“Keep the fans abreast of what’s happening.”– F1 doesn’t want the sprint races to be a blur for the F1 fans, as it is a huge transition.
Formula 1 is about to experiment with the sprint races in Formula 1 Grand Prix weekends. The first implementation will be at the Silverstone during the British Grand Prix and then could happen in Monza and Interlagos.
F1, aware of the intricacies of the move to shift qualifying on Friday and replace it with sprint races, have been working with AWS to provide in-race insights to fans through a variety of graphics, including overtaking chances, braking performance, and speed traces.
F1 technical consultant Rob Smedley has explained that they are working to predict the sprint races’ scenarios and don’t want it to pass by too quickly without fans having any idea of what happened.
“We’re discussing what we think the likely outcomes and scenarios are going to play out over the weekend,” ex-Ferrari and Williams engineer Smedley told Autosport.
“Obviously we’re trying to be ahead of the game. If you think about it, it’s the first time that we’re actually on the same footing if you like as the teams, because we’re learning at the same rate as the teams. So it’s quite nice.”
“But you’ve got to be able to convey that as well. The sprint qualifying session and the weekend format will only be a success if we’re able to keep the fans abreast of what’s happening.
“If it’s kind of a blur and it’s all different, and you don’t really know what’s happening until the end, I think we’re going to lose some of the advantage of the sprint qualifying.”
A learning partnership with AWS
Smedley feels that the partnership with AWS will help fans to know the important elements of the sprint qualifying and its place within the weekend.
“Ross [Brawn] has been pretty clear with us all about trying to absolutely maximise this as an opportunity,” Smedley said. “So we’re going through again with AWS, going through what can we do and what do we really need?”
“What are the important parts of the actual sprint qualifying race part itself? What’s the important part of the actual qualifying? How does all of that weave into the Sunday afternoon race? That type of thing.”
“There’s quite a lot of interesting aspects to that, which we’re going through now and making sure that we’re ready with briefing and stories and graphics for Silverstone.”.