Feature image: @MercedesAMGF1 on Twitter
With the motorsport world in mourning after the passing of Murray Walker yesterday afternoon, pre-season testing in Bahrain wrapped up with Max Verstappen setting the fastest time of the weekend. It was Verstappen’s team-mate, Sergio Perez, who set the fastest time of the morning and rounded up the weekend looking very comfortable in the RB16B. With the time of 1:30.187 that the Mexican set in the morning, it was also the fastest lap of all morning sessions all weekend. It really feels like the Red Bull duo might be able to mount a much better title fight against the Mercs.
Yuki Tsunoda was another driver who shined during the evening session of the final day. The young Japanese driver was setting purple lap after purple lap in the AT02 which shows how much more comfortable he is getting with more time in the car. Out of the three rookies on the grid, he is definitely one the to watch this season.
The duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr. will be an interesting one, with Carlos Sainz hoping to show himself capable of being in a title challenging car but that will all come down to how well the car Ferrari have developed actually is. They have been hovering around the midfield throughout testing and showed some glimpses of having good pace. All will be shown in two weeks.
Setting the second least amount of laps throughout the weekend, Aston Martin are likely to be very frustrated with the lack of data they could obtain in Bahrain. Their day was littered with issues again, with much of Sebastian Vettel’s evening session spent in the pits. They will be desperately wanting to iron out these issues for the start of the season.
The highlight of Alfa Romeo’s day came at the very end of the the day when Kimi Räikkönen and Carlos Sainz Jr. seemed to touch a little bit at turn 10. The two then took part in some aggressive racing back to the pits, giving us another taster of some race action two weeks early.
Mercedes managed to get a lot more testing laps in today, after starting the day at the bottom of the lap charts. They didn’t have a great session and things are starting to look a bit iffy over at the seven-time reigning World Champions garage. Even with the softer compounds of tyres, Lewis Hamilton or Valtteri Bottas couldn’t set a pacey time which we were all expecting them to do. Obviously, you never know anything during testing so this could just be nothing come race day in two weeks.
After a tough 2020 season along with a tough pre-season , Haas F1 decided to cease all development on the 2021 car and focus on 2022. So with the car that Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin will use all season long, the two rookies managed to get in 394 laps of some good data for the American constructor that will hopefully help them turn 2021 into something to cheer about.
George Russell finally got to get his hands of the FW43B in Bahrain after Roy Nissany and Nicholas Latifi took their turns on Friday and Saturday respectively. With the team not even having a car to test for the first few days of the 2019 testing week, it shows how far they have come with the 373 laps of data they managed to get throughout the weekend. Fingers crossed we can see the Williams boys’ in the midfield battles this season and getting some consistent points finishes.
Total Lap Counter
|Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team 🇩🇪||304|
|Red Bull Racing Honda 🇦🇹||369|
|McLaren F1 Team 🇬🇧||327|
|Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team 🇬🇧||314|
|Alpine F1 Team 🇫🇷||396|
|Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow 🇮🇹||404|
|Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda 🇮🇹||422|
|Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen 🇨🇭||422|
|Uralkali Haas F1 Team 🇺🇸||394|
|Williams Racing 🇬🇧||373|