The controversial qualifying lottery will not be replaced in the upcoming Formula E season, despite it being unpopular among drivers.
In the first three seasons of the championship, a lottery draw has determined which of four groups a driver will qualify in. As, at some tracks, qualifying in group one puts drivers at a disadvantage compared to their group four competitors, many have called for the system to be replaced.
A new system had been proposed for the 2017-18 season, which would see qualifying groups determined by championship position. The top five in the championship would be in one group, with the next five in a second, and so on. It meant those battling one another in the title fight would qualify in the same conditions.
But team representatives were told at preseason testing that the proposal has been dropped, and the qualifying lottery will continue next season.
“I was hoping for it to go,” Sebastien Buemi told Autosport.
“When you go to a track where the lottery plays a big role – we had two tracks, Montreal and Mexico, where it was very bad to qualify in group one – it could destroy your weekend.”
Changing weather has also impacted qualifying in the past. Ahead of the first 2016 London ePrix, rain moved in part of the way through qualifying, which meant only those who had qualified in group one got a chance on a dry track. It put championship contenders Buemi and Lucas Di Grassi in the middle of the pack.
[…] were told at Valencia during preseason testing the qualifying draw – which determines which group a driver will qualify in – would remain for […]