British GP schedules evening session for Friday qualifying

Silverstone has tweaked its timetable for the British GP, scheduling F1’s sprint race qualifying session at 6pm on Friday evening.

The tenth round of the 2021 F1 World Championship which will take place from July 16-18 will see the sport trial its first ever Saturday sprint qualifying event, the outcome of which will determine the grid for Sunday’s race.

Friday’s schedule will include an opening 60-minute free practice session and a 60-minute qualifying session – for Saturday’s sprint race – that will unfold according to the normal three-segment format.

However, Silverstone has pushed back both Friday sessions in a bid to allow fans to make it to the Northamptonshire track for the afternoon action and potentially boost attendance numbers.

Friday’s first free practice is therefore scheduled to start at 2:30pm while qualifying will be held 6pm.

Saturday’s F1 action will kick off with FP2 at 12pm, with the sprint race starting at 4:30pm. Regarding the latter, points will be distributed to the top three finishers.

Formula 1 will evaluate its novel sprint qualifying format at three venues this season, with Monza and Interlagos expected to complete the three-race trial after Silverstone.

“We are excited by this new opportunity that will bring our fans an even more engaging race weekend in 2021,” stated F1 chief executive Stefano Domenicali. “Seeing the drivers battling it out over three days will be an amazing experience,” he said.

“I am sure the drivers will relish the fight. I am delighted that all the teams supported this plan, and it is a testament to our united efforts to continue to engage our fans in new ways while ensuring we remain committed to the heritage and meritocracy of our sport.”

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