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Verstappen warns against Sprint weekends changing ‘the DNA' of F1

The Red Bull driver has previously voiced his displeasure over Sprint races, now he taking aim at the plans to change the qualifying format for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Max Verstappen has branded Formula 1's plans to change the weekend format for the Sprint race in Azerbaijan as against “the DNA of the sport." Plans are being discussed to get rid of the second morning practice on Saturday in favour of an extra qualifying session to determine the grid for the Sprint. Staging the first Sprint race weekend at Baku has already drew criticism from Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner, who pointed towards the associated costs with having two races at a street circuit. Now Verstappen thinks F1 should focus more on closing the gap between the teams, rather than changing the fundamentals of the weekend format. "I don't find that it's the DNA of F1 to do these kind of Sprint races. F1 is about getting the most out of it in qualifying and then having an amazing Sunday," he said. "That's the DNA of the sport and I don't understand why we should change that. "Because I think the action has been good, and how do we get even more action is about getting the cost closer, getting more teams able to fight for the win. "I think naturally the show will be great. If we have six, seven teams already fighting for win, that will be insane."

Verstappen: Adding more stuff not worth it for me

Verstappen believes F1 should look to cut back on the amount of days due to how 'intense' it can be, given the amount of races on the existing calendar. "When we're going to do all that kind of stuff, the weekend becomes even more intense and we're already doing so many races. I think that is not the right way to go about it," he said. "I understand they want to have basically everyday exciting, but then I think maybe it's better to just reduce the weekend; only race and Saturday and Sunday and make those two days exciting. "Because we're heading into seasons where you have at one point 24 or 25 races, if you then start adding even more stuff, it's not worth it for me. I'm not enjoying that." The Dutchman continued his rant to argue that Sprint races are more about "surviving" rather than actual racing. "For me a Sprint race is all about surviving, it's not about racing," he said. "When you have a quick car, there's nothing to risk and I prefer to just keep my car alive and make sure that you have a good race car for Sunday."

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