The countdown has started.
A massive logistical challenge.
An army of forklift drivers.
A well-oiled machine.
The race is back on.
Shortly after the freight touches down in Bahrain at 06:00, eight garage technicians, two electricians and two IT experts serve as the vanguard of the setup operation, with the hospitality team also on hand to begin setting up the team suits for the weekend
and, more importantly, keep the crew fuelled for the mammoth task at hand. The objective on Tuesday is to complete the central engineers' station, the main IWC gantry and the track shacks so that the trackside electronics and IT systems can get up and running, before the Bahrain International Circuit turns into a customs control zone at 18:00 that evening.
12 hour lockout.
This 12 hour lockout halts all progress until the Wednesday morning, when the 12 remaining pallets arrive at 06:00. The truckies and IT guys have an early wakeup call, leaving the hotel at 05:30 to get into the paddock and start breaking those crates open. They'll be joined at 08:00 by 25 mechanics and, by between 10:00 - 11:00, the garage should be finished. Only then do the cars, pit gantry, engines and gearboxes come out of their crates and the garage starts to resemble a 'normal' race weekend operation.
A big paddock.
Each back-to-back race has its own unique challenges. Formula One swaps one big paddock for another moving from China to Bahrain, leaving plenty of space to work in. This certainly makes life easier than fitting everything into the tight and twisty confines of a street circuit, for example. But, on the flip side, the distance between the venues means the team has longer to wait for its freight to arrive. It's never a straightforward game this - and the men and women who make it all happen are true unsung heroes!
Incredibly, there will already be a crew in Russia before the team leaves Bahrain on Wednesday following the first in-season test of the year. In Formula One, the racing never really ever stops - on or off track. Better stock up on the Monster Energy...