F1 Bosses Hoping For 6 Sprint Races In 2022

2021 British Grand Prix F1 Sprint Qualifying Race (image courtesy Pirelli)

Ross Brawn, F1’s motorsport head, told reporters on Monday that all Formula One grand prix promoters want to hold sprint races, but only six are likely next year after the experiment of three this year.

There will be 23 races on the 2022 F1 Calendar next year, a record for the sport.

Silverstone, Monza, and Interlagos were selected as the circuits to try out the format this year, yet Brawn did not specify if they would be chosen again in 2022 during a video conference with reporters.

The final stage of the evaluation process will take place after this month’s Brazilian Grand Prix.

“We’ve in principle agreed with the teams that we will look toward six (sprint) events for next year.

“Our view is that we should take some progressive steps for next year but not radical steps.

“That’s partly because we have the new car coming along and everyone needs to settle down with the new car … we need to see the impact of the new car.”

Several major changes will be made to Formula One next year, including the use of larger tyres and changes to the rules to make overtaking easier and racing closer.

Following one practice session on a Friday, the sprint format features Friday afternoon qualifying for a 100km race on Saturday that determines the starting grid for Sunday’s main event.

“I think it’s clear that every promoter we have would like to have a sprint,” said Brawn, who did not rule out the format being used at most grands prix in the future.

“There’s a number of factors we’ve got to take into consideration. One is the spread through the year. How do we spread these events through the year?

“It’s probably not something we’d want to have at the first race, probably not something we want at the last race … it would be nice to have a variety (of circuits).”

In the past, Brawn has said Monaco would be inappropriate for the format since overtaking would be extremely difficult, and he said Monday it would be “probably bottom of the list.”.

“It’s probably the most challenging circuit to have a sprint … but never say never.

For this season, points have been awarded to the top three drivers in the sprint, according to a 3-2-1 system, but Brawn said that could be expanded next year to provide more incentives throughout the field.

The original proposal was that the sprint would have around a third of the points offered in the main race by 2022.

“We think that will be the starting point for the discussion.

“Something around that order so it’s significant enough to be worth going for, it goes far enough down for people in lower positions to still want to fight for it but not of a number that has an over-influence on the championship,” concluded Brawn.

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