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Bahrain Grand Prix

Circuit Bahrain.png
Bahrain Grand Prix
Flag 22px-Flag of Bahrain.png
Circuit Bahrain International Circuit
Laps 57
Circuit length km 5.412
Circuit length mi 3.363
Race length km 308.238
Race length mi 191.539
First held 2004
Last held 2008
Most wins driver 22px-Flag of Spain.png Fernando Alonso (2)
22px-Flag of Brazil.png Felipe Massa(2)
Most wins constructor 3dflagsdotcom italy2bs.gif Ferrari (3)
Current year 2008
Pole driver 22px-Flag of Poland.png Robert Kubica
Pole team BMW Sauber
Pole time 1:33.096
Winner 22px-Flag of Brazil.png Felipe Massa
Winning team Ferrari
Winning time 1h 31m 06.970s (202.974 km/h)
Second 22px-Flag of Finland.png Kimi Räikkönen
Second team Ferrari
Second time +3.339s
Third 22px-Flag of Poland.png Robert Kubica
Third team BMW Sauber
Third time +4.998s
Fastest lap driver 22px-Flag of Finland.png Heikki Kovalainen
Fastest lap team McLaren-Mercedes
Fastest lap 1:33.193


The Bahrain Grand Prix (جائزة البحرين الكبرى) is a Formula One Championship race which first took place at the Bahrain International Circuit on 4 April 2004.

The Bahrain Grand Prix, sponsored by Gulf Air, made history as the first Formula One Grand Prix to be held in the Middle East. Bahrain fought off fierce competition from elsewhere in the region to stage the race, with Egypt, Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates all hoping for the prestige of hosting a Formula One Grand Prix.

The inaugural race 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 it swapped places with the traditional opener, the Australian Grand Prix, which was pushed back to avoid a clash with the Commonwealth Games.

History

The building of the Sakhir track was started in 2002 with high domestic interest about the project as it gave a future to the next generation of Bahraini racers. By the completion of the project, the Circuit soon outshadowed the Kuwait Circuit and became the center of motor sport in the Gulf ,as it held many other races such as drag races, GT races, Formula 3 races and the Australian V8 Supercar series.

The first race was in 2004 and it was won by German driver Michael Schumacher. Fernando Alonso won the second Bahrain Grand Prix in 2005, and then became the first repeat winner of the Middle Eastern race in 2006, after a thrilling race-long battle with Michael Schumacher. In 2007 and 2008, Brazilian Felipe Massa won the race for Ferrari.

Characteristics

A characteristic of the course is the giant run-off areas, which has been criticised for not punishing drivers who stray off the track, although this has made Bahrain one of the safest tracks in the world, and tends to prevent sand getting onto the track.

The drivers do not spray the traditional champagne on the podium, although alcoholic beverages are legal in Bahrain, in contrast to neighbouring Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Instead, they spray a non-alcoholic rosewater drink known as Waard.

Sponsors

Gulf Air have sponsored the Bahrain Grand Prix from its inaugural race in 2004 right up until the 2008 race.

Winners of the Bahrain Grand Prix

Repeat Winners (Drivers)

Number of wins Driver Years
2 22px-Flag of Brazil.png Felipe Massa 2007, 2008
22px-Flag of Spain.png Fernando Alonso 2005, 2006

Repeat Winners (Constructors)

Number of wins Constructor Years
3 3dflagsdotcom italy2bs.gif Ferrari 2004, 2007, 2008
2 22px-Flag of France.png Renault 2005, 2006


Year by Year

Year Driver Constructor Location Report
2008 22px-Flag of Brazil.png Felipe Massa Ferrari Sakhir Report
2007 22px-Flag of Brazil.png Felipe Massa Ferrari Sakhir Report
2006 22px-Flag of Spain.png Fernando Alonso Renault Sakhir Report
2005 22px-Flag of Spain.png Fernando Alonso Renault Sakhir Report
2004 22px-Flag of Germany.png Michael Schumacher Ferrari Sakhir Report

Support races

Formula BMW Asia supported the Bahrain Grand Prix in 2004, with Hong Kong driver Marchy Lee winning both rounds. But the series had logistical problems after the race, when the cars were delayed on their way to Malaysia, missing the next event and had to reschedule the rest of the season. Formula BMW Asia has not supported the Bahrain Grand Prix since, but the first ever Formula BMW World Final was held in Bahrain. The Porsche Supercup has supported the 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 races. The GP2 Series supported the race in 2007 and a celebrity race was held in 2006 with the likes of Simon Webbe competing.

Further support for the 2008 event was provided by the GP2 Asia, Speedcar Series and a series using ex-V8 Supercar Holdens badged as Chevrolet Luminas.

External links




Races in the Formula One championship:
2007 championship Grand Prix events:

Australian | Malaysian | Bahrain | Spanish | Monaco | Canadian | U.S. | French | British
German | European| Hungarian | Turkish | Italian | Belgian | Japanese | Chinese | Brazilian

Past championship Grand Prix events:

Argentine | Austrian | Dutch | Indy 500 | Las Vegas | Luxembourg | Mexican | Morocco
Pacific | Pescara | Portuguese | San Marino | South African | Swedish | Swiss | USA East | USA West

Confirmed future Grand Prix events:

Abu Dhabi | Korean | European | Singapore