Grand Prix 2016 Bahrain Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

And so it is with fresh optimism and renewed hope that the F1 band wagon rolls northwards from Australia and into the Middle East. Not everyone's favourite holiday destination at the moment which means it should be relatively cheap if you still want to pop out and take a look.

Previously a British protectorate, Bahrain became an independent state in 1971 and a Kingdom in 2002. It's cultural routes stretch back thousands of years. One of the first regions of the Gulf to adopt the Islamic faith, during the 7th century, at one stage prior to this it was home to a group who worshipped a shark deity call Awal which for a time the country was also called. More recently if made headlines for the brutal crack down of an uprising as part of the Arab Spring. With neighbour Saudi Arabia sending tanks across the causeway that links the two countries in support of the the monarch and government. Bahrain unlike many of the other states in the region has an economy that is focused on banking and tourism therefore global relations are extremely important.

The 2004 Bahrain Grand Prix was the first F1 race to be held in the Middle East and was deemed a huge success by the FIA. Shunted around the calendar over the next few years, the GP has had the pleasure of opening the series on a number of occasions. The 2011 race was cancelled due to the turmoil mentioned above and there was a great deal of pressure from a number of quarters for the 2012 race to follow suit. The cancellation in 2011 was not as a result of the fact that they made viewers sit through an extremely dull race using the much longer 'Endurance Track' layout in 2010. Since 2014 the race has been held under floodlight conditions in order to be broadcast at a more suitable time for European TV audiences. A happy hunting ground for want to be World Champions as 8 of the 11 winners have gone on to lift the title trophy, Fernando Alonso leads the pack with 3 wins.

It will be interesting to see how the cars run here in a hotter climate. We still don't really know about the operating ranges and limits of the 2016 tyres and with the fact that the tyre rules allow for a far greater use of strategy than before, that level of 'unknown' has certainly added to the interest this year.

There can be no doubt that the 2016 Mercedes is the car to beat but the big question is just how hard to beat will it be? Was Australia a true reflection given that the qualifying system was a mess and that Hamilton made a complete dog's breakfast of his race start?

Ferrari will be kicking themselves for not being able to draw first blood when it seemed like a really strong result was on the cards. A must for the team should be getting both cars home and as high up the grid as possible. That pressure on Mercedes will surely see mistakes being made.

Further down the grid, there are a lot of tidy looking cars out there this season which should add some real drama to the midfield battle. It was an encouraging start for Red Bull who, despite having a poor weekend with Kyvat, did show that the new TAG-NotRenault engine has improved since last year. Haas made a fantastic start to their campaign and life in F1 becoming one of the very few teams to have scored points on their début and, for the old school among us, actually score real points from back in the day when only the top six scored. That just goes to show that if you spend a full year getting yourself together before joining the grid you can reap the rewards (I'm looking at you Toyota !!).

With the relative closeness of the midfield, you get the impression that the drivers will make the difference. Max '****ing' Verstappen, Carlos Sainz, Jo Palmer, Daniel Ricciardo etc etc, all of these guys are pushing hard.

Of the established teams, McLaren have improved, there is no doubt about it but they must be relieved that Alonso's crash gave the team more positive headlines about the strength and design of the car then they would of received had he made it to the finish in one piece. Again it's going to be another long year but surely a more fruitful one. Williams on the other hand seem to be slipping right back into clutches of the midfield having threatened to make the Ferrari, Mercedes scrap a three way battle they now seem incapable of dragging the best out of the combination of their chassis, drivers and Mercedes engine.

Finally, it looks like another long year ahead for Sauber and Manor but there was an encouraging start for Pascal Wehrlein who, despite losing out to his team mate in the farce of Qually, ran well enough in the race to suggest that a point or two may not be a remote prospect this season.

Let's just hope that the season continues to unfold in a positive and exciting way.
 
Last edited:

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Desppite enjoying Australia I don't have massive hopes for Bahrain as if the Mercs get of the line ok I imagine they'll have the pace to pull away especially as Bahrain has not been Vettel's best track over the years.

I'll be interesting to see how Torro Rosso Wars continues and I have to say I suspect that the Manor car has more pace in it than we really saw in Australia. Bahrain might be where Sauber start to have a major panic on possible coming 11th in the constructors and not getting any dosh at the end of it.

I'm going for a Hamilton win with Rosberg 2nd which will make it all nice and level in the championship.
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member

Looks like Manor's fax machine is still broken...
Ferrari, Williams, McLaren and Sauber all see a need for the medium tyres, while Mercedes do not. You'd expect degredation to be higher at Sakhir than Melbourne. The mediums ran between 20 and 30 laps last year.

It'll also be interesting to see if anyone decides to start on the softs by putting them on in Q2. This seems most likely for Mercedes or Toro Rosso to attempt considering both pace and selection.
 

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
Stating bleeding obvious from honda today, Honda has confirmed it is to replace the entire power unit in Alonso's McLaren for Bahrain following his crash in Australia but my favourite part was what the honda guy said. they have recovered the power unit from Fernando's car used in Melbourne & After initial investigations we are massively disappointed the ICE, and most of the surrounding parts, have been heavily damaged as the impact from the accident was just too great.

massively disappointed :o. Did honda watch a different accident to us & also they couldn't get a power unit to finish a race never mind after a accident

Honda couldn't salvage any of Alonso's engine after Australia crash
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
olegg - Britain makes a huge plurality of its military trade with Saudi Arabia, which supplied the guns to crush the Bahraini resistance. Please draw your own conclusions from that.
 

ATL11

Podium Finisher
Stating bleeding obvious from honda today, Honda has confirmed it is to replace the entire power unit in Alonso's McLaren for Bahrain following his crash in Australia but my favourite part was what the honda guy said. they have recovered the power unit from Fernando's car used in Melbourne & After initial investigations we are massively disappointed the ICE, and most of the surrounding parts, have been heavily damaged as the impact from the accident was just too great.

massively disappointed :o. Did honda watch a different accident to us & also they couldn't get a power unit to finish a race never mind after a accident

Honda couldn't salvage any of Alonso's engine after Australia crash

Actually thinking about spicing up the Grand Prix weekend, what do you reckon if we had the Honda engineers seeing if they could get Alonso's engine restarted using only spanners, WD40 & a lump hammer. Think if they did we could give them a World Championship point?

Could be a goer & bloody interesting to watch, be better than qualifying.
 

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
Is it wrong that for the 1st time I can remember (holidays excluding) im Wondering whether theres any point taping Bahrain qualifying while im bramall lane watching sheff utd v Walsall game. As Australia gp qualifying was painful viewing & waste of a few hrs that I couldve been doing something else
 

ATL11

Podium Finisher
Is it wrong that for the 1st time I can remember (holidays excluding) im Wondering whether theres any point taping Bahrain qualifying while im bramall lane watching sheff utd v Walsall game. As Australia gp qualifying was painful viewing & waste of a few hrs that I couldve been doing something else

I'd still record it, but go to the football, make sure Sheffield United beat Walsall 4-0, after this go to the pub have a few too many drinks celebrating & then return home, select to watch the last 5 minutes of the Q3 recording, you never know with high seratonin levels & alcohol you improve the viewing?
 

Jos the Boss

Champion Elect
Why do friends not plan events around the F1 calendar? I'm gonna have to download SkyGo or miss half the race, hopefully they understand why I'm bringing an iPad to dinner!
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Andrew W. Welcome to the site!

I think we'd all love to see a Grosjean win because of the amazing race it would be! I think you're right that it'll be Lewis though!
 

teabagyokel

#dejavu
Valued Member
Welcome Andrew W. I do enjoy that even a Haas fan isn't considering a Gutierrez victory possible... :p

Only Seb Vettel, Alberto Ascari, Michael Schumacher, Jack Brabham, Jim Clark, Nigel Mansell and Lewis Hamilton have won 5 or more races in a row. That is some élite - especially with Prost and Senna uninvited. Down to you, Nico.
 

Greenlantern101

Super Hero And All Round Good Guy
Contributor
Well despite the rain earlier this week it is now forecast as dry for the race. Who'd of thunk it a dry race in the desert.
I'm guessing the Bahrainees don't chat about the weather much.

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 15.53.07.png
 
Top Bottom