Bahrain F2: Drugovich leads Ticktum in Friday practice

Felipe Drugovich topped the times in the opening practice session of the FIA Formula 2 Championship season in Bahrain.

Bahrain F2: Drugovich leads Ticktum in Friday practice
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The UNI-Virtuosi driver ended the 45 minute session with a 1m45.340s benchmark posted on the new-for-2021 hard tyre.

His effort was some 3.6 seconds shy of the outright pre-season testing pace set by ART Grand Prix’s Christian Lundgaard earlier this month.

New Carlin recruit Dan Ticktum proved to be Drugovich’s nearest rival, ending the outing 0.141s adrift having enjoyed a short spell at the top of the times in the session

Hitech Grand Prix’s Liam Lawson completed the top three a further tenth back as the field elected to focus on race runs.

After a series of installation laps the first timed laps came 12 minutes into the session with Campos Racing’s Ralph Boschung posting the first real indicative time with a 1m46.943s.

Boschung continued to lower his benchmark by three tenths before he was toppled by Ticktum, who posted a 1m45.554s on the new specification hard tyre with 27 minutes remaining.

Drugovich was next to threaten the top of the timesheets as he dipped 0.141s underneath Ticktum to lead the session at the halfway point.

The order remained largely unchanged for the second half of the session.

DAMS driver Marcus Armstrong was fourth fastest narrowly ahead of one of the title favourites Robert Shwartzman (Prema), who popped into fifth as the session ticked into its final 10 minutes.

Lirim Zendeli (MP Motorsport) emerged as the top rookie in sixth, while Juri Vips (Hitech Grand Prix), Jehan Daruvala (Carlin), and F2 newcomers Bent Viscaal (Trident) and Oscar Piastri (Prema Racing) completed the top 10.

Early title contenders Guanyu Zhou (UNI-Virtuosi) and Lundgaard could only set times good enough for 12th and 13th positions respectively.

The session ran green throughout with the only incidents of note being a series of lock ups from drivers on the approach to Turns 1 and 10.

The field will return for a 30 minute qualifying session at 1:30pm GMT (4:30pm local time).

As previously reported, the fastest 10 runners in qualifying will be reversed to create the starting order for Race 1. The Saturday qualifying order will be used to form the grid for Sunday’s Race 3.

Bahrain F2 - Practice results:

Cla # Driver Team Time Gap
1 4 Brazil Felipe Drugovich
United Kingdom UNI-Virtuosi 1'45.340
2 5 United Kingdom Dan Ticktum
United Kingdom Carlin 1'45.481 0.141
3 7 New Zealand Liam Lawson
United Kingdom HitechGP 1'45.628 0.288
4 17 New Zealand Marcus Armstrong
France DAMS 1'45.651 0.311
5 1 Russian Federation Robert Shwartzman
Italy Prema Powerteam 1'45.666 0.326
6 12 Germany Lirim Zendeli
Netherlands MP Motorsport 1'45.734 0.394
7 8 Estonia Jüri Vips
United Kingdom HitechGP 1'45.762 0.422
8 6 India Jehan Daruvala
United Kingdom Carlin 1'45.763 0.423
9 24 Netherlands Bent Viscaal
Italy Trident 1'45.838 0.498
10 2 Australia Oscar Piastri
Italy Prema Powerteam 1'46.077 0.737
11 10 France Theo Pourchaire
France ART Grand Prix 1'46.149 0.809
12 3 China Guanyu Zhou
United Kingdom UNI-Virtuosi 1'46.195 0.855
13 9 Denmark Christian Lundgaard
France ART Grand Prix 1'46.207 0.867
14 16 Israel Roy Nissany
France DAMS 1'46.225 0.885
15 11 Netherlands Richard Verschoor
Netherlands MP Motorsport 1'46.237 0.897
16 14 Germany David Beckmann
Czech Republic Charouz Racing System 1'46.387 1.047
17 15 Brazil Guilherme Samaia
Czech Republic Charouz Racing System 1'46.585 1.245
18 20 Brazil Gianluca Petecof
Spain Campos Racing 1'46.597 1.257
19 25 Japan Marino Sato
Italy Trident 1'46.718 1.378
20 21 Switzerland Ralph Boschung
Spain Campos Racing 1'46.788 1.448
21 22 Italy Matteo Nannini
HWA Racelab 1'47.400 2.060
22 23 Italy Alessio Deledda
HWA Racelab 1'48.888 3.548
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