Encouraged by a successful trial of three experimental events at Silverstone, Monza and Interlagos last year, F1 championship bosses had wanted to double the amount of Saturday sprint races to six for the upcoming campaign. 

However, the plans have been threatened by an ongoing stand-off over money, with some teams - believed to be Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari - pushing for a larger compensation package, with the budget cap reducing to $140m for 2022. 

McLaren boss Zak Brown recently admitted there is a real possibility of no sprint races taking place this season due to the dispute. 

"A couple of teams, and one team in particular, wanted a $5m budget cap increase, which was just ridiculous," he said. 

Teams were given an extra $450,000 to cover the three sprint races last year, along with allowances of up to $100,000 per car to cover potential damage accident.

German publication Auto Motor und Sport reports the teams have now been informed by F1 bosses that there will be a maximum of three sprint events this year. 

The season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix on March 20 was originally earmarked to feature a sprint but this plan is now off the table. It is understood that no decision has been taken on which grands prix will host the three sprint races if a deal is reached. 

Under F1’s current governance structure, the world championship requires a ‘super majority’ of 28 votes from the 30 representatives in the F1 Commission to successfully push through changes for this year. 

That means eight of the 10 teams would need to agree on the details in order for the sprint plan to get the green light. 

Additional sprint events in 2023 appears a more likely scenario, given a lower threshold is required to vote through such changes for next year. 

The issue is set to be one of the main topics on the agenda at the next meeting of the F1 Commission on February 14.