Vettel: F1 sprint race plans "make no sense"

Sebastian Vettel has blasted Formula 1’s plans to introduce sprint races in 2021, saying the proposal “makes no sense” and is “taking the focus away from the real problem”.

Vettel: F1 sprint race plans "make no sense"

F1 is planning to stage sprint races on the Saturday of three grand prix weekends this year in a bid to trial the format change, setting the grid for Sunday.

A 100km event is currently planned for races in Canada, Italy and Brazil after receiving “broad support” from teams at the last F1 Commission meeting.

Further details are being finalised by a working group in the coming weeks, with a final decision expected before the start of the season at the end of March.

But a number of drivers have voiced their concerns about the plan, fearing it could devalue Sunday grand prix victories and not solve any issues with the on-track racing.

Four-time world champion Vettel has become the most vocal figure on the plan, making his opposition clear and questioning the rationale behind the decision.

“I don’t know what the thinking is behind it,” Vettel said when asked by Autosport about his view on the proposal.

“I don’t like it. Why would you have a pre-final to a final? What’s the point of that? I don’t understand it.

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin Racing

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin Racing

Photo by: Aston Martin Racing

“Obviously if there is a race on Saturday, then I will have to take part because I still want to drive on Sunday, but from my point of view, it makes no sense.”

Vettel felt that if F1 had to change the format for a grand prix weekend, it was indicative of a greater problem that needs to be resolved.

“You have the grand prix and it has always been around 300km and the main challenge of the weekend,” Vettel said.

“I I think if you have to introduce something like this, then there is something else that you need to fix other than the format, or another race, or another two minutes, or a Q4 or Q5, or whatever it is.

“Maybe it’s shifting or taking the focus away from the real problem. It’s more of a patch rather than a fix.”

Vettel is not the only driver to have spoken out against sprint races. Red Bull duo Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen are both unsure of the plan, calling it “risky”, while Daniel Ricciardo felt it would detract from the Sunday races.

But teams are known to be in favour of the plan, with Mercedes chief Toto Wolff believing it was something that F1 “needs to do” and try out in 2021.

shares
comments
The 12 month journey to settle Aston Martin's new F1 livery

Previous article

The 12 month journey to settle Aston Martin's new F1 livery

Next article

Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery

Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Sebastian Vettel
Author Luke Smith
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Plus

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future Plus

The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future

The Formula 1 world reacted with surprise when it learned Lewis Hamilton’s long-awaited new Mercedes deal guarantees his presence on the grid only until the end of 2021. Both parties claimed publicly they were happy with the arrangement but, asks MARK GALLAGHER, is there more to it than that?

Formula 1
Apr 17, 2021
How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again Plus

How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again

Driver-turned-DJ Jaime Alguersuari lost his love for motorsport when he was booted out of Formula 1 just as he was starting to polish his rough edges. Having drifted from category to category then turned his back on racing altogether in 2015, he’s come full circle and is planning a return in karts for fun

Formula 1
Apr 17, 2021
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Plus

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Plus

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well-aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead on pace. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent Plus

Why Tsunoda can become Japan’s greatest F1 talent

While Japan's fever for motor racing is well-documented, the country has yet to produce a Formula 1 superstar – but that could be about to change, says BEN EDWARDS

Formula 1
Apr 15, 2021
Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration Plus

Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration

For too long, F1's richest teams have justified being able to spend as much as they want because that's the way they've always conducted their business. STUART CODLING says that's no reason not to kick a bad habit

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Plus

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is not guaranteed

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021