WATCH: Exclusive – Hot lap of Bahrain’s Outer Track layout that will be used for the Sakhir GP
This weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix will take place on the usual track layout, but the following race at the same venue – the Sakhir Grand Prix – will see the F1 drivers tackle the circuit's ultra-quick 3.543 km ‘Outer Track’.
The Outer Track takes in Turns 1, 2 and 3 of the standard Grand Prix track, before breaking away at Turn 4 for a series of quick sweeps and then re-joining the familiar layout at Turn 13.
With such a short circuit – the second shortest on the calendar after Monaco – F1 simulations predict qualifying lap times below 55 seconds, and race laps below 60 seconds, meaning it will be an 87-lap race when the cars take to the track on December 6.
This track layout – which you can see in the clip above – has never been used for an international race, so the fans and drivers alike will be stepping into the unknown for the Sakhir GP.
But to give you some idea of that the lap will be like for the 20 F1 drivers, hit play in the video at the top of this article to see Sheikh Salman bin Isa Al Khalifa, Chief Executive of the BIC, take a McLaren 720s take on lap of the outer track. Of course, the F1 cars will be going a little quicker...