F1 testing 2024: Pre-season session timings in Bahrain and how to watch

The 2024 Formula 1 season starts this week with pre-season testing at the Bahrain International Circuit – just a week before the first race of the season at the same track.

It’s been a busy off-season in the world of F1: from Lewis Hamilton’s shock 2025 move to Ferrari being announced to the current investigation into the behaviour of Red Bull boss Christian Horner, there’s been no shortage of intriguing storylines.

But Wednesday sees the cars out on track for the first time with three days of testing, as the drivers and teams get up to speed quickly ahead of a record-breaking 24-race season.

Who will set the early benchmark? And can anyone possibly challenge Max Verstappen and Red Bull this year? Testing will give us our first indicator.

Here is everything you need to know

When is F1 pre-season testing?

The times for testing – at the Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir – are as follows:

(All times GMT)

Friday 23 February

7am-4pm - morning and afternoon session*

*no lunch break after a loose drain cover suspended testing for an hour

Driver line-ups for Bahrain testing


Day 1: Esteban Ocon (AM), Pierre Gasly (PM)

Day 2: Pierre Gasly (AM), Esteban Ocon (PM)

Day 3: Esteban Ocon (AM), Pierre Gasly (PM)

Aston Martin

Day 1: Fernando Alonso (AM), Lance Stroll (PM)

Day 2: Fernando Alonso (AM), Lance Stroll (PM)

Day 3: Lance Stroll (AM), Fernando Alonso (PM)


Day 1: Charles Leclerc (AM), Carlos Sainz (PM)

Day 2: Charles Leclerc (AM), Carlos Sainz (PM)

Day 3: Carlos Sainz (AM), Charles Leclerc (PM)


Day 1: Kevin Magnussen (AM), Nico Hulkenberg (PM)

Day 2: Nico Hulkenberg (AM), Kevin Magnussen (PM)

Day 3: Kevin Magnussen (AM), Nico Hulkenberg (PM)


Day 1: Oscar Piastri (AM), Lando Norris (PM)

Day 2: Oscar Piastri (AM), Lando Norris (PM)

Day 3: Lando Norris (AM), Oscar Piastri (PM)


Day 1: George Russell

Day 2: Lewis Hamilton

Day 3: Lewis Hamilton (AM), George Russell (PM)

Red Bull

Day 1: Max Verstappen

Day 2: Sergio Perez (AM), Max Verstappen (PM)

Day 3: Sergio Perez


Day 1: Yuki Tsunoda (AM), Daniel Ricciardo (PM)

Day 2: Yuki Tsunoda (AM), Daniel Ricciardo (PM)

Day 3: Daniel Ricciardo (AM), Yuki Tsunoda (PM)

Stake F1

Day 1: Valtteri Bottas (AM), Zhou Guanyu (PM)

Day 2: Zhou Guanyu (AM), Valtteri Bottas (PM)

Day 3: Valtteri Bottas (AM), Zhou Guanyu (PM)


Day 1: Logan Sargeant (AM), Alex Albon (PM)

Day 2: Logan Sargeant

Day 3: Alex Albon

Where can I watch pre-season testing?

Every minute of running in pre-season testing will be live on Sky Sports F1 in the UK and Ireland.

ESPN broadcast coverage of Formula 1 in the United States.

When is the first race of the 2024 season?

The first race of the new season is on Saturday 2 March, with the Bahrain Grand Prix.

The first two races of the season, in Bahrain and Saudi, are on Saturdays so they don’t clash with the start of Ramadan on 10 March.

It means practice for both races will be on Thursday, with qualifying on Friday.