Sebastian Vettel
Can Sebastian Vettel shine during the Bahrain Grand Prix?Reuters

The Bahrain Grand Prix, being a night race, is always one of the most anticipated races of the season. Though the main race day is Sunday, drivers will be involved in practice sessions Friday and Saturday at the Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir. The qualifying session will also take place Saturday evening.

Mercedes will be keen to come out with flying colours in Bahrain as well after their notable performance in the first race of the season -- Australia Grand Prix last month. Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton finished first and second respectively. The duo will want to clinch the first two positions, yet again, in the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Though Mercedes might have emerged on top in Australia, Ferrari have an improved car this season as was witnessed in the season's first GP. 

Ferrari, with Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonnen, are expected to push the two Mercedes drivers.

"I'm really pleased with the car that we have. The team has done an incredible job to give us such a car again this year. It will be a great couple of races coming up for sure, but of course we are also looking closely at the battle with Ferrari," F1 official website quoted Rosberg as saying.

Though Ferrari and Mercedes dominate headlines most of the times during the race, Red Bull have always been impressive, and have applied pressure on both the teams. Red Bull's driver Daniel Ricciardo, who is excited about the Bahrain Grand Prix, finished fourth in the first race of the season. 

Besides the top three teams, Force India and Williams will also battle it out for a podium finish in Bahrain.

However, McLaren's Fernando Alonso will not been seen in action during the Bahrain GP, after his unfortunate accident in Australia. Alonso has been fantastic in Bahrain in the past, winning the race three times, but broken ribs have kept him out of participating.

"There has been some painful days, with some pain at home, but I was ready to go through this pain somehow in the car and make sure I could race, because at the end of the day the pain is manageable if you don't think too much probably and [with] the adrenaline of driving, but there are some other risks that the doctors they think," Alonso said.

"So it's a risk management that I understand, to minimise everything is the logical thing to do, so a little bit sad for that but it's the only way to go."

Reserve driver, Stoffel Vandoorne will replace Alonso in Bahrain.

Where to Watch Live (Australian Grand Prix practice session complete schedule)

First Practice Session (Friday):2 p.m local time, 4:30 p.m. IST, 11 a.m. GMT

Second Practice Session (Friday): 6 p.m. local time, 8:30 p.m. IST, 3 p.m. GMT

Final Practice Session (Saturday): 3 p.m local time, 5:30 p.m. IST, 12 p.m. BST

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Asia Fox Sports
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