Daniel Ricciardo
Daniel Ricciardo poses for a picture ahead of his home Grand Prix at the Albert Park Circuit in Melbourne, AustraliaGetty

The 2016 F1 season gets underway at the Albert Park Circuit in Melbourne with new drivers and new car designs. Will it be Mercedes dominating yet again? Or will Ferrari be able to make in-roads?

Where to watch live

The first practice session of the Australian Grand Prix starts at 1.30am GMT, with Sky Sports F1 and Sky Sports F1 HD providing live coverage in the UK.

Real-time internet updates are available on the Live Timing section of the sport's official website. Live coverage of the second practice session starts at 5.30am GMT.

Overview

If we go by the results of the winter testing that took place in Barcelona, it looks like Mercedes are favourites yet again to top the podium in Australia, with Williams and Ferrari battling for the title of "best of the rest". The Maranello-based team, however, did display good pace during testing, which has got a few neutrals excited about the prospect of them challenging the Silver Arrows team this season.

There is a new team for the 2016 season in Haas Racing. The American-based team were hoping to challenge for a midfield place owing to their technical partnership with Ferrari, but they had a difficult time during testing, which could see them fighting at the back end of the midfield for the initial part of the season.

The pecking order is sketchy despite eight days of testing. The second free practice should give a clearer idea of the actual speeds of the cars, but it won't be until the final session of qualifying that teams start showing all their cards.

Track Facts

  • Circuit Name: Albert Park Circuit
  • First F1 Race: 1996
  • Circuit Length: 5.303km
  • Number of Laps: 58
  • Race Distance: 307.574kms
  • Lap Record: 1:24.125 M Schumacher (2004)
  • Most Wins: Michael Schumacher (4)
  • 2015 Winner: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
  • 2015 Pole: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)