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Saudi Arabia Grand Prix 2021

It’s easy to dismiss Saudi Arabia as merely the home of oil magnates, Bedouins, and pilgrims. But the country holds so much more. Its wonderful oasis and buzzing city centers are enough reasons to be a Saudi Arabia Grand Prix.

In case you missed it, the 2021 Saudi Arabia Grand Prix is set to be the first of its kind. And there’s a whole lot of standouts to expect in this inaugural race. Second, only to the Singapore Grand Prix, the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is hyped to be a superior full night race in the entire Formula One calendar.

The journey to the F1 Saudi Arabia started way back in 2019. It was a plan by the Test and Training International to build a world-class circuit.

Test and Training International aimed to establish a high-grade motorsport complex within the mega entertainment center, Qiddiya. The circuit was set to host FIA category competitions up to Formula 1 standard.

Throughout the journey to achieving a Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, several Formula 1 drivers have simulated races on the tracks. While Formula 1 didn’t quickly give a heads-up about a potential race in Saudi Arabia, a Formula 1 commission meeting cleared every doubt.

In October 2020, Formula 1 authorities, during the commission meeting, rolled out plans to host the inaugural Saudi Arabia Grand Prix in its 2021 World Championship Calendar. However, unlike prior plans, the Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix holds at a makeshift Jeddah Circuit.

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Saudi Arabia Grand Prix Event Information

The Saudi Arabia Grand Prix is to hold in a temporary Jeddah Street circuit. The Grand Prix complements a host of other tournaments held on Middle Eastern soil – the Bahrain and Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. And like these races, the Saudi Arabian race is to be held under floodlights.

The race date is set for December 3-5, subject to the approval of the circuit. Sadly, however, there’s more hindering the race than circuits.

There have been security and human rights concerns about the viability of the race.

Activists have famously called on top Formula 1 drivers to boycott the race. They lay claim to Saudi’s participation in the Yemeni Civil War, the murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and restriction of women’s rights as some of the reasons for abstinence.

Other dissidents have considered the recent missile interception at the 2021 Diriyah ePrix as another reason to stall on the competition. Hopes are still alive that security concerns won’t plague the competition.

Saudi Arabian authorities have denounced claims that the F1 Saudi Arabia race was a sport washing attempt. The F1 Saudi Arabia GP is instead aimed at opening up the oasis to the world. Formula One has also expressed trust that the Saudi government is capable of ensuring security and safety.

Unlike many other Grand Prix in the 2021 Formula 1 calendar, the Saudi Arabian race doesn’t have an official title brand sponsor. So, it maintains its official name as the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Jeddah Street Circuit

Jeddah Street Circuit is home to many firsts. Despite being a temporary circuit, the Jeddah Street Circuit is set at a mind-blowing average speed of 252km/hr.

What’s more?

The circuit is just about the fastest street circuit in the history of Formula 1. Its average speed levels come only second to the Monza circuit in Italy. The circuit also boasts 27 corners, the most for any racetrack on the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship Calendar.

Located in Corniche, just off the Red Sea, the circuit’s was designed by a German engineer Hermann Tilke. The circuit is billed to have 50 laps and a circuit length of 6.175km. Besides, the total race distance stands at 308.75km. That places it as the second-longest track in the F1 calendar, only second place to Spa-Francorchamps.

Saudi Arabia Grand Prix Schedule

The average F1 race is packed with excitement throughout the race weekend. The Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is no exception. The race weekend is scheduled for night time between December 3 to December 5.

Typically, the race draws drivers to participate in practice sessions, qualifying rounds, and the main race.

Below is a rundown of every activity you can expect in the Jeddah Circuit.

  • Practice 1: Here, drivers have their first feel of the circuit. They also test their cars and driving settings ahead of the other sessions. While there’s no real contest in any practice sessions, many spectators still look out for the fastest teams. The first practice session is held between 12:30 pm and 1:30 am (UK time) on December 3. In Jeddah, the track time is about three hours ahead.
  • Practice 2: This session is another opportunity for drivers to continuing their testing of the racetracks. They get to tweak their vehicles and race styles. Free Practice Session 2 is set for 4pm to 5 pm on December 3.
  • Practice 3: Free Practice Session 3 is the final practice session of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. It holds on December 4 between 1 pm to 2pm.
  • Qualifying Rounds: The qualifying rounds last a total of one hour, split into three different sessions. At each session, the slowest drivers get eliminated till the final 20 drivers are selected. The time slot for the qualification rounds in UK time is December 4, from 4 pm to 5pm.
  • Main Race. The main race takes place on December 5 from 4 pm to 6pm, UK time. In Saudi Arabia, the track time for the main race is 7 pm to 9pm.

Drivers & Teams of Saudi Arabia Grand Prix

As you already know, the F1 Saudi Arabia GP is the first of its kind. However, there’s some certainty to the drivers we can expect.

Since the Formula 1 world championship is fixed, we can surely expect the same F1 teams to show up. With no defending champions in Saudi Arabia, all is up for grabs when the drivers converge at Jeddah.

Here are the teams and drivers of the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix in order of the team’s aggregated titles.

teams driver number drivers country
ferrari #16 charles leclerc monaco
#55 carlos sainz spain
williams #63 george russell united kingdom
#6 nicholas latifi canada
mclaren #4 lando norris united kingdom
#3 daniel ricciardo australia
mercedes #44 lewis hamilton united kingdom
#75 valtteri bottas finland
red bull racing #33 max verstappen netherlands
#11 sergio perez mexico
alpine #31 esteban ocon france
#14 fernando alonso spain
aston martin #18 lance stroll canada
#5 sebastian vettel germany
haas f1 team #47 mick schumacher germany
#9 nikita mazepin russia
alfa romeo racing #7 kimi räikkönen finland
#99 antonio giovinazzi italy
alphatauri #10 pierre gasly france
#22 yuki tsunoda japan

Betting on Saudi Arabia Grand Prix

You can enjoy the action of the race on the Jeddah Circuit while also making cool cash off your interests. Several platforms allow you to place bets on a different aspect of the race.

Betting on the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix is determined by odds set by official bookmakers. You can expect to get the best odds hours before the race starts.

Here’s a list of many options to bet on for the F1 Saudi Arabia GP.

  1. You can bet on the driver to win the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix
  2. You can place a bet on drivers who will get a podium finish (1st to 3rd)
  3. You can bet on the best overall team performance
  4. You can bet on the fastest driver during qualifiers
  5. You can bet on the drivers to qualify for the main race
  6. You can also bet on the fastest lap finish
  7. You can bet on Safety Car Appearance at the Grand Prix

To get started and place bets at the start of the competition, try out sport betting platforms like Bwin.com, UniBet, 888Bet, and William Hill.

Final Thoughts

Don’t just wait on the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix; follow up on every pre-race action. And during the race, don’t just watch the world’s fastest drivers slug it out on a new podium. You can also place mouth-watery bets on your favorite drivers.

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