Thursday, April 18, 2013


The Bahrain Grand Prix is a Formula One Championship race in Bahrain sponsored by Gulf Air. The first race took place at the Bahrain International Circuit on 4 April 2004. It made history as the first Formula One Grand Prix to be held in the Middle East, and was given the award for the "Best Organised Grand Prix" by the FIA. The Bahrain Grand Prix has usually been the third race of the Formula One calendar. However, in the 2006 season, Bahrain swapped places with the traditional opener, the Australian Grand Prix, which was pushed back to avoid a clash with the Commonwealth Games. In 2010, Bahrain staged the opening race of the 2010 season and the cars drove the full 6.299 km (3.914 miles) "Endurance Circuit" to celebrate F1's 'diamond jubilee'.

The 2011 Grand Prix, due to be held on 13 March, was canceled on 21 February due to the 2011 Bahraini protests after drivers including Damon Hill and Mark Webber had protested. Human rights activists called for a cancellation of 2012 race due to reports of alleged human rights abuses committed by the Bahraini authorities, team personnel also voiced concerns about safety. The race however was held as planned on 22 April 2012. This year is no better with protests on-going and martial law imposed, the situation is not in the best interest of the sport and puts it in a bad light.


Location : Sakhir, Bahrain
Time zone : UTC+03:00
Construction cost : 56.2 million Dinars ($150 million)
Lap record : 1:30.252 (Michael Schumacher, Ferrari, 2004)

Circuit Length : 5.41 kilometres
Race distance : 57 laps (308.23 kilometres)
Corners : 15 corners in total, mostly medium speed, with three long straights
Aerodynamic setup : Medium downforce
Top speed : 322km/h (with Drag Reduction System on rear wing) – 310km/h without
Full throttle : 64% of the lap
Total fuel needed for race distance : 150.8 kilos
Time spent braking : 16% of the lap (7 braking zones)
Brake wear : High

Loss time for a Pit stop : 18.6 seconds
Total time needed for pit stop : 22.6 seconds
Fuel effect (cost in lap time per 10kg of fuel carried) : 0.38 seconds (average/high)
Fuel consumption : 2.6 kg/lap
Max. corner g-force : 3.6 (Turn 6)
Tyre selection : Medium (White), Hard (Orange)


Friday - Sunny, high 34°C (93.2°F) / low 22°C (71.6°F)
Saturday - Sunny, high 34°C (93.2°F) / low 22°C (71.6°F)
Sunday - Sunny, high 36°C (96.8°F) / low 21°C (69.8°F)

Latest update is that rain is expected during both Friday practice sessions with "heavy rain" in the morning and "light" showers in the afternoon. The rain, though, won't have an effect on the temperature with it ranging between 28C to 34C.


Two DRS zones will be in place at this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix for the first time in its history, with governing body the FIA choosing to add to the pit-straight area. The first detection point has been placed at Turn 9, before the activation mark on the exit of Turn 10. The second detection line comes under braking for the penultimate corner, Turn 14, with the activation area situated shortly before the start-finish line.

As per the regulations, DRS can be used in the allocated zones during practice and qualifying, while in the race a driver must be within one second of a car ahead.

Again, we are looking at a strategy driven race as the Pirelli tires are still an unknown element at this track since Pirelli has altered the construction from last year. Pirelli has also changed the tire allocation from soft/hard to medium/hard as the softs were just being killed in Shanghai. Imagine the heat of Bahrain. The long-running on Friday afternoon, FP2, should be an indication of how long the tires are going to last, Pirelli's Paul Hembery is predicting three stops, although he is hedging his bets:
"We expect about three stops per car, although we'll have to wait to get some running in on Friday before we can look at the data and make a more accurate prediction. One of the main challenges of racing in Bahrain is that the track evolution is very hard to predict, depending on how much sand is blown onto the circuit. From what we saw last year though, there will be plenty of scope for different race strategies, which can even allow drivers who have not qualified as well as they hoped to recover during the grand prix."
So qualifying should be close and watch out for the strategies teams will employ then that will then impact the race strategy. We've seen how Vettel played qualifying in China, it will be interesting to see Red Bull in Bahrain.

KIMI QUOTE: "It's a little bit different from others we visit and it's quite nice to be out there in the sand! Wherever you look around the track you can just see sand in the distance and you notice it in the paddock too."

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