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F1 2022

Plans for Sprint races in 2022 hit a stumbling block

Formula 1's plans to host six Sprint Qualifying races in 2022 have taken a hit, due to a stand-off with some of the teams.

Verstappen Sprint Monza
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images

Formula 1 could be set for three or fewer Sprint Qualifying events this season, having scaled back from initial plans to host six such Grands Prix in 2022.

After debuting the revised qualifying format in 2021, the intent was to increase the number of Sprint Qualifying races to six in 2022 – including at the season opener in Bahrain.

However, as previously reported by RacingNews365.com, those plans have taken a big hit due to a stand-off with some of the teams.

They are understood to be seeking an additional allowance alongside F1's budget cap, in light of the increased costs and risks of taking part in six additional 30-minute races over the course of the season.

The budget cap, introduced last season, tightens this year to just $140 million dollars, with teams forced to limit their expenditure to this amount.

The unnamed teams are seeking the allowance to cater for the increased risk and wear, but RacingNews365.com understands that F1, the FIA and the other teams are refusing to budge on the issue and have suggested three such races as a compromise.

Agreements have not yet been reached, which has caused the impasse.

2022 Sprint Qualifying plans still being discussed

Discussions regarding the Sprint Qualifying format, including the hows and whens, as well as administrative issues such as championship points allocations and recognition of pole position, are ongoing.

However, with just a few weeks remaining until the season begins, the details of the Sprint Qualifying events are yet to be written into the 2022 rulebooks.

Last week, Red Bull team boss Christian Horner pushed for the final decisions to be made regarding Sprint Qualifying races, saying it is getting perilously close to the season to still have aspects of the championship up in the air.

"I'm very much a purist. I believe that qualifying and the race are the fundamental aspects of a Grand Prix," he explained to India's WION.

"I think that the Sprint races were interesting last year. I think the format wasn't perfect but, if you don't try something, you don't know.

"I think there's things that could be done to make it more exciting, to make it more interesting. But it's getting quite late now. And we're going to need to have a decision pretty shortly."

Also interesting:

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With huge changes being made to the F1 rule book for 2022, our journalists Dieter Rencken, Mike Seymour and Thomas Maher look ahead to the new season.


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