Hamilton predicts Silverstone F1 sprint race will be "a train"

Lewis Hamilton says he has “not particularly” high hopes for Formula 1’s first sprint race at Silverstone next weekend, predicting it will be “a train”.

F1 will debut its new weekend format at the British Grand Prix, holding a 100km sprint race on Saturday in place of regular qualifying.

Qualifying will still take place using its traditional format on Friday, setting the grid for the sprint race, the results of which will then define the starting order for the grand prix on Sunday.

The World Motor Sport Council rubber-stamped the new rules for the sprint races on Thursday, with the format also set to be used at two other events this year. But seven-time world champion Hamilton has doubts the new concept will deliver an exciting on-track product.

Asked if he had high hopes for the first sprint race, Hamilton replied: “Not particularly.

"It’s going to be a train, probably. Hopefully there’ll be some overtaking, but it most likely won’t be too exciting.”

Read Also:

The sprint race at Silverstone will last for 17 laps - one-third of the usual grand prix distance - and is scheduled to get underway at 4:30pm on Saturday.

The late running of the session serves as part of a wider shake-up of the weekend timings that will see qualifying begin at 6pm on Friday evening.

A further change in the rules for the sprint weekend will see the FIA officially declare the winner of the sprint race as the driver to take pole position - not the fastest man in qualifying.

Hamilton holds the record for the most pole positions in F1, having scored his 100th earlier this year at the Spanish Grand Prix, but he did not think much of the rule change.

“I don’t really have an opinion about it,” Hamilton said. “We’ll wait and see. There’s no point judging it before we even get into it. It doesn’t matter.”

Read Also:

F1 has already said that it will use the sprint events this year as a trial for the format that could be expanded in the future should it prove to be a success.

AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly said he was going into the weekend “open-minded”, believing it would be tricky to make any firm judgements after a single trial.

"I think it’s fair to wait all three weekends, and if there are any positives from it and people like it, then why not keep it in the future?” Gasly said. “But I think we have to review after all three weekends. What does it bring? Does it really make it more exciting? Because I think that’s the whole point of it.

“If it does, then why not? But if it doesn’t, then it’s important to keep the format that we have, which I think is good.

“I enjoy the qualifying on Saturday and having only one single race during the weekend.”

shares
comments

Related video

Red Bull junior Lawson to receive first F1 taste at Goodwood
Previous article

Red Bull junior Lawson to receive first F1 taste at Goodwood

Next article

Why F1’s latest technical wrangling is nothing new

Why F1’s latest technical wrangling is nothing new
Load comments
How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison Prime

How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells Stuart Codling about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Prime

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as Ben Anderson discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren Prime

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver for McLaren

From being lapped by his own teammate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Prime

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing wind tunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher Prime

The invisible enemy that's made Hamilton's title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles as a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021
Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay Prime

Why F1's inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax Prime

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021's title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Qatar Grand Prix driver ratings

Qatar was a virtual unknown for most as Formula 1 made its inaugural visit to the Gulf state, and tyre management quickly emerged as an even more critical factor than normal. Perhaps then it should come as no surprise that two of the championship's elder statesmen produced standout drives

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021