Formula 1

Which driver has the X Factor?.

Formula 1 livens up qualifying rules for 2016

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Formula One turned into a song and dance halfway through testing at Barcelona last week when F1 bosses announced new rules for qualifying in 2016.

The proposed changes are not quite as bad as getting the cars to drive in reverse with the slowest cars starting at the front of the grid, but they do seem just as confusing.

It is basically Formula One meets the X Factor, as drivers will be eliminated one by one throughout the qualifying with the last two drivers in a 90-second shoot-out to determine pole position.

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Felipe Massa was utterly confused. The veteran Brazilian said: "The only thing I understand is that they want to create some chaos - and this will happen for sure."

However, Lewis Hamilton voiced his opinion on the matter, with the three-time world champion remarking: "I don't agree with the changes that are made, and have been made for many, many years, so you just live with it."

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British racing fans will be hoping Hamilton will be able to deal with the changes because the talk in Barcelona was that the Mercedes car was super quick and super reliable. The only thing that could have threatened the German carmaker ahead of 2016 season was a last-minute rule change designed to manufacture drama.

And that is just what is proposed.

Fortunately, the teams have time to gather their thoughts and report any concerns back to the FIA, but it seems that the new rules will be implemented as initially outlined.

Maybe Bernie Ecclestone has been channeling his inner-Simon Cowell in order to make Grand Prix weekends more entertaining for himself and his family.

The chief executive officer of Formula One Management said recently: “I wouldn't spend my money to take my family to watch a race. No way.”

F1 Grand Prix of Mexico

That seems a little harsh but with Formula One being a big business driven by advertising revenue, he is understandably concerned that the familiarity of routine Mercedes victories may breed contempt for the sport.

So whether the “chaos” of the new qualifying rules ends Mercedes’ dominance, and heralds in a new world order remains to be seen.

But at least, it will make for a fun weekend at the Ecclestone residence.

Will the changes to qualifying affect the Championship? Leave your opinion in the comment box below!

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