F1 releases 2018 calendar
Formula One races in Bahrain and China will swap places early in the season as initially planned following approval of the 2018 F1 calendar.
Motor sport's governing body FIA confirmed the proposed switch, with Bahrain taking place at the Sakhir circuit on April 8 and the Chinese GP in Shanghai a week later.
As usual, the F1 season begins with the Australian GP in Melbourne on March 25.
All the other races in the 21-race calendar were confirmed from the original plan set out in June, with the exception of the United States GP in Austin on Oct. 21 being subject to confirmation. Brazil (Nov. 11 at Interlagos) and Abu Dhabi (Nov. 25 at Yas Marina) are the last two races.
Questions were raised about the Brazilian GP being held next year in Sao Paulo after serious security scares last month.
The FIA directly urged that the race promoter uses an "independent security expert to evaluate and advise on security plans," while implementing a police reporting hub at the circuit and improving "overall communication between the promoter security, police and F1 stakeholders."
The French GP, meanwhile, returns after a 10-year absence and will be hosted at the iconic Paul Ricard circuit, also known as Le Castellet, in southern France on June 24.
Paul Ricard last hosted the French GP in 1990. The race was then organized at Magny-Cours from 1991-2008 but was dropped from the calendar in 2008 because of financial issues.
The German GP, which has struggled with attendances and track fees, was scrapped this year but will return at Hockenheim on July 22.
March 25: Melbourne, Australia
April 8: Sakhir, Bahrain
April 15: Shanghai, China
April 29: Baku, Azerbaijan
May 13: Barcelona, Spain
May 27: Monaco
June 10: Montreal, Canada
June 24: Le Castellet, France
July 1: Spielberg, Austria
July 8: Silverstone, England
July 22: Hockenheim, Germany
July 29: Budapest, Hungary
Aug. 26: Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
Sept. 2: Monza, Italy
Sept. 16: Singapore
Sept. 30: Sochi, Russia
Oct. 7: Suzuka, Japan
Oct. 21: Austin, United States (asterisk) (subject to confirmation)
Oct. 28: Mexico City, Mexico
Nov. 11: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Nov. 25: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates