No reason to expect better qualifying in Bahrain - Wolff

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff sees no reason to believe qualifying will be better in this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix, after Formula 1 failed to change the under-fire format for the second round.

Although all teams had agreed at the Australian GP that the new elimination format was a failure, a vote during last week failed to produce the unanimous support needed to revert to the previous system for Bahrain.

As reported by, McLaren and Red Bull refused to accept a compromise and the same system will be used again at Sakhir this weekend.

Wolff accepted Formula 1 was "under scrutiny", but he reckons the format is set to fail again in Bahrain.

"This weekend we will see the new qualifying system continue after a less-than-impressive debut in Australia," said Wolff in a team preview.

"The teams were unanimous in their opinion of it on Sunday in Melbourne and it wasn't a positive opinion.

"We haven't found the right format with this change and it's hard to see how it might be more entertaining for the fans this weekend in Bahrain.

"The sport is under scrutiny on this matter, so careful thought is required in order to make coordinated, intelligent steps forward from the position we are in right now.

"The fans want close racing, in a format they can understand, between the best drivers and cars in the world - in that order.

"We should be capable of delivering that to the people in the grandstands and watching around the world," Wolff added.

Hamilton on 2017 changes

After a week during which Formula 1 faced harsh criticism for its lack of direction - with the GPDA calling for changes to an 'ill-structured' sport - world champion Lewis Hamilton said he does not believe the drivers should be coming up with ideas on how to improve the show.

The Briton, who is not a member of the GPDA, reckons Formula 1 will head in the wrong direction if it pushes on with plans to make the 2017 cars faster by increasing the downforce.

"It's not our job to come up with ideas and we all have different opinions anyway," he said. "But personally, I think we need more mechanical grip and less aero wake coming off the back of the cars so we can get close and overtake.

"Give us five seconds' worth of lap time from aero and nothing will change - we'll just be driving faster.

"I speak as somebody who loves this sport and loves racing. I don't have all the answers - but I know that the changes we're making won't deliver better racing."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Bahrain GP
Track Bahrain International Circuit
Teams Mercedes
Article type Interview