Bahrain to be included in 2019 F1 in-season test schedule
Bahrain and Barcelona are set to host the 2019 F1 season's two in-season tests, I/FormulaRapida.net have learned.
Barcelona and Hungary hosted this year's two F1 in-season test where the FIA allowed for the teams to use their younger drivers to give track time in a F1 car. In fact, rookie drivers get two full days of testing as per the FIA rules.
For 2019, it is learned from multiple sources within the F1 paddock that the venues for the two F1 in-season tests will be Bahrain and Barcelona - the former joining the fray to be the first of the two tests.
The dates are yet to be confirmed but it is expected that it will take place a day after the grand prix event which is the usual case. Bahrain GP falls between March 28-31 next year which means the test days could be on April 2-3.
Whereas the Spanish GP is scheduled for May 9-12 which means the test could be on May 14-15. Should Bahrain and Barcelona be confirmed, it means the Hungary test could be dropped so as to give teams more time at home.
The Hungary test took place just before the summer shutdown, which meant the two extra days ate from the teams' summer holidays. With an increasingly packed calendar, teams did raise the topic to discuss for solutions.
There were also talks earlier in the year to stage only one test instead of two but it seems like the teams have decided to keep the two, with several days for Pirelli tyre test to be added along with the post-season run in Abu Dhabi.
So far, only the two pre-2019 test days and venue is confirmed with Barcelona hosting both. The first one is scheduled to take place during February 18-21 with the second one during February 26 - March 1.
Talks for the pre-season test to be moved out of Barcelona was on after the snow issues this year. Bahrain was in frame along with Jerez but the former was dropped due to financial issues while no reason was officially given for the latter.
We now await confirmation of the dates and venues of the in-season test along with the Pirelli's tyre test dates, teams and venues. Abu Dhabi is certain to continue hosting the post-season test at Yas Marina Circuit - which will take place in December this time.
[Note: This story was also written by me on Formula Rapida]