Mosley defends new qualifying

Although some team bosses are still arguing over the new rules, FIA president Max Mosley is standing by the new qualifying sytem and the no refueling. It's yet to be seen if those against will be successful in overturning the rules but it seems ...

Although some team bosses are still arguing over the new rules, FIA president Max Mosley is standing by the new qualifying sytem and the no refueling. It's yet to be seen if those against will be successful in overturning the rules but it seems unlikely as Mosley thinks they have produced good results.

"It's difficult to say," he replied, when asked in a live chat with ITV-F1, which was the most effective of the new rules. "But the thing we were trying to do was to reduce the probability of any given car being in a position you would have expected on the grid."

"Therefore the single lap qualifying, which is a new rule, played an important part but so did the procedural matter of requiring the cars to carry the same amount of fuel in qualifying as they start the race."

Not only teams, some fans have complained about no refueling, saying that it has ruined qualifying because there will be no more excitement of the 'banzai' laps. Mosley agreed that it was great to watch but thinks the new system has it's own excitement because of the unpredictability involved.

"A number of people have made this point," he said of losing the old system. "If you are going to have single lap qualifying which has many advantages, you have the disadvantage that you will not see an out and out lap which you would see at the old style. The driver can't take these risks now as he only has one lap with which to qualify."

"That means that without the all-out lap the addition of the fuel actually makes it more exciting because it introduces another element that the driver has to take account of. I used to find the all-out lap in the old style one of the highlights of the qualifying. It's not part of the January measures, we'll never see those absolutely flat-out laps again."

In the new qualifying, the Friday session dictates the order of running on the Saturday. Some have said that it's unfair because if the weather turns, a driver could be stuck with no choice but to go out in poor conditions. However, it's just part of the spectacle that adds to the interest according to Mosley.

"This was discussed when the new rules were agreed with all the teams back in October," he said. "The consensus was that over a season this would be a question of swings and roundabouts. The shower of rain would increase the probability that someone would be in a grid position you wouldn't normally expect."

Mosley's role as FIA president comes to an end in October 2005 and he has not yet decided if he will stand for election for a further term. While his role extends beyond F1, Mosley has maybe other things in mind for when he retires: "I only spend a small proportion (of time) on F1, most of the time is spent on wider issues to do with everyday motoring, road safety, things of that kind. I haven't really thought about it. I'd like to do a bit more snowboarding."

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Series Formula 1