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F1 weekends are set to change with sprint qualifying: this is what it looks like

F1 weekends are set to change with sprint qualifying: this is what it looks like

26-04-2021 17:16 Last update: 17:20


Not sprint races, but sprint qualifying, is the name of the new concept that Formula 1 will test extensively in 2021. During three different race weekends, there will be sprint qualifications on Saturday and this is how it works:

Friday already has changes

The weekend starts like any other with the first free practice session on Friday, reports the FIA on its website. This will last 60 minutes as usual. During this session, the teams will only be allowed to use two sets of tyres. But after this, the setup changes compared to a regular Formula 1 weekend.

The second free practice will no longer be held on Friday afternoon. It will be moved to Saturday morning. After one hour of practice on Friday, the teams will start qualifying for the sprint race. This session will be the same as the usual qualifying, except that the teams can only use the soft tyres. There are five of these available per driver. The result of this qualifying forms the grid for sprint qualifying on Saturday.

An extra 'race' on Saturday, Sunday will not change

On Saturday morning the team will start the second free practice of the weekend. Here only one set of tyres can be used, which the teams can choose themselves. Just like the first free practice, FP2 will last one hour.

In the afternoon, the 100km sprint qualifying will start. Each team will get two sets of tyres for the short race. The result of the sprint qualifying will determine the starting grid for Sunday's Grand Prix. The top three will also score points in sprint qualifying. The number one gets three points, number two gets two and number three gets one point.

Sunday, the Grand Prix will start as usual. 300 kilometres plus one lap and the points will be distributed as is the case with every Grand Prix. During the race, the two remaining sets of tyres will be used by the teams.

In case of rain

In the event of wet weather, teams will be given three sets of full wets and four sets of intermediates. When FP1 or qualifying is wet, the teams will get an extra set of intermediates, for which they will have to return a used one for sprint qualifying. If qualifying is held in wet weather, teams may exchange one set of intermediates or full wets for a new set of intermediates. In total, the teams will have nine sets of full wets and intermediates at their disposal.

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