Max Verstappen may have won three of this season's five races, but Ferrari's Charles LeClerc still leads the drivers' championship by a decent margin. Of course, there are 17 rounds to go and it's never a good idea to write Lewis Hamilton off, even if his start to the season has been pretty dismal.

Of course, you're here because you want to know the start time for this weekend's race, which is in Spain. So without further ado, here's everything you need to know about watching on TV and online in the UK, along with free practice and qualifying.

You'll also find the full F1 2022 calendar along with the published race start times.

If you're interested in other sports, you can also find out:

When does the Spanish Grand Prix start in the UK?

Timings for the race weekend are in UK time, not Spanish local time.

  • Round 6: Circuit de Catalunya, Spain
  • Date: Sunday 22 May 2022
  • Race start time: 2pm (BST)
  • Race highlights: on Channel 4, 6.30pm

Practice, qualifying & race times for the Spanish F1 Grand Prix

All times are in BST.

  • Practice 1: Friday 20 May on Sky Sports F1, 1-2pm
  • Practice 2: Friday 20 May on Sky Sports F1, 4-5pm
  • Practice 3: Saturday 21 May on Sky Sports F1, 12-1pm
  • Qualifying: Saturday 21 May on Sky Sports F1, 3-4pm; Channel 4 highlights, 6.45pm
  • Race: Sunday 22 May. Start time 2pm on Sky Sports F1 (3.30-5.30pm). Race highlights on Channel 4, 6.30pm

If you're unable to get to a TV or record broadcasts, you can watch them later on Sky Go and on All 4 - the app for Channel 4. You can also catch up with much shorter highlights on the official Formula 1 YouTube channel.

How to watch every F1 race for free in the UK

  • Sky showing live races
  • Extended qualifying, plus highlights on Channel 4 shown 2.5 hours after live race ends

F1 is fast becoming a pay-to-watch sport. But there are ways to watch without paying, especially if you're happy to watch highlights later in the day.

Sky still has the exclusive rights to show live races in the UK (as well as Italy and Germany), meaning the only coverage on free-to-air TV in the UK will be available on Channel 4.

This arrangement runs until 2024 and - until the end of the 2022 season - extended highlights of both qualifying and races can be shown on Channel 4 only two and a half hours after the race ends.

This doesn't mean all broadcasts will be shown this soon, and if you want to stream those highlights, you might have to wait a lot longer for them to appear on Channel 4's streaming service - All4. 

The highlights show lasts 2.5 hours and is allowed to cover 70 percent of the action.

You can watch Channel 4 on your TV, of course, but you can also watch using the All4 app on your phone or tablet (but not live), or in a web browser via Channel 4's website.

As in previous years, the British Grand Prix will be shown live on Channel 4.

The other way to watch for free - especially if you want to watch races live - is to use a VPN and stream them from broadcasters in other countries which show races on free-to-air channels (but not necessarily with English commentary). 

For more details, see the section below on how to watch races live for free.

How to watch F1 races in 4K HDR

If you’re happy to pay a subscription fee so you can watch entire races live, then Sky is the only option in the UK. While Liberty operates an online streaming service – F1 TV Pro – you can’t watch it in the UK because of Sky’s exclusive deal.

For the first time, races will be broadcast in 4K HDR and, as we understand it, you'll need a Sky Glass TV, or a Sky Q box that's capable of sending the 4K HDR signal to your compatible TV. That means one which supports the HLG type of HDR, because that's what Sky uses. You'll also need the appropriate Ultra HD add-on for your Sky TV package. 

Unfortunately, that means no 4K or HDR for Now customers, or those who receive Sky channels via BT TV. 

You can get Sky Sports F1 for £18 per month on top of your normal Sky package - meaning a minimum cost of £41 per month in reality - or Complete Sports (all the sports channels) for £25 per month, again for an 18-month contract.

The other option for UHD HDR is to sign up to F1 TV, the official streaming service for the sport. See below for more details, but it isn't available in the UK.

Watch F1 on Now

If you don't want to pay for Sky TV (maybe because you only want F1) then there is an alternative: you can subscribe via Sky’s streaming service, Now (formerly Now TV). That’s available on your phone, tablet, games consoles, via a web browser and also via an Amazon Fire TV Stick, Roku device and others.

It isn't much cheaper though: it's £33.99 per month for the Sky Sports Pass, although there is currently an good offer which gets you whole season for £20 per month.

BT broadband customers can also get Sky Sports channels as part of a Now bolt-on to their BT TV package -  see more details in our BT VIP review.

Can you get F1 TV Pro in the UK?

Annoyingly, no, you can't. In case you didn't know, F1 TV Pro is the official streaming service of Formula 1 but you can't subscribe in the UK because of Sky's exclusive deal for live races.

F1 TV Pro is only available the US where it costs $79.99 per year. You can also buy it in a few other countries including the Netherlands where it is €7.99 per month.

In the UK, all you can access is the live timing service which costs £2.29 per month. We don't advise using a VPN to buy the service from the US or Netherlands: it's likely your VPN will be detected and Liberty Media, which runs F1, says your subscription will be terminated with no refund.

If you don't want to pay for F1 TV Pro and you're in the US, F1 races will be shown on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC.

Can I watch F1 online in 2022?

Indeed you can. Coverage is available using the following apps:

How to watch F1 races online - highlights

Note that you cannot watch live on the All 4 app.

Unlike BBC iPlayer, you can't join a live broadcast and you may have to wait hours for the race highlights to appear in the app.

Sky

To watch races online with the Sky Go app you first need to subscribe to its TV service. Sky will be broadcasting practice, qualifying and races in Ultra HDR, but as explained above, you'll need the right equipment to get it, and this is not available via Sky Go. You can find out more on Sky’s website.

Now

As mentioned above, you can watch Sky Sports F1 without being a Sky TV customer as the channel is also available on Now (formerly Now TV) as you can also get Now as part of a BT TV package.

Now is Sky's streaming service, which you can watch via the Now app on a laptop, PC, Mac, phone or tablet. It can also be found or installed on Amazon Fire TV Stick streaming devices, LG TVs, Samsung TV, YouView boxes (not early ones), Apple TV, Sony TVs, Google Chromecast, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series S/X.

You'll need the Now Sports membership which costs £33.99 per month or £9.98 per day. But at the time of writing, the monthly subscription was discounted to £20 for the whole F1 season.

How to watch F1 online with a VPN

If you're not in the same country as the TV broadcaster, you won't be able to watch F1 online without a VPN. For example, you can no longer watch abroad using the Sky Go app on your phone or tablet because of Brexit.

Similarly, you can't watch highlights on the All 4 app unless you use a VPN with a UK server.

We recommend using NordVPN, Surfshark and VyprVPN.

A VPN makes it appear that you're located in the same country as the broadcaster when you connect to a server in the appropriate country.

Read our guide to the best VPN services for more information.

Is there a way to watch F1 races live for free?

Officially, no. But there is a way. In 2022 and 2023, F1 will be shown on free-to-air channels ServusTV and ORF in Austria, plus on Match TV in Russia. Races are also broadcast live on Belgian TV channel RTBF.

You'll need a VPN (see above) to watch these channels outside of those countries, so connect to the appropriate country - Austria or Russia - and then head to their respective websites and figure out how to navigate to the right channel and you'll be ale to watch the live stream.

Obviously unless you speak those languages the commentary won't be at all useful, but the good news is that you can listen to English commentary by tuning into Radio 5 Live. You don't need an actual radio of course: you can also listen via the BBC Sounds app, or on the BBC website.

Here are the website links:

If you fancy watching on the big screen rather than your laptop, then here's how to hook up your laptop to a TV. You could also cast from Android, if you're using a VPN and web browser on your phone or tablet. Similarly, those with iPhones or iPads can mirror their screen to the TV using an Apple TV.

Other than this, the sport is all but behind a paywall now. You used to be able watch races live on RTL Germany but Sky Germany now has exclusive rights (as in the UK) to show live races in Germany as well.

Last year a deal between the two was done so that RTL could show the four events below (including the Sunday races) live, and something similar may well happen in 2022.

  1. Italy (Imola)
  2. Spain 
  3. Italy (Monza)
  4. Brazil

You can watch races on RTL in the UK if you have a satellite dish and can figure out how to tune into Astra satellite at 19.2E.

I'm also reliably informed by a Tech Advisor reader that F1 is shown free to air on an Arabic satellite channel service called MBC Action MBC Persia. They're available on a number of satellites at varying frequencies, but they require a very good satellite installation and setup to pick up the signals. 

Sprint Qualifying races in 2022

The format will be run at three races this season:

  • Round 4: Italy
  • Round 11: Austria
  • Round 22: Brazil

Instead of being run on the Saturday, normal qualifying (with Q1, Q2 and Q3 sessions) takes place on Friday afternoon. This determines the grid order for Sprint Qualifying, which is a short 100km race that is held on Saturday afternoon.

The rules have been tweaked this year. The driver who sets the fastest time in qualifying will be given pole position on Sunday. Last year, it was the driver who won the Sprint who secured pole. The grid order for the sprint race itself will be determined by qualifying times from the Friday sessions, as before.

Points have been changed, too. Now, the top eight drivers in the sprint race are awarded points, from 8 for the winner down to 1 point for coming P8.

F1 Calendar 2022

Round

Date

Race Start Time (BST)

Location

Circuit

1

20 Mar

3pm

Bahrain GP

Bahrain International Circuit

2

27 Mar

6pm

Saudi Arabian GP

Jeddah Street Circuit

3

10 Apr

6am

Australian GP

Albert Park

4

24 Apr

2pm

Emilia Romagna GP (Italy)

Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari

5

8 May

8.30pm

Miami GP (USA)

Miami International Autodrome

6

22 May

2pm

Spanish GP

Circuit de Catalunya

7

29 May

2pm

Monaco GP

Circuit de Monaco

8

12 Jun

12pm

Azerbaijan GP

Baku City Circuit

9

19 Jun

7pm

Canadian GP

Circuit Gilles Villeneuve

10

3 Jul

3pm

British GP

Circuit Silverstone

11

10 Jul

2pm

Austrian GP

Red Bull Ring

12

24 Jul

2pm

French GP

Circuit Paul Ricard

13

31 Jul

2pm

Hungarian GP

Hungaroring

14

28 Aug

2pm

Belgian GP

Spa-Francorchamps

15

4 Sep

2pm

Dutch GP

Circuit Zandvoort

16

11 Sep

2pm

Italian GP

Autodromo Nazionale Monza

17

2 Oct

1pm

Singapore GP

Marina Bay Street Circuit

18

9 Oct

6am

Japanese GP

Suzuka Circuit

19

23 Oct

8pm

United States GP

Circuit of the Americas

20

30 Oct

8pm

Mexican GP

Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez

21

13 Nov

6pm

Brazilian GP

Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace Interlagos

22

20 Nov

1pm

Abu Dhabi GP

Yas Marina Circuit

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