Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time of Free Practice 1 for the Bahrain Grand Prix.
While Vettel was the fastest of the session, his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen was on the other end of the time sheets finishing slowest in the session after an overheating turbo ended his session. Vettel set a time of 1:32.697 which was 0.4s faster than Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo who set a 1:33.097.
Max Verstappen was 3rd fastest of the session almost a second down on Vettel and ahead of Force India’s Sergio Perez.
Felipe Massa was 5th fastest but brake issues ended his session. Replays of the incident showed Massa locking up his rear wheels and spun off the track at Turn 13. Lance Stroll had a good session finishing 6th fastest behind his team mate but ahead of Esteban Ocon in the Force India.
Fernando Alonso finished 8th fastest in the McLaren ahead of Romain Grosjean in P9 for Haas.
Lewis Hamilton rounded out the top 10 in 10th fastest clearly running a very different program to the rest of the front runners.
It was not a session without incident. After Raikkonen’s turbo overheating issue, McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne retired from the session with engine problems.
The session was a relatively quiet session with not many drivers lighting up the timing wall. One needs to remember that the conditions for this session are not representative of Qualifying and the race so teams mainly use this session for data collection and wind tunnel correlation.
The second free practice session should give us a better idea of the relative pace of the teams for the weekend as the conditions are more representative.
PROVISIONAL CLASSIFICATION: END OF FP1
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Photo credit: Scuderia Ferrari Formula One