Studio 397’s rFactor 2 has enjoyed several major updates in recent times, but could that trend continue with the Bahrain International Circuit is coming to the sim?
The track was revealed as part of the Le Mans Virtual Series 2022-23 calendar announcement earlier today (10th June 2022). Bahrain is currently pencilled in as the venue for the first round of the rFactor 2-based series.
The race is set to take place on the 17th of September, indicating the track may be released as part of a future content update.
Given the timing of the Q1 and Q2 Content Drops – 7th February and 9th May respectively – we should expect to see the Q3 Content Drop around 8th August or a Q4 Content Drop on 7th November, if the esports series uses a preview build for the venue.
The Bahrain International Circuit opened in 2004 and has held the Bahrain F1 Grand Prix every year since – barring 2011 when it was postponed due to regional civil unrest. Located in Sakhir, six track layouts are available, including the well-known Grand Prix Circuit used by Formula 1 and the FIA World Endurance Championship.
F1 also ran on the Outer Circuit during its first visit to the track in 2020 – dubbed the Sakhir Grand Prix – resulting in sub-60s lap times and heartbreak for George Russell on his Mercedes debut. The unpopular Endurance Circuit appeared for just one processional Grand Prix in 2010 and has never been used again.
The Paddock Circuit has held rounds of the Australian V8 Supercars series, while the Oasis/Inner Circuit has been used for regional club events. Intriguingly, a small Oval layout also exists, encompassing the start/finish straight and perpendicular drag strip, but has only been used for testing purposes thus far.
Since 2014, the Herman Tilke-designed circuit has run all its F1 Grand Prix under atmospheric floodlights, producing some of F1’s most dramatic races; who can forget Romain Grosjean’s horrifying accident, the classic 2014 battle between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg or Sergio Perez’s enthralling last-to-first performance in 2020?
Details on which configurations will be included with the rFactor 2 version of Bahrain have yet to be confirmed, but we’d expect to the 3.4-mile long Grand Prix Circuit as a minimum.
Are there any other tracks – or cars – you would like to see in rFactor 2’s future content drops? Let us know in the comments below.
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