Rare ‘flyaway’ F1 tests early this year will be staged in Bahrain and Malaysia, we can confirm.
Prior to the start of the 2007 season, Bridgestone has now agreed to supply tyres for six days of winter testing at the Bahrain grand prix venue Sakhir, with at least five teams understood to have already confirmed their attendance.
The five teams are Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Toyota, McLaren and Renault, with Honda and Ferrari also tipped to attend.
The tests are for 22-24 February and 27 Feburary-1 March.
Malaysian GP host Sepang, meanwhile, has confirmed that testing will be held at the circuit for the first time in its nine year history.
All eleven teams will be in attendance at the ‘official’ session between March 27-29, as they plug the logistically frustrating three week gap after the season opener in Australia.
The Malaysian grand prix is then scheduled for 8 April.
A Sepang spokesman said: “(The test) is further recognition of our efforts to make the circuit in Sepang a hub of motorsports in Asia.
“Almost all the F1 teams are based in Europe and it would make sense for them to commit their personnel to test the cars in Sepang instead of flying them back to the other side of the globe.”