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Last Updated: Saturday, 23 April, 2005, 10:47 GMT 11:47 UK
F1 teams ponder qualifying change
Paul Stoddart
Sunday qualifying is out of favour, it's a dead duck
Paul Stoddart
Formula One bosses have held a meeting to discuss making the fourth change to Grand Prix qualifying since 2002.

With the exception of Ferrari's Jean Todt, team chiefs met F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone at Imola this week.

Ecclestone admits the new system, with first qualifying on Saturday and pole decided on Sunday, is not popular.

"We will see what we can come up with. We ought to get it back to what it was before, everyone running together and the quickest guy on pole," he said.

Minardi owner Paul Stoddart said no decision was expected to be made in the near future.

But he added: "I think everybody accepts the current format is not working.

"Sunday qualifying is out of favour. I don't think you'll find a single supporter of that. It's a dead duck."

Television companies are also against the current format, with nothing decided on Saturday afternoon and viewing figures low for Sunday mornings.


"There is an overriding feeling among the team principals that we're not changing it again unless the change we make is fully thought through, supported by everybody and is permanent," said Stoddart.

BAR boss Nick Fry suggested a format divided into three sections to take place on a Saturday.

All cars would run for 15 minutes, after which the slowest five are eliminated, leaving the remaining 15 to run again before another five drop out.

The final 10 cars would then have 20 minutes to battle it out for pole.

Another proposal was for two half-hour sessions, one with low fuel and the other with a fuller load, but any change has to be agreed unanimously by all the teams and F1's governing body the FIA.

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