F1 returns to old qualifying format, starting at Chinese GP

PARIS (AP) Formula One's governing body has officially approved a move back to last year's qualifying format for this weekend's Chinese Grand Prix after the new system proved widely unpopular.

The new rolling-elimination format - in which the slowest driver is eliminated every 90 seconds - was used in the first two races this season in Australia and Bahrain, but heavily criticized both times for a lack of on-track action.

With leading drivers such as Sebastian Vettel increasingly unhappy, all the teams voted against the new format last week, forcing FIA president Jean Todt and series commercial chief Bernie Ecclestone to backtrack.

The return to 2015 qualifying still needed to be officially approved, however, and the FIA said Monday that the World Motor Sport Council had approved it.

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