The question of precisely how Formula One can spice up the business of qualifying – and inject more unpredictability to the eventual Grand Prix grid line-up - is something which has preoccupied the rule makers for years.

Lewis Qualify First we had an open-house, free-for-all, predictable only in the sense that Ayrton Senna would sit in the cockpit of his McLaren-Honda, enjoying the shade of the pit garage and timing things to perfection to make sure he went into his final - and usually pole-winning run - with a matter of seconds to spare before the chequered flag fell.

Subsequently this format was succeeded by a one-car, one-lap Indy-style shootout which seemed like a good idea at the time, but never quite hit the mark as far as spectator entertainment was concerned.

Then that was ditched for the three-stint qualifying format which ended up with a top-ten shoot-out, each of the competitors running with the fuel load they had chosen for their first leg of the race.