A new discussion about sprint races is now on the table, this time concerning additional spendings that could appear during these events in case of a crash for example.
This year’s F1 offseason has been particularly animated due to the project of including a new qualifying format to Formula One weekends: Sprint races. However, a major aspect of it is now being discussed, concerning budget caps and additional spendings during these events.
Indeed, letting 20 cars race on a short distance to define their position on the grid for Sunday’s race is definitely prone to causing first lap dramas, involving additional costs for the teams that would have to repair their single-seaters. There is, therefore, a big question on the table about sprint races and the costs they might involve, which could be representing an illegal exceeding of the new budget cap for some teams like Ferrari or Mercedes.
A few suggestions have already been made like for example, allowing additional spendings for the teams on each race weekend. Smaller teams with a lower budget like Williams are nonetheless very picky about this proposal and are waiting for tangible numbers. If they find these numbers unrealistic, they will probably deny the idea as bigger teams might be using this little additional budget to develop their cars instead of just replacing broken parts.
The other principal idea consists of allowing teams to release funds in order to finance their repairs after the race weekend and after an estimation of the funds needed to repair the car. This proposition should ensure a fairer budget allocation between the teams and prevent big names of the Formula One grid to take advantage of an extra budget allocation.
To end the debate, another vote should be organized by the FIA. There is however a very low probability that this issue will stop the running of sprint races this year. As always, a compromise should be found between the teams to ensure fair racing between them.