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Vettel fastest, problems for Raikkonen in opening practice – FP1 Report

Bahrain Grand Prix – Sebastian Vettel headed Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen in a somewhat unrepresentative opening session in Sakhir.

With air and track temperatures much hotter than those anticipated for qualifying and the race, few drivers elected to complete many laps in the opening stages of the session, with many teams trialling new components.

With conditions towards the end of the session being slightly more representative, Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time with a 1:32.697 on the soft tyre. However, no driver chose to use the fastest available tyre compound – the supersoft.

The Red Bull Racing duo of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen were second and third respectively with Force India’s Sergio Perez in fourth place.

With Mercedes completing their own practice schedule, neither Lewis Hamilton or Valtteri Bottas completed a ‘flying’ lap, they finished the session in tenth and fourteenth respectively.

Kimi Raikkonen failed to set a lap time after he was forced to pull over with smoke pouring out of his Ferrari. The problem occurred on the approach to the penultimate corner, but the Finn was unable to roll his car back to the pits.

Williams completed a strong opening session with Felipe Massa and Lance Stroll ending free practice one in fifth and sixth place ahead of the second Force India of Esteban Ocon.

Stoffel Vandoorne also stopped on-track in his McLaren-Honda. The Belgian reported that the “engine had stopped” and he pulled over to an escape road after turn ten.

Vandoorne’s team-mate Fernando Alonso finished the 90-minute session in eighth place ahead of Haas’ Romain Grosjean and Mercedes’ Hamilton.

To view the full results of the session, click here.

 

About Luke Murphy

I've been a motor racing fan since the late 90's, enjoying the underdog stories, the history and the technology of the sport. Graduate of Huddersfield University with a BEng Motorsport Engineering Degree and a keen amateur karter.

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