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Bahrain F1 Grand Prix: Hamilton heads disjointed FP1

Lewis Hamilton heads a Mercedes one-two as FP1 for the Bahrain Grand Prix takes place in unrepresentative conditions
Full FP1 times HERE


Lewis Hamilton was comfortably quickest during a relatively quiet FP1 session for the Bahrain Grand Prix, as some teams opted to limit their running.

With qualifying and the race taking place at night this weekend, the first practice session took place in unrepresentative conditions and led to teams carrying out reduced running during the middle of the session. McLaren ended its programme early while both Mercedes spent a long spell in the garage.

However, after Fernando Alonso had gone quickest, both Mercedes' emerged late in the session and Hamilton beat team-mate Nico Rosberg to the fastest time by 0.231 seconds, with the team completing just 27 laps in total.

Alonso ended the session in third place but there was a strange incident at Ferrari when he was released out in to the pit lane with an odd combination of tyres. The Ferrari emerged with mediums on three corners of the car but a soft tyre on the front left, leading Alonso to have to stop the car and be pushed back to the garage by his mechanics.

Nico Hulkenberg managed just 10 laps in total but finished the session fourth quickest and within 0.6s of the Mercedes pace, leaving him over half a second clear of Jenson Button in fifth. The gap was partly due to the fact that both McLarens stayed in the pits for the final 15 minutes of the session and are likely to have been able to improve further.

Red Bull appeared slightly off the pace as Sebastian Vettel could only manage the 10th quickest time – 1.8s off Hamilton – with team-mate Daniel Ricciardo down in 14th. Williams also had both cars outside the top ten, with Felipe Nasr getting within half a second of fellow Brazilian Felipe Massa despite having participated in GP2 practice just minutes before. Nasr's best time of 1:40.078 was 2.7s faster than his GP2 time.

Comparisons between the two categories showed that the top six cars in GP2 practice set faster times than the Caterham pair of Robin Frijns and Marcus Ericsson. With Frijns filling in for Kamui Kobayashi, e delivered a solid performance in his first F1 practice session, managing 35 laps and beating Ericsson by 0.3s.

Lotus enjoyed another trouble-free day of running, with Pastor Maldonado completing 31 laps and Romain Grosjean 24, albeit with both cars ending the session over three seconds off the pace.




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