Ross Brawn, Bahrain International Circuit, 2019

Two teams blocked reverse grid qualifying races plan for 2020 – Brawn

2019 Mexican Grand Prix

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Just two teams blocked a proposal to run reverse grid qualifying races at three rounds on the 2020 F1 calendar, Ross Brawn has revealed.

Formula 1’s motorsport director had urged teams to support a plan to trial the new format at the French, Belgian and Russian Grands Prix next year.

“We wanted to try a small number of races in 2020, a different format, where it was a reverse grid on a Saturday based on championship order and that short format race would determine the grid order for the final race,” Brawn told Sky. “I thought it was a fascinating contest.”

The proposal was strongly criticised by drivers, who called it “artificial”. “The drivers were a little bit nervous which I can understand,” said Brawn.

“But we were just asking for three races to try this format. If it didn’t work, put our hands up. If it does work, great. If it’s something in between, we can work with [it] just to help us develop the format of racing.”

The plan failed to win the necessary support to be added to the rules for the 2020 F1 season.

“It’s frustrating that we’ve not been able to do that,” said Brawn. “And I think unfortunately is a classic problem of Formula 1.”

“The current governance system means we need unanimity to carry any decision through for next year,” he explained. “The teams initially said they would agree with it. And then two teams put their hands up at the last meeting and said they wouldn’t agree with it.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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20 comments on “Two teams blocked reverse grid qualifying races plan for 2020 – Brawn”

  1. I’m glad it (probably) won’t go ahead. I think it would have led to some spectacular races, including the following main race afterwards, but it would’ve felt very hollow to me and not in the spirit of F1.

    It’s great watching top drivers fight from the back but the idea of no more qualifying records alone puts me off and I want to see natural racing, not forced.

    1. Whoever the two teams are they should receive a large cash bonus and everlasting gratitude from the sport and fans. Well done!

      1. I would even consider to become a some sort of fan of both of these teams. A very BIG thank-you to them!

  2. Good for the three. Without rule changes being implemented to allow for things like an increase allocation of parts and tires, doing qualifying races would seem to be a losing proposition for the teams.

  3. Until we see new regulations – we can’t relax. These “geniuses” can throw anything in there…

  4. Anybody want to buy a team, there’s one for sale in Enstone…so it begins

  5. If they want to mix things up, make each qualifying session shorter, maybe even reduce it to two sessions. With less chances, mistakes will have a bigger impact and getting a single lap bang on will be harder

  6. GtisBetter (@)
    26th October 2019, 20:20

    The classic F1 problem is trying to fix things that don’t need fixing and not fixing the things that do need fixing.

    1. COTD right there!

  7. “It’s frustrating that we’ve not been able to do that,” said Brawn. “And I think unfortunately is a classic problem of Formula 1.”

    “The current governance system means we need unanimity to carry any decision through for next year,”

    Normally I’d say yes, this is a fundamental desgin-flaw in the F1-rulemaking process. It’s just odd it comes up from official sources exactly at that moment when this “design-flaw” prevents something that’s just bad in a way that seems obvious to pretty much everyone except whoever it is that thinks qualifying needs to be destroyed.

    That said, the commercial rights holder (currently liberty) needs to get out of the rule-making process just as urgently, if not more, as the teams. The rules of a sport should be made by a sporting governing body that is interested in the sport itself and for the sport itself, in this case that is the FiA.

  8. Those two teams did you a favour.
    Time to move on and think of something else.

  9. Just two teams? Were they the first two teams you asked?

  10. Though I know not your names, two teams, you will forever have my gratitude.

    Unless you vote for it next time they ask, because I’m sure they will.

  11. Reverse grid quali races would be utterly useless. As seen today, top 6 teams have 1-2 secs advantage on the midfield. this mean that in 10-15 of a quali race they would be on their expected places on the grid. It would generate some fake action – and potential damage for sunday race -, but nothing truly relevant.

  12. Ok, so one Thank You card goes to Via Abetone N. 4, Maranello, Italy. Where should I send the other one?

  13. I don’t care who it was. Just a huge thank you to both.

    Seriously, what was Ross thinking?

  14. Ross has nothing to worry about as the new generation will adopt all means necessary to keep non-spec series relevant. All these current naysayers will end up just like the previous ones: six feet under.

  15. possibly Renault due to their new leadership of the parent company

  16. OK, it was Mercedes & RBR who opposed, in order to preserve the sport’s DNA.
    Let’s thank them

Comments are closed.