Weather conditions are forecast to be fine and sunny for the weekend, with peak temperature during the day on Sunday expected to hit 84 degrees F (29 degrees C). Expected wind speed is 17 mph. Wind can be issue; because the Bahrain International Circuit where the race is held lies in the middle of a desert, conditions change frequently, with lots of sand often ending up on the track, which can affect grip levels. Significant temperature drops can also have adverse effects on tires. Tire supplier Pirelli has nominated its P Zero White medium and P Zero Yellow soft compounds.
During the early practice session today, Mercedes AMG’s Lewis Hamilton was the quickest, with his teammate Nico Rosberg second on the timesheets. Then it was Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso followed by Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and McLaren’s Jenson Button.
Going into qualifying tomorrow and Sunday’s race, Nico Rosberg leads the Drivers’ Championship with 43 points, with Lewis Hamilton in second with 25 points and Fernando Alonso in third with 24 points. Mercedes AMG leads the Constructors’ Championship with 68 points while McLaren sits on 43 points and Ferrari on 30.
Off the track, Williams made an apology to its drivers and fans yesterday because of the use of team orders at last week’s Malaysian Grand Prix. During the race, the team asked Felipe Massa to let teammate Valtteri Bottas pass because he was faster. Massa ignored the request but the radio discussion was heard worldwide.