A hugely exciting opening round is set for the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship, to be held in support of the Formula 1 2018 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix next weekend at BIC in Sakhir.

Formula 2 is one of two support series during the Formula 1 extravaganza. The other is the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East.

The series just last weekend held its final pre-season tests at BIC, and all systems are go for the new campaign.

Action in the first meeting of the season is set to be spread out over three days. It will include one 45-minute practice session and one half-hour qualifying session, followed by two races. The qualifying session is a straight fight for fastest lap time, and it determines the order of the grid for Race One, which is known as the weekend’s Feature Race. Four points are awarded for pole position.

The Feature, usually held on the Saturday of the race weekend, is run over 170km or 60 minutes (except for Monaco where the race is run over 140km and in Budapest where the race is run over 160km), and each driver must complete one compulsory pit stop and must use at least one set of each specification of dry-weather tyres.

The top 10 drivers score points (25, 18, 15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2, 1) with two points being awarded to the driver who set the fastest lap of the race.

The grid for Race Two, or the Sprint Race which takes place on the Sunday of the event, is determined by the finishing order of the first race, with the top eight positions reversed. The Sprint is run over 120km or 45 minutes (except for Monaco where the race is run over 100km), with no pit stop allowed.

The top eight finishers score points (15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2, 1) and the driver who sets the fastest lap scores two points.

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