Night racing has become a common part of Formula 1 and Bahrain always proves to be a spectacular sight as the floodlight descends over the desert track.
The Race for The 5th
The racing may be spectacular too as Vettel and Hamilton re-new their rivalry, as they will do all year. It looks very likely that the narrative for the whole season will be the race for the 5th world title, as it seems like once again Ferrari and Mercedes will be the two best teams and once again their teammates can’t compete with them.
Vettel struck the first blow in Australia as Ferrari took advantage of the Virtual Safety Car to pass Hamilton in the pit-lane. The German has won 3 times in Bahrain before, so the expectation from Scuderia is high going into the 2nd race. Mercedes will be hoping to fight back from their Australian disappointment.
A Lot of Pressure on Haas
While Ferrari will be hoping for another great weekend, the team that they have sold half of their car too have been under a lot of scrutiny. Whether the amount of parts Haas have bought from the Italian outfit is fair or not has been up for a lot of debate. They have done nothing wrong, however, but had a nightmare at Albert Park as their wheelmen cross-threaded the nuts on both of their cars. Before that they were fast, and will be hoping for the double point finish that the opening round promised.
More Overtaking Required
The track itself should offer up more overtaking possibilities so hopefully, we will be in for a more entertaining race than we saw in round one. The 57 laps of the circuit have offered up some great drama in the past including Fernando Alonso’s three wins on the track. He won’t win here, but McLaren have had a positive start to the season and he would have been happy with his 5th placed finish with Vandoorne in 9th. A similar points haul in Bahrain would be another positive step.
Red Bull will be hoping that they can enter the conversation with Ferrari and Mercedes and try and make the constructors race into a three-way battle, but it looks unlikely. Improvements seem to be on their way, but it won’t be enough as it doesn’t seem like the Renault engine will be able to cope.
A Repeat for Vettel?
We learned a lot from Australia, and we’re likely to learn a lot from Bahrain as well. Mercedes will be hoping to show their power throughout the whole weekend, and the rest will be hoping that they can try and keep up.
Lewis Hamilton is the hot favorite again, but he was for Australia. Mercedes will be hoping that the same mistakes won’t be made as we saw with Bottas in qualifying and Hamilton with the safety car. This time last year they had just lost the first race but came back strong in the second. Last season though, Bahrain was the 3rd race of the season, and Vettel won it. Ferrari will be hoping for a repeat.