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Brawn not considering shorter Formula 1 races

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Formula 1 sporting chief Ross Brawn says he is not interested in make grands prix shorter, believing that races are currently at a good length.

Brawn was appointed F1’s new sporting managing director following Liberty Media’s takeover back in January, working alongside CEO and chairman Chase Carey.

The length of F1 races has been brought into question recently as Liberty considers ways to grow the sport and make it more appealing to fans, with three-time world champion Lewis Hamilton suggesting they should be made shorter.

Brawn is against this idea, though, instead preferring to focus on ways to keep fans watching for the duration of the race by making it more entertaining.

“I like the heritage of a race. I think an hour 40, an hour 45 is a great period for a race,” Brawn told Reuters.

“And that’s traditionally what we’ve had. I think it’s a good time period.

“Some people say ‘let’s have shorter races because the public’s attention span is shorter these days’.

“Well, with modern technology you can package the sport in whichever way people want to watch it.

“What we have to do is develop the sport so there is as much entertainment as possible during that period.”

Brawn also revealed that he met with MotoGP’s CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend to discuss the prevention of calendar clashes with F1, a new tactic for the sport’s management.

“We’re not too proud to consult with other championships and work out the best way forward,” Brawn said.

“It’s difficult to juggle dates, and you can’t always achieve what you want, but at least we’re having a dialogue to try and work it out.”

F1 2017 driver review: Lance Stroll

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Team: Williams

Car No.: 18
Races: 20
Wins: 0
Podiums: 1
Best Finish: P3 (Azerbaijan)
Pole Positions: 0
Fastest Laps: 0
Points: 40
Championship Position: 13th

Lance Stroll’s arrival in Formula 1 at the start of the 2017 was a far from smooth one despite a significant private testing program being undertaken in the months leading up to his grand prix debut.

Even with older hand Felipe Massa at Williams, Stroll looked uneasy behind the wheel of the FW40 car through the opening run of races as he failed to reach the checkered flag in any of his first three starts.

The Canadian was left deflated after his first decent effort in Bahrain was cut short after a clash with Carlos Sainz Jr., calling it his “rock bottom” moment – but things would turn around on home soil.

Stroll produced a stunning fight through the field to take an excellent P9 in Canada, proving his talent seen in Formula 3 the previous year and shushing many of his critics.

Better would follow two weeks later in Baku when Stroll became the youngest rookie in F1 history to score a podium, dodging a crazy race to finish third. It would have been second had he not lost a drag race against Valtteri Bottas to the line.

Stroll’s form then fluctuated greatly. He was sublime on occasion, the best examples being Monza, when he started a remarkable P2 on the grid and ended as the top midfielder in P7, or Mexico where he took a brilliant sixth.

But there were too many weekends he was a little anonymous. Sure, Williams didn’t have the best car this year, but perhaps a little better was expected from Stroll.

2018 will be an even bigger challenge as he looks to the lead the team when a new teammate arrives – and at only 19, it is a lot to handle. Nevertheless, there are positive signs to be found; you just need to look for them a little.

Season High: Taking a shock podium in Baku after dodging chaos in front.

Season Low: A poor opening two races in Australia and China.