Sakhir Grand Prix live stream: how to watch George Russell’s Mercedes F1 debut

Formula 1 has been anything but boring lately. Last week Romain Grosjean cheated death in a horrific accident reminiscent of the 1970s; this week newly-minted World Champion Lewis Hamilton has tested positive for coronavirus. Can George Russell guide Hamilton’s Merc to victory? We’ll find out this weekend in Bahrain. Here’s how to watch a Sakhir Grand Prix live stream from anywhere in the world.

Viewers in the US can sign up to a $79.99 F1 TV Pro season pass for live streams of every track session for all Grands Prix. US resident abroad? Don’t forget that you can use a VPN to access your US F1 pass from anywhere in the world. (There are also some countries where you can watch an F1 live stream for free; see below). UK F1 fans must use Sky or buy a £9.99 Now TV pass to catch the race.

We’ll get you up to speed with the best Sakhir Grand Prix live streams in a second, but first, here’s a taste of what’s to come this weekend…

The 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix will take place over 87 laps of the Bahrain International Circuit’s 3.543-kilometre Outer Track layout on Sunday 6th December. What it lacks in gravel traps it makes up for in high-speed corners.

Practice 1 starts at 1.30pm (UK time) on Friday 4th December, followed by Practice 2 at 5.30pm.

Final practice will get underway on Saturday at 2pm, before qualifying at 5pm. Then it’s lights out for the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix at 5.10pm on Sunday evening.

Having cheated death last week, Romain Grosjean will sit this one out. The Frenchman suffered burns to his hands and extensive bruising but was otherwise unhurt in the accident which saw his car split in two at 137mph.

It’s a big weekend for Britain’s George Russell, though. The young Williams driver says he feels under “no pressure” as he prepares to race Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes after the seven-time World Champion withdrew following a positive covid-19 test.

So far, it’s looking good for a Russell rout. the Young Brit finished top in practice, beating Red Bull’s Max Verstappen by 0.128 seconds with the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas 11th. Can he do the business in qualifying?

Follow our guide on how to watch the best Sakhir Grand Prix live stream on your laptop, TV or mobile device…

Formula One F1 TV Pro season pass

Sakhir Grand Prix live stream: how to watch Formula One online

(Image credit: wikipedia: By Will Pittenger – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=8975255)

Formula 1 itself offers an on-demand and live streaming service to race fans everywhere. Exactly what you get depends on what country you’re in, so it may be a case of making sure you’re signed up to a VPN if you’re away from home.

Those in the US, for example, can sign up to a $79.99 F1 TV Pro season pass with live streams of every track session for all Grands Prix, access to all driver onboard cameras and team radios and live streams of F1, F2, F3 and Porsche Supercup races.

There’s also on-demand access to full race replays and highlights, the F1 onboard cameras, all F1, F2, F3 and Porsche Supercup replays and F1’s historic race archive too – an excellent package for petrol heads.

Watch the Sakhir Grand Prix anywhere in the world using a VPN

Sakhir Grand Prix live stream: how to watch Formula One online

(Image credit: Mercedes AMG F1 / LAT Images)

We’ll look at the TV and live stream options for UK and USA-based F1 fans below, but even after spending all that money on a subscription you’re still not going to be able to watch the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix from another country. The service will know your location based on your IP address, and will automatically block your access.

There are certain territories where some or all of the races are free to air – so if you’re away in Albania, Azerbaijan, Brazil, China, Russia, Slovenia, USA, the Middle East or North Africa, you may just need to tune in on your hotel TV or find a local bar. You can find a full list of the world’s broadcasters with rights to show live Formula 1 here.

Anywhere else and you might want to get yourself a VPN instead. A VPN (Virtual Private Network) creates a private connection between your device and the internet, such that the servers and services you’re accessing aren’t aware of what you’re doing. All the information passing back and forth is entirely encrypted.

There are many VPN providers out there, with some more reliable and safe than others. As a rule, we’d suggest a paid-for service such as NordVPN.

NordVPN Get 3 months free + 30-day money-back guarantee
You can get three months free when you sign up to a year-long plan, bringing VPN access to smart devices including the Amazon Fire TV Stick, laptops, TVs and both Android and iOS mobiles and tablets. Express also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.View Deal

Once you’ve made your choice, all you need to do is sign in to your VPN service through whichever device you’d like to use to watch the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix. When prompted to select a server, you need to pick one which is based in the country whose content you’d like to access. Then navigate to the relevant video streaming app or website and you’re in.

Watch the Sakhir Grand Prix live in the UK

Sky is the only place for UK viewers to watch the Sakhir Grand Prix race, practice and qualifying sessions all live in 4K resolution, on the company’s Ultra HD service. You’ll need to receive the Sky Sports F1 channel to enjoy all the coverage.

That comes bundled in with all the other sports channels as part of the £18 per month Sky Sports pack or you can get Sky Sports F1 on its own for £10 per month but on a rolling contract.

Build your Sky Sports package

If that all sounds a bit much, then anyone can enjoy the F1 using Sky’s pay-per-view platform, Now TV. Now TV is available on all good smart TVs and set-top-boxes You can choose between a day, week or month-long pass and it’s worth keeping an eye on just how many races each one might scoop up at any one time in the F1 calendar.

Now TV Sports day passes from £9.99
A day pass for sports on Now TV can cost as little as £9.99, with a weekly pass coming in at £14.99 for those after qualifying as well. A monthly pass is £33.99 if you want to cover two or three races.View Deal

The Sky Sports F1 HD channel is also available on Virgin Media as part of the Bigger + Sport TV bundle. It’s £65 per month but it comes with all the other Sky Sports channels and all the BT Sports ones too, including BT Sports Ultra HD. All of that brings access to just about every televised sports action you’d care to mention including Premier League, Champions League and Europa League football.

If you’re already a Virgin Media TV subscriber, then it may be a case of upping your package by just a few pounds per month.

Upgrade to Virgin Media Bigger + Sport

It’s not all a dead loss without Sky in the UK. Channel 4 has the rights to show the highlights. The free-to-air channel will broadcast qualifying highlights at 6.30pm on Saturday and race highlights at 6.30pm on Sunday.

Watch the Sakhir Grand Prix live in 4K

To watch the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix  in Ultra HD, you’ll need a Sky Q set-top-box and a package with Ultra HD and Sky Sports F1. That starts at £49 per month, with a one off payment of £20 if you’re not already a Sky subscriber. It’s a fair whack but it’s the only way to watch the F1 live and in 4K.

Watch the Sakhir Grand Prix live in the USA

Sakhir Grand Prix live stream: how to watch Formula One online

(Image credit: Mercedes AMG F1 / Steve Etherington)

For complete, all-season access to F1, including the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, Americans will need to sign up to the EPSN paid channels or Univision for the Spanish language coverage.

ESPN will carry live coverage of every session to subscribing US fans. Practice sessions will be available on ESPN2, with qualifying and the race broadcast on the main ESPN channel.

Live streaming is available via the ESPN App, which is available on Android phones and tablets, iPhones, iPads, Fire Tablets, Apple TV, Android TV, Chromecast, Fire TV, and Roku. You’ll need to sign up to ESPN first, though.

Live 2020 Formula One race calendar

Sakhir Grand Prix live stream: how to watch Formula One online

(Image credit: FIA)

The Formula One season usually runs from March to December 2020 with 22 races but that’s all changed due to the coronavirus outbreak. Below you’ll find the dates for both of the remaining Grand Prix on the 2020 Formula One calendar:

4th – 6th Dec: Sakhir Grand Prix, Bahrain IC, Sakhir, Bahrain

11th – 13th Dec: Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi