Haas Team Principal Guenther Steiner is open to trialling Sprint Races in Formula 1 this year, but says the sport shouldn’t be afraid scrap them if they are viewed as unsuccessful.
A new weekend format has been proposed to teams that would see qualifying take place on Friday afternoon, forming the starting grid for a Saturday Sprint Race.
The final results of the Sprint Race would set the grid for Sunday’s grand prix. It’s understood that should the format be introduced, it would be tested at three race weekends in 2021.
A number of senior F1 personnel have voiced support for the new format, including Steiner, who is eager to see the reactions of fans.
“I always think we should try things but we should never be afraid when we try it and say they weren’t good – not be stubborn because we’ve tried it so now we need to push it through,” Steiner said.
“We have to try it to see how it will work. I don’t think there’s a lot to be gained.
“I want to see how the fans react to it, that we are not putting too much [of a] show on but I don’t know that. I am very open to trying it, I have no issue with it.”
F1 has been floating the idea of a revised weekend format for a number of years, with previously proposed reverse grid race plans rejected by the teams.
As the current Sprint Race motion is receiving more support than prior schemes, Steiner says F1 should not push to continue with the new format if it doesn’t add to the weekend.
“I have no issue with saying if it doesn’t work, we shouldn’t be doing it,” he stated.
“If we find out it doesn’t add anything we shouldn’t be afraid to say no and nobody loses any credibility in my opinion – that is how we should think.
“There are a few small things that need to be sorted out in the regulations but hopefully, we can get them all ironed out and we do some of this.
“At least we know, we put it to the test, if the test works, fantastic. If it doesn’t work, we turn the page and try the next thing.”