THE stage is set for the region’s biggest grand touring event of the year as the Bapco Bahrain GT Festival flags off at Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) in Sakhir on Friday (November 30).
An entire day’s racing is scheduled and the action will be non-stop, with three exciting global championships hitting BIC’s 5.412-kilometre desert track.
These include the all-new FIA GT Nations Cup, the GT4 International Cup and the Bahrain Classic Challenge – all of which will be making their debut at the highest levels of motorsport.
The weekend’s events have been organised by BIC in cooperation with SRO Motorsports Group and the Bahrain Motor Federation.
“We are delighted to be welcoming drivers and teams from all over the world for an exciting weekend of racing,” commented BIC Chief Executive Shaikh Salman bin Isa Al Khalifa.
“GT racing is one of my favourite categories in motorsport, and I am proud to see that the Bapco Bahrain GT Festival has so much to offer.
“The FIA GT Nations Cup presents the perfect opportunity for fans to show their support for the drivers and teams representing their various countries. We look forward to welcoming fans from across the region.
“The GT4 International Cup will be bringing together leading participants from a dozen GT4 championships around the world. It will certainly be an exciting battle in this first-ever season finale.
“The Bahrain Classic Challenge will be bringing a historic flavour to the festival’s programme, , with many iconic racing machines from years past showcasing their prowess.
“With all that spectacular racing and the other attractions we have in store off the track, we invite everyone to come and join us for another wonderful occasion at BIC, ‘The Home of Motorsport in the Middle East’.”
Racing on Friday will begin from 9am and continue all the way until 8.30pm when BIC’s state-of-the-art floodlighting system will be shining brightly and illuminating the track.
Drivers from all corners of the globe are taking part in the weekend’s events. An impressive 17 countries are entered in the FIA GT Nations Cup, which is headlining the festival’s two-day programme.
Friday’s action in the series will include two 80-minute Free Practice sessions, a 50-minute Qualifying, and then an hour-long Qualifying Race 1.
The GT4 International Cup will also have a pair of 80-minute Free Practices and a 50-minute Qualifying run on Friday. For the Bahrain Classic Challenge, a 30-minute Practice along with a 30-minute Qualifying will make up the day’s programme.
Plenty to enjoy off the track for race-goers throughout the weekend
At the Bapco Bahrain GT Festival, there will plenty to enjoy at the BIC vending area for all those attending the event.
There will also be a Monster Truck show that will surely amaze, as well as extreme activities including a pair of heart-stopping thrill rides such as the SCAD Freefall and a Freefall Stunt Bag, and a challenging Ninja Assault course.
For kids, there is a wide array of acts that will be keeping them engaged. These include The TNT Show, Maple Staplegun, Pop The Balloon Man and the Tutti Fruttie Rainbow Ladies.
Meanwhile, world-class artists will be putting on all kinds of fantastic performances to entertain everyone on hand. Among them are Extreme Stunt Show Limited, The Stannage International Stunt Team, Terry Grant and Lee Bowers, Reuben DotDotDot, The Due, Adam Kadabra, Freefall Stunt and Ninja, The Passaports and Teatro Bambola.
There will also be extreme activities for race-goers, including a pair of heart-stopping thrill rides such as the SCAD Freefall and a Freefall Stunt Bag, as well as a challenging Ninja Assault course.
Massive Zelzaal motor show to take place on the sidelines of the GT festival
BIC will also be hosting the Zelzaal motor show on the sidelines of the Bapco Bahrain GT Festival.
The ultra-colourful display of automobiles of different makes and models will be located at BIC’s car parks seven and eight. Expected to be on hand are more than 2,000 cars representing 61 car clubs from all over the Gulf, including Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain.
The Zelzaal motor show is one of the largest in the Middle East, and it is the first time a car show of this magnitude is being held on the sidelines of a major international race weekend at BIC.
All are invited to come and join BIC for another memorable event
All are invited to attend and enjoy all the top-class racing and entertainment. Tickets can be purchased at the gate, on BIC’s official website www.bahraingp.com, by calling the BIC Hotline on +973-17-450000 or at the BIC stand in Bahrain City Centre. They cost BD5 apiece for adults and BD2.5 for teenagers aged 13 to 17. Those 12 years old and younger can attend for free.
Ticket-holders will be able to watch the racing action from either the Main Grandstand or Batelco Grandstand, or both, and will also be able to roam the circuit at their leisure.
To find out more about the Bapco Bahrain GT Festival, visit bahraingp.com or call the BIC Hotline on +973-17-450000. Also, follow BIC’s official social media accounts on Facebook (facebook.com/OfficialBahrainInternationalCircuit), Twitter (@BAH_Int_Circuit), Instagram (instagram.com/bah_int_circuit) and YouTube (youtube.com/bahrainbic) for regular updates.
Time Category Session
9am-10.20am GT4 International Cup Free Practice 1
10.30am-11.50am FIA GT Nations Cup Free Practice 1
12noon-1.20pm GT4 International Cup Free Practice 2
1.30pm-2.50pm FIA GT Nations Cup Free Practice 2
3pm-3.30pm Bahrain Classic Challenge Free Practice
3.40pm-3.50pm McLaren Laps
4.05pm-4.55pm FIA GT Nations Cup Qualifying
5.10pm-6pm GT4 International Cup Qualifying
6.15pm-6.45pm Bahrain Classic Challenge Qualifying
7.30pm-8.30pm FIA GT Nations Cup Qualifying Race 1