• 2011 Season

Ecclestone backs 107% rule

ESPNF1 Staff
March 14, 2010 « Andretti calls for US GP return | »
Bernie Ecclestone wants a tougher qualifying process © Sutton Images

Bernie Ecclestone has backed the FIA's efforts to reinstate a 107% qualifying rule in Formula One.

FIA president Jean Todt this weekend indicated he will push for the rule, which would see cars failing to get within 107% of the pole time excluded from the race.

An immediate rule change would require the near-impossible unanimous agreement of all the teams, but an introduction in 2011 requires just a 70% majority.

"We will reintroduce the rule," Ecclestone told France's Auto Hebdo. "Not this year, next year."

The report added that Ecclestone wants the 107% tightened to 105% for 2011.

107% of Sebastian Vettel's Bahrain pole is about 8 seconds, meaning that neither HRT driver would have qualified for the season opener. At 105%, all of F1's three new teams would have struggled to qualify.

But McLaren team boss and FOTA chairman Martin Whitmarsh said he is not surprised the new teams are so far off the pace.

"If the new teams were very close it would mean the rest of us had done a poor job," he said.