The 2004 Bahrain Grand Prix marked the first ever round of the FIA Formula One World Championship to be held in the Middle East. Located in Sakhir, 30 kilometres south-west of the island's capital, Manama, the Bahrain International Circuit was designed by Hermann Tilke and contains five track layouts within one complex.
Construction began in November 2002, with over 12,000 tonnes of stone used in the build: a third of it being Welsh granite, chosen for the track surface due to its excellent adhesive qualities. The 5.412-kilometre Grand Prix circuit layout provides a unique driving experience, because the track width varies at the end of the different straights, which promotes a diverse range of racing lines.
A revised 'endurance' track layout was used for the 2010 event, with an additional complex starting at Turn Four extending the lap to 23 corners and 6.299 kilometres. The original layout has been preferred in ten of the eleven remaining races held at the venue. However, 2020 saw two Formula One races at the track, with the second on the high-speed Outer Circuit at a duration of 87 laps.
Since 2014, Bahrain has hosted a twilight race, with the start taking place at sunset and ending under dark skies and floodlights.