McLaren supports Mercedes in opposing reverse-grid races

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

McLaren’s team principal Andreas Seidl says the teams need to “respect what Mercedes has done over the last few years to build up this dominance”.

In recent weeks talks about the introduction of a reverse-grid qualifying sprint race have intensified. Even F1’s managing director motorsports Ross Brawn has been very vocal about the good it would bring to Formula 1 in terms of excitement. However Mercedes’ team boss Toto Wolff was one of the loudest voices opposing the idea.

“This is not because I have a Mercedes bias,” said the Austrian.

“On the contrary, I like the variability and the unpredictability, and we will have races that will be very different such as the Monza race.

“But nobody wants a winner that has started from a reverse grid. I don’t think we should be designing freak results where it is almost impossible to overtake, just because we believe that the pecking order should be a different one.

“This is a meritocracy, this is a sport where best man and best machine wins, and this is not WWE, where the outcome is completely random,” concluded Wolff.

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Now McLaren’s Andreas Seidl also thinks “randomness” of results should not be introduced in Formula 1.

“For us, Formula 1 is a championship, and always has been, where everyone is working within the same regulations,” said the German.

“The best team, with the best car, with the best driver, is at the front in qualifying, and if everything also goes well on Sunday, is also at the front and wins the race.

“This is why we are absolutely not supportive of the idea of introducing a reverse grid.

“We simply have to accept, and respect, what Mercedes has done over the last few years to build up this dominance.

“In the end, they deserve to be there because they do the best job by far compared to everyone else, and it’s simply down to everyone else to try to catch up.

“Next year I’m aware that it is kind of an interim year with probably not a big change, at least at the front of the grid and in terms of the pecking order.

“But with everything that comes into the game from ’22 onwards, with the budget cap and the new sporting and technical regulations, that will help to close the grid again and to have more competition.

“I think that’s positive, and why it would be wrong to introduce any other randomness now,” concluded McLaren’s team principal.

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