In the round-up: Carlos Sainz Jnr says Formula 1 needs to find a way to add excitement to its new sprint qualifying races.

In brief

Sprint qualifying format needs more excitement – Sainz

Sainz believes F1’s new format experiment has been worthwhile as it gives teams a limited amount of time to prepare their cars with a single practice session before qualifying.

“Friday is clearly improved for everyone, it’s progress,” he said. “I think [first practice] is exciting because you know you cannot put a foot wrong and you need to learn.

“For the teams, with the amount of simulation tools there are nowadays, it forces the teams to be modern, to be up-to-date and to be on top of the simulations to try and put together a good car on Friday already. Teams nowadays have enough tools to make that happen as you see here in Monza and Silverstone.”

But Sainz still sees room for improvement after Saturday’s underwhelming sprint qualifying race. “We need to find a way to make Saturday a bit more exciting because at the moment I don’t think it’s giving much excitement compared to Saturday qualifying,” he said.

“I don’t see the sprint qualifying being more exciting than a Saturday qualifying. So we need to find a way to make something more more exciting for everyone.”

Hamilton’s crash escape “not lucky”

Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton crash, Monza, 2021
Verstappen’s car landed on Hamilton’s Halo

Engineering – not luck – should be credited for the performance of the Halo which protected Lewis Hamilton in his Monza crash, according to an engineer at Cranfield University, where the head protection device was developed.

Clive Temple, the Motorsport MSc programme director and senior lecturer at the Advanced Vehicle Engineering Centre at Cranfield University, said: “Hamilton was not lucky – it is a fact that engineering and science underpin all of this work which ensures drivers are safe. Safety is the primary concern in motorsport.”

“The Halo is exceptionally strong and is integral to other safety critical elements within the car,” he added. “Hamilton experiencing Verstappen’s car coming on top is probably around the equivalent of close to a London double decker bus landing on top of the car.

“The current Halo is designed to withstand 100 kilonewtons – 10.2 tonnes – and a modern double decker is around 12 tonnes or so. 10.2 tonnes is also the equivalent of two African elephants landing on the race car. This is a very strong structure indeed.”

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