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Last Updated: Monday, 24 October 2005, 18:52 GMT 19:52 UK
F1 brings in knockout qualifying
Fernando Alonso
Fernando Alonso will have to qualify over three sessions next year
Formula One will switch to a knockout qualifying system next season as the sport seeks to improve its appeal.

Qualifying will now take part in three phases, with five cars dropping out after a first 15-minute session and another five following a second stint.

The remaining 10 cars will then compete for pole position in a 20-minute finale designed to maximise TV excitement.

Tyre changes are also making a return after being scrapped this season, despite objections from some teams.

The return to slick tyres and a move to run a single tyre supplier were also passed for a provisional introduction in 2007.

A proposal for a radical new rear wing concept, designed to facilitate overtaking, also won the support of teams for 2007 subject to further input from their technical directors.

"This new research is important for the future of Formula One," said International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Max Mosley.

"By introducing the CDG wing we can give motorsport fans exactly what they have asked for, wheel-to-wheel racing with much more overtaking."

The tyre changes will bring a tyre war and a massive escalation in costs
Outgoing Minardi head Paul Stoddart

Proposed rule changes that were not accepted were the banning of spare cars for 2006 and the end of third cars running in Friday practice sessions.

The current single-lap qualifying format, with each car running alone against the clock, has been much criticised by teams and broadcasters.

And the new system was developed by F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

Ecclestone, Mosley, sponsors, promoters and representatives from all 10 teams were among those at the meeting.

Outgoing Minardi head Paul Stoddart was wary on the qualfying changes, while he said the tyre changes would lead to a tyre war.

Stoddart said: "Time will tell with the qualfying change. But the tyre changes will bring a tyre war and a massive escalation in costs. I do not think it's the smartest move.

"Only time will tell if it is a good day for Formula One or a bad day. But I don't think it will prove to be a good day."

Interview: FIA president Max Mosley


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