Red Bull boss Christian Horner believes top-ranked teams don’t have enough financial freedom to introduce sprint races unless there is a correction in budget constraints. Recall, the Formula 1 leadership wants to try out the sprint qualifying races on three races this season to see what impact they will have on tracking the race weekend.
The idea is that in Silverstone, Monza, and Interlagos the normal qualifiers will be postponed to Friday, and on Saturday they will insert a 100 km long sprint race that will decide the order for the start of Sunday's race.
Although much has already been agreed upon, there is still a question mark over the financial part of the plan. Team bosses are demanding that the budget limit be raised due to the risk of damage and other costs due to the extra race on the race weekend.
However, not all teams agree on this issue. Teams with smaller budgets fear that raising the limit could allow bigger teams to invest more in development than they would otherwise be able, to gain an advantage.
Horner made it clear that money is currently a major factor in the deal for sprint races.
“If you divide $ 145 million into 23 race weekends, you see how much we have available for each race per car. In addition, if you add at least such a short race, the costs will increase because we will spend more parts and everything else.
” “It’s a very sensitive issue because we’re currently hunting for 10, $ 20,000 to $ 30,000 savings to stay within budget limits. If they suddenly had an extra race they would have to adjust to it as well.
We are ready to support the idea, but some other corrections need to be made, ”Horner said. Toto Wolff agrees with Horner's view of the situation, adding that Mercedes would have to decide to reduce the number of staff if sprint races are introduced.
"We have difficulty staying within the budget, and I'm talking about tens of thousands, not hundreds. On the other hand, we would support Stefan [Domenicali] and Ross [Brawn] in implementing the idea because I think it’s worth a try."
"But we just don’t have enough freedom to try it out because we don’t have an extra half a million to a million in the budget to stay within the limits again, because that would mean we have to look at human resources and we don’t want to, ”Wolff said.