Formula 1 returns to Barcelona for a 2022 Spanish Grand Prix which could give the pecking order a shuffle.
The first five races of the 2022 season have now come and gone, all of those victories going the way of either Red Bull or Ferrari, Max Verstappen scoring three, with the other two belonging to Charles Leclerc.
Could we see this season take a turn though at the Spanish Grand Prix?
Marking the start of the European season, many teams plan to roll out their first major upgrade of the season and this new regulatory era at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, so we could well be in for a surprise.
Here is everything you need to know ahead of the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix.
When is the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix?
Friday May 20
Free Practice 1: 1400-1500 [1300-1400 UK time]
Free Practice 2: 1700-1800 [1600-1700 UK time]
Saturday May 21
Free Practice 3: 1300-1400 [1200-1300 UK time]
Qualifying: 1600 [1500 UK time]
Sunday May 22
Race: 1500 [1400 UK time]
Where does the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix take place?
Pedralbes, Jarama, Montjuic and Jerez were the initial venues to host the Spanish Grand Prix as part of an official Formula 1 World Championship but, the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has been the sole home of Formula 1 racing ever since 1991.
The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is located just outside of Barcelona and is a purpose-built track used across a huge range of racing disciplines. MotoGP and the FIA World Rallycross Championship are two of the other most high-profile series to race here and it was also used as a venue for the 1992 Olympics.
It is widely regarded as an excellent all-rounder, with the track characteristics putting both the power and aerodynamic efficiency of Formula 1 cars under scrutiny with a mixture of high-speed sections and a tricky technical section. It is one of the predominant reasons why pre-season testing also takes place at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
The track features 16 corners and comes in at 4.655km long in distance. The venue represents home races for both Fernando Alonso and Carlos Sainz.
Where can I watch the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix?
Pay-TV broadcaster Sky Sports will show the entire race weekend on its dedicated Sky Sports F1 channel. You can also access a live stream of the coverage via Now TV.
Free-to-air broadcaster Channel 4 will show extended highlights from qualifying and the race.
F1 TV Pro viewers can watch all the live action from Barcelona. Please check to see if F1 TV Pro is available in your country.
Subscribers to F1’s own app can hear radio commentary on the race proper from the BBC and access live data throughout every session.
PlanetF1 will carry live timing and expert commentary on every session of the race weekend, from FP1 on Friday morning to the race on Sunday afternoon.
The Spanish Grand Prix will be shown live on TV on the following outlets in other key markets:
United States: ESPN
Canada: RDS (French), TSN (English)
Australia: Fox Sports
Italy: Sky Sport F1, TV8
Germany: Sky Sport F1
Spain: DAZN, Telecinco
What are the odds for the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix?
Max Verstappen may have won back-to-back races, but he is currently the joint-favourite alongside Charles Leclerc to win the Spanish Grand Prix.
Here are the latest selected prices from Planet Sport Bet:
[Last updated Sunday May 22]
What is the starting grid for the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix?
1 Charles Leclerc Ferrari
2 Max Verstappen Red Bull
3 Carlos Sainz Ferrari
4 George Russell Mercedes
5 Sergio Perez Red Bull
6 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
7 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Racing
8 Kevin Magnussen Haas
9 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren
10 Mick Schumacher Haas
11 Lando Norris McLaren
12 Esteban Ocon Alpine
13 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri
14 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri
15 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo Racing
16 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin
17 Lance Stroll Aston Martin
18 Alex Albon Williams
19 Nicholas Latifi Williams
20 Fernando Alonso Alpine*
What is the weather forecast for the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix?
Friday May 20: 24c, sunny and a gentle breeze.
Saturday May 21: 24c, sunny and a moderate breeze.
Sunday May 22: 25c, sunny and a gentle breeze.
Which drivers have won the Spanish Grand Prix?
Michael Schumacher is the joint-most successful Formula 1 driver at the Spanish Grand Prix, winning six times at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, and like with their overall world title tallies, Schumacher shares the record with Lewis Hamilton for the most Spanish GP wins.
Hamilton has been dominant in Barcelona for a long time now, winning all of the past five Spanish GPs. Does that run end in 2022?
The 10 most recent winners of the Spanish Grand Prix are:
2021 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2020 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2019 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2018 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2017 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2016 – Max Verstappen, Red Bull
2015 – Nico Rosberg, Mercedes
2014 – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2013 – Fernando Alonso, Ferrari
2012 – Pastor Maldonado, Williams
Directions to the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix
The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is one of a select few tracks that has an abundance of parking spaces available outside the venue – 32,000 to be exact.
Those travelling in a car to the track are advised to follow the C-17 road and exit at Montmelo or, from the AP-7 highway, use exits 13, 14 and 15. The exits 14 and 15 connect to the C-17 road.
To get to the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya by train, use the Barcelona Sants, Passeig de Gràcia or Clot rail stations and make Montemelo your final stop. This is the closest station to the track but it is not necessarily an easy journey given the walk will take approximately 45 minutes.
On race weekend, though, a small shuttle bus service to the circuit is available. There is also a special bus service in operation from Barcelona Nord bus station in the city centre to the circuit which also takes 45 minutes.
The best airport to use for the quickest access to the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is Barcelona International Airport (BCN), which is located in El Prat de Llobregat.
Regional airports such as Reus (REU) or Girona-Costa Brava (GRO) are cheaper options to fly to and both are approximately 100km away from the circuit.
Tyre choices for the 2022 Spanish Grand Prix
The Barcelona circuit is well-known to the #Fit4F1 teams from testing and previous races. A wide-ranging layout also demands the hardest compounds in the range!
— Pirelli Motorsport (@pirellisport) May 16, 2022
Pirelli has selected the hardest compounds in their range for the Spanish Grand Prix.
So, the C1 will be the hard tyre, the C2 will serve as the medium and the soft tyre will be the C3.
Looking at the forecast, it seems very unlikely that the intermediates or wets will be called upon.
What are the latest F1 Championship standings?