Plans to introduce a four-part Formula 1 qualifying system for 2020 remain in limbo, after further discussions in China on Thursday failed to move the proposal forward.
Team managers met with FIA technical chief Nikolas Tombazis and F1's sporting director Steve Nielsen in Shanghai to dig deeper into the pros and cons of the proposed system, which would see four cars eliminated after Q1, Q2 and Q3, leaving eight to contest Q4.
The top eight would then start on the same spec of tyre they used to set their best Q4 times with, moving away from the current format of the top 10 qualifiers starting the race on the rubber they set their fastest Q2 laps with.
Liberty Media is keen for the new system to be introduced in a bid to create extra jeopardy on Saturdays, as the top drivers will have to get it right three times just to make it to Q4.
It has also emerged market research suggests currently many fans tune in to watch only the last part of qualifying, and there is a desire to please broadcasters by making the full one-hour show more appealing.
The plans have been discussed previously by the team managers, as well as by their bosses in the F1 strategy group.
However, on this occasion they were armed with more information after some teams ran simulations of how qualifying would play out under the new rules.
McLaren and Williams had prepared some detailed data, while both the Woking-based squad and Alfa Romeo brought strategists to the meeting.
Sources suggest only one of the 10 teams present showed any real support for the new format. The consensus was that a four-part system would not improve the show, with it thought Q4 would end up being an anti-climax.
It's widely assumed six of the eight drivers who make it through to Q4 would almost certainly be from the established three top teams of Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull, and that the other two drivers would either not run, or just make a token effort, and settle for seventh and eighth on the grid.
It's also believed the top teams would soon drift towards using the harder tyre in Q4, likely putting them on the same compound as those who missed the cut - and as a result have free tyre choice - and ultimately reducing variety in race strategies.
A lack of tyres for the four sessions has long been pinpointed as a potential drawback, and Pirelli has made it clear that due to cost issues it is not willing to increase its current commitment.