Cover Image for F1 Sprint Race 2022- Everything you need to know about the changes to the Sprint weekend format ahead of the Emilia Romagna GP

F1 Sprint Race 2022- Everything you need to know about the changes to the Sprint weekend format ahead of the Emilia Romagna GP

Somin Bhattacharjee
|Thu Apr 21 2022

The first F1 Sprint race of the 2022 season takes place in Imola this weekend, but there’s a lot that has changed since we last saw them.

Sprint formats were introduced in 2021, to add more meaning to Grand Prix weekend. The organizers wanted competitive driving action on all three days of a race weekend, which led to several changes.

In last year’s format, Qualifying took place on Friday evening, after a single practice session. It was followed by another practice session on Sunday afternoon, after which the Sprint race took place.

The starting order for Saturday’s session was decided, using the traditional qualifying format the previous day. The race itself, saw 100kms of action, (number of laps were set accordingly), and the order in which the drivers finished, set the grid for Sunday’s main race.

There was criticism surrounding this format, but F1 saw it as a success and decided to go ahead with it this year too. However, there are a few changes we need to note ahead of the season’s first sprint race in Imola.

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Here’s everything that has changed about the F1 Sprint Race in 2022

The first change is barely noticeable, but it’s no longer known as ‘Sprint Qualifying’. Saturday’s race will now just be known as’F1 Sprint’. There also won’t be any podium celebration, but the winner of the 100km dash will receive a trophy.

Last year, the pole sitter’s award went to the winner of the Sprint race. This year, that won’t be happening anymore. The Pirelli pole position award will go to the driver who earns P1 in the traditional Qualifying format on Friday itself.

However, it’s important to remember that the winner of the Sprint race himself will start Sunday’s main race at front. The driver who gets pole on Friday, will only start the Sprint race from P1.

The points system for last year too, was radically different from what it will be this year. Three points were awarded to the race winner, followed by two points and one point for the second and third placed drivers in 2021. This year, there’s a lot more points at offer, which will give the teams something extra to fight for.


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