European F1 Grand Prix 2016: Start Time, Drivers, TV Schedule and More for Baku

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistJune 18, 2016

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team's British driver  Lewis Hamilton steers his car at the Baku City Circuit, on June 17, 2016 in Baku, during the first practice session for the European Formula One Grand Prix.  / AFP / ANDREJ ISAKOVIC        (Photo credit should read ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP/Getty Images)
ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton will hope his renaissance in the current season continues as he chases down Formula One championship leader Nico Rosberg in the sport's debut in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Sunday.

The current world champion has got back to winning ways after watching his Mercedes team-mate dominate the early battles, and now he sits just nine points behind the rapid German talent.

The race will be held on a circuit dubbed the fastest street track in the world, according to James Galloway of Sky Sports.

Here is how you can watch Sunday's big race:

Date: Sunday, June 19

Time: 2 p.m. (BST), 9 a.m. (ET)

TV: Sky Sports F1 and HD, Channel 4 and HD, NBC

Live Stream: Sky Go, ALL 4NBC Sports Live Extra

For a look at the full field of drivers, visit Formula One's official website.

Drivers Criticise New Baku Track

BAKU, AZERBAIJAN - JUNE 17: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain driving the (44) Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes F1 WO7 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo on track during practice for the European Formula One Grand Prix at Baku City Circuit on June 17, 2016
Mark Thompson/Getty Images

The racing calendar visits the shores of the Caspian Sea for the first time as the European Grand Prix takes place in Baku.

Hamilton shone in the first practice session as he took his place as the quickest before qualifying, but there were a number of concerned voices ahead of race day.

Rosberg and Jenson Button both spoke out about the perilous nature of the track in the capital city, with the Mercedes driver questioning safety rules ahead of the race, as quoted by Andrew Benson of BBC Sport.

Rosberg said, "I'm doubting it a little because of those corners," when addressing safety regulations in Azerbaijan.

BAKU, AZERBAIJAN - JUNE 17: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain driving the (44) Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes F1 WO7 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo on track during practice for the European Formula One Grand Prix at Baku City Circuit on June 17, 2016
Dan Istitene/Getty Images

Button added, per Benson:

We trust in the FIA and they do a fantastic job in keeping us safe. They have improved pretty much every circuit we go to, including Monaco.

It's just that on certain corners here, it looks as if there is not a lot of run-off. Hopefully I'm wrong.

It is fine as long as no-one has a failure, we will go away all happy. We just have to hope that doesn't happen.

Luca Bruno/Associated Press

P1 saw the first crash as Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo lost control of his car. The Australian brushed a barrier at Turn 15 and sustained heavy damage to his RB12's rear suspension, per Galloway. Red Bull had already had a difficult morning after an oil leak on Max Verstappen's vehicle.

McLaren had one of their best practice sessions in recent memory as Button and Fernando Alonso made the top seven in timings.

The Spaniard was ahead of Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari during the session.

Formula One provided specific details of each driver's effort in FP2:

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team's German driver Nico Rosberg steers his car at the Baku City Circuit, on June 17, 2016 in Baku, during the first practice session for the European Formula One Grand Prix.  / AFP / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV        (Photo credit shoul
KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/Getty Images

Hamilton has once again found his mean streak behind the wheel, winning a brace of races consecutively, but if Rosberg prevails in Baku, he will believe he has the speed and precision to stay ahead of the British kingpin.

The reigning world champion looked troubled and demotivated in the opening races, but he has struck back with a vengeance to close the gap at the top.

As Ferrari struggle for race pace, it will be Red Bull who once again hold the biggest threat against the Silver Arrows.

However, anything but a win for Hamilton or Rosberg is unlikely as the German constructor goes from strength to strength.

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