New F1 qualifying format gets green light for Melbourne
Formula 1 team bosses have given the nod of approval to the controversial new elimination-style qualifying format set to be introduced from the season opening Australian Grand Prix.
The idea was voted through unchanged on by the FIA World Council which governs the rules of F1.
The World Council appears to have decided to ignore calls for changes to the system which may result in a deserted track at the end of qualifying.
The rule has been pushed through despite F1 commercial boss Bernie Ecclestone announcing last week that FOM would not be able to implement the system as early as the first race in Melbourne.
Apparently the software shortcomings have been resolved and it is all systems go for the new format which will see drivers eliminated every 90 seconds in the closing minutes of each of three qualifying stanzas.
Seven drivers will be knocked out in the final minutes of a 16 minute first session and another seven in the final minutes of a 15 minute second session, leaving eight for a 14-minute shootout for the top positions at the end.
Many drivers are against the change because they believe it will make qualifying too complicated for fans to follow.
There are also concerns the final minutes of the FP3 shootout will be an anti-climax because drivers may have used up their fresh tyres too early.