Home  //  Circuit Guides Le Mans / FIA WEC 6 Hours of Bahrain
Written by @Damien_Marquez   
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 23:26

The Bahrain International Circuit is the host of the 6 Hours of Bahrain, the penultimate round of the FIA World Endurance Championship which takes place on the 13-14-15 November 2014. It is the hottest track of the season and offers a real challenge for the teams. The sand and cooling track temperature will have an effect on changing grip levels. The race weekend could also be the title decider with Toyota and Audi battling it out for both driver's and constructor's titles.


Tower, Oasis Complex, pit building, main straight and Main Grandstand - Photo / DPPI for FIAWEC.COM

Being a twilight race, the circuit and the cars look magnificent under the floodlights. The facilities are top notch, the climate very kind and the ticket prices very low for such an impressive racing series. As per every other WEC rounds, the weekend will feature an Open Paddock, giving spectators a rare opportunity to see cars and teams from up close. Support for the event will be provided by the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East and the India-based MRF Challenge Formula 2000 (Dallara-Renault two-litre Formula car).

The sunny weather, nice temperature (22-29° C) and low humidity (about 50%) make Bahrain the perfect getaway destination for an autumn break, which can be coupled with the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix held a week later.

 

CONTENTS

1 // Location and accommodation
2 // Money matters
3 // Ticket prices
4 // Which grandstand to choose
5 // Tips and recommendations
6 // Useful links to prepare your trip to Bahrain

 

1 // LOCATION AND ACCOMMODATION

At the time of writing, the travel advice from the Australian authorities is to reconsider your need to travel to Bahrain. The British and Canadian Foreign Offices strongly recommend visitors to exercise a high degree of caution, to be vigilant and aware of their surroundings anywhere on the Island. Remain clear of large public gatherings as demonstrations can become violent. There is also the ongoing threat of terrorism.

We would recommend you to find accommodation in Manama, either in the Diplomatic Area where some of the F1 personnel stay for the weekend, or Juffair where many expats live. Avoid Shia-majority areas, including the Sanabis area, Hamad town, Saar, Budaiya and the Sitra area. As a precaution, follow the advice of your hotel concierge before heading out.

It takes approximately 35 minutes by car to drive the 30km that separate Manama from Sakhir where the circuit is located. There is no public transport, so check with your hotel for any shuttle going to the track or book a taxi or a hire car with chauffeur.


Oasis Complex - Image: Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG

 

2 // MONEY MATTERS

There is little difference between the F1 weekend and the WEC round as far as the costs are concerned besides the ticket price. For a comfortable stay, we recommend accommodation in a four or five star hotel. Cheaper alternatives are of course available, just beware the reputation of some midrange hotels. It might also be worth checking sites such as Airbnb.com.

Return airfares to Bahrain start from:
• $1,400 (1 stop) from Shanghai
• $300 (direct) or $200 (1 stop) from Dubai
• $200 (direct) from Abu Dhabi
• £900 (direct), £600 (1 stop) or £500 (2 stops) from London
• €900 (direct) or €600 (1 stop) from Frankfurt
• €600 (direct) or €500 (1 stop) from Paris

Three night accommodation from:
BD150 / $400 / £260 / €320 for a four star double/twin room with a review score of 7/10 or more on Booking.com.

Visa:
Aside from Thai nationals, all foreigners need a visa to enter the kingdom. A two-week Visit Visa costs BD25 / $70 / £45 / €55 and is issued on arrival at the border.

Taxi:
• From the airport to Central Manama: BD6 / $16 / £11 / €13
• From Central Manama to the airport: BD4 / $11 / £8 / €9
• From Central Manama to the circuit: BD10 / $30 / £20 / €25
The above prices are for a one-way journey.

Food and drinks:
BD60 / $160 / £110 / €130 per person for three days, although local meals start from BD2 / $6 / £4 / €5.

Internet access:
BD3 / $8 / £6 / €7 for a SIM card and about 1GB of mobile data. Batelco and Zain both offer 4G services.

TOTAL BUDGET from (excluding flights and tickets):
BD320 / $900 / £600 / €700 for a solo traveller or BD470 / $1,300 / £800 / €1,100 for a couple.


View from Tower - Photo: Toyota Motor Europe S.A./N.V.

 

3 // TICKET PRICES

The circuit opens to the public on Friday 14th and Saturday 15th November. The Main Grandstand and Oasis Complex are the two grandstands on offer for the 6 Hours of Bahrain as well as hospitality in the pit building. There is no general admission. A two-day grandstand ticket costs BD20 / $55 / £35 / €45 and children aged 3-12 only pay BD10 / $30 / £20 / €25. It's free for infants and toddlers under the age of 3. Grandstand tickets include the customary pit walk and autograph session before the race start on Saturday as per the WEC tradition.

Hospitality tickets are for the Saturday race only and are priced at BD220 / $570 / £360 / €450 (+ VAT). The package include all three meals, complimentary bar, afternoon tea and large TV screens to follow the action from inside the Le Mans Spirit Club Hospitality lounge, although both grandstands are accessible too. Also part of the package is the exclusive grid walk which takes place a few minutes before the start of the race, to meet the drivers and team personnel.

Prices from the organisers are in bold. Exchange rates are sourced from xe.com.


Image: Bahrain International Circuit (BIC)

 

4 // WHICH GRANDSTAND TO CHOOSE

The Main Grandstand is covered and boasts views of the team garages. From there, you can watch the cars in the main straight, see the start and finish as well as the pit stops. It is also a comfortable place to watch the action unfold on one of the three TV screens located on the roof of the pit building. Saying that this grandstand offers a limited experience as far as track viewing is concerned and there are no seats that allow watching the cars above the catch fence.

The Oasis Complex is located behind the pit building. From this grandstand, you can follow the cars from Turn 7 to Turn 10 as well as the back straight. The section between Turn 8 and Turn 9 is seen unobstructed from the catch. As such, it is probably the best place to take pictures from.

 

5 // TIPS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The event commentary is provided in both Arabic and and English over a single channel. It is broadcast in the grandstands through the PA system and is also available on 107.0 FM. It is a good idea to bring an FM radio and a set of canalphones to block off the excessive noise from the cars.

Unless you opt for the Le Mans Spirit Club Hospitality package, buying a ticket for both grandstands might be the way to go to enjoy the different phases of the race. The price levels certainly allow it.

The hashtag for the event is #6hBahrain.


Oasis Complex grandstand on the left - Photo: Toyota Motor Europe S.A./N.V.

 

6 // USEFUL LINKS TO PREPARE YOUR TRIP TO BAHRAIN

smartraveller.gov.au/zw-cgi/view/Advice/Bahrain - Bahrain travel advice from the Australian government
gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/bahrain - Bahrain travel advice from the British government
travel.gc.ca/destinations/bahrain - Bahrain travel advice from the Canadian government

bahraingp.com - BHD grandstand ticket sales and event information
fiawec.com - EUR hospitality ticket sales and event information
portal.batelco.com - telecommunication services
bh.zain.com - telecommunication services
timeoutbahrain.com - restaurant, nightlife, arts and culture guide
lonelyplanet.com/bahrain


Have you been to the 6 Hours of Bahrain? If so, you can help us to improve this guide by leaving your impression of this event in the 'Write a Review' section of this website.

If you would like to add further information or correct any of the above article, please leave your comments below.

6 Hours of Bahrain spectator guide
 

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