Nico Rosberg has closed out Friday’s track action at the Bahrain Grand Prix with the fastest time in the floodlit second practice session.
The early championship leader finished ahead of Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, with the Silver Arrows once again setting the early pace at the Sakhir circuit after achieving a similar result in the preceding FP1 session.
Rosberg took full advantage of the cooler track conditions and a set of fresh Super Soft tyres to lower his FP1 benchmark by over a second, posting a 1:31.001. Hamilton was two-tenths of a second slower.
The surprise performer of the session was McLaren’s Jenson Button, who took his unfancied McLaren-Honda third-quickest, 1.2 seconds off the ultimate pace, ahead of Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen. The Englishman’s debutante teammate Stoffel Vandoorne improved on his FP1 showing by going eleventh-fastest, seven-tenths of a second slower than the 2009 champion.
Ferrari claimed fifth- and sixth-fastest on the time sheets, with Kimi Räikkönen lapping a couple of tenths faster than Sebastian Vettel on a late Super Soft tyre run. A mistake by Vettel on his sole Super Soft tyre run consigned him to sixth place, and he later stopped on the circuit with an issue at the left-rear of his Ferrari SF16-T.
The Red Bull Racing and Williams teams rounded out the top-ten, with Daniil Kvyat slotting ahead of Valtteri Bottas, and Daniel Ricciardo edging out Felipe Massa.
The new Haas F1 Team showed its midfield credentials with Esteban Gutiérrez and Romain Grosjean finishing twelfth- and fourteenth-fastest after running inside the top-ten for much of the 90-minute session. Worryingly, Grosjean had his session impacted by another front wing failure, although this time it was self-inflicted thanks to whacking the Turn 2 kerbs.
Saturday’s final practice session in Bahrain begins at 15:00 local time (GMT +3).
|2016 FORMULA 1 GULF AIR BAHRAIN GRAND PRIX – FREE PRACTICE 2 RESULTS|
|Driver||Team / Entry||Result||Laps|
|1.||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W07 Hybrid||1:31.001||38|
|2.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 W07 Hybrid||+ 0.241||32|
|3.||Jenson Button||McLaren-Honda MP4-31||+ 1.280||32|
|4.||Max Verstappen||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR11||+ 1.405||31|
|5.||Kimi Räikkönen||Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H||+ 1.451||38|
|6.||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H||+ 1.649||26|
|7.||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer RB12||+ 1.702||34|
|8.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW38||+ 1.791||39|
|9.||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing Tag Heuer RB12||+ 1.869||23|
|10.||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing Mercedes FW38||+ 1.872||36|
|11.||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren-Honda MP4-31||+ 1.998||30|
|12.||Esteban Gutiérrez||Haas F1 Ferrari VF-16||+ 2.128||31|
|13.||Carlos Sainz Jr||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR11||+ 2.176||36|
|14.||Romain Grosjean||Haas F1 Ferrari VF-16||+ 2.383||23|
|15.||Sergio Pérez||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM09||+ 2.405||35|
|16.||Kevin Magnussen||Renault Sport F1 Team RS16||+ 2.446||34|
|17.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sahara Force India Mercedes VJM09||+ 2.569||37|
|18.||Jolyon Palmer||Renault Sport F1 Team RS16||+ 2.639||35|
|19.||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor Racing Mercedes MRT5||+ 2.952||21|
|20.||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C35||+ 3.223||31|
|21.||Felipe Nasr||Sauber F1 Team Ferrari C35||+ 3.476||34|
|22.||Rio Haryanto||Manor Racing Mercedes MRT5||+ 3.561||33|
Image via Mercedes AMG F1 Team
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