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Bahrain Grand Prix 2021

Verstappen fastest in second practice to complete Friday sweep

Red Bull's Max Verstappen has set the pace in Friday's second practice session at the Bahrain International Circuit, while Lando Norris underlined McLaren's potential by placing second.

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Max Verstappen has topped the times in second practice in Bahrain, with the Red Bull driver completing a clean sweep on Friday after also going quickest in the opening morning session.

The Dutch driver set a 1:30.8 on the soft compound Pirellis during the team's fast runs in the middle of the session, enough to just pip McLaren's Lando Norris and Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton.

The one hour session began under the floodlights at the Bahrain International Circuit, with the session being more representative of the conditions which the drivers will race under on Sunday.

Early times on the mediums saw both Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton set fastest times, before Hamilton's soft tyre lap of 1:31.082 moved him to the top.

Times quickly tumbled, with AlphaTauri's Yuki Tsunoda vaulting up the order on the softs to place second behind Hamilton, before Lando Norris moved to the top with a 1:30.9 on the softs.

Completing his soft tyre run as well, Max Verstappen then took over at the top with a 1:30.847 to go a tenth clear of the McLaren with just over twenty minutes of the session remaining as the drivers switched back to race simulations.

With the top three remaining unchanged at the chequered flag, it was Ferrari's Carlos Sainz in fourth place as best of the rest and just half a tenth slower than Hamilton on the same soft compound.

Valtteri Bottas had to settle for fifth, a further tenth back in his Mercedes, while Daniel Ricciardo finished sixth for McLaren.

Having caught the eye with his great soft tyre lap, Yuki Tsunoda finished the second practice session in seventh place, two tenths clear of teammate Pierre Gasly in ninth with the AlphaTauri drivers split by Aston Martin's Lance Stroll.

Red Bull's Sergio Perez finished in 10th place, six tenths off the pace set by his teammate at the front on the soft compound.

Alpine's Esteban Ocon was 11th, ahead of Charles Leclerc's Ferrari in 12th, and Alfa's Antonio Giovinazzi in 13th.

Sebastian Vettel finished in 14th in his new Aston Martin, with Alpine's Fernando Alonso 15th on his first day back in Formula 1 after two years.

Kimi Raikkonen brought out the yellow flags early in the session, as the Alfa Romeo driver found the barriers as he negotiated the first sector.

Powering through Turn 2, Raikkonen lost the rear of his C41 and skittered through the gravel and struck the barriers with his left front. While he was able to drive back to the pits, the hit also impacted his suspension and rear wing and resulted in extensive checks in the pits. He finished in 16th.

George Russell was down in 17th as the lead Williams driver, 1.4 seconds from the front but a second clear of Mick Schumacher's Haas. Nicholas Latifi was 19th for Williams, while another driver to lose control during the session was Nikita Mazepin, as the Haas driver slid sideways through Turn 5, prompting him to shout "The balance is all over the f**king place!"

The Russian rookie finished the session in 20th.

Result Free practice 2 - Bahrain

Pos. Driver Team Time Tyre
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