F1 Wants Reverse-Grid Qualifying
F1 Wants Reverse-Grid Qualifying

Formula One bosses want to press ahead with the idea of reverse-grid qualifying. This is despite the opposition of Mercedes, the drivers, and most of the fans of the sport.

The sports organisers want to try and make races more competitive, rather than the normal scenario which sees one or two dominant teams qualify first on the grid, and then race away into the distance when the lights go out on race day.

And now the idea of reverse-grids has been given fresh impetus after this weekends Italian Grand Prix in Monza. That saw two safety cars and a time penalty for race leader, Lewis Hamilton, mixed up the race order completely, and resulted in Pierre Gasly of France driving an Alpha Tauri, secure his first ever F1 win.

The idea of using reverse grid order for qualifying is relatively simple. Rather than teams compete over an hour to see who can complete the circuit the fastest in three elimination rounds, teams would take part in a short sprint race in reverse championship order.

This means that the bottom drivers in the championship would start last, and the leader in the standings last. The outcome of the race would then be used to determine the starting places on the grid for Sunday.

Supporters of the idea argue it would make both qualifying, and the race itself, more competitive and interesting.

However, those against it believe that the concept is a gimmick. The sport is meant to be a meritocracy, and the best should not be penalised in favour of the worst. They also argue that the system can be gamed, and that the execution of the plan disadvantages the fastest car, compered to the second and third cars in the field.

The drivers too are opposed to the idea. Lewis Hamilton, the world championship leader, believes it fails to address the fundamental issue of competitiveness in the sport, whilst Romain Grosjean, head f the Grand Prix Drivers Association, believes that it answers a question that has not been asked.

According to a recent poll, only 15% of F1 fans like the idea as well.

Despite this, F1 bosses are determined to trial the new system, perhaps as early as the Bahrain Grand Prix later this year.

Suneer chowdhary
Sports Pundit staff writer @suneerchowdhary
ICC-accredited cricket journalist, covers Team India through their cricketing journey around the world

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