?? THE 2021 BAHRAIN GRAND PRIX
ROUND 1. 26th – 28th March.
1036th F1 GRAND PRIX | 17th BAHRAIN GRAND PRIX | 18th GRAND PRIX AT BAHRAIN INTERNATIONAL CIRCUIT
2020 POLESITTER: LEWIS HAMILTON | 2020 WINNER: LEWIS HAMILTON
Friday 26th March
Free Practice 1 (2:30pm Local Time/ 12:30pm UK Time)
Free Practice 2 (6pm Local Time/ 4pm UK Time)
Saturday 27th March
Free Practice 3 (3pm Local Time/ 1pm UK Time)
Qualifying (6pm Local Time/ 4pm UK Time)
Sunday 28th March
The 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix (6pm Local Time/ 4pm UK Time)
- Mick Schumacher, Nikita Mazepin and Yuki Tsunoda will become the 768th, 769th and 770th drivers to start a round of the Formula 1 World Championship.
- Aston Martin will make their first appearance since the 1960 British Grand Prix, breaking the record for the longest gap between two appearances for a constructor.
- McLaren will make their first appearance with Mercedes power since the 2014 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
- Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon make this the 900th race to feature a French driver.
- Valtteri Bottas makes his 80th appearance with Mercedes. This is the 40th occasion on which a driver has made an 80th appearance with the same team.
- Fernando Alonso returns to F1 after an absence of 2 years, 3 months and 24 days – the 86th longest gap between Grand Prix appearances. With Alonso back in the sport, this will be the first race since the 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to feature four World Champions on the grid and the first race to feature 10 active Grand Prix winners on the grid since the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix.
- Sir Lewis Hamilton will become the first driver with a knighthood to start a Formula 1 race. No other driver has been knighted before the end of their career. The last race to feature a driver other than Hamilton who was knighted after their career ended was the 1973 Canadian Grand Prix.
- This will be the first race in which Ferrari compete without an active World Champion since 2007.
- This will be the 75th Grand Prix to be held in the month of March.
There have been no major track changes since F1 last raced here in December 2020. There will be three DRS zones, as there was at the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix.
BAHRAIN INTERNATIONAL CIRCUIT TRACK GUIDE
F1 stepped into the Middle East for the first time in 2004, with the Bahrain International Circuit hosting its first race in the Sakhir desert. Since then, the track has become host to one of the sport’s annual night races.
Situated 30km south-west of the Bahrain capital Manama, the Bahrain International Circuit is built on the site of a former camel farm. Crown Prince of Bahrain, Shaikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, was enthusiastic for the track to be built and for the pinnacle of motorsport to visit the country – so much so that it became a national objective for the country.
PRESS CONFERENCE SCHEDULES
The world’s media will have the opportunity to talk to the drivers on the Thursday before the race. All 20 drivers will appear in the press conference at the Bahrain Grand Prix, which will take place virtually.
The media will also be talking to prominent members of Formula 1’s teams on Friday. Appearing in the press conference at the Bahrain Grand Prix are: Zak Brown (McLaren), Toto Wolff (Mercedes), Christian Horner (Red Bull), Laurent Rossi (Alpine), Toyoharu Tanabe (Honda) and Jost Capito (Williams).
Each weekend a former Formula 1 driver, or a driver from another prominent series of motorsport, joins the stewards to help judge any incidents from a drivers’ perspective. The Driver Steward this weekend is Emanuele Pirro.
The weather forecast for the week ahead at the circuit currently looks like this:
In 2021, each team will be supplied with the same selection of tyres by Pirelli: two sets of hard compounds, three sets of medium compounds and eight sets of soft compounds. Pirelli will supply the C2, C3 and C4 compounds for this race weekend.
2020 BAHRAIN GP RECAP
The 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix will be remembered for Romain Grosjean’s fiery crash, from which he was lucky to escape relatively unscathed.
As the startling lights went out at Formula 1’s first night race of 2020, polesitter Lewis Hamilton led his team-mate away from the line in the ordinary fashion. But this was to be no ordinary start to a Grand Prix. At the rear of the field, Romain Grosjean clipped Daniil Kvyat’s AlphaTauri, sending the Haas driver spearing into the barriers at high speed. As the car sheared in two and penetrated the metal barriers, the French driver was engulfed in flames. Thankfully, with quick response from the FIA medical team, Grosjean escaped relatively unharmed for such a huge impact. Nevertheless, burns to his hands would bring a premature end to the Frenchman’s F1 career. The race was red flagged, with a long delay as necessary repairs were made to the barriers.
The race resumed with a standing start. Hamilton re-took pole position, but this time was joined by Max Verstappen on the front row. Valtteri Bottas had made a poor start the first time around, so restarted from fourth. Sergio Perez challenged Verstappen for second at the opening turn, but there was more trouble further back. Lance Stroll’s car was flipped over by Kvyat, with the Safety Car called out as a result. Bottas picked up a puncture which dropped him to the back of the field. The rest of the race was a less dramatic affair, that was aside from Perez. After running in the podium positions, the Racing Point’s engine expired, costing the Mexican a top three finish. The race ended under Safety Car conditions, with Hamilton taking the win, Verstappen second, and Alex Albon inheriting the final podium position. It proved to be Hamilton’s final win in his seventh title winning season.
FASTEST EVER LAP
RECENT FASTEST LAPS IN EACH SESSION
|Free Practice 1||1:32.697 (Sebastian Vettel)||1:31.060 (Daniel Ricciardo)||1:30.354 (Charles Leclerc)||1:29.033 (Lewis Hamilton)|
|Free Practice 2||1:31.310 (Sebastian Vettel)||1:29.817 (Kimi Raikkonen)||1:28.846 (Sebastian Vettel)||1:28.971 (Lewis Hamilton)|
|Free Practice 3||1:32.194 (Max Verstappen)||1:29.868 (Kimi Raikkonen)||1:29.569 (Charles Leclerc)||1:28.355 (Max Verstappen)|
|Qualifying||1:28.769 (Valtteri Bottas)||1:27.958 (Sebastian Vettel)||1:27.866 (Charles Leclerc)||1:27.264 (Lewis Hamilton)|
|Grand Prix||1:32.798 (Lewis Hamilton)||1:33.740 (Valtteri Bottas)||1:33.411 (Charles Leclerc)||1:32.014 (Max Verstappen)|