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Ross Brawn

F1 boss wants pole position for Sprint winner revisited

After criticism from F1 drivers over how pole position is awarded during a Sprint race weekend, Ross Brawn says the issue will be looked into.

Verstappen sprintrace
To news overview © Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

F1 Managing Director Ross Brawn admits the awarding of pole position to the Sprint Qualifying race winner is something that needs to be revisited.

The Sprint format has been used at Silverstone and Monza so far in 2021, with the third and final race set for Brazil in just under two weeks.

One source of frustration amongst drivers regarding the format is the awarding of pole position. As things stand, pole is awarded to the winner of the Sprint race on Saturday, rather than the driver that finishes with the fastest time in qualifying on Friday

This has resulted in criticism from drivers, with Sebastian Vettel stating that the current setup is "wrong". Brawn is hopeful this will change in 2022.

"We definitely need to look at it," Brawn told select members of the media, including RacingNews365.com.

"It's been a consistent comment amongst fans and media and drivers et cetera that the person who does the fastest single lap with low-fuel in that sort of competition is the pole position holder.

"I guess we hadn't really considered that, if I'm honest, when we set up this new format. So personally I'd like to see a reversion to that being pole position.

"These things are decided with the FIA and the teams but that one definitely I think [there's] broad opinion that Friday should be pole position for the Sprint weekends. So that's something I would hope would get through for next year."

Points change also being considered

That isn't the only change being considered for 2022. The current Sprint format sees three points awarded to the winner, two to the second-place finisher and three for third. Brawn would like to see those figures increase.

"I think the points distribution for a Sprint, personally, we proposed something around the third of the points you get in a race for the Sprint," said Brawn.

"That was the initial proposal which was not taken up, because the feeling was that we needed to see how the Sprint functions first before we allocated the points.

"So we think that will be the starting point for the discussion, something around that sort of order. It's significant enough to be worth going for, it goes far enough down that people in lower positions still want to fight for it, but not of a number that has an over-influence on the championship.

"It will have an influence on the championship, it must have, that's what we want, but not an excessive amount."

The title of 'Sprint Qualifying Champion' could also be awarded in 2022, according to Brawn, as long as it doesn't take away from the Grand Prix on Sunday.

Brawn added: "Yes, I think that's a possibility.

"I think as you saw with Crypto, we were able to bring in a new commercial partner which was partly around Sprint. So therefore that could be a very appealing aspect for commercial partners.

"The trick is always to make sure we never cannibalise the main event. The race on a Sunday is the main event."

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