Red Bull a lot better than it looked in FP2 - Ricciardo

09 April, 2018, 01:31 | Author: Virgil Todd
  • Fernando Alonso

"Yesterday our race pace didn't look bad in second practice but it wasn't as good as it was in FP1 or what it is now so it is encouraging to know that I believe our vehicle will be better than it was yesterday".

Lewis Hamilton already knew he would be starting from a lowly grid position as a result of a five-place grid penalty incurred for an unscheduled gearbox change, but ninth place is still surprising given the advantage he held during qualifying in Australia.

SAKHIR, Bahrain (AP) - Kimi Raikkonen topped the leaderboard ahead of Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel in the second practice session for the Bahrain Grand Prix on Friday.

Australian Daniel Ricciardo put Red Bull at the top of the timesheets at the end of Friday's opening practice session for the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix.

"Although we were untroubled by any reliability issues, and we ran through our programme as expected, it wasn't our best day from a performance point of view", said Mercedes technical head James Allison.

In a boost for Ferrari, both Mercedes cars were more than half a second slower than the best lap set by Raikkonen, who would be investigated by race stewards for an unsafe vehicle release following a pitstop. With such fine margins, any one of the three teams could prove to be quickest during Sunday's race.

Max Verstappen, who failed to register a time in the first session, was fifth, ahead of Ricciardo. The defending F1 champion had a tricky first session, locking his tires and twice taking his Mercedes too wide on corners.

Earlier, Ricciardo's teammate Max Verstappen's auto lost power and ground to a halt on the track.

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The Red Bull driver had put in a time good enough to get him through to Q2, and was completing a second high-speed lap to help sort out some engine settings.

Vettel snatched an opportunistic win from Hamilton in the season-opening race in Australia two weeks ago to take the early championship lead.

And Verstappen says the reason he was out on track was to try and solve a mapping issue that had been costing him time when trying to run in qualifying specification.

"I think tomorrow we'll be better than sixth for sure, and the race will be better than that again".

"I learned the data immediately once I arrived on the scene of this auto as for me it had been also a significant surprise", Verstappen informed reporters.

"We've got more to do overnight and in the session tomorrow to give us a vehicle that will allow us to have a good fight in qualifying and on Sunday".

Vettel won in Melbourne, profiting from an error by Mercedes to finish ahead of Hamilton.

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