1103rd F1 GRAND PRIX | 4th SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX | 4th GRAND PRIX AT JEDDAH CORNICHE CIRCUIT
2023 POLESITTER: SERGIO PEREZ | 2023 WINNER: SERGIO PEREZ
Jeddah Corniche Circuit is the fastest street circuit on the Formula 1 calendar. The first Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was held in 2021 – and it proved to be a highly dramatic affair! The 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is set to take place on March 7-9.
2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX WEEKEND SCHEDULE
Thursday March 7
Free Practice 1 – 4:30pm Local Time/ 1:30pm UK Time
Free Practice 2 – 8pm Local Time/ 5pm UK Time
Friday March 8
Free Practice 3 – 4:30pm Local Time/ 1:30pm UK Time
Qualifying – 8pm Local Time/ 5pm UK Time
Saturday March 9
The 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix – 8pm Local Time/ 5pm UK Time
2024 SADUI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX: WEEKEND MILESTONES
The final lap of the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix will be the 200th racing lap completed at Jeddah Corniche Circuit since F1 first visited the track in 2021.
No driver has taken multiple wins at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix but that could change this weekend if Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen or Sergio Perez cross the finish line first. A victory for someone other than Hamilton, Verstappen or Perez would see the record for most successive different winners at Jeddah Corniche Circuit extended to four.
Red Bull lead the way for most team victories at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, with two. Mercedes could equal their record this weekend.
Max Verstappen remains the only driver to record multiple podium finishes at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and holds a 100% podium record at the track. He could extend that record this weekend, while Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz, Sergio Perez and Fernando Alonso could join him in the group of drivers with more than one top three finish at the track.
READ MORE IN MILESTONES AND RECORDS TO BREAK
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX
WHAT HAS CHANGED AT THE CIRCUIT SINCE LAST YEAR?
Any changes to the circuit since the previous F1 race at the track will be posted here.
HOW MANY DRS ZONES WILL THERE BE AT THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
It’s yet to be announced how many DRS zones there will be at the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. Last year, there were three DRS zones.
JEDDAH CORNICHE CIRCUIT TRACK GUIDE
Rumours of a Formula 1 race in Saudi Arabia have been ongoing for a number of years. In 2019, it was announced that a permanent circuit was to be built in Qiddiya, outside of capital city Riyadh. The plans were confirmed in January 2020.
Track designer Alex Wurz appeared with a number of past and present Formula 1 drivers – including World Champion Damon Hill, David Coulthard, Nico Hulkenberg and Romain Grosjean – in an event on the proposed site of the circuit. It was confirmed at the event that the circuit was designed to FIA Grade 1 standards, meaning that Formula 1 could theoretically race there – though not until 2023. Instead, for the time being at least, the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix will take place on the streets of Jeddah, the country’s second-largest city.
Saudi Arabia has attracted other major motorsport events in recent years. The Race of Champions, held at the King Fahd International Stadium in February 2018, was the first ever international motorsport event to take place in the country. Meanwhile, Formula E has raced in Diriyah since 2018 and the Dakar Rally has been held in the country in each of the past two years.
The track layout for the inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was unveiled on 18th March 2021. The Jeddah Corniche Circuit is designed by Hermann Tilke, and is situated on the Jeddah Corniche. It is the fastest street circuit in Formula 1, with an average speed of over 250km/h. Race organisers say that the circuit – which has 27 turns set out over 6.175km – prioritises overtaking, rather than scenic views. The race takes place at night.
WHO WILL BE IN THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX PRESS CONFERENCES?
The world’s media will have the opportunity to talk to the drivers ahead of the on-track action. The drivers appearing in the press conference for this race are yet to be announced.
The media will also be talking to prominent members of Formula 1’s teams in a separate press conference over the race weekend. The team members appearing in the press conference are yet to be announced.
WHO WILL BE THE RACE DIRECTOR AT THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
Niels Wittich will make his second appearance as race director at the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
WHO WILL BE THE DRIVER STEWARD AT THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
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 yet to be announced.
WHICH TYRE COMPOUNDS WILL BE USED AT THE 2024 SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
Pirelli are yet to announce which tyre compounds will be used at the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. The C2, C3 and C4 compounds were used in 2023.
WHAT HAPPENED AT LAST YEAR’S SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
Perez won the 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix from pole position while Verstappen recovered from 15th on the grid to give Red Bull another 1-2 finish.
Drivers accustomed themselves to a number of track changes at Jeddah Corniche Circuit ahead of the 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix through the practice sessions as traffic proved to be one of the major talking points.
Lando Norris recorded a rare Q1 exit after bumping the wall early in the session, while spinners Nyck de Vries and Logan Sargeant were also eliminated early. Max Verstappen was a shock exit in Q2 due to engine issues, leaving a clear route to pole for team-mate Sergio Perez. The Mexican set the fastest lap time in Q3 by 0.155 seconds from Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who dropped 10 positions on the grid due to a power unit problem.
Leclerc’s penalty left Fernando Alonso alongside Perez on the front row of the grid on Sunday. The Spaniard capitalised on the opportunity, taking the lead at the opening corner. Oscar Piastri, who had reached Q3 for the first time on Saturday, suffered damage on the opening lap. That debris was then hit by Norris, in an incident that compromised both McLaren driver’s races.
Alonso’s charge at the front soon came to an end. After being handed a 5-second time penalty for being in the incorrect position in his grid slot, Perez flew by the Aston Martin – despite a lock-up – at Turn 1 at the start of Lap 4. Meanwhile, Leclerc was making up positions from his low starting spot with a series of impressive overtakes. Verstappen was following suit, making his way through the order.
The Safety Car was called out when Lance Stroll was told to stop trackside with engine issues. That prompted the leaders to pit for their first stops and put Verstappen very much in the fight for victory. At the restart, Verstappen sat in fourth place, behind leader Perez, Alonso and George Russell. By Lap 25, Verstappen had made his way into second, with a six second gap to his team-mate ahead.
While Verstappen complained about strange noises from his engine, Alex Albon became the second driver to retire from the race; the Williams driver suffering a brake failure. Perez was unchallenged for victory and won by five seconds, leading home the second Red Bull 1-2 in the second race of the 2023 season.
Alonso finished third to secure the 100th podium finish of his career. After the podium celebrations, stewards handed the Spaniard a 10 second penalty for failing to serve his previous penalty correctly. The latter penalty was later rescinded, meaning Alonso finished on the podium after all.
WHAT’S THE FASTEST EVER LAP AT THE SAUDI ARABIAN GRAND PRIX?
Attending the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix? Learn more about visiting Jeddah Corniche Circuit in the F1Destinations Travel Guide.