Formula 1’s new Sprint weekend format will see separate qualifying sessions held to set the grid for Saturday’s Sprint and Sunday’s full-length race; watch the new format debut live on Sky Sports F1 at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix this weekend
Last Updated: 25/04/23 4:36pm
Formula 1 has confirmed a new format for Sprint weekends in 2023 that will see a second qualifying session, to be known as the Sprint Shootout, added to the schedule.
The new format, which was voted through by the F1 Commission and World Motor Sport Council on Tuesday, will be used at the six Sprint weekends taking place this season, the first of which is this weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
The previous format, which has been used since Sprint weekends were introduced to F1 in 2021, saw a qualifying session on Friday set the grid for Saturday’s shortened race, which would in turn set the order for Sunday’s Grand Prix.
The updated schedule will see Friday’s qualifying session set the grid for Sunday’s race, while Saturday will now feature a standalone double of the Sprint Shootout to dictate the order for the shortened 100km race that follows.
Qualifying for Sunday’s Grand Prix
The Sprint Shootout will mirror a regular F1 qualifying session in being split into three parts, but each of those will be shorter, with the final eight-minute period potentially leading to one-lap contests to set the top 10.
While teams are free to use any of their available tyres in regular qualifying, in the Sprint Shootout new sets of tyres will be mandatory in each of the three parts, with medium compounds in Q1 and Q2 followed by a switch to softs in Q3.
Check out the key moments from the Sao Paulo Grand Prix Sprint
There is no change to the awarding of points from 2022. The Sprint winner will score eight points, with that amount descending by a point for each of the top eight.
The changes eliminate a second practice session on Saturday morning, which had been criticised for providing minimal entertainment, given that after Friday qualifying teams were unable to make setup changes to their cars.
F1 Sprint dates in 2023
|Sao Paulo GP
Teams and drivers will now have just Friday’s opening 60-minute practice session to work out their car setups for the remainder of the weekend.
There is hope that the Sprint contest no longer setting the grid for Sunday’s race, where the most points are on offer, will encourage drivers to take more risks on a Saturday.
Sky Sports F1’s live Azerbaijan GP schedule
10.30am: Drivers’ Press Conference
8am: F2 Practice
10am: Azerbaijan GP Practice One (session starts 10.30am)
11.55am: F2 Qualifying
1pm: Azerbaijan GP Qualifying build-up
2pm: AZERBAIJAN GP QUALIFYING
3.30pm: Ted’s Qualifying Notebook
9am: Azerbaijan GP Sprint Qualifying build-up
9.30am: AZERBAIJAN GP SPRINT SHOOTOUT
12:10pm: F2 Sprint Race
1.30pm: Azerbaijan GP Sprint build-up
2:30pm: AZERBAIJAN GP SPRINT
4pm: Ted’s Sprint Notebook
8.30am: F2 Feature Race
10.30am: Grand Prix Sunday Azerbaijan GP build-up
12pm: THE AZERBAIJAN GRAND PRIX
2pm: Chequered Flag Azerbaijan GP reaction
3pm: Ted’s Notebook
The Formula 1 season resumes with the Azerbaijan Grand Prix from April 28-30, with the first Sprint weekend of 2023 shown in full live on Sky Sports F1. Watch Saturday’s Sprint at 2:30pm and Sunday’s race at 12pm. Get Sky Sports
Source : https://www.skysports.com/f1/news/12040/12851266/f1-sprint-shootout-new-format-with-second-qualifying-session-confirmed-for-2023-season?rand=3094