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Brawn clarifies proposal for changes to qualifying format

NEWS STORY
23/09/2019

Following comments made by Ross Brawn in recent weeks, there has plenty of reaction to the suggestion that 2020 will witness changes to the qualifying format, including the proposal of a race to decide the grid order.

Following the claim that future races could also see the grid reversed, a number of drivers made their feelings clear in Singapore over the weekend.

"I don't really know what to say to it," sighed Lewis Hamilton, when told of the proposal for a reversed grid. "People that propose that don't really know what they're talking about."

"I think it's complete bullshit to be honest," added Sebastian Vettel. "I think we know... if you want to improve things I think it's very clear we need to string the field more together, we need to have better racing. So, it's just a plaster.

"I don't know which genius came up with this but it's not the solution," he added. "It's completely the wrong approach."

In reaction to these comments, and those from fans on social media, Ross Brawn sought to clarify his comments.

"In recent days I've read a variety of statements from drivers and pundits concerning ideas to make the race weekend format more spectacular," he told the official F1 website. "To try to clarify the situation and avoid misunderstandings, there are discussions about experimenting in 2020 with changes to the qualifying format with the aim of making a Grand Prix weekend a little less predictable.

"I want to emphasise the word ‘experiment' because this is what it is about, a small sample to establish the directions for the future.

"We are all too aware that the current qualifying format is exciting and spectacular," he added, "but what is also important is to make sure that the race, the highlight of the weekend, is the best it can be."

Referring to some of the ideas being considered, he said: "No matter how many simulations you run, there's no measure more accurate than the track.

"Formula 1, the teams and the FIA are studying the possibility of a revised format for a small number of events for next season. With stable sporting and technical regulations in place for 2020 it is the perfect time for such evaluations.

"No decision has been taken yet because we are finalising all the details, but feedbacks received so far are, in the majority, positive. I understand that the purists might be concerned, but we should not be afraid to conduct an experiment otherwise we cannot progress.

"We don't want change for the sake of change; we want to improve our sport, because, rather like the development of the cars, if you stand still you risk slipping backwards."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Spindoctor, 27/09/2019 8:55

"The old adage 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it' seems appropriate.
Such a change would undoubtedly promote more overtaking, but this is Motor RACING & "Racing" involves a lot more than simply having lots of overtaking. Pole position is a reward for being fastest, and being fastest relies on a combination of car design, preparation, driver skill & set-up it involves determining complex compromises which play-out on race day. That's as much a part of the 'show' as watching Verstappen picking-off the also-rans in the slow cars....

This move suggest that if you are Lewis Hamilton, in a Mercedes you'll plod around the track at 20 mph, in order to start first- genius! Naturally there will be a humongously complex set of Rules, Regulations & Penalties put in place to discourage this. If nothing else it'll give the TV commentators something else to babble endlessly about.


"

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2. Posted by USA1, 24/09/2019 12:17

"Like I said before, put a budget cap on the teams and let everything else open and let the best guy win, you will have lots of great racing and qualifying!"

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3. Posted by Hobgoblin, 24/09/2019 11:42

"Reverse Grids - are you kidding me?
Let's see how that would work... Fastest car starts at the back, slowest at the front...

Did these people watch the farce that was Q3 in Monza??"

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4. Posted by alvarezh3, 24/09/2019 11:37

"@Editor

I missed that, my appologies, best to keep things in-house. Thanks!"

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5. Posted by alvarezh3, 24/09/2019 11:17 (moderated by an Adminstrator, 24/09/2019 11:20)

"@ TokyoAussie:

Regarding the front and rear wings for 2021, rejoice, they seem to have heard you!

https://www.pitpass.com/65781/F1-plans-futuristic-front-wings-for-2021"

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6. Posted by kenji, 24/09/2019 10:36

"@ Graham G...I do think that you've missed the point entirely...just like the teams and drivers of all but the top three teams. Watching the same old same old just disappear into the distance is not my idea of exciting racing. Watching Vettel/Verstappen/Ricciardo et al carving their way through the field shows us more about their skills than driving to a delta for half the race with team orders thrown into the mix!!!!"

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7. Posted by GrahamG, 24/09/2019 7:25 (moderated by an Adminstrator, 24/09/2019 11:20)

"Forgive me, but I thought the idea of motor racing was for the fastest car/driver combination to win the race. Current qualifying seems to serve the purpose quite well. If "exciting" means lots of collisions while faster drivers try to thread their way through slower cars then we can always go to the nearest dirt oval to see banger racing, no need to pay loads to watch destruction derbys in far off places."

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8. Posted by TokyoAussie, 24/09/2019 3:28

"kenji: Pitpass had exactly such a forum in the past. And I miss it.

ross_brawn: If you want to experiment, how about experimenting with the front wings. There are many ways of reducing their impact on the sport, the easiest of which is to make the darn things much smaller for a start."

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9. Posted by kenji, 23/09/2019 23:46

"As a rider to this topic...what are the chances of PITPASS running a dedicated forum. I used to comment on another site which originally was the best forum in F1 but due the expansion of a ce rtain group this forum was 'monetised. and has now ceased to exist in all it's former glory. Pitpass has the 'chops' to take up this mantle and grow a decent forum for serious comment."

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10. Posted by kenji, 23/09/2019 23:42

"I need to go way back...decades even to remember when any team, other than the majors, ever took a win let alone regular podiums. As long as the fastest cars from the biggest teams start at the front of the grid it will for ever be so. I raced yachts for many year and the system of handicapping resulted in many extremely close and exciting races. I, for one, would love to see the 'others' in with a chance and superstars being made to constantly prove that they are worthy of that accolade by having to battle through the field. Watching Ricciardo doing just this last Sunday is a case in point. "

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11. Posted by alvarezh3, 23/09/2019 23:28 (moderated by an Adminstrator, 24/09/2019 11:20)

""In reaction to these (If I may add -negative-) comments, and those from fans on social media, Ross Brawn sought to clarify his comments."

He goes on to say:

"No decision has been taken yet because we are finalizing all the details, but feedbacks received so far are, in the majority, positive."

So, if the above mentioned and social media's negative comments was what caused him to clarify in the first place, from whom is he getting his so called "majorly positive" feedbacks?

If the majority of comments were positive I would think there would be no need to clarify that what they intent to do is "experiment". This expressed, of course, in order to appease those (probably a sizable number whom he prefers not to mention) who complain.

"Referring to some of the ideas being considered, he said: "No matter how many simulations you run, there's no measure more accurate than the track."

If the end result is to make the weekend "more spectacular", obviously, to us the viewers, I am very much interested -for curiosity purposes- in knowing more on this simulator or simulator program that can somehow closely predict how a group of people are going to react to a change on a car race's procedure. Didn't know computer simulators -at this point in time- had gotten so accurate at predicting human social behavior. Very interesting!

Finally, experimenting in F3 is not good enough, it has to be specifically in F1 in order to be 100% accurate. I see, maybe it has something to do with the difference in the speed of the cars or the celebrity grade of the drivers! Well gals and guys, FOM and the FIA knows best, I guess to them we are just the (dumb) sheeps that must follow the pastors."

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