British GP and Sprint Qualifying
13th July 2021
This coming weekend, it’s the 2021 British Grand Prix, with Formula 1 heading back to Silverstone, complete with grandstands of fans. It’s a great track and who knows if Red Bull with continue their dominance or if Mercedes can reclaim control of the championship. It’s such a great season so far for competition across the whole field, as well as the epic title battle shaping up between Hamilton and Verstappen.
The new Sprint Qualifying
Now, as if F1 needed something else to shake things up besides the pandemic, this weekend sees the first race weekend trialling the new “Sprint Qualifying” format, or simply “F1 Sprint” format that it’s now being dubbed as. If you’ve missed the news so far, here’s how it’s going to work for the Sprint weekends:
- Friday: One practice session, then the regular Q1, Q2, Q3 qualifying session.
- Saturday: Another practice session, then the Sprint Qualifying race
- Sunday: The usual Grand Prix race
And so the Friday qualifying session follows the format we’re used on Saturdays. The result of the Friday qualifying decides the starting grid for the Saturday “Sprint Qualifying” race. And then the result of the Sprint Qualifying race decides the grid for the proper Grand Prix on Sunday. Got that? Good! No? Read it again, it really doesn’t make much sense to us as to why this format will do much for the racing action, but hey – we’re open to F1 trying something new, why not. Oh, except we’re having of the best seasons in a long time. Ah well!
The Fantasy GP game format
Due to the fact that the “Sprint Qualifying” is a trial thing, we’re not changing the whole format of Fantasy GP for just this weekend or the other 2 planned sprint weekends (Monza and another TBC, since the originally planned for Brazil isn’t likely to happen).
- Fantasy GP will lock as usual on the Saturday – at 4:30pm (BST, GMT+1), at the start of the Sprint Qualifying race.
- Prediction Points for Pole Position will be awarded for correctly predicting the driver who starts the main Grand Prix in Pole Position – i.e. the winner of the Sprint Qualifying race (caveat, as per usual rules, it the driver who starts the race in Pole on Sunday).
- Race, Qualifying and Bonus Points will be awarded as usual, based on the main Grand Prix on Sunday.
In short, if you ignore the fact that Saturday is a Sprint Qualifying race and think of it as normal qualifying, the format of Fantasy GP is as before. Get those team changes and predictions in before the start of the Sprint Qualifying race, which starts at 4:30pm BST (GMT+1).