Today, December 4, was the first day that the world's fastest cars tested the outer track of Bahrain ahead of the Sakhir Grand Prix. We have to remember that last week was also a race week at the same circuit, however, this weekend, Formula 1 will race for the first time at the Bahrain International Circuit but in its outer layout. The first two free practice sessions have already taken place and, as we could see, the circuit is amazingly fast. One of the drivers who have stood out the most this season, although it is still not certain that we will see him next season, is Sergio Perez. During the morning session, Checo, with a total of 33 laps, finished in P12 with a best time of 55,716 and 1,170 seconds behind the leader, who was a surprising George Russell with a time of 54,546. In the afternoon, the Mexican Racing Point driver achieved an excellent P3, only behind George Russell and Max Verstappen, with a best time of 54.866, being 0.153 seconds slower than the leader, in addition to the Mexican driving for 52 laps . As we can see, Checo had a fairly calm and quiet first session, however, it seems that his car will perform very well, just like last week. These are some words from the Racing Point driver.
“I’m optimistic about our chances this weekend after a positive day on track. I think we can aim for a strong result, but today has really shown just how close qualifying is going to be. The margins will be tight and that means putting everything together over a single lap is going to be crucial.” The Mexican driver commented.
“It was a challenge taking on the new layout today: the middle sector is particularly tricky because the kerbs are quite aggressive. It’s tempting to use them but it’s so easy to make a mistake if you misjudge it. I think we’ll see plenty of lap times deleted and see some errors over the weekend, so it’s important to minimise the chances of making a mistake.” Checo affirmed.
As we have seen in past races, drivers tend to literally go to the limit of the track, and there are times when they go over it and, consequently, that lap is eliminated. The FIA has been extremely strict in this regard and, as mentioned by the Mexican driver from Racing Point, during the qualifying session many lap times will be eliminated, this will be a determining factor for the starting position of each driver, since they have to go at maximum speed, making sure not to go off the track limits.
“The whole lap is a challenge too, even though there’s not many corners overall – so getting the middle sector right is very important.”
The circuit that will be used for the Sakhir Grand Prix had never been used for Formula 1, so the drivers will have to join it almost immediately, this will be the perfect occasion to observe the adaptability of each one of the drivers and, of course, also of the teams.