When does the race start, what TV channel is it on and the latest odds

The 2023 Formula 1 season gets underway in Bahrain on Sunday at the Bahrain International Circuit just outside of Sakhir.

Friday practice and qualifying are over and defending champion Max Verstappen will start the first race of the season from pole position in front of his teammate Sergio Perez.

Charles Leclerc was third for Ferrari and Fernando Alonso a promising fifth for Aston Martin, ahead of both Mercedes cars.

When is it?

The 2023 Bahrain Grand Prix takes place on Sunday 5 March.

What time do the sessions start?

Friday March 3rd

First exercise – 11:30am GMT
Second exercise – 3 pm

Saturday March 4th

Third exercise – 11.30 a.m
qualification – 3 pm

Sunday March 5th

Bahrain Grand Prix – 3 pm

What TV channel is it on?

Sky Sports F1 has near-exclusive live coverage rights in the UK this year and indeed for years to come with its usual superb team.

Sky’s qualifying program starts at 14:00 GMT on Saturday, with race coverage at 13:30 on Sunday.

Channel 4 also has expanded highlights coverage this year. Their qualifying coverage begins at 7:30pm on Saturday with their race coverage at 9pm on Sunday.

How was the time after qualifying?

  1. Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1 min 29.708 sec
  2. Sergio Perez (Mex) Red Bull 1:29.846
  3. Charles Leclerc (Mon) Ferrari 1:30,000
  4. Carlos Sainz Jr. (Spa) Ferrari 1:30.154
  5. Fernando Alonso (Spa) Aston Martin 1:30.336
  6. George Russell (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1:30.340
  7. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1:30.384
  8. Lance Stroll (Cannon) Aston Martin 1:30.836
  9. Esteban Ocon (Fra) Alpine 1:30.984
  10. Nico Hulkenberg (D) MoneyGram Haas F1 1:30.809
  11. Lando Norris (Gbr) McLaren 1:31.381
  12. Valtteri Bottas (Finn) Alfa Romeo F1 Team Race 1:31.443
  13. Guanyu Zhou (Chn) Alfa Romeo F1 Team Race 1:31.473
  14. Yuki Tsunoda (Jpn) Scuderia AlphaTauri 1:32.510
  15. Alexander Albon (Tha) Williams 1:31.461
  16. Logan Sargeant (USA) Williams 1:31.652
  17. Kevin Magnussen (Den) MoneyGram Haas F1 1:31.892
  18. Oscar Piastri (Aus) McLaren 1:32.101
  19. Nyck de Vries (Ned) Scuderia AlphaTauri 1:32.121
  20. Pierre Gasly (Fra) Alpine 1:32.181

What do we know about the Bahrain International Circuit?

  • circuit length: 5.412km
  • First Grand Prize: 2004
  • Round: 57
  • race distance: 308.238km
  • Race lap record: 1:31.447 (Pedro de la Rosa, 2005, McLaren)
  • Winner 2022: Charles Leclerc, Ferrari
  • Number of Corners: 15
  • chances of overtaking: Pretty decent overall, but again you’re most likely to see it along the long pit straight, with the help of DRS in the hard-braking hairpin of turn one. A few other opportunities throughout the round, although they require a bit more guts.

What are the driver line-ups for this year?

RedBull: Max Verstappen (1) and Sergio Perez (11)
Mercedes: Lewis Hamilton (44) and George Russel (63)
Ferrari: Carlos Sainz (55) and Charles Leclerc (55)
Alpine: Esteban Ocon (31) and Pierre Gasly (10)
McLaren: Lando Norris (4) and Oscar Piastri (81)
Alfa Romeo: Valtteri Bottas (77) and Guanyu Zhou (24)
Aston Martin: Lance Stroll (18) and Fernando Alonso (14)
Hass: Kevin Magnussen (20) and Nico Hulkenberg (27)
AlphaTauri: Yuki Tsunoda (22) and Nyck de Vries (21)
Williams: Alexander Albon (23) and Logan Sargeant (2)

What are the latest odds?

  • Max Verstappen 4/9
  • Charles Leclerc 6/1
  • Fernando Alonso 1.10
  • Lewis Hamilton 12/1
  • George Russell 14/1
  • Sergio Perez 20/1
  • Carlo Sainz 33/1

Here’s what you need to know… the storylines to watch out for ahead of the 2023 F1 season

By Tom Cary

A mammoth 23-race season, the longest in Formula One history, begins this weekend in Bahrain, where Max Verstappen will hope to turn the defense of his crown into a flyer while chasing a title hat-trick.

Can anyone stop him? That will certainly be the main focus of the opening weekend when all eyes will be on Ferrari and Mercedes to see where they stand compared to Red Bull.

But the fight for the driver’s championship is undoubtedly the main story of the city, but by no means the only one. Telegraph Sport delves into the various storylines to keep F1 fans entertained this year…

Can anyone stop Red Bull?

Clearly the biggest question of all. We should have a much better performance by the end of this weekend. The consensus from last week’s test – the only test of the preseason – is that they will be incredibly difficult to stop. Red Bull was ridiculously dominant in 2022, winning 17 out of 22 races last year (Verstappen a record 15 of them). And the truth is, this year’s cars are a continuation of last year’s rather than a radical rewrite of the rules. Yes, Red Bull has an aerotesting penalty for exceeding the budget cap for 2021 that it is struggling with. That could pull the field together a bit when it starts biting later in the year. But maybe we’re grasping at straws. Red Bull looked ominously good in testing. They start out as hot favorites.

Will Mercedes get back on the road to success? And if they can, who will win out of Hamilton or Russell?

After a literally bumpy season, Mercedes has largely stayed true to its goals in terms of car design, refusing to abandon its “narrow sidepod” concept. Toto Wolff remains adamant that the car has plenty of potential, but some have wondered if they’re just proud. Testing was inconclusive as Mercedes experienced three very different days (although they appear to have largely overcome their porpoise issues).

Regardless of whether they are fighting for wins, fans will enjoy the fight between Hamilton and Russell. The youngster was at the top last year but there were signs in the second half of the season that Hamilton had gotten his mojo back. With speculation running high over the seven-time champion’s contract – whether or not he will sign and, if so, how long he will commit – there will be plenty of interest in his and Mercedes’ form over the first few races.

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