Formula 1 confirms six sprint events in 2023
Formula 1 has announced the venues for its six Sprint events during the upcoming 2023 season, with four tracks hosting the newly brought-up shortened format for the first time. While the anticipation soars up to witness this format among the watching world, there are plenty of other eyes from the business world as well as they see this form of the sport taking Formula 1 to the next level.
The Austin’s Circuit in the United States of America will see the country make its debut as a Sprint host, along with Asian countries like Azerbaijan and Qatar, alongside Belgium. Austria have managed to hold the event for a second successive season, with Brazil maintaining its record of being the only country to have been a venue for the format since its inception in 2021.
F1 has decided to double the number of Sprints from three – as seen in 2021 and 2022 – to six for the upcoming campaign with the growing popularity among the audience for this format. With Grand Prix hosts keen to hold the popular events, the usual weekend format that we have seen over the years is about to take a hit and provide more wheel-to-wheel action with another race.
F1 president Stefano Domenicali added: “We have seen a hugely positive reaction to the F1 Sprint events during the first two years of its running, and we can’t wait to bring even more action to fans with six events next year, including our first US F1 Sprint in Austin.”
This format will see Qualifying take place on Friday, before on Saturday drivers race over 100km – which is a third of the usual race distance – in a flat-out sprint for grid slots for the Grand Prix and points for their championship hopes. The winner of the Sprint collects eight points, with that award descending by one point for each of the top eight.
There have been mixed reactions to this Sprint format with the current world champion Max Verstappen himself not being okay with its resurgence. He feels the Sprint should not set the grid for Sunday’s race because drivers would then be willing to take even greater risk in the shorter event.