Lewis Hamilton says F1 should let fans judge new qualifying format

Lewis Hamilton has urged critics of Formula 1's new qualifying format to wait until the system has made its debut in Australia before passing judgment

Lewis Hamilton says F1 should let fans judge new qualifying format

On Friday the World Motor Sport Council confirmed an earlier decision made by the F1 Commission that qualifying for this season would take on an elimination style, with the slowest driver knocked out at 90-second intervals in the closing minutes of each segment.

F1 has come in for criticism for the uncertainty that surrounded the changes in recent weeks, and many believe the qualifying format did not need to be changed in the first place.

How F1 created its qualifying shambles

Hamilton, who has made his views clear on certain aspects of F1 most recently, notably with regard to its direction, and especially the 'halo' cockpit protection system, is holding fire on this occasion until he has sampled the new format.

"What's most important is how the fans feel about it," said Hamilton.

"There have been some good formats and some OK formats.

"I've generally enjoyed the format of the last few years.

"That's why it doesn't make sense to me right now, the changes that have been made, but don't knock it until you try it.

"I'm looking forward to getting to Melbourne and trying it out, and maybe we'll be surprised.

"It may be really exciting, or maybe it won't. We'll see.

"We'll get there, see how it goes, and then immediately you'll get comments from the fans as to whether it's good or not."

Team-mate Nico Rosberg does not feel Mercedes will be too deeply affected by the change, although he has yet to fully review the system.

F1 needs to stop using half-measures

Unaware of its confirmed introduction when asked, Rosberg initially joked: "It's back again? Don't say it's going ahead, we still have two weeks!

"I don't think for us it makes much difference.

"It's more for the people in the midfield, and maybe in wet-weather conditions, where it will become much more complicated.

"To be honest, I don't even know what's coming. I haven't looked into it because it doesn't really change much for us.

"But before Melbourne I will tick that box to know what to do and what's coming for qualifying."

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F1 needs to stop using half-measures
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