Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix, has confirmed it will host Formula 1’s first ever Sprint Qualifying session.
F1 confirmed last week that it would trial a new weekend format at three select events – two in Europe and one flyway – but didn’t confirm exactly which rounds would host the Sprint Qualifying session, although it’s widely believed to be Silverstone, Monza (Italy) and Interlagos (Brazil).
Silverstone boss Stuart Pringle has now confirmed that his venue will be the first to trial the new session, which will take place on Saturday and consists of a 100km race to determine the grid for Sunday’s grand prix.
“We are incredibly excited that Silverstone fans will be the first to experience the Formula 1 sprint qualifying format at this year’s British Grand Prix,” he said.
“We have not seen such a major timetable shake up in the sport for years and I appreciate the continued efforts being made by Formula 1 and the FIA to enhance the entertainment on track giving our spectators even more to look forward to this July.”
Pringle revealed that Sunday tickets have almost sold out for the event, which is likely to play host to a smaller than normal crowd due to COVID-19 restrictions, and says this new format gives fans an opportunity to witness a race on Saturday, adding value to the weekend.
“The Friday and Saturday crowds at Silverstone are arguably the largest on the F1 calendar and, following the live events drought of 2020, this year will be no exception.
“Given we have very nearly sold out of tickets for Sunday, Saturday now represents a great opportunity for fans to see a Formula 1 race at Silverstone this summer.”
Also read: Sprint qualifying – what is it and how does it work?