F1 retains qualifying format; Monza to keep Italian GP for another five years

F1 retains qualifying format; Monza to keep Italian GP for another five years

Formula One has opted not to alter its qualifying format from 2020.

A proposal to split qualifying into four timed sessions rather than the current three has been rejected following the release by the FIA of its sporting regulations for next year.

Team bosses were asked to consider the new format - that would have seen four drivers eliminated in the first three sessions leading to a 10-minute, top-eight shootout - by commercial rights holders Liberty Media.

However, it is understood reverting to such a plan would have put pressure on teams with regard to tyre use, and the cost of supplying additional tyres was deemed unnecessary.

The Italian Grand Prix is poised to remain at Monza as the Automobile Club of Italy (ACI) has reached an agreement in principle to continue to host the race through to 2024.

Doubts have long been raised as to whether the Italian GP would remain on the F1 calendar, despite its historical significance, with Monza set to host the 70th edition of the fabled race in September.

Although no formal contract has as yet been signed with Liberty Media, who run F1, the ACI has confirmed a new five-year deal is close.

A statement on its website said: "ACI and Formula 1 have reached a general agreement regarding the economic aspects of the collaboration contract for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza for the next five-year period 2020-2024.

"The General Council of the Automobile Club of Italy has therefore given a mandate to the President Angelo Sticchi Damiani to continue the negotiation with Formula 1 on all the technical and commercial aspects related to the partnership, in order to reach, in a short time, the signing of the contract to make the collaboration fully operational."

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