By Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw
In order to add to the excitement of a race weekend, Formula One is introducing so-called ‘sprint races’ on the Saturday afternoon at three Grand Prix races this year: at Silverstone in July; Monza in September; and Sao Paulo in November.
These sprint races will be run over 100 kilometres and the results of these races will count towards the grid positions of the Grand Prix races themselves, which will be run over a full race distance on the Sunday. The winner of the sprint races will receive 3 points; the runner up 2 points; and the driver in third place 1 point.
Stefano Domenicali, the head of Formula One, commented as follows:
“We are excited by this new opportunity that will bring our fans an even more engaging race weekend in 2021.”
And he added as follows:
“Seeing the drivers battling out over three days will be an amazing experience and I am sure the drivers will relish the fight.”
Jean Todt, the President of the FIA, the world governing body of motor sport, welcomed this latest development “to spice up the action” and stated:
“I am pleased to see that Formula One is seeking new ways to engage with its fans and enlarge the spectacle of a race weekend.”
Formula One is not the only sport introducing new formats to engage existing fans and win new ones. Take cricket, for example, and the introduction of the new Competition ‘The Hundred’ (see Post of 15 April 2021).