F1 teams agree to more sprint races as FIA calls for further evaluation

F1 teams agree to more sprint races as FIA calls for further evaluation

At a meeting held on Tuesday, Formula 1 teams agreed to increase the number of Sprint Races from four to six in 2023, but the governing FIA postponed formal acceptance, requesting more research.

The sporting organisation stated in a statement that the idea was to use the same format as this season, with points handed to the top eight in the 100km Saturday sprint, but that it would wait to make a decision.

“While supporting the principle of an increased number of sprint events, the FIA is still evaluating the impact of this proposal on its trackside operations and personnel, and will provide its feedback to the commission,” it added.

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem presided over the meeting, and sources said the governing body requested a financial commitment from Formula 1. The FIA did not respond to a request for comment right away.

The reform needs a supermajority to take effect next year, and the FIA has a third of the votes on the commission.

The first sprint race of the season took place over the weekend in Imola, Italy, with Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn expressing his desire for more after the format was first trialled in 2021.

“I think what I would like to do is at least get six races settled and then after these three races we can see if there are format developments we want to do, but I would like to just move on to six races.” he told reporters at Imola on Saturday.

In the sprint style, qualifying for the official pole position takes place on Friday, with the race on Saturday determining the grid for the grand prix on Sunday. Austria and Brazil will host the other two Sprint Races this year.

The FIA also set goals for aerodynamic restrictions starting in 2026, when a new power unit would be introduced. The goals are to dramatically reduce drag to counterbalance any power loss, boost sustainability with more standardised or simplified components, develop closer racing, and make the vehicles smaller and lighter.

Helmet cams were successfully trialled lately, and it was unanimously agreed to revise next year’s technical standards to require their usage by all drivers.

The commission also unanimously agreed to test a reduction in tyre allocation from 13 to 11 sets at two events next season as part of a long-term plan to transition to more environmentally friendly practises.

The cost cap and mounting inflationary pressures were also considered, with the sport’s financial working group submitting ideas.

The Russian Grand Prix was cancelled following the country’s invasion of Ukraine, and no replacement has been announced. Russia’s military intervention is referred to as a “special operation.”

Singapore might host back-to-back races, or a European circuit like Portugal’s Portimao could return, according to media conjecture. Qatar has been suggested as well, but the heat is a worry.

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has confirmed that the original schedule of 23 races will be maintained.

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