At the start of the 2023 F1 season, Aston Martin drew attention to itself with its AMR23 in pre-season testing and that pace was duly implemented at the Sakhir circuit on Friday as Alonso closed the second practice session with a best lap of 1m30.907s minutes.
Inside: What we learned from Friday practice at the 2023 Bahrain Formula 1 GP
That put the two-time F1 champion ahead of the two Red Bulls, the team many see as favorites this year, with Max Verstappen second ahead of FP1 timelist winner Sergio Perez.
Alonso’s team-mate Lance Stroll made his comeback after missing pre-season testing with a wrist injury, with the Canadian admitting he had been protecting his wrist during practice for the grueling race weekend ahead.
Further back, it was a dejected reaction from both Ferrari and Mercedes after Friday practice, with Charles Leclerc predicting Ferrari won’t be in contention for pole position despite finishing FP2 in fourth place.
But it was worse for Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton eighth and George Russell 13th in FP2, prompting the seven-time F1 champion to fear the German manufacturer is in a worse situation compared to last year.
George Russell, Mercedes W14
Photo by: Erik Junius
When does qualifying for the Bahrain F1 Grand Prix start?
Qualifying for the Bahrain GP begins at 18:00 local time (15:00 GMT) in the regular format of knockout sessions for Q1, Q2 and Q3.
Date: Saturday March 4, 2023
Start time: 6pm local time – 3pm GMT
How can I watch Formula 1?
In the UK, Formula 1 will be broadcast live on Sky Sports, with highlights shown on Channel 4 several hours after the end of the race. Live streaming via NOW is also available in the UK.
Sky Sports F1, which broadcasts F1 races, can be added as part of the Sky Sports channels, at a cost of £24 a month for new customers. Sky Sports can also be accessed through NOW with a one-off daily payment of £11.98 or a monthly membership of £34.99 per month.
How can I follow qualifying for the F1 Bahrain GP?
In the UK, every F1 practice session, qualifying session and race is broadcast live on Sky Sports F1 and Sky Sports Main Event, with Bahrain GP qualifying coverage starting at 14:10 GMT on Sky Sports F1.
Channel: SkySports F1
Start time: 14:10 GMT March 4, 2023
Autosport will broadcast live text coverage of qualifying here.
Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23
Photo by: Erik Junius
When can I watch the F1 Bahrain GP qualifying highlights?
In the UK, Channel 4 will broadcast qualifying highlights for the Bahrain GP on Saturday night at 19:30 GMT. The full program runs for 90 minutes and includes both qualifying and the conclusion of the most important topics of conversation from the race weekend so far.
Throughout the 2023 F1 season, Channel 4 will broadcast highlights of every qualifying session and race of every event. The highlights will also be available on Channel 4’s on-demand services.
Channel: channel 4
Start time: 19:30 GMT, 4 March 2023
Will F1 Bahrain GP qualifying be broadcast on the radio?
Live radio coverage of every practice session, qualifying session and race for the 2023 F1 season will be available on BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC 5 Live Sports Extra or via the BBC Sport website.
Bahrain GP qualifying coverage begins at 15:00 GMT on BBC Radio 5 Sports Extra and the BBC Sounds app.
What is the weather forecast for qualifying at the Bahrain International Circuit?
Warm and dry weather conditions are forecast for the start of qualifying at the Bahrain International Circuit on Saturday. At the beginning of qualifying, the temperature is set at 23 degrees Celsius.