The civil (and not-so-civil) unrest in Bahrain had put the race's presence on the 2011 Formula 1 schedule in doubt this year, and until today, most had assumed the race would be skipped. Instead, the FIA voted to hold the race despite the violence and political turbulence.
Since Bahrain was scheduled as the season opening event on March 13, it had to be slotted into the schedule elsewhere. It will be held October 28-30, pushing the Grand Prix of India to Dec 9-11, subject to approval of the New Delhi track.
Keeping Bahrain on the schedule means there will be a full 20 races on the calendar this year. Next year will see the addition of the U.S. Grand Prix at Austin, pushing the tally to 21, another record number. The return of the U.S. GP is scheduled for June 17, 2012.