Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel expressed his disagreement over who gets awarded pole position in the upcoming Sprint Qualifying format, stating that to award the winner of Sprint Qualifying pole position is, in his opinion, wrong.
Vettel was one of the first to be critical of the new qualifying format but now seems not to be against it. Despite this, however, Vettel believes that the pole position and the winner of the Sprint Qualifying should not be synonymous.
“I’m fairly open because it is what it is,” he added. “It won’t change no matter what we say. We’ll see, maybe it’s really good. I think generally it’s fine to be open about it.”
One of the main concerns of the Sprint Qualifying is the potential of devaluing Sunday due to it essentially being a mini-race itself. This view has also been emulated by Vettel, who expressed his discontent.
“It will be interesting to see [whether] people will like it or not,” Vettel explained. “I think the main event always has to be Sunday otherwise there’s no point hanging around until Sunday we can just go home or finish the weekend Saturday night. We’ll see how it goes, I think it’s the first time so let’s give it a go.”
The Sprint Qualifying format is to be implemented for three Grands Prix over the course of the 2021 season with the British Grand Prix at Silverstone to be the first. Vettel, who has had 57 career pole positions, was never a fan of how the pole position would be determined in this format.
“It’s a new discipline, they didn’t have it 50 years ago and now we have it,” Vettel commented. “So then you just add a new column to the statistics.”
“If this is a one-off then it doesn’t do much harm, but if we end up having 10 sprint races next year or in the future then I think it’s just a bit weird. Pole position should go to the guy who goes fastest in one lap.”