qualification in one round. Every other solution we can try will never work, because we will always find a way around them,” Alonso explained.

The current qualifying format has been a fixture in Formula One since 2006, with a brief flirtation with an elimination-style format in 2016, which was quickly discarded. Alonso reminisces about a time when single-lap qualifying was the norm – first introduced in 2003. This format allows each car to have a single opportunity to set their best time, isolated from the rest of the field.

Highlighting the obsolescence of the current system, Alonso added, “I think this qualifying format [existing format] is outdated. It’s been the same thing for 20 or 25 years and the cars are not the same as 20 or 25 years ago. We have hybrid engines, we have to load, unload, cool the tyres. So the only way to move forward is to do a single lap.”

Alonso’s comments have sparked discussions among fans and professionals alike, reigniting the debate on how best to evolve the sport’s qualifying format in line with modern technological advances and safety standards.

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