FIA President Max Mosley has been singing the praises of Renault boss Flavio Briatore in F1 Racing this month. He’d do well to listen to Briatore’s thoughts on the current qualifying system:
I think the knockout system is very good but I am still not happy with the first part of Q3. At the moment, we are going round for no reason, and it doesn’t make sense for the people or for our image with the environment. I think the final session should be 15 minutes long and you fuel beforehand. You then qualify, and whatever load you finish the session with, then you start the race like that. What we are doing now doesn’t make sense for the show.
What would be even better, of course, would be for them to do away with fuelled qualifying altogether and let the fastest man win – just as they’re going to in the DTM. But Briatore’s entirely correct in pointing out that the ‘fuel-burning’ phase of qualifying is hideously bad for Formula One’s image as the world of motoring gradually wakes up to environmental concerns.