New teams and new drivers, along with a race-long battle for victory, led to a season opener to remember. After considering both qualifying and the race, here are the driver rankings for the Bahrain GP.
Nikita Mazepin - 1
Qualifying - P20
Race - DNF
A poor debut for the Haas rookie.
Throughout the weekend Mazepin was off the pace, suffering two spins in qualifying on his way to the slowest time, giving very little hope for the race.
The goal for his first F1 race weekend would surely have been to get laps on the board and experience under his belt.
This was not helped by a crash on the exit of the second corner on the first lap.
A weekend to forget for the debutant.
Fernando Alonso - 7
Qualifying - P9
Race - DNF
Qualifying was strong for returning two-time champion, Fernando Alonso.
The Spanish driver was convincing ahead of teammate Esteban Ocon and into Q3.
However, he would not have the race he would've wanted on his return.
All this was in vain though, as on lap 34 he was forced to retire through a brake-duct issue.
A strong first weekend back for Fernando.
Nicholas Latifi - 4
Qualifying - P17
Race - DNF (Classified P18)
He was behind team-mate George Russell in qualifying in a quiet session.
He followed this up by having a quiet race, where he retired with five laps of the race remaining.
Pierre Gasly - 7
Qualifying - P5
Race - DNF (Classified P17)
A strong qualifying and an unlucky race for Pierre Gasly.
The AlphaTauri driver put his car an excellent P5 after a strong qualifying session.
Starting on the mediums, hopes were high for the Frenchman. However, this hope was undone on Lap 5.
A collision with Daniel Ricciardo's left-rear wheel led to Gasly losing his front wing and having to crawl back to the pits.
From here, Gasly spent his race at the back of the field, opting to retire with four laps to go.
Mick Schumacher - 5
Qualifying - P19
Race - P16
The Schumacher name returned to F1 and finished the race as the last running car.
Schumacher was convincingly ahead of team-mate Mazepin in qualifying, with an advantage of eight-tenths of a second.
In the race, A spin on Lap 5 after the safety car restart was far from ideal. After this Schumacher had a quiet race in an uncompetitive car.
Useful laps and experience for Haas' second rookie.
Sebastian Vettel - 3
Qualifying - P18
Race - P15
A weekend to forget for the four-time world champion.
Caught out by yellow flags in qualifying, Vettel's P18 was made worse by a five-place grid penalty, for not respecting said flags, which dropped him to last on the grid.
George Russell - 7
Qualifying - P15
Race - P14
Another strong showing from 'Mr. Saturday'.
Russell spent time on the verge of the points but would ultimately slip back to P14 in the race, which in the Williams, isn't a bad result.
Esteban Ocon - 4
Qualifying - P16
Race - P13
For the Alpine racer, the race was not much better.
Ocon spent the race out of the points, battling with Vettel and the two Alfa Romeo's.
His race went from bad to worse as Vettel collided with him going into turn one, which would cost Ocon a position.
A poor weekend from start to finish.
Antonio Giovinazzi - 6
Qualifying - P12
Race - P12
A solid, yet uneventful, weekend for the Italian.
In the race, he struggled for pace at times, with his team-mate asking for him to be moved aside.
He was running 14th before the Ocon and Vettel collision, which gave him two places, ending up P12 behind Kimi.
Kimi Raikkonen - 6
Qualifying - P14
Race - P11
As the 'Iceman' enters his 20th season in F1, he can take positives from his performance in Bahrain.
A solid weekend for both Alfa Romeo's, in what looks to be a solid car.
Lance Stroll - 6
Qualifying - P10
Race - P10
A so-so weekend for Lance Stroll as Aston Martin struggled.
Aston Martin had a tough weekend with complaints about how the new aerodynamic changes have affected their car negatively.
In the midst of that, Stroll got into Q3, which is a good effort from the Canadian.
Still, a decent weekend for Stroll.
Yuki Tsunoda - 7
Qualifying - P13
Race - P9
An impressive drive into the points capped off a strong weekend for the F1 rookie.
Tsunoda was unlucky to exit qualifying in Q2, with AlphaTauri, perhaps over-ambitiously putting him into the medium tyres in Q2 which hindered his progress.
However, on Sunday Tsunoda showed why he is so highly rated.
After a poor start, Tsunoda found himself in P17. Many would forgive the Japanese-driver for struggling from there on out on his first weekend, but this was not the case.
A storming drive to P9 meant he became the first rookie since Stoffel Vandoorne in 2016 to pick up points on debut.
Impressive from the first F1 driver to be born in the 21st century.
Carlos Sainz - 7
Qualifying - P8
Race - P8
The Spanish driver had a strong weekend in what looks to be a much improved Ferrari.
Slightly off team-mate Charles Leclerc's pace in qualifying, Sainz had a difficult start which saw him slip back to P10.
However, after this he showed strong race-pace, as he battled back to take P8, securing four points on his debut for the Scuderia.
Daniel Ricciardo - 7
Qualifying - P6
Race - P7
A strong first weekend at McLaren for the Aussie.
A good start at McLaren.
Charles Leclerc - 8
Qualifying - P4
Race - P6
A mighty performance from Leclerc as Ferrari show improvements
Charles Leclerc, once again, showed just why he is so highly rated.
If Leclerc continues this level of a performance, he can look forward to a fruitful year at Ferrari.
Sergio Perez - 8
Qualifying - P11
Race - P5
A roller-coaster first weekend at Red Bull for Checo.
The roller-coaster began with a Q2 exit on Saturday, as he failed to get into Q3 on the medium tyres.
Following this, on the formation lap on Sunday, his car ground to halt, seemingly ending the Mexican's race before it had even begun.
However, Perez was miraculously able to get his car going again for a pit-lane start.
From here, Perez was the definition of 'It's not where you start, it's where you finish.
Checo stormed through the field, on an unconventional three-stop strategy, to take P5 with just a handful of laps remaining.
Voted 'driver of the day' as well, a successful first race for the Mexican, only let down by his qualifying performance.
Lando Norris - 8
Qualifying - P7
Race - P4
However, Lando turned this disappointment into a strong race.
He came out on top of his on-track battle with Ricciardo and would later pass Leclerc as he stormed to an impressive fourth-placed finish.
An impressive performance from the young Brit.
Valtteri Bottas - 6
Qualifying - P4
Race - P4
A tough first weekend of the year for Bottas, despite the podium finish.
Bottas was only able to manage one meaningful Q3 run, as a result, he started third.
A late pit stop for fastest lap was only a consolation for the Finn, who showed signs of frustration with his team's strategy post-race.
Max Verstappen - 9
So so close, yet so far for Max Verstappen.
He dominated the weekend, heading Practice 1,2, and 3, as well as Q2 and Q3 before taking pole in the much-fancied Red Bull car.
Verstappen held his lead into turn one, only losing it in the first round of pit stops.
After the final round of stops, Max fought hard to catch Hamilton and caught him with just four laps remaining.
On lap 53, Max attempted a pass around the outside of Hamilton at turn four, seemingly completing the move before going off the track.
Verstappen would not get another clear opportunity to overtake and will be disappointed to finish in second.
Despite this, a very strong weekend for Verstappen, with the race win the only thing keeping him from a perfect 10.
What a performance from Sir Lewis Hamilton.
Mercedes spent the weekend playing second fiddle to the superior Red Bull, however, they snatched victory with a clever strategy and superb driving from the seven-time world champion.
Missing out on pole by nearly four-tenths was a blow for Hamilton, and is what keeps him from a perfect 10.
On his last stint, on older tyres Hamilton drove his heart out to defend from Verstappen, who seemed certain to pass the Mercedes if given the chance.
With this victory, Hamilton and Mercedes can breathe a sigh of relief, and spend the next three weeks before the next race at Imola trying to catch up to Red Bull.
What a title fight we have on our hands, will it be a record-breaking eight titles for Hamilton or a maiden crown for Verstappen?