OffonF1 has obtained some recce notes for the Bahrain Grand Prix, put together by F1 truckie ‘Spanner’ who visited the Sakhir circuit a week ago to prepare a briefing document on the state of the track.
TRACK NOTES/DRIVER BRIEFING
Start/Finish Straight: Tarmac looks very gnarly - about as rough as the proverbial camel’s jacksie, so you’ll have to wait for the HRTs to put some rubber down.
Turn 1: Braking point will be by the burnt-out police car
On full tanks it will be closer to the toppled statue of some bloke in robes (check they don’t move it after FP1 as Charlie probably won’t like statues of deposed former rulers close to the racing line, but he may go easy on them as everything’s gone a bit ***sup this week.
Turns 2/3: Important to carry speed through these for the back straight, avoid the slippery painted surfaces where people have written DOWN WITH ECCLESTONE and JEAN IS A KNOB on the track. In Arabic obviously. Actually it might say EAT AT SALIM’S and my interpreter and security crew are just having a laugh. Jokers.
Turn 4: Braking point is by first tent of the Occupy Sakhir encampment. Don’t worry about sliding off and into them, there’ll be no-one inside, just like at St Paul’s.
Turns 5/6/7: Should be flat out. Avoid the burnt effigy of Damon Hill on the apex of Turn 6.
Turn 8 – Molatov Hairpin: Don’t hang around here the locals looks a bit lary. Keep one eye on the grandstand for hurled flaming objects and one eye on the track on exit.
Turn 9/10: Tricky little complex, get your line right on entry. Line up on the makeshift barrier of oil drums and mattresses that’s been bulldozed aside .
Turns 11/12/13: This is the safer end of the circuit to go off – very few banners that say F1 DRIVERS GO **** YOURSELVES and far fewer missiles than the other grandstands - only small stones and pebbles, no bricks like Turn 9. A bit like Croydon in August, really.
Remember, there’s no Mercedes Safety Car this race – the Bahrain GP Safety Car will be a tracked vehicle that can do 26 mph (or 28 mph if they heat up the tracks in the garage before it goes out. Arf! What am I like?) It can only do 23 mph if it’s firing its water canon.
There’ll be a barrier across the pitlane and you have to show your papers going into and out of the pits. No exceptions – failure to do so will incur a stop and go to jail penalty (or for Lewis, life imprisonment or something)
Nah - only kidding, it’s exactly like 2009. Had you there! What am I like?