Fernando Alonso 'sad' for F1 amid qualifying confusion

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Fernando Alonso is "sad" for the current state of Formula One and says the confusion over qualifying highlights why people are losing interest in the sport.

Drivers are opposed to recent changes to qualifying for the upcoming season, which will see drivers eliminated one by one in three different sessions. The lack of necessary timing software delayed its introduction, though a compromise between the new and old formats is set to be run for the Australian Grand Prix -- though it remains uncertain two weeks away from the season opener.

Asked about his opinion of the qualifying changes, Alonso said: "I don't have a real opinion ... it's sad. I am sad. I am sad for the sport because it does not look right from the outside when in one week we change the qualifying format three times. Or we pretend to change. No one officialises anything. If I were a sportsman from another sport I will look at Formula One a little bit surprised about that.

"I don't think that it is right. And the change, there are too many changes. The complexity of the rule also for the spectator is quite high. I think all my friends here in Spain they want to switch on the television and watch battles, big cars, big tyres, big noise and enjoy the race like they do with other sports.

"But for us they only know MGU-H, MGU-K, state of charge, super-soft, use mandatory medium tyre. When you are fourth in the race, three laps to the end you need to stop because you need to put another mandatory tyre. Things like that it's normal that they switch off the television."

Alonso was not at Wednesday's meeting between drivers and the FIA, where the opposition was first raised to the sport's race director. However, he thinks F1 should move back to the one-lap shootout system of the early 2000s.

"Any of the things that my mate will say, I will agree completely because I think that's a unanimous theme. We want simplicity on the rules. Even the one-lap format, super-pole that we did in 2005 was quite spectacular. Every one has one-lap television coverage. It's simple. You do one lap, you brake late, maybe you start 15th because you miss a corner. There is some adrenalin on that lap as well. Whatever they decide we will go for it as we have done for the last 16 years."