Max Verstappen seen during a photo shoot of the kit launch of Red Bull Racing in London, United Kingdom in 2023. // Red Bull Racing / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 drivers reject qualifying format shake-up

(GMM) Formula 1’s top drivers seem unimpressed with plans to spice up the qualifying format later this year.

In Bahrain for the 2023 season opener, it emerged that the sport intends to debut an experimental qualifying format at Imola in late May.

The format, which will be repeated at another grand prix later this season before the summer break, will see drivers limited to hard tires in Q1, medium tires in Q2, and soft tires in Q3.

The drivers’ tire allocation for those weekends will also drop from 13 to 11 tire sets.

“It’s the same for everyone,” said world champion Max Verstappen, “but I don’t think we actually need to do these kinds of things.

“I hope it’s not to be cold in Imola also, otherwise it’s going to be quite tricky.”

Fellow Red Bull driver Sergio Perez agrees: “I just think it’s for the show.

“I think we don’t need that when you see the qualifying we had today, with how close everything was.”

And Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc added: “I don’t feel there was a need to change that, but let’s try it and see.”


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