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Baku Sprint
BAKU, AZERBAIJAN - JUNE 12: Charles Leclerc of Monaco driving the (16) Ferrari F1-75 locks a wheel under braking as he battle for track position with Sergio Perez of Mexico driving the (11) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB18 at the start during the F1 Grand Prix of Azerbaijan at Baku City Circuit on June 12, 2022 in Baku, Azerbaijan. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

BREAKING: F1 approves new Sprint weekend format for Baku

Find out what the new Sprint schedule will look like in 2023

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Ahead of the Azerbaijan GP, F1 has confirmed a new Sprint weekend format with two Qualifying sessions.

Baku Sprint
The starting grid for the last F1 Sprint Race of 2022 in Brazil (Image Credit: Dan Istitene – Getty Images)

The previous Sprint weekend schedule had qualifying on Friday set the grid for the Sprint Race, and the finishing results from that race would set the grid for Sunday’s Grand Prix.

In the new format announced by Formula 1, Friday’s qualifying session will set the grid for Sunday’s Grand Prix and will be unaffected by Saturday’s race.

All Sprint-related action will occur on Saturday, with a new Shootout deciding the grid for the Sprint that will take place later that day.

New format

The Sprint Shootout will consist of a somewhat shortened version of qualifying, Q1 being only 12 minutes long, Q2 being 10 minutes, and Q3 being eight minutes. The Shootout will also have mandatory tyre rules, with the medium tyre allocated for Q1 and Q2, while all cars will use the soft tyre for Q3. All tyres used in theShootout will be new and fresh.

Where FP2 previously played a part in this special weekend schedule, the F1 teams agreed to get rid of it for these select weekends, giving themselves just one session of practice at the beginning of the weekend.

This makes the weekend schedule as follows:

Friday: FP1 and Qualifying (for Grand Prix)
Saturday: Sprint Shootout and shortened ace
Sunday: Grand Prix

As far as penalties go, F1 has declared that any penalties accrued on these weekend during FP1 and Qualifying will apply to the Grand Prix, penalties picked up during the Shootout will apply to the Sprint, and penalties picked up during Saturday’s race will apply to the Grand Prix.

This format will first be trialled this weekend at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix at the Baku City Circuit. It will also be used for the five other Sprint weekends that will take place throughout the 2023 season: in Austria, Belgium, Qatar, Austin, and Brazil.

More to follow…

Feature Image Credit: Mark Thompson – Getty Images

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