Sergio Pérez topped the timesheets for the second day running on Day 2 of the final Formula 1 pre-season test in Bahrain.

Lapping slightly slower than the pace he’d shown on the previous day, the Mexican kept clear of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso by about five-hundredths of a second on the stopwatch.

The teams were very much focused on reliability runs – as opposed to chasing a headline-grabbing lap-time – and that was shown with a number of outfits attempting full race simulations with varying degrees of success.

Pérez and Alonso were on top of the timesheets in mileage and speed terms, while Daniel Ricciardo was a confidence-boosting third-fastest in the Red Bull Racing RB10.

The RB10 had a solid hit-out at BahrainWith the car featuring plenty of bodywork cut-outs to improve is troublesome cooling, the Australian managed 66 laps in what was easily the team’s best day of pre-season running so far.

While his longest sustained run was just 19 laps, it was the first time that the new car had completed the equivalent of more than a race distance in a single day.

Felipe Massa wound up fourth-fastest in his consistently reliable Williams FW36. The Brazilian veteran’s programme focused on aerodynamic and mechanical component testing, before he switched focus onto longer runs in the afternoon session.

Massa finished four-tenths clear of Jenson Button, who lost precious on-track time when he was forced to park his McLaren during the morning running.

Marussia seemed to have overcome its computer problems from last week, with Jules Bianchi managing a very solid day in the MR03 as he clocked up 67 laps in the Ferrari-powered machine, backing up the efforts of teammate Max Chilton the day before.

The works Mercedes team had a rather more troubled day. Lewis Hamilton was behind the wheel this time and caused one of the day’s red flags when he had a trip through the gravel at Turn 3. He also lost the final hour of running with a gearbox issue, consigning him to seventh on the time sheets.

Toro Rosso’s Jean-Éric Vergne and Sauber’s Esteban Gutiérrez managed to lap under the 1m40s barrier, while Pastor Maldonado and Marcus Ericsson brought up the rear, both striking trouble as they continued to experience reliability woes in Lotus and Caterham respectively.

2014 Formula 1 Pre-Season Test – Bahrain Day 6 Results:

  Driver Team / Entry Time Laps
1. Sergio Pérez Force India Mercedes VJM07 1:35.570 105
2. Fernando Alonso Scuderia Ferrari F14T 1:35.634 122
3. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing Renault RB10 1:35.743 66
4. Felipe Massa Williams Mercedes FW36 1:36.507 103
5. Jenson Button McLaren Mercedes MP4-29 1:36.901 52
6. Jules Bianchi Marussia Ferrari MR03 1:38.092 67
7. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes AMG Petronas F1W05 1:39.041 89
8. Jean-Éric Vergne Scuderia Toro Rosso Renault STR9 1:39.636 61
9. Esteban Gutiérrez Sauber Ferrari C33 1:39.976 106
10. Pastor Maldonado Lotus Renault E22 1:41.613 31
11. Marcus Ericsson Caterham Renault CT05 1:42.516 55

Images via XPB Images

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.