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MotoGP Austrian GP

MotoGP looking to introduce F1-style sprint races in 2023

MotoGP wants to introduce Formula 1-style sprint races to grand prix weekends in 2023 and will discuss this with teams this weekend, Motorsport.com has learned.

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As part of a revamp in race weekends, F1 trialled sprint races at three events – Silverstone, Monza and Brazil – on Saturdays which determined the starting grid for the main grand prix on Sunday.

The trial proved successful among fans and teams alike, and so F1 pencilled in three further sprint weekends for 2022 at Imola, Red Bull Ring and Brazil.

As part of the Global Fan Survey run by Dorna Sports in conjunction with the Motorsport Network, the idea of sprint races was floated.

Now MotoGP plans to push ahead with this idea for 2023 and will discuss this in Friday’s Grand Prix Commission meeting at this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix.

Unlike in F1, the idea is to have a sprint race at every single MotoGP event next year and keep it a separate entity to the main grand prix.

The MotoGP sprint race would run to around half distance of the main grand prix and half-points will be awarded.

It is likely the starting grid for the grand prix will continue to be decided by a qualifying session and will not be dictated by the result of the sprint race.

To accommodate this, one free practice session and the warm-up on Sunday would be cut from the schedule.

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Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

At present, this idea is only for the MotoGP class, with Moto2 and Moto3 weekend formats likely to remain unchanged for now.

While details are yet to be finalised, most of the constructors’ currently competing in MotoGP are in favour of the format change.

Should this go ahead, it will be the first major change to a MotoGP weekend format since the split qualifying sessions was introduced in 2013.

Since then, there has only been minor changes made to the weekend format for the Moto2 and Moto3 class, when split qualifying was introduced in 2019 for them.

Currently, there are three 45-minute practice sessions each weekend for the MotoGP class – the combined order of which decides who goes straight into Q2 in qualifying and who must go through Q1.

A 30-minute FP4 sessions precedes qualifying, with both Q1 and Q2 running to 15 minutes each.

A 20-minute warm-up takes place on Sunday before the grand prix later that afternoon.

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