Ecclestone says new qualifying system delayed

Bernie Ecclestone has said that the revised qualifying system will not be introduced until Spain because of issues with readying the new timing software, which has to deal with the complex elimination process.

The timing system is the responsibility of FOM and not the FIA. The new system had been discussed behind closed doors for some months, so the delay reflects a lack of joined-up thinking at the top of the sport. The FIA is also likely to be frustrated by the situation given that the change has already been announced, albeit with the proviso that it will “potentially” be introduced for 2016.

As reported last week that there were already concerns in the paddock about the software being readied in time.

“There’s a lot of work to do in the next few weeks,” said Pat Symonds of Williams. “Not just for us but for FOM to redo the software that handles the timing systems and things like that. It’s quite a tough call.”

Ecclestone has now confirmed that the work cannot be completed by the start of the season.

“The new qualifying won’t happen because we can’t get everything together in time,” he told The Independent. “It was going to come in at the start of this year but we are not going to be able to get all the software done in time. So the qualifying changes will probably be in Spain. In Australia it will be the old qualifying. All of the software has to be written so it’s not easy.

He added: “It’s not what I wanted in the end. All I’m trying to do is muddle up the grid so that the guy that is quickest in qualifying doesn’t sit on pole and disappear because why should he be slow in the race if he is quick in qualifying?”

Ecclestone also confirmed that he wanted time penalties added in order to mix up the grid.


Filed under F1, F1 News, Grand Prix News

11 responses to “Ecclestone says new qualifying system delayed

  1. Mick

    Embarrassing for the sport. No wonder people aren’t watching anymore. How is a casual viewer who just wants to sit down & watch quali and the race once a fortnight supposed to follow what is going on when the rules are constantly being changed. Maybe if we are lucky the new tyre rules will give us some interesting grids at the first few races and the new system will be dropped.

  2. peterg

    …….. All I’m trying to do is muddle up the grid so that the guy that is quickest in qualifying doesn’t sit on pole and disappear because why should he be slow in the race if he is quick in qualifying”

    So now Bernie is artificially ordering the grid. From race promoter to race producer. Just like NASCAR. Good Grief!! 😦

  3. peterg

    There is the possibility we have all been conned.Historically Bernie has been a master of distraction “watch the right hand, while the left hand gets what he really wants”

  4. Brian

    I know how they can do it without having to rewrite anything and it could be implemented tomorrow. It’s called a lottery. Just draw numbers from a hat. Or, if we can get Luddite Bernie to agree, let the fans VOTE on who they want to be on pole and set the grid by those numbers. Ties can be broken by the number of freckles on the drivers’ left hand or number of nurses employed by the hospital in which the driver was born.

    How about mixing the “grid” by randomly selecting which of the multiple options of tires available are the ones that a driver has to start on? None of this selecting ahead of time nonsense – Bernie will draw colors from a hat and that’s what you start on. THAT would mix things up for sure. 🙂

    It’s simply impossible to roll one’s eyes enough to express the dismay at the grotesque amateurishness of all of this. Year upon year it just gets ever more foolish and ludicrous. And, to be honest, I can’t figure out if Bernie is a positive or a negative in this endless game. He swings from offering up all these crazy schemes to vetoing other ideas that are either just as crazy or even worse. It sure is (or isn’t) hard to imagine what will follow F1’s upcoming “Scalia moment” – when the thin twine that holds all the lunatics in check snaps. If I was CVC I think I’d want to get out of this about now.

  5. Not George

    For years Q1 was HRT, Marussia, Caterham +1 knocked out. Why fiddle with it now when Manor, Haas, Sauber and Renault are likely to be neck and neck? So race 1 is Barcelona, race 2 is Monaco… chaos? Fast cars at the back coming through the field? Lotus 1991 Monaco “sponsor”, Ollocks springs to mind.

    Next bright idea: cars eliminated from the race at lap intervals so that tv can concentrate on the top 2 droning round in formation for lap after lap. Oh hang on, most of that plan happens already. I am beginning to despair.


    I really miss the days of F1 when Senna, Prost, Mansell and Piquet would battle for pole position. Glorious sounds of race engines and huge slick tires being pushed to the edge. I think Mr. Ecclestone has lost his way. He acts like a dolt with eight billion dollars. I am sure the drivers would hate this idea and it goes against technology, but they could invert the qualifying grid and fans would see some great passing in the first five laps. Give extra championship points for fastest pole lap. Have that driver start on the last row. Unlimited fuel and unlimited tires. No mandatory pit stops.

  7. GeorgeK

    If there’s a racing god in a racing heaven somewhere, the timing for this misbegotten timing system will prove unworkable and never see the light of day.

    Bury it and lock up Bernie, please.

  8. Floodo1

    Bernie has to go. The fastest driver SHOULD be on pole and disappear into the distance if no one is similarly fast!

    If I wanted close racing I’d watch something like SuperGT or one-make racing like Ferrari Challenge

    Bernie is so out of touch that it’s ridiculous.
    Bring back Magnu-Cours!

  9. Lars

    Sadly Bernie appears to be past his sell date: at least on this topic. Time penalties for the fastest…. seriously?

  10. Off Track

    I’ve said before this new quali stuff is NOT a smart idea. I think I was being kind.

  11. petes

    And reading the fine print contained in Adam’s twatter feed, Pirelli too are facing a reality check. Just another day of fcuk-ups in the world of F1……

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