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Russian Grand Prix live stream and how to watch the F1 from Sochi

Max Verstappen driving a Red Bull F1 car
(Image credit: ANP Sport/Getty)

From we've seen so far, the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream will be every bit as unpredictable as the season as a whole is proving to be. 

2021 Russian Grand Prix live stream: How to watch live online

The 2021 F1 Russian Grand Prix starts at 8 a.m. ET / 5 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. BST today (Sunday, September 26).
• U.S. — Watch on ESPN2 via Sling or Fubo.TV
• U.K. — Watch on Sky Sports
• Watch anywhere — Try ExpressVPN 100% risk free

The Sochi Aerodrom was hit by torrential downpours yesterday, leading to the cancellation of third practice, but the clouds cleared just in time for qualifying. 

That was far from the end of the drama, though: Lewis Hamilton glanced the wall when returning to the pit for slick tires in the final session and could only finish fourth. Instead, McLaren's Lando Norris put in a thrilling lap to take pole ahead of Ferrari's Carlos Sainz. What's more, Williams' Mercedes-bound young Brit George Russell again performed wonders, taking third.

So where was Max Verstappen? The championship leader sat out qualifying, after Red Bull decided to replace his engine and take a grid penalty that means he'll start from the back. Verstappen was already facing a three-place penalty after being judged to be at fault for his collision with Hamilton last time out in Italy. 

All of which leaves us with the tantalising possibility of his Red Bull cutting through the traffic and reaching Hamilton to once again set up a duel between the two. We certainly wouldn't bet against it. 

One thing we do know is that Valtteri Bottas may be able to help his teammate out; like Verstappen, he's taken a grid penalty due to an engine change. That moves him down to 17th, leaving him just a few places ahead of the Dutchman and potentially able to slow the Red Bull down.

There's plenty of intrigue ahead of us, then, and we'll find out what happens at the Sochi Autodrom circuit soon. The good news is that you can watch all the action online via an F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream; read on to find out how to do just that.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream for free

Most countries have an F1 live stream on one channel or another, but many of them require a subscription. However, if you're lucky enough to live in Austria then you can watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream for free.

That's because the race will be shown on free-to-air television on state broadcaster ORF.

If you're based in Austria but aren't at home for the Russian Grand Prix, don't worry — you can watch it via a VPN instead. We'll show you how to do that below.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream from anywhere in the world

It's natural that you might want to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream from your home country, but what if you're not there when the race is on?

Look no further than a VPN, or virtual private network. A VPN makes it look as if you're surfing the web from your home country, rather than the one you're in. That means you can access the streaming services you already pay for, from anywhere on Earth. Or anywhere that has an internet connection, at least.

For instance, a Brit who's currently in the U.S. could watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream on Sky Sports, even though they're not in the U.K. 

They're totally legal, inexpensive and easy to use. We've tested lots of the best VPN services and our favorite right now is ExpressVPN. It's fast, works on loads of devices and even offers a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

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Safety, speed and simplicity combine to make ExpressVPN our favorite VPN service. It's also compatible with loads of devices and there's a 30-day money-back guarantee if you want to try it out.

Using a VPN is incredibly simple.

1. Install the VPN of your choice. As we've said, ExpressVPN is our favorite.

2. Choose the location you wish to connect to in the VPN app. For instance if you're in the U.S. and want to view a U.K. service, you'd select U.K. from the list.

3. Sit back and enjoy the action. Head to Sky Sports or another website and watch the race.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream in the US

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream – US flag

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

ESPN2 is the place to turn for the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream in the U.S., and there are several ways you can access it.

As well as being available through your cable service across the weekend, you can also stream the race via the ESPN app, or on the Watch section of ESPN's website. However, you'll need to authenticate with your satellite, cable or live TV provider credentials to watch any sessions. Also note that Formula 1 is not available on ESPN Plus, ESPN's standalone streaming service; you need access to live ESPN channels.

ESPN2 is available through most cable packages as well as cable TV replacement services, including Sling TV, Fubo.TV, YouTube TV and Hulu with Live TV. Either way, coverage of the big race starts at 8 a.m. ET on Sunday (September 26). 

If you don't want to pay for live ESPN2 in some fashion or another, your best alternative is F1 TV Pro. This is F1's own official F1 live stream service, and as with ESPN's own coverage, it uses the feed from Sky Sports F1. 

F1 TV Pro costs $10 per month or $80 for the season, which is much better value considering there are set to be 23 races this year. Plus you also get Formula 2, Formula 3 and Porsche Supercup races, and F1's archive of classic Grands Prix.

And remember, if you're usually based in the U.S. but aren't there at the moment, you can still watch the services you already subscribe to via a VPN such as ExpressVPN — meaning you can view an F1 live stream from anywhere in the world. 

Sling TV

If you're not already a Sling TV subscriber, you'll want Sling Orange in order to watch ESPN. This costs $35/month and includes dozens of other great channels. 

FuboTV

Love sports? Then check out Fubo.TV. It's got a 7-day free trial so you don't need to pay up front. The channel lineup includes ESPN2, plus other top networks including Bravo, FX and MTV.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream in the UK

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream – British flag

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

As usual, Sky Sports F1 will show all of the Russian Grand Prix action, and in up to 4K resolution. The race starts at 1 p.m. BST.

You'll need to be a Sky Sports subscriber to watch the F1 Italian Grand Prix live stream: the Sky Sports F1 channel is available for £18 per month, and there are packages available that give you lots more channels for only a bit extra. 

To follow it in ultra high-definition 4K, you'll need to pay a little more: you'll need a Sky Q set-top box and a package that includes both Ultra HD and Sky Sports F1. In total, that'd come to £45 a month, plus a £20 one-off payment if you're not an existing subscriber.

A far cheaper option is to buy a Now Sports Pass. This will give you all 11 of the Sky Sports channels for a limited time, with pricing starting at £9.99 for a Day Pass and £33.99 for one month. There's no 4K available here though.

Again, if you're usually based in the U.K. but are elsewhere at the moment, you can still watch the services you subscribe to by using one of the best VPN services.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream in Canada

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream — Canadian flag

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

TSN airs all Formula 1 races in Canada in English, while RDS has coverage in French. F1 TV Pro also remains an option for fans looking for an F1 live stream. 

All sessions are broadcast on TSN, and if you receive the network through your cable or satellite provider, you can use TSN Go by signing in with your TV service credentials. Cord-cutters will want to check out TSN Direct, which comes in day- and month-long passes for $8 or $20 CAD, respectively. The TSN app will allow you to live stream the race from your phone, streaming box or supported device.

Not actually in Canada at the moment? ExpressVPN and other VPN services can help you access the services you already subscribe to.

How to watch the F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream in Australia

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream – Australia flag

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Fox Sports has the rights to the F1 live streams in Australia, which means you can watch the 2021 Russian Grand Prix online via Foxtel

Kayo Sports is another option. This service offers new subscribers a 14-day free trial, while one-month subscriptions start at $25. 

You can also use one of the best VPN services to follow the action from your home country even when you're elsewhere.

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream: Practice, qualifying and race weekend schedule

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream — how to watch the Italian Grand Prix online – Red Bull

(Image credit: Red Bull / Getty)

The Russian Grand Prix weekend started on Friday (September 24) with practice 1 & 2. Saturday's third practice session was cancelled, but qualifying took place as scheduled.  

The race itself is tomorrow (Sunday, September 26).

Friday, September 24

  • Practice 1: 4.30 a.m. – 5.30 a.m. ET (1.30 a.m. – 2.30 a.m PT / 9.30 a.m. – 10.30 a.m. BST)
  • Practice 2: 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. ET (5 a.m. – 6 a.m PT / 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. BST)

Saturday, September 25

  • Practice 3: CANCELLED
  • Qualifying: 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. ET (5 a.m. – 6 a.m PT / 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. BST)

Sunday, September 26

Race: 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. ET (5 a.m. – 7 a.m PT / 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. BST)

F1 Russian Grand Prix — full starting grid

Position

Driver

Team

1

Lando Norris

McLaren

2

Carlos Sainz Jnr

Ferrari

3

George Russell

Williams

4

Lewis Hamilton

Mercedes

5

Daniel Ricciardo

McLaren

6

Fernando Alonso

Alpine

7Lance Stroll

Aston Martin

8Sergio Perez

Red Bull

9Esteban Ocon

Alpine

10Sebastian Vettel

Aston Martin

11Pierre Gasly

AlphaTauri

12Yuki Tsunoda

AlphaTauri

13Kimi Raikkonen

Alfa Romeo

14Mick SchumacherHaas
15Nikita Mazepin

Haas

16Valtteri BottasMercedes
17Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo

18

Nicholas Latifi

Williams

19

Charles Leclerc

Ferrari

20

Max Verstappen

Red Bull

F1 Russian Grand Prix — current driver standings

POS

DRIVER

NATIONALITY

CAR

PTS

1

Max VerstappenNEDRED BULL RACING HONDA226.5

2

Lewis HamiltonGBRMERCEDES221.5
3Valtteri BottasFINMERCEDES141
4Lando NorrisGBRMCLAREN MERCEDES132
5Sergio PerezMEXRED BULL RACING HONDA118
6Charles LeclercMONFERRARI104
7Carlos SainzESPFERRARI97.5
8Daniel RicciardoAUSMCLAREN MERCEDES83
9Pierre GaslyFRAALPHATAURI HONDA66
10Fernando AlonsoESPALPINE RENAULT50
11Esteban OconFRAALPINE RENAULT45
12Sebastian Vettel

GER

ASTON MARTIN MERCEDES

35
13Lance StrollCANASTON MARTIN MERCEDES24
14Yuki TsunodaJPNALPHATAURI HONDA18
15George RussellGBRWILLIAMS MERCEDES15
16Nicholas LatifiCANWILLIAMS MERCEDES7
17Kimi RaikkonenFINALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI2
18Antonio GiovinazziITAALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI1
19Mick SchumacherGERHAAS FERRARI

0

20Nikita MazepinRAFHAAS FERRARI0
21Robert KubicaPOLALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI0

F1 2021 car and driver line-ups

Team

Driver 1

Driver 2

Alfa Romeo

Kimi Raikkonen (7)

Antonio Giovinazzi (99)

Alpha Tauri

Pierre Gasly (10)

Yuki Tsunoda (22)

Alpine

Fernando Alonso (14)

Esteban Ocon (31)

Aston Martin

Sebastian Vettel (5)

Lance Stroll (18)

Ferrari

Charles Leclerc (16)

Carlos Sainz (55)

Haas

Nikita Mazepin (9)

Mick Schumacher (47)

McLaren

Daniel Ricciardo (3)

Lando Norris (4)

Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton (44)

Valtteri Bottas (77)

Red Bull

Max Verstappen (33)

Sergio Perez (11)

Williams

George Russell (63)

Nicholas Latifi (6)

Full 2021 F1 calendar

DATE

GRAND PRIX

CIRCUIT

COUNTRY

26-28 March

Bahrain Grand Prix

Bahrain International Circuit

Bahrain

16-18 April

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

Autodromo Imola

Italy

30 April 2 May

Portuguese Grand Prix

Portimão Circuit

Portugal

7-9 May

Spanish Grand Prix

Catalunya Circuit

Spain

20-23 May

Monaco Grand Prix

Monaco Circuit

Monte Carlo

4-6 June

Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Baku street circuit

Azerbaijan

18-20 June

French Grand Prix

Circuit Paul Ricard

France

25-27 June

Styrian Grand PrixRed Bull Ring

Austria

2-4 July

Austrian Grand Prix

Red Bull Ring

Austria

16-18 July

British Grand Prix

Silverstone Circuit

Great Britain

30 July - 1 Aug

Hungarian Grand Prix

Hungaroring

Hungary

27-29 Aug

Belgian Grand Prix

Spa-Francorchamps Circuit

Belgium

3-5 Sept

Dutch Grand Prix

Circuit Zandvoort

Netherlands

10-12 Sept

Italian Grand Prix

Autodromo Nazionale Monza

Italy

24-26 SeptRussian Grand PrixSochi International Street Circuit

Russia

8-10 OctTurkish Grand PrixIntercity Instanbul ParkTurkey

22-24 Oct

US Grand Prix

Circuit of The Americas

United States

5-7 Oct

Mexico Grand Prix

Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez

Mexico

12-14 Nov

Brazilian Grand Prix

Autodromo Interlagos

Brazil

19-21 Nov

TBCTBCTBC
3-5 Dec

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

Jeddah

Saudi Arabia

10-12 Dec

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Yas Marina Circuit

UAE

F1 Russian Grand Prix live stream — VPN statement

(Image credit: Future)
Marc McLaren

As U.K. Editor in Chief on Tom’s Guide, Marc is responsible for the site’s U.K.-focused output as well as overseeing all gaming, streaming, audio, TV, entertainment, how-to and cameras coverage. He previously edited the tech website Stuff and has tested and written about phones, tablets, wearables, streaming boxes, smart home devices, Bluetooth speakers, games and much more. He also spent years on a music magazine, where his duties mainly involved spoiling other people’s fun, and on a car magazine. An avid photographer, Marc likes nothing better than taking pictures of very small things (bugs, his daughters) or very big things (distant galaxies). When he gets time, he also enjoys gaming (console and mobile), cycling and attempting to watch as much sport as any human can (particularly cricket).