Max Verstappen beat Lewis Hamilton to win F1’s first-ever sprint qualifying race on Saturday afternoon as Silverstone hosted the debut of the world championship’s new weekend format experiment.

17 laps of flat-out racing decided the starting grid for Sunday’s British Grand Prix, after F1’s traditional qualifying session had taken place on Friday evening.

The format will be trialled at a further two events this year before F1 makes a decision on whether to incorporate sprint races as a regular feature of the grand prix weekend.

“It’s a completely new concept for Formula 1 and I think one of the things we all saw today was a racing driver is a racing driver and they’re never going to take it easy,” Brawn said.

“That first lap or so was completely nail-biting, and sensational, and then we had the little duels in the rest of the race. Fernando Alonso’s performance today was sensational, got my vote for the highlight of the race. I’d buy a ticket for that every day, so we’re very pleased.

“We’ll let the dust settle on the weekend, spend some time with the FIA and the teams, try and understand if there’s some evolutions we want but we won’t be changing the fundamental format this year.

“And I think after the three races we can sit down and see where we go from here. But so far very positive.”

What could be changed?

Brawn acknowledged that fan feedback will be “crucial” in how the format will be adopted in the future, but said the initial response was overwhelmingly positive.

“We’re already getting massive positive feedback from the fans,” he said. “On social media, they love it.

“But there will be fans who make some comments, what they didn’t understand or appreciate and we’ll take that into account as well.”

Brawn admitted that F1 may not stick with its decision to credit the sprint qualifying race winner with pole position, something which Sebastian Vettel called “wrong” before the weekend.

While Hamilton topped qualifying on Friday, Verstappen’s victory meant that he was awarded pole position.

“Should Friday be the pole position? It’s things like that we’ll talk about and discuss with the FIA and teams,” Brawn said.

"But I think we can’t be held back by history. We need to respect history but we must never be held back by history.”

Drivers were given free tyre choice for the sprint race and will also not be obliged to start Sunday’s grand prix on the tyres on which they set their fastest laps on.

Alpine pair Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon were two drivers that were rewarded for gambling on softs as they each made up places on the grid for the British GP.

Brawn said free tyre choice was another “appealing” element of the new format he felt worked well and could potentially be adopted for normal races.

“There’s some very appealing parts, everyone runs the same tyre in qualifying and we still have variety in the race as there were two tyres we can use,” he added.

“There’s no handicap in terms of what tyres we can use, so possibly we can take that forward.”