F1’s march toward a Sprint Race on Saturdays it progressing nicely according to McLaren CEO Zak Brown. The new format was agreed to in general by the teams and a working group was assembled to tease out all the details of the format change.
“It’s looking like we’ll maybe do it at two or three races this year, Brown said.
“What’s important is that it’s an equal playing field in the sense of no reverse grids or anything artificial, but then we do something different so it differentiates itself from Sunday’s race. The working group is inputting into that.
“I’m encouraged. Anytime you have something new you try it. If it works you keep doing it, if it doesn’t you either change it up or you don’t do it anymore. I think it’s only a positive for the sport.”
Rom a driver perspective, McLaren driver, Daniel Ricciardo, also has come around on the idea.
“At first I was a little apprehensive but I do feel better at the thought of that certainly than a reverse grid.
“Ultimately if the best guys and the best teams are still coming out on top and it’s not manipulated or artificial, so to speak, then I’m less scared of it.
“Competition is what I love most and I would love to do more races and less practice. In saying that, it kind of does go towards what I want but the biggest thing is I’d still want an F1 win to still feel as big as what it should be.
“I don’t ever want an F1 win to feel diluted or somewhat lower than it should.”
What seems to be evidently clear is that few people, apart from some fans, are in favor of a reverse grid concept. To be fair, a sprint race could mix up the starting grid but do so in a more organic way than artificially reversing the grid or drawing straws for a position.