Start time: 15:10 CET | 14:10 UK | 06:10 LA | 23:10 Tokio
Lewis Hamilton did it again today. He scored pole again. I was the his 10th pole of the 2020 season and the 98th pole of his F1 career. He is only shy of 2 more poles to get to a unbelievable number of 100 poles!
Today's pole also broke the pole record that was set with the (probably) illegal Ferrari SF90 of last year. Looking at the pace of all cars only Max Verstappen in the Red Bull RB16 will have change against the almost unbeatable Brit. It will be interesting to see if a battle develops during tomorrow's race. At the start Verstappen is on the clean track and the odds are in favour of the Dutchman that he will turn in to the first corner as 2nd, because P2 starter Valtteri Bottas is on the (very) dirty part of the track.
F1 Starting Grid 2020 Bahrain GP
|Pos||No||Driver||Team||Lap Time||Pole gap||Tyres|
|1||44||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||1:27,264||M (C3)|
|2||77||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||1:27,553||+0,289s||M (C3)|
|3||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1:27,678||+0,414s||M (C3)|
|4||23||Alexander Albon||Red Bull||1:28,274||+1,010s||M (C3)|
|5||11||Sergio Pérez||Racing Point||1:28,322||+1,058s||M (C3)|
|6||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Renault||1:28,417||+1,153s||M (C3)|
|7||31||Esteban Ocon||Renault||1:28,419||+1,155s||M (C3)|
|8||10||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri||1:28,448||+1,184s||M (C3)|
|9||4||Lando Norris||McLaren||1:28,542||+1,278s||M (C3)|
|26||Daniil Kvyat||AlphaTauri||1:28,618||+1,354s||M (C3)|
|13||18||Lance Stroll||Racing Point||1:29,557||+2,293s|
|15||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||McLaren||0:00,000||-|
|16||99||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo||1:29,491||+2,227s|
|17||7||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo||1:29,810||+2,546s|
2020 Bahrain F1 GP Race Strategy
With the abrasive granite surface of Sakhir, and a softer tyre nomination compared to last year, a two-stop strategy looks set to be the quickest way to tackle the 57-lap Bahrain Grand Prix.
The fastest two-stopper involves one stint on the P Zero Yellow medium for 21 laps, (set to be the opening stint for those in the top 10 of the grid) plus two stints on the P Zero Red soft tyre of 18 laps each.
The second-quickest two-stopper instead uses the medium for two 21-lap stints and the soft for 15 laps.
A medium-hard one stopper is slower: this would use the medium for 27 laps and the hard for 30 laps.
Finally, there's the slowest two-stopper: two stints on the medium of 18 laps with one stint on the White hard of 21 laps (probably the middle stint). There's no real point in going for a three-stopper, as this costs too much time in the pits.
2020 Bahrain F1 GP Race Notes
- Strategy. All the top 10 on the grid chose to go through Q2 on the P Zero Yellow medium tyre and therefore start on this compound, which should cope well with the high-wear characteristics of Sakhir and allow them to run a longer first stint. As usual, those starting from P11 downwards will get a free choice of tyres.
- Speed. Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton set a new track record twice in qualifying: during Q2 with the P Zero Yellow medium and then again with the P Zero Red soft in Q3 to seal pole.
- Wear. The rough surface of the Bahrain circuit takes a lot out of the tyres, meaning that a two-stopper is most likely but drivers will still have to manage their tyres carefully: particularly the rear softs.
- Temperatures. Both ambient and track temperatures were 27 degrees centigrade halfway through the session: relatively cool for Bahrain compared to previous years when the race was held much earlier in the season.
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