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Why F1 will have three Saturday races in 2024

The calendar for next season has been released with three races scheduled for Saturdays. Here is why.

The announcement of next season's F1 calendar reveals three races are to be held on Saturdays. F1 races are traditionally held over three days with practice taking place on Fridays, final practice and qualifying on Saturdays and the Grand Prix ending the weekend. Whilst the format has changed over time, this formula has changed very little in the modern era. But the Las Vegas Grand Prix offers a shake-up this season with the race scheduled for Saturday night in the Nevada city, which allows for a Sunday morning start time in Europe [07:00 CET, 06:00BST]. However, on the 2024 calendar, the opening two races in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia will join Las Vegas in racing on Saturdays.

Three Saturdays

The Bahrain Grand Prix will be held on March 2, with Jeddah hosting its event a week later. Both will take place on Saturdays in order to respect the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. The change was expected with Ramadan kicking off on March 10 - a day after the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is slated to take place. Bahrain has therefore shifted forward a day to help with the logistical effort of the double-header and allow the paddock to make its way to Saudi Arabia and set up shop before Wednesday's media day. For Las Vegas, event CEO Reneé Wilm previously revealed why the race had been scheduled for Saturday night in the city for this year, explaining: “That was actually a compromise to make sure we are broadcasting at a time when our European fans can get up with a cup of coffee and watch the race [at] six [or] seven in the morning, very similar to how we [in the US] watch the European races. "So that was actually a very important component of planning out our sequencing for the race weekend.” It is likely that this will continue to be the case as long as the event remains on the calendar.

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