From one street circuit, to the next – from Monaco to Baku. Baku too was left off the 2020 calendar and has provided a mixture of good and bad races since the race was first held in 2016. Let’s hope for a bit more action than we saw in Monte Carlo.
When is it?
First and second practice take place on Friday June 4 with final practice and qualifying on Saturday June 5. The 2021 Azerbaijan Grand Prix is on Sunday June 6.
What time does it start?
First practice starts at 9.30am BST on Friday, followed by second practice at 1pm. Final practice on Saturday is at 10am with qualifying at 1pm. The race itself starts at 1pm on Sunday.
What are the championship standings after five rounds?
Drivers’ top 10:
What TV channel is it on?
Sky Sports F1 have near-exclusive live coverage rights in the UK this year and indeed for the next few with their usual excellent team. Their qualifying coverage begins at Noon BST on Saturday and their race coverage at 11.30am on Sunday.
Channel 4 have highlights for this year with their equally excellent team. Their schedules have yet to be released but the programs will likely start between 6 and 8pm respectively.
You can also keep up to date throughout qualifying and the race right here at Telegraph Sport.
What do we know about the Baku City circuit?
Circuit length: 6.003km
First grand prix: 2016
Race distance: 306.049km
Race lap record: 1:43.009 (Charles Leclerc, Ferrari – 2019)
2019 winner: Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes
Number of corners: 20
Overtaking chances: From turn 16 through the pit straight and into turn one is the best, by far. Get a good exit from the tight turn 16 and then there’s a very good chance of getting the car ahead if they are close enough. As it’s flat out for 25 seconds if you do it too early, though, and they can pick up a tow once you’ve overtaken them. Into turn three is possible as well but with walls in close quite risky.
What is our prediction?
So far this season it has been too close to call between Mercedes and Red Bull and ultimately between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen. At least until the Monaco Grand Prix, anyway, when Mercedes were well behind Red Bull – and behind even Ferrari – and Hamilton finished a worrying seventh.
What of Baku, then? It is another street circuit but with very little in common with the slow-speed and tight and twisty streets Monte Carlo. It would be a surprise if Mercedes struggled quite as much as they did in Monaco, though tyre warm-up may be an issue as it was in Monaco. The ‘point and squirt’ nature of the track, with its many short, 90-degree corners could hamper Mercedes again.
What about Ferrari? Again Monaco is unlikely to be that representative of Azerbaijan or indeed the rest of the season. They could be ahead of McLaren this time but Baku is a slightly peculiar circuit, too.
In short: Perhaps Red Bull may be marginal favourites, with the gap to Ferrari and McLaren a bit further behind.
What are the latest odds?
Max Verstappen 5/4
Lewis Hamilton 6/5
Valtteri Bottas 8/1
Sergio Pérez 17/2
Lando Norris 40/1
Charles Leclerc 50/1
Read More: Valtteri Bottas’ poor luck is a bad joke – it could have consequences for his future