Max Verstappen dominated the first day of free practice for the inaugural round of the 2021 World Championship, the Bahrain Grand Prix, on Sunday, the 28th. The Red Bull-Honda rider, after leading the fastest lap at Sakhir’s 5.412 km during the morning session (1.31,394 m), was imposed in the afternoon, held under artificial light, as will happen tomorrow (15:00), in qualifying for the first race of the season, with the best record on Friday: 1.30.847 m.
Verstappen confirmed the good indicators he brought from the winter tests, which also took place in Bahrain, about two weeks ago, and presents himself as a favorite for pole position for Sunday’s race. However, the Dutchman’s advantage is not … huge. In the second free practice, Briton Lando Norris, in a McLaren-Mercedes, was only 0.095 s slower than Max and compatriot Lewis Hamilton, in a Mercedes-AMG, finished him in 3rd position, with another 0.235 s.
More: in free practice 2, 15 drivers finished in the same second – Fernando Alonso, the former World Champion who returns to Formula 1 after two years in other categories, closed the ‘top-15’, at 0.993 s from Verstappen and only 0.001 s behind another former world number one, the German Sebastian Vettel – numbers that allow us to anticipate a highly competitive qualification!
In 2020, qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton, the world champion in the title, secured the ‘pole’ for the race he won with 1.27.264 m.
Free training results 2
1st Max Verstappen, Red Bull-Honda, 1.30.847 m
2nd Lando Norris, McLaren-Mercedes, +0.095 s
3rd Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, +0.235 s
4th Carlos Sainz Jr., Ferrari, +0.280 s
5th Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-AMG, +0.371 s
6th Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren-Mercedes, +0.383 s
7th Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri-Honda, +0.447 s
8th Lance Stroll, Aston Martin-Mercedes, +0.556 s
9th Pierre Gasly, AlphaTauri-Honda, +0,636 s
10th Sergio Pérez, Red Bull-Honda, +0.656 s
11th Esteban Ocon, Alpine-Renault, +0,754 s
12th Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, +0,765 s
13th Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo-Ferrari, +0,893 s
14th Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin-Mercedes, +0.922 s
15th Fernando Alonso, Alpine-Renault, +0,923 s
16th Kimi Räikkönen, Alfa Romeo-Ferrari, +1,015 s
17th George Russell, Williams-Mercedes, +2,450 s
18th Mick Schumacher, Haas-Ferrari, +2,450 s
19th Nicholas Latifi, Williams-Mercedes, +2,553 s
20th Nikita Mazepin, Haas-Ferrari, +2,602 s
Source: with Agencies