Flexibility the key for Monaco qualifying

Formula 1 teams believe flexibility will be the key in escaping trouble in qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend

Flexibility the key for Monaco qualifying

F1 bosses failed to agree on a split format for the principality event, amid fears that the fastest teams will suffer in qualifying due to traffic issues around the tight streets of the circuit.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner reckons being flexible will be vital to avoid being knocked out in the first session.

Horner said one of the possibilities was to be on track for the majority of the 20 minutes of Q1.

"It is one way of looking at it, or you pick you gap when the others have pitted. Flexibility is going to be the name of the game," he said.

"I think the most worrying aspect is Q1, it is just a matter of trying to get a lap that is sufficiently clear to post a time through Q1. Somebody unfortunately mentioned statistically that every 200 metres there will be a car if everyone runs and there is obviously a big difference in pace between the cars.

"The worst thing is when you come around to Rascasse every lap and there is a queue of five cars. I think it is just about picking a gap, perhaps when the slower teams are pitting and making sure you get in. You only need one lap."

Mercedes GP CEO Nick Fry said one of the reasons why no agreement was reached was because the smaller teams saw it as an opportunity to stir a surprise.

"I think from a professional point of view it would have been better for the top teams for it to be split but even the top teams were not fighting too hard," said Fry.

"It does gives the guys at the back a spin of the wheel and we respect that. There wasn't a big discussion about it. The teams obviously do see it as potential to take advantage and good luck to them, we will see what happens."

Fry reckons even the first driver leaving the pits at the start of Q1 is likely to face problems because of the huge difference in performance between the top and bottom teams.

He added: "Trouble is even with the first slot the performance differential is such that it doesn't stop someone coming out of the pits in front as you as you come around - so then you are stuffed as well.

"Someone said that in the first part of qualifying there will be a car every 200 metres if they are spaced evenly and they won't be spaced evenly."

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