The majority of the Formula 1 teams are set to begin the on-track preparation for the 2021 F1 season by working with two drivers on the opening day of the pre-season testing.
The preparation for the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship is ramping up with teams eager to sample their cars in anger in Manama. The Bahrain International Circuit will host the official pre-season testing after the sport relocated the venue of the winter testing due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The track, which hosted two races in the final stage of the 2020 F1 season, will welcome the teams from Friday through Sunday with all teams working with a single car during the three-day testing programme.
Due to the limited track time, most of the teams decided to kick off their testing programme with both of their drivers. Alfa Romeo will work with Kimi Räikkönen in the morning before Antonio Giovinazzi takes over the C41 in the afternoon.
The Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team will begin its first day of testing with its newcomer Sebastian Vettel while the afternoon belongs to Lance Stroll. At McLaren, Daniel Ricciardo will kick off the day before handing his new car over to Lando Norris later on. Mercedes will also split its day with Valtteri Bottas driving first before Lewis Hamilton climbs into the W12.
The Uralkali Haas F1 Team scheduled Mick Schumacher as the first driver with Nikita Mazepin continuing the work in the afternoon. The Scuderia AlphaTauri team will be represented by Monza race winner Pierre Gasly in the morning with the Frenchman handing over his car to Yuki Tsunoda in the afternoon.
The Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow outfit will also field two drivers on the opening day of pre-season testing with Charles Leclerc getting the morning running and Carlos Sainz driving in the afternoon.
Red Bull Racing will only work with Max Verstappen on Friday. Williams Racing is the only team to give its test driver the chance to drive its 2021 car with Roy Nissany taking the new Williams FW43B to the track on Friday.