Max Verstappen in the RB20

Formula 1 News: Verstappen tops Day 1 morning times in Bahrain

Defending World Driving Champion Max Verstappen sent early chills down the spine of his competitors with a blistering time in the first preseason F1 test session in Bahrain.

–by Mark Cipolloni–

The four-hour morning session saw Verstappen turn a lap of 1m32.548s in the radical Red Bull RB20. That was 0.7s faster than Charles Leclerc could manage in his new Ferrari.

Of course, it’s still early days with Verstappen’s top time well over two seconds slower than his own pole time from 2023 but he was on hard tires.

Fernando Alonso completed the top three in the AMR24, 0.837s off Verstappen.

Oscar Piastri completed 56 laps as he set the fourth-fastest time of the day, 1.1s off the pace.

Yuki Tsunoda set the fifth-fastest time in the Visa Cash App RB ahead of George Russell and Valtteri Bottas.

Yuki Tsunoda

Alex Albon was eighth overall, but his session was cut short after a fuel-related issue forced him to stop out on track.

Bahrain Pre-Season Testing – Day 1 Morning Results

Pos Driver Nat. Team Time Behind Laps
1 Max Verstappen NED Oracle Red Bull Racing 1m32.548s 0.000s 66
2 Charles Leclerc MON Scuderia Ferrari 1m33.247s 0.699s 64
3 Fernando Alonso ESP Aston Martin Aramco F1 Team 1m33.385s 0.837s 77
4 Oscar Piastri AUS McLaren F1 Team 1m33.658s 1.110s 57
5 Yuki Tsunoda JPN Visa Cash App RB F1 Team 1m34.136s 1.588s 64
6 George Russell GBR Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team 1m34.230s 1.682s 48
7 Valtteri Bottas FIN Stake F1 Team Kick Sauber 1m34.431s 1.883s 68
8 Alex Albon THA Williams Racing 1m34.587s 2.039s 40
9 Esteban Ocon FRA BWT Alpine F1 Team 1m34.677s 2,129s 60
10 Kevin Magnussen DEN MoneyGram Haas F1 Team 1m35.692s 3.144s 66
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