After the season opener two weeks ago we now head to Bahrain for the second race. The Bahrain Grand Prix is the first night race of the season and in the past has seen some spectacular battles, especially between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.
Number of Laps: 57
Start Time: 16:00 BST
Fastest Lap: 1:29.527 (Mark Webber)
Tyre Compounds: Supersoft, Soft, Medium, Intermediate, Wet
Last year Hamilton came first with Kimi Raikkonen in second and Rosberg in third. Those results are likely to be emulated again this year as Ferrari have the power needed to challenge the Mercedes. With Rosberg continuing his dominance from the end of last season it will be interesting to see if he can gain another win.
Perhaps the biggest news going into this weekend is the absence of Fernando Alonso. After his crash in Melbourne he sustained fractured ribs and the FIA doctors have decided that it is not acceptable for Alonso to race. Stoffel Vandoorne, the McLaren reserve driver, will be taking his place this race making his F1 debut. It is speculated that Alonso will miss the Chinese Grand Prix as well due to the severity of his injuries.
The new qualifying format will make it’s return this race weekend as well. The return of this format is somewhat surprising considering the response it got from the fans, drivers and teams. Although team executives held a meeting with the FIA it has still been decided to keep the format. It may have just been experiencing teething problems at the last Grand Prix so qualifying is still worth a watch in case it does improve.