Another successful Grand Prix

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The Formula One Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix was successfully held in the Kingdom from April 14-16, 2017. This year’s race is the 13th edition to be held in Bahrain since its starts in 2004. The establishment of the Bahrain International Circuit and Bahrain’s hosting of the F1 was a ground breaking event in 2004 when Bahrain became the first Middle Eastern country to host the event, in what was designed as the first desert track. 

The winners of the Grand prix were Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, coming in first place, followed by Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in second and Valterri Bottas in third. Vettel’s victory came after he beat Hamilton by 6.6 seconds. This is Vettel’s 44th career victory and his third victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix.

With a record of more than 93,000 visitors during the F1 weekend, the Bahrain International Circuit organised numerous events to highlight the three days of the race and provide an entertaining atmosphere to people of different ages. The highlight of the 2017 Grand Prix were the long waited concerts by iconic international artists such as Enrique Iglesias and world-renowned DJs such as Steve Aoki, Dimitri Vegas and Like Mike. 

Following his successful concert Steve Aoki ended his performance by tweeting an image of the huge turnout and a message of peace stating

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Analysis: Bahraini views on the 2017 Grand Prix

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The Bahrain Grand Prix will kick off for its 13th edition in the Kingdom from 14-16 April, 2017. The event is anticipated to draw in tens of thousands of motorsport enthusiasts to the island kingdom. Citizens for Bahrain spoke to a wide range of Bahrainis to hear their opinion on the largest event held in the Kingdom: 

“The hottest destination in the region”

“I am very excited about the upcoming race, it’s my favourite time of the year in Bahrain with the F1 and its festivities. These events turn the country into the hottest destination in the region;” said Ahmed, age 33, from Riffa.

“The thousands of visitors add a great value to the economy. Bahrain is in need of such events that create jobs and provide more opportunities for Bahraini youth at the current challenging economic times;” said Maryam, age 28, from Manama. 

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Bahrain Grand Prix Fact Sheet 2017

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2017 will be Bahrain’s thirteenth Formula One Grand Prix and the fourth night race. This year’s Bahrain Grand Prix starting on 14 April is the third race of the Formula One season, following the 24-26 March race in Australia won by Mercedes’ Sebastian Vettel; and the China race 7-9 April won by Lewis Hamilton.

Bahrain champions

Nico Rosberg from Mercedes won in Bahrain in 2016 although his retirement at the end of that season means that he won’t be a contender in 2017. In both 2014 and 2015 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton won the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Fernando Alonzo has a strong record for Bahrain, with wins in 2005, 2006 and 2010. Felipe Massa and Sebastian Vettel have both won twice here, with Vettel coming first in 2013. Jenson Button and Michael Schumacher are Bahrain’s other one-time winners.

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Analysis: Bahraini views on US terrorist listing

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The US State Department’s decision to list two affiliates of the Al Ashtar Brigades on a terrorist list was strongly welcomed by many Bahrainis. The organisation which is backed by Iran was responsible for the deadliest attack on Bahraini soil that left three policemen dead in March 2014.

There was a notable tendency for Bahrainis to welcome this new readiness by the US to get tough on terrorism in the GCC and to take a stronger approach on Iran. However, many people raised other concerns about American policies towards the region and Muslims more generally. Below is a range of opinions on how Bahrainis viewed the recent decision by the United States:

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