F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race - Start time, how to watch & more

Max Verstappen has taken pole position for Red Bull at the Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix sprint race on Friday. Here’s how and when to watch the sprint race.

F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race - Start time, how to watch & more

In a qualifying session stalled by five separate red flags, Verstappen grabbed his first pole of the 2022 season, beating F1 world championship leader Charles Leclerc by 0.779s despite having to ease off under yellow flags caused by Valtteri Bottas stopping on the edge of the circuit with exhaust failure.

With Leclerc unable to fight back, the remainder of Q3 was truncated by red flags triggered by Bottas’s Alfa Romeo and McLaren driver Lando Norris going off the road at Acque Minerali, allowing Verstappen to become the official pole position holder at the Emilia Romagna GP regardless of his finishing position in Saturday’s sprint race.

Despite causing the fifth and final red flag of qualifying, which he felt cost him a front-row shot, Norris held on to grab third place for McLaren behind Ferrari’s Leclerc, as Kevin Magnussen delivered the best ever F1 qualifying result for Haas with fourth place, despite spinning off early in Q3 to cause a brief red flag.

Fernando Alonso claimed fifth place for Alpine ahead of McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull’s Sergio Perez. Bottas took eighth place despite being unable to take part in the final few minutes of Q3, in front of Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel who bounced back from a tough Australian GP.

Carlos Sainz made it into Q3 but couldn’t take part in the session after crashing heavily midway through Q2, leaving the Ferrari driver to start from 10th place in the sprint race.

Sainz’s red flag plus a rain shower denied any later improvements in Q2 to relegate George Russell in 11th and Lewis Hamilton in 13th – which meant neither Mercedes driver made it into Q3 for the first time since the 2012 Japanese GP.

Norris crashed out in Q3, but will still start the sprint from third

Norris crashed out in Q3, but will still start the sprint from third

Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images

What is a sprint race?

A sprint race is essentially a shortened version of a normal race, taking place over a shorter distance, with the finishing order deciding the grid for Sunday’s grand prix. They’re used in many other series, though perhaps most notably for Formula 1 is their inclusion in the Formula 2 race weekend. In F2 the sprint race is 120km and the feature race covers 170km, though are usually no less exciting.

F1 has introduced sprint races to ramp up the excitement of the whole race weekend, providing fans with a competitive session on each of the three days of track action (with qualifying moved to Friday afternoon) and it is hoped to make it an overall better experience. F1 has long been looking to make changes to the traditional race weekend format and while other options like reverse grid races were considered, they were ultimately unfancied compared to sprint races.

Each sprint race will be run over 100km (down from the normal race distance of 305km), and will take around 25-30 minutes. The starting order for the sprint race will be decided by a traditional qualifying session held on Friday afternoon.

Find out more about the sprint races and what has changed for 2022 here.

What time does the sprint race start for the F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix?

The sprint race for the Emilia Romagna GP starts at 4.30pm local time (3.30pm BST).

Date: Saturday 23rd April 2022
Start time: 4.30pm local time – 3.30pm BST

Leclerc was beaten to pole for only the second time this year after Sergio Perez claimed top spot in Jeddah, but will start the sprint from second

Leclerc was beaten to pole for only the second time this year after Sergio Perez claimed top spot in Jeddah, but will start the sprint from second

Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

How can I watch Formula 1?

In the United Kingdom Formula 1 is only broadcast live on Sky Sports, with highlights shown on Channel 4 several hours after the race has finished. Live streaming through NOW is also available in the UK.

Sky Sports F1, which broadcasts the F1 races, can be added as part of the Sky Sports channels which costs £20 a month for new customers. Sky Sports can also be accessed through NOW with a one-off day payment of £11.98p or a month membership of £33.99p per month.

Fans wanting to watch the race for free will have to wait until Saturday evening (qualifying and sprint race) or Sunday evening (race) to see the highlights on Channel 4.

How can I watch the F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race?

In the United Kingdom every F1 practice, qualifying and race is broadcast live on Sky Sports F1, with the Emilia Romagna GP sprint race coverage starting at 2.30pm BST.

Channel: Sky Sports F1
Start time: 2:30pm BST 23rd April 2022

Autosport will be running a live text coverage of the sprint race here.

When can I watch the highlights of the F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race?

In the United Kingdom Channel 4 is broadcasting highlights of the sprint race for the Emilia Romagna GP at 6:45pm BST on Saturday. The full programme will run for 90 minutes, covering qualifying, the sprint race and wrapping up the major talking points of the race weekend so far.

For the entire 2022 F1 season, Channel 4 will broadcast highlights of every qualifying and race of each event. The highlights will also be available on Channel 4’s on demand catch up services.

Channel: Channel 4
Start time: 6:45pm BST 23rd April 2022

Magnussen was another to go off, but recovered to set the fourth-fastest time and secure Haas its best-ever qualifying position

Magnussen was another to go off, but recovered to set the fourth-fastest time and secure Haas its best-ever qualifying position

Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images

Will the F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race be on the radio?

Live radio coverage of every practice, qualifying and race for the 2022 F1 season will be available on the BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC 5 Live Sports Extra or via the BBC Sport website.

Coverage of the Emilia Romagna GP sprint race will start at 3:25pm BST on BBC 5 Live Sports Extra and the BBC Sounds app.

What's the weather forecast for the sprint race at Imola?

Dry, warm and cloudy weather is forecast for Saturday afternoon for the start of the sprint race at Imola. The temperature is set to be 20 degrees Celsius at the start, five degrees colder than qualifying for the Australian GP last time out.

F1 Emilia Romagna GP sprint race grid: 

Cla Driver Chassis Engine Time Gap
1 Netherlands Max Verstappen Red Bull Red Bull 1'27.999  
2 Monaco Charles Leclerc Ferrari Ferrari 1'28.778 0.779
3 United Kingdom Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes 1'29.131 1.132
4 Denmark Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 1'29.164 1.165
5 Spain Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault 1'29.202 1.203
6 Australia Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes 1'29.742 1.743
7 Mexico Sergio Perez Red Bull Red Bull 1'29.808 1.809
8 Finland Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1'30.439 2.440
9 Germany Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Mercedes 1'31.062 3.063
10 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr Ferrari Ferrari    
11 United Kingdom George Russell Mercedes Mercedes 1'20.757  
12 Germany Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari 1'20.916  
13 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Mercedes Mercedes 1'21.138  
14 China Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo Ferrari 1'21.434  
15 Canada Lance Stroll Aston Martin Mercedes 1'28.119 0.120
16 Japan Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri Red Bull 1'20.474  
17 France Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri Red Bull 1'20.732  
18 Canada Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes 1'21.971  
19 France Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault 1'22.338  
20 Thailand Alex Albon Williams Mercedes    
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