Upcoming week’s Azerbaijan’s GP will see the initiation of the new F1 Sprint 2023 format, one which will make every session count for the remaining weekend. The free Saturday morning practice two sessions will be taken over by a new qualifying session, which indicates there’ll be two qualifying sessions altogether.
The changes in F1 Sprint 2023 format are included after a request from the drivers to keep the Sprint distinguished from the Sunday race. The unanimous approval from all 10 F1 teams is already here, but the final rules will be agreed upon by FIA and all parties at the World Council, scheduled on 26th April. This is two days before the Grand Prix in Baku kicks off.
F1 Sprint 2023: new format
Friday on Sprint Weekend
Free Practice 1 (11:30): As per the new format, it will be 60 minutes long. This is where a driver can fix their one-lap speed and race pace for the remaining weekend. There’s hardly any time to test parts or draw big comparisons between cars.
Official Qualifying (15:00): Under the conventional Q1, Q2, and Q3 format (18,15, and 12 minutes respectively). The session will be the determinant for Saturday’s race starting order. The winner will be placed in the pole position and will get the Pirelli trophy.
Sprint Qualifying (11.30): The newly included session for the short afternoon race differs from the traditional qualifying. However, it’ll have Q1, Q2, and Q3 in a reduced format for 12, 10, and 8 minutes, respectively.
What F1 shall do with the last 8 minutes is yet to be approved; whether the top 10 will stay on track at the same time, or will each car have a single lap?
A 100 km long race (15 laps), and the winner shall receive 8 points. The second-place holder will get 7 points. The respective points for third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth position holders are 6,5,4,3,2, and 1.
Race (13.00): A 51-lap race. The beginning order on the grid will be fixed on Friday afternoon and not by Sprint, similar to the scenario in 2021 and 2022.
Both the qualifying sessions are independent, and risking in any one doesn’t cost losing the other.
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