Ricciardo fastest on Saturday morning of F1 test, Hamilton spins

McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo has set the fastest time on the second morning of Formula 1 pre-season testing in Bahrain, as Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes lost more precious mileage due to a spin.

Ricciardo fastest on Saturday morning of F1 test, Hamilton spins

Shortly past the halfway point in the four-hour morning session Hamilton lost the rear of his Mercedes W12 in Turn 13 and slid backwards into the gravel trap. Hamilton got beached, bringing out a 15-minute red flag and forcing the world champion to have his car towed back to the pitlane.

Hamilton returned to the track before the start of the fourth hour and recovered to turn a healthy 58 laps, but the incident meant Mercedes lost more precious track time after teammate Valtteri Bottas only managed six laps on Friday morning due to a gearbox issue.

The seven-time world champion was one of many drivers to go adrift on the ever-dusty Bahrain international Circuit, with Williams driver Nicholas Latifi spinning off at Turn 7 and Ferrari's Carlos Sainz also going for an off-track excursion.

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At the top of the leaderboard Sainz had put down a first marker with a 1m33.072s lap on mediums.

Alpine's Fernando Alonso, who made his first appearance since fracturing his jaw in a cycling accident, soon dipped below Sainz' time with a 1m32.769s on hard tyres.

Alonso and the man he replaces at Alpine, McLaren's Ricciardo, then traded fastest times during the second hour. Ricciardo, who was also fastest on Friday morning, re-took top spot with a 1m32.215 on mediums, one tenth quicker than Alonso's quickest lap.

After the mid-session red flag Latifi jumped to third, only to be displaced by Sergio Perez. The Mexican took third with a hard tyre lap of 1m32.478s on his first Red Bull appearance.

Latifi used Pirelli's softest C5 compound to grab fourth, followed by AlphaTauri's Yuki Tsunoda and Sainz. On soft tyres Nikita Mazepin was seventh for Haas ahead of Hamilton, whose fastest time was 1.1s slower than Ricciardo.

 

Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi didn't set a competitive time in ninth but - more importantly - enjoyed a productive morning in the C41. His tally of 73 completed laps was just two short of lap chart leader Mazepin.

Aston Martin's Sebastian Vettel was tenth and last after sitting out most of the morning session. In a repeat of Bottas' woes on Friday, the German only managed six laps before encountering a Mercedes gearbox issue on his AMR21.

Aston managed to get Vettel back out shortly before lunch for three more laps, but a second red flag with five minutes to go - for a race control systems test - then brought the session to a close.

The chequered flag marked the halfway point of F1's pre-season test at Sakhir, with testing to resume at 15:00 local time on Saturday ahead on Sunday's final test day.

   Pos  Driver   Car / Engine   Time   Gap  Laps 
Daniel Ricciardo McLaren/Mercedes 1'32.215   52
Fernando Alonso Alpine/Renault 1'32.339 0.124 60
Sergio Pérez Red Bull/Honda 1'32.478 0.263 39
Nicholas Latifi Williams/Mercedes 1'32.541 0.326 47
Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri/Honda 1'32.684 0.469 57
Carlos Sainz  Ferrari 1'33.072 0.857 56
Nikita Mazepin Haas/Ferrari 1'33.101 0.886 76
Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1'33.399 1.184 58
A.Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 1'36.018 3.803 73
10  Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin/Mercedes 1'38.849 6.634 10

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Series Formula 1
Event Bahrain March testing
Author Filip Cleeren
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