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The Bahrain Grand Prix - did you know?

15 Apr 2015

Did you know that while Kimi Raikkonen holds the record for most podium finishes in Bahrain with six, he's never won in the country? Ahead of the 2015 Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix, we've scoured the record books to find the most fascinating need-to-know facts, stats and trivia...
  • The Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir has been the venue for the Bahrain Grand Prix since the event's inception in 2004. On all but two occasions the race has been held in April, the exceptions being the 2006 and 2010 events which were both season openers. Last year's race was the first to be held under floodlights.
  • The race has been run on the current 5.4-kilometre Grand Prix circuit layout on all but one occasion. In 2010 the 6.2-kilometre 'endurance' circuit layout was used, but it proved unpopular with teams and drivers.
  • Michael Schumacher dominated the inaugural race in 2004, taking pole position, victory and fastest lap. It was the first of a record four wins at the circuit for Ferrari, Felipe Massa (2007 and 2008) and Fernando Alonso (2010) claiming the Scuderia's other victories. Renault (2), Red Bull (2), Brawn and Mercedes (both 1) have also triumphed at the desert venue, but McLaren have never won in Sakhir.  Sochi is the only other track on the current calendar at which the Woking team have not been victorious.
  • Fernando Alonso is statistically the most successful driver in Bahrain Grand Prix history, having claimed a record three wins. Of the current grid, Felipe Massa (2), Sebastian Vettel (2), Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton (both 1) have also recorded wins in Sakhir, but Kimi Raikkonen has never stood on the top step, despite achieving a record six podium finishes at the venue. Will this finally be the Finn's year?
  • Several of the current grid have recorded ‘firsts' in Bahrain - Nico Rosberg scored his first fastest lap at the circuit (in his first ever F1 race) in 2006, Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton achieved their first front-row starts at Sakhir in 2006 and 2007 respectively, and Romain Grosjean collected his maiden F1 podium on Bahraini soil in 2012.
  • Pedro de la Rosa holds the lap record in Bahrain - a 1m 31.447s effort recorded in 2005 while the Spaniard was deputising for the injured Juan Pablo Montoya.
  • In 10 previous races in Bahrain, no one has won by more than 20 seconds. The biggest winning margin came in 2010 when Alonso came home 16.099 seconds ahead of Ferrari team mate Massa. The smallest winning margin came in last year's race when Hamilton beat Rosberg across the line by just 1.085 seconds.
  • Pole position isn't everything in Bahrain, the race having been won from P1 on the grid just four times out of ten. However, no one has won the race from lower than fourth on the grid. 
  • The biggest margin between pole position and second on the grid in Bahrain Grand Prix history occurred in 2005 when Alonso beat Michael Schumacher to pole by 0.455 seconds. 
  • Of all the rookies on the 2015 grid, only Felipe Nasr has raced at Bahrain before (in GP2 in 2012, 2013 and 2014). The Brazilian was second at Sakhir in 2013. 
  • McLaren's Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso and Williams' Felipe Massa are the only drivers to have started every Bahrain Grand Prix since its inception in 2004. Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen has started all but one, with just the 2010 race missing from his resume.
  • Only two drivers have led more than 100 laps in Sakhir - Sebastian Vettel (146) and Felipe Massa (102). Alonso and Hamilton are next up on 96 and 58 laps led respectively.