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Mercedes against reverse grid qualifying

NEWS STORY
30/05/2020

In its efforts to run a schedule of up to 18 (or 19) races this season, F1 is looking to reformat race weekends, a desire it has made no secret of in the past.

Along with two-day weekends, F1 is proposing a qualifying race on the second Saturday of back-to-back events at the same circuit, for example the Red Bull Ring and Silverstone, whereby instead of the usual qualifying session there would be a 30 minute race with drivers starting in reverse order to how they finished the previous weekend's race. The result of the qualifying race would decide the grid order for the next day's Grand Prix.

The idea was proposed at a meeting of the teams, F1 and FIA on Friday, with a vote on the issue scheduled for the coming days.

Seemingly, Mercedes was against the idea, and though the FIA recently announced that at this time only the approval of 60% of the grid is needed as opposed to unanimity, this only applied to "urgent" rule changes and as this proposal is not considered urgent unanimity will be required.

The thinking behind the proposal is the fear that two races at the same circuit within days of one another could effectively end with the same result, and as a result, F1, with an eye on TV audiences, believes that 'reversing' the grid would provide an element of uncertainty.

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