F1 News

Verstappen must fear F1 plans

Formula 1 CEO wants more sprint races across the year

19 June at 18:00
  • Nicole Mulder

Max Verstappen may have been slightly more positive about sprint races since its format was rejigged for this season. He is not likely to become an enthusiast of the sprints, however. F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has expressed a desire to increase the number of sprint weekends in the sport. The Dutchman is not the only driver who isn't the biggest fan of the sprints. Several drivers, including Lando Norris and George Russell, have criticised the format since its arrival in F1 in 2021.

The sprint format was changed in early 2024, leaving only one free practice session for the drivers which is immediately followed by sprint qualifying. After the sprint race on Saturday, teams then have the opportunity to make adjustments ahead of qualifying for the Grand Prix.

Verstappen has been considerably less critical of the sprint format since this change, but despite winning nine of the 14 sprint races held so far, he would prefer to see them disappear.

F1 wants more sprint races

The number of sprint races will likely increase. "That is the goal. The figures show that there is interest in this," Domenicali is quoted by Auto, Motor und Sport.

What many drivers are also concerned about is the calendar, which currently has a record 24 races. However, Domenicali does not believe this is too many. "Look at other sports. Football and basketball are played every other day. They entertain their fans much more intensely. In terms of quantity, we have much less to offer. Yet, compared to other sports, we are doing very well and continue to grow. Everyone involved in our sport, in any way, should be happy with the situation," the F1 boss stated.

F1 wants to start with a rotation system in Europe

Domenicali does say he wants to stick to 24 races. However, many venues would like to have a spot on the calendar. The 59-year-old Italian suggests this possible solution for some races. "We want to keep a good balance between old and new races, although there are many more countries that want a Grand Prix. We are thinking about a rotation system. Probably we will start with this in Europe," Domenicali concluded.