2021 Bahrain Grand Prix Preview Presented by Cognizant Aston Martin
|Author: Will Hings||Published: 24th March 2021 09:52|
The 2021 Formula One season gets underway at the Bahrain Grand Prix this weekend as the Silvestone based F1 Aston Martin returns to the World Championship grid for the first time since the 1960 British Grand Prix – ending an absence of 61 years. Ahead of the milestone moment in Aston Martin’s history, here’s your guide to the upcoming Grand Prix...
Lance on history being made...
“The arrival of Aston Martin underlines all the potential in this team; it’s a very exciting moment for us all. We’re continuing to develop as an organisation – that means we’ll have more people and more resources to understand the car and how it operates; but we’re still understanding how the team is growing. I don’t think we were able to show our full potential during the Bahrain test, so there’s definitely more performance to come during these opening races, which is exciting.”
Sebastian previews Bahrain...
“It’s going to be a bit of a learning curve in these first few races: for me, it’s a new team – I’m still getting to know everyone, still understanding how the AMR21 wants to be driven, and familiarising myself with the team. I’m very excited to be at the start of that journey in Bahrain this weekend. The conditions were very interesting during testing – high winds made it quite tricky to drive – and we know that tyre degradation is always a key factor here. It should make for an exciting race.”
Keys to the Race from Cognizant
It’s time for the Duel in the Desert. Quick thinking on the pitwall, conserving tyres on the abrasive surface and responding to fluctuating track conditions could make the difference between success and heartbreak. Cognizant breaks down the demands of this weekend’s Grand Prix.
Desert winds regularly deposit sand on the circuit, so there’s fairly hefty track evolution across the race weekend as the cars clear the sand and rubber-in the racing line. Pirelli brings its C2, C3 and C4 compounds to this race (Hard, Medium and Soft) – the same as last year. The track surface is particularly abrasive, so expect to see high degradation and multi-stop strategies as default. Pole position is on the left-hand side of the track – it’s a relatively short 460m run from P1 down to Turn One.
In general, passing is relatively easy at Bahrain. Excluding the opening lap and restarts, there were 53 overtakes in last year’s race – and 70 per cent of those were DRS-assisted. It’s the fifth-easiest track on the calendar for overtaking. Austria and Montreal top the list for most passing action; Monaco, unsurprisingly, is the hardest place to overtake. The majority of passes happen into Turn One, where a following car is assisted by a DRS zone along the straight and heavy braking into a second-gear right- hander, which offers multiple lines for attack and defence. Another popular passing spot is into Turn Four, for the same reasons (DRS assist/heavy braking).