Ocon puts pink Alpine on top as Latifi’s Williams catches fire

Esteban Ocon pipped Charles Leclerc to the fastest time in his pink Alpine as Nicholas Latifi’s Williams caught fire on the second morning of Formula 1’s final pre-season test in Bahrain. 
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Alpine F1 Team A522.
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Alpine F1 Team A522.
© xpbimages.com

Alpine’s striking pink livery that will be used for the first two races of the season broke cover on Friday as Ocon used a fresh set of Pirelli’s C4 soft tyres to surge to the top of the timesheets with a 1m34.276s. 

Ocon ended up just 0.090s clear of Leclerc, whose best lap was set on the C3 compounds. 

Reigning world champion Max Verstappen finished 1.5s off the pace on C2s as he took third, ahead of Sebastian Vettel, who managed 46 laps for Aston Martin before he pulled off onto the outer loop with an unspecified technical issue during the final hour of the morning session. 

McLaren’s Lando Norris completed the top five as he continued to deputise for teammate Daniel Ricciardo, who has not taken part in any of this week’s test so far due to being unwell. 

Sixth spot went the way of Yuki Tsunoda’s AlphaTauri, while seventh-placed Valtteri Bottas broke down in the closing minutes of the session to bring out the red flags as the FIA attempted to practice its standing restart procedure. 

Nicholas Latifi (CDN) Williams Racing FW44 stopped on the circuit with the rear brakes on fire.
Nicholas Latifi (CDN) Williams Racing FW44 stopped on the circuit with the…
© xpbimages.com

Haas is currently investigating an exhaust problem after Mick Schumacher was restricted to just 23 laps in the morning. 

Mileage was no problem for Mercedes as George Russell completed the most laps of anyone, racking up 67 on his way to finishing ninth in the morning order, some four seconds off the pace. 

The morning session was punctuated by a red flag when Latifi’s rear brakes dramatically caught fire, causing the Canadian to spin off at Turn 12. 

The brakes ended up exploding as a fire marshal attempted to put out the flames before the rear of the FW44 became engulfed, while Latifi was also on hand to help put out the fire.

Latifi propped up the order in 10th and also completed the fewest laps, managing just 12 before his session-ending issue. 

Morning results from day two in Bahrain 

Read More