formula 1 Motorsport

Times of the F1 GP Abu Dhabi 2022

November 16, 2022

What time should you turn on for action next weekend? These are the times of the 2022 Abu Dhabi F1 GP. Due to the time difference (of three hours) with the United Arab Emirates, the sessions for Dutch race fans start a little earlier: the first free practice on Friday at 11 a.m., the “evening race” starts as early as 2 p.m.

What time does qualifying for the F1 GP Abu Dhabi 2022 start?

Qualifying for the F1 GP of Abu Dhabi begins at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 19.

In the battle for second place among drivers, it is exciting: Sergio Peréz (Red Bull Racing) and Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) have the same number of World Cup points. Not everything is decided among the constructors either. Ferrari is doing everything it can to stay ahead of Mercedes: the difference is only 19 points. The battle for the fourth spot is equally exciting: between Alpine and McLaren there is also only 19 points.

Times of the F1 GP Abu Dhabi 2022

Check out the schedule with all the times of the F1 GP Abu Dhabi 2022 below.

Date Session Dutch time
Friday, November 18 1st free practice 11.00 – 13.00
Friday, November 18 2nd free practice 14.00 – 15.00
Saturday, November 19 3rd free practice 12.00 – 13.00
Saturday, November 19 Qualification 15.00 – 16.00
Sunday, November 20 Race 14.00 – 16.00

It is the very last race of the season, so enjoy it for a while longer; the next race is not until March 5, 2023 in Melbourne.

What happened at the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP?

Last year’s race has gone down in history as the spectacular finale to one of the most exciting seasons ever in Formula One. Championship contenders Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton come to Abu Dhabi with an exact same number of World Cup points. At the start, the Briton rushes past the Dutchman, who still took pole position on Saturday.

After Hamilton’s pit stop, Red Bull teammate Sergio Peréz pulls out all the stops to hold up the Mercedes driver. That succeeds, Verstappen closing in fast. But it helps little: Hamilton once again puts both Red Bulls behind, drives away and seems easily headed for his eighth world title.

In the closing stages, a crash by Williams driver Nicolas Latifi turns everything upside down. The safety car neutralizes the race, all of Hamilton’s lead undone. Verstappen even dove into the pits for new tires without losing his second position behind Hamilton.

Incredible denouement

Race director Michael Masi makes a controversial decision at that point: behind the safety car, the four stragglers driving between Verstappen and Hamilton are allowed to clear themselves of their lap deficit. At the same time, the safety car is brought in. The result: a blood-curdling final round of racing, with the world championship at stake.

In a crazy final stage, Verstappen can go on the attack. On fresh soft tires, he wriggled his Red Bull past Hamilton in Turn 5, who could not defend on worn hard tires. The Mercedes driver comes awfully close in the Dutchman’s slipstream, but is has to give in. Thus ends this controversial race with a first world championship for Verstappen, a deeply disappointed Hamilton and a robust discussion about the decisive role of the race committee.

READ ALSO: This is how the rest of the world experienced Max’s final round and victory

What can we expect this time in Abu Dhabi?

The F1 paddock is also buzzing with questions and rumors this weekend. How strong is Mercedes really? Can Ferrari hold on in the constructors’ championship? And have Verstappen and Peréz already made up after Brazil? Verstappen refused to let his Red Bull colleague pass him in the closing stages last Sunday, just when the Mexican desperately needs every World Cup point in the battle with Leclerc for second place in the championship.

Young talents, departing veterans

The final race weekend of the season is also the last opportunity for teams to give young talents a taste of Formula One. During the first free practice session, Mexican Pato O’Ward drives Lando Norris’ McLaren, Mick Doohan drives Fernando Alonso’s Alpine and Robert Shwartzman gets another chance at Ferrari.

Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin), Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) and Nicolas Latifi (Williams) will most likely drive their last Formula One race in Abu Dhabi. Other drivers move to another team next season: Alonso goes to Aston Martin, Pierre Gasly takes over his seat at Alpine. Things are still tense for Haas driver Mick Schumacher: will he get a contract extension or will the team opt for veteran Nico Hulkenberg after all?

READ ALSO: McLaren 720s Daniel Ricciardo edition makes one cheerful

Weather forecast F1 GP Abu Dhabi 2022

It won’t surprise you: all indications are that it’s going to be a sunny, warm and dry race in the United Arab Emirates. Teams can prepare for temperatures around 30 degrees.

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What should you know about the circuit in Abu Dhabi?

With the construction of tourist attraction Yas Island, it was immediately clear that a motor racing circuit would be central to the plans. Within two years, the circuit was built. This track is another design by the great circuit designer Hermann Tilke. Always fun: the race is run at sunset, under spectacular artificial lights.

A feature of the track is the 1.2-kilometer straight between turns 5 and 6. An ideal opportunity for a slipstream, preferably with the DRS wing unfolded. Tough braking zones require extreme precision and strong neck muscles from the drivers. Turns 10, 11 and 12 are slow and are not conducive to Pirelli tires.

The first Formula One race in 2009 was a win for Sebastian Vettel. He beat Red Bull colleague Mark Webber and the already crowned champion Jenson Button (Brawn GP). A year later, Vettel would win his first of four world titles at this track. It would not be the last time a championship was decided at this track.

Yas Marina Circuit in facts and figures

Official name: Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2022
Location: Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates)
Circuit length: 5.281 km
Number of laps: 58
Number of bends: 16
Total race distance: 306.183 km
Lap record: 1:26:103 Max Verstappen (2021)