'Nonsense' qualifying a mockery for F1 fans - Alonso


Strategic decisions from several teams led to limited running in qualifying in Sochi on Saturday, and Fernando Alonso believes the "nonsense" session likely left F1 fans unimpressed.

Grid penalties in the Red Bull, Toro Rosso and McLaren camps and Renault's choice to avoid at all cost a start on Pirelli's hypersoft tyre enticed one-third of the field to run just a minimum amount of laps in Q1 or Q2, with no search for performance.

The deliberate choice to remain in the garage was par for the course for Alonso, but the Spaniard admitted the teams' decisions were unfair to the spectators

"For us it's OK, this is what we're used to and we follow whatever," Alonso said.

"For the fans, it's maybe a problem. It's more asking the fans what they think to have a nonsense Q1 and a not very important Q2.

"At least I think they enjoyed the F2 race. It's definitely the most fun part of the day for the spectator."

Pirelli's hypersoft compound will be the de facto compound used at the start of the race for all those who qualified in the top ten.

However, the tyre's limited durability will require a fair amount of management with those using the pink-rimmed rubber during their opening stint aiming to go as far as possible without giving up too much pace.

Renault's drivers purposefully avoided any attempt to make the Q3 cut in order to have a freedom of tyre choice at the start.

But Haas' Kevin Magnussen, who will line up fifth on Sunday's grid, isn't sure the French team's strategy will pay off.

"They are probably starting off the soft and we will start on the hyper-soft," said the Dane

"Once we pit off that, which I imagine will be quite early, we will most likely be behind the Renault guys. But then they will have to pit. So they're not the biggest threat I don't think...

"We will pit and get behind them and they will need a gap that's big enough to pit and get out in front, they're going to be older tyres and we get out on older tyres.

"I see the Force Indias as a bigger threat."

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