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Four teams hit problems, Ocon ends morning fastest

The second morning of pre-season testing in Bahrain has ended with Esteban Ocon on top of the timesheets, while four of Alpine's rivals hit problems.

Esteban Ocon has ended the second morning of pre-season testing in Bahrain on top, edging out the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc. The Frenchman, behind the wheel of his freshly-painted pink Alpine, put in a lap time of 1:34.276 on the Soft tyre early on in the session, and it remained unbeaten throughout. Leclerc (C3) ended the morning second, just 0.090 seconds behind Ocon, with Max Verstappen (C2) in third. Sebastian Vettel, Lando Norris (standing in once again for the unwell Daniel Ricciardo), Yuki Tsunoda, Valtteri Bottas, Mick Schumacher, George Russell and Nicholas Latifi all spent time on track, running through the run plans of their teams. Russell was the most productive driver of the morning session, racking up 67 laps in his updated Mercedes, while Ocon (59) also surpassed a race distance.

Aston Martin, Alfa Romeo, Haas and Williams hit problems

It was far from a perfect morning session for four teams, three of which were forced to abandon their cars on track. Williams encountered issues first, when their car caught flames in the hands of Latifi, bringing out the red flag in the process. The team say initial investigations have confirmed that the cause of the fire was minor and not as severe as the video footage suggested.

https://twitter.com/F1/status/1502204720848707586

A small fire breaks out on the Williams car... But thankfully fireman @NicholasLatifi is on hand to extinguish 👨‍🚒 #F1Testing #F1 pic.twitter.com/VJWDvehJPV — Formula 1 (@F1) March 11, 2022

Aston Martin, meanwhile, managed to avoid bringing out a red flag thanks to some quick thinking by Vettel. He was able to steer his AMR22, struggling with a rear-right wheel issue, well away from the track before the car was towed back to the garage. The problem was only minor for the British team and they were back out on track just a few minutes later – unlike Haas, with their morning session being brought to an early end due to an exhaust issue. And the session ended with Alfa Romeo hitting problems, as Bottas stopped on track. You can stay up to date with all the action from Bahrain in the dedicated RacingNews365.com live blog .

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