F1 2020 setup guide overview – Bahrain
Bahrain is an extremely power hungry circuit, which is why Ferrari generally always perform well here. In 2019, Ferrari locked out the front row of the grid, and despite not winning the race, Leclerc posted the fastest lap time. It is also a circuit where the AI drive very well, meaning it’s a little harder to compete here than at other circuits.
The F1 2020 Bahrain setups above will help you get the maximum out of the car, allowing you the best platform to compete with the AI in long race distances.
Generally, Bahrain requires a low to medium downforce setup, with more downforce at the rear of the car. You need this to ensure you have a stable back end exiting the long sweeping corners.
Along with the fast sweeping corners, there are also a fair few heavy braking zones, which require the best traction on corner exit. The majority of these slower corners are at the beginning of a long straight, meaning you want to get the best corner exit possible.
To maximise your corner exit around Bahrain, you should set your on-throttle differential extremely low. The lower your on-throttle differential is, the easier it will be to get better traction when you apply the throttle. Because you can adjust this part of your setup whenever you want, you can increase it for qualifying to give you the best one lap pace.
Because Bahrain isn’t too harsh on your tyres, we would setup the camber and toe to be fairly aggressive. The lower toe setup will help maximise your straight line speed, which is key around Bahrain. Setting your suspension geometry to be fairly aggressive shouldn’t affect your stability too much, as we would adjust the rest of the setup to account for this.
Bahrain is a track where you will be looking to attack the kerbs throughout every lap. The key to a quick middle sector in particular is to really use every part of the track throughout this slower part of the lap.
Setup your suspension to allow for maximum attack, by using a soft setup. The softer your suspension, the less harshly your car will react to the kerbs. If you setup your car to be too stiff, you will find you wont be able to drive over the kerbs without your car becoming unstable.
You should look to setup your anti-roll bars to be stiffer than the suspension. This will give the car a good level of responsiveness when you turn in to a corner, and throughout the quick direction changes of the middle sector. Generally you can set the rear anti-roll bars stiffer than the front, as you will want to ensure rigidity through the rear of the car to stop too much body roll.
Bahrain doesn’t have too many undulations or uneven track surfaces, so you can set your ride height low. This will help create more downforce throughout corners, and reduce drag down the long straights, so the lower the better. Just don’t set your ride height to its lowest setup otherwise you will start to rub the track, reducing your straight line speed.
Brake pressure around Bahrain is a tricky one to setup. You have a big braking zone in to the first corner, however you also have a few very tricky braking zones. The off camber braking of turns 9 and 10 being one of the hardest corners on the whole F1 calendar. If you set your brake pressure too high, you will almost always lock your front wheels braking into turn 9 and 10.
We would recommend running a lower than normal brake pressure setup to maximise your consistency throughout the lap. You can adjust the brake bias during each lap to send more braking force to the front brakes when approaching turn 1. This will help you still stop in a short distance into this heavy braking zone.
Throughout the rest of the lap, you should move your brake bias back to an average setup. This adjustment throughout the lap will help you drive consistently lap after lap. We would also look to run the tyre pressures a little lower than normal. This will help your traction out of every corner.
How To Best Drive The Bahrain Grand Prix Circuit
The key to having a good Bahrain Grand Prix is a couple of things. Having a strong power unit helps around Bahrain. However if you are driving a slightly under-powered car such as a Renault or Red Bull, don’t be too disheartened.
The second key for Bahrain in F1 2020, is to drive consistently through the middle sector. This middle sector of the lap is a tricky one to master. You need a soft enough car setup to attack every corner throughout the middle sector. And you also require confidence in your brakes, especially in to turns 9 and 10.
When exiting turns 9 and 10, try to limit wheel spin. You will be driving out of the corner very slowly, and there is a slight dip on the exit which can sometimes spin up your tyres. This is the one part of the lap where a driver can lose a lot of time. You can help traction by lowering your on-throttle differential as you approach this corner, and taking care when applying the throttle.
Bahrain in F1 2020 is a very nice track for overtaking, with a few good spots to pull an overtaking move. Turns 1, 4 and 14 are all great DRS assisted overtaking spots. But even throughout the middle sector, you can pull an overtake in to turns 8, 9, 10 and 11 if you have enough speed.
If you have a poor qualifying session, don’t feel like your going to have a difficult race. Baharin is one of the funnest tracks to race in F1 2020, with very close AI racing possible.