Although yet to be formally announced, the proposed Sprint Qualifying races at three Grand Prix events this year are set to go ahead after financial agreements have been made to allow teams to spend above the cost cap.
With a new budget cap introduced just this season, limiting teams to a maximum spend of $145 million over the year, the introduction of three Sprint Qualifying had to be trashed out with the teams due to the obvious increased risks of damage and running costs for such races.
With the big teams already having to downsize their operations in order to squeeze in under the new limit, there was pushback against the introduction of the extra Saturday races as a result.
However, RacingNews365 has learned that agreements have now been made that will allow for the introduction of Sprint Qualifying, with finances arranged.
Each team is set to receive an extra $75,000 from Formula 1 per Sprint Qualifying race, as well as a $200,000 cap per race to spend on damage repairs.
In order to ensure fairness and the strict application of the Financial Regulations, teams will have to prove the damage to their car, with the car being either forced to pit or retire from the race as a result of the damage incurred. If the car doesn't need to pit, it will not be viewed as sufficiently damaged.
The new limits will mean teams will be granted a total of $600,000 overspend on the budget cap, if required for repairs.
With the arrangements made, it now appears to just be a matter of time until the announcement is made officially. The proposal for three Sprint Qualifying rounds will go before the F1 Commission and, upon approval, will go before the World Motor Sport Council for ratification.
As it stands, the proposed races will be held at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, and the Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos. A regular qualifying will be held on Friday to determine the grid for Sprint Qualifying, with the short race then determining the grid for the Grand Prix itself.