Alonso suggests F1 should return to ‘one lap’ qualifying

Fernando Alonso believes Formula 1 might do well to think about going back to a one-lap qualifying system.

The present ‘knockout’ method, split into Q1, Q2 and Q3 phases, became a part of the sport in 2006. This was in response to the waning appeal of the one-lap styles that had been the norm from 2003 to 2005.

Alonso clinched his inaugural world title in 2005. During that year, an opening one-lap session on Saturdays set the sequence for a concluding one-lap session.

Now in his early 40s, the Spaniard feels that F1 could benefit from revisiting such a system. This feeling comes especially in light of recent complications with drivers slowing down during qualifying, particularly on narrower street tracks.

Alonso recognises that F1 officials are looking at regulations to mitigate the issue of qualifying traffic.

“I think whatever they do, we will always find a way to exploit,” he is quoted by France’s Auto Hebdo.

“They have a very difficult job in terms of managing traffic on street circuits. As I have said several times, there is only one real solution and that is qualifying over one lap.

“Every other solution we can try will never work, because we will always find a way around it,” the Aston Martin driver added.

However, there are many who believe that the existing knockout qualifying system has maintained its appeal over the last 17 years.

To this, Alonso commented: “I think it’s outdated. It’s been the same thing for 20 years and the cars are not the same as 20 years ago.

“We have hybrid engines, we have to load, unload, cool the tyres. The only way to move forward is to do a single lap.”