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Zhou makes surprise appearance at top ahead of Verstappen

It was a surprise end to Day 2 of Formula 1 testing in Bahrain, while Mercedes brought out the red flags with a breakdown.

Zhou Guanyu set the quickest time ahead of Max Verstappen at the end of Day 2 of Formula 1 testing in Bahrain. The Alfa Romeo driver set his quickest time in the closing stages of the day, with a glory run on the Soft tyres which put him 0.040s quicker than the Red Bull driver. Verstappen was sat in the garage for most of the afternoon session after the team reportedly suffered from an oil leak, with the team closing off the garage while they worked on the car. After a hive of activity the Red Bull driver was back out setting lap times, initially for a few installation laps before setting into a race run to cap off the day.

Alonso and De Vries complete glory runs

Fernando Alonso was once again seen towards the sharp end of the time sheet, having put in late timed efforts to go third quickest. The Aston Martin driver ended up completing 130 laps having done the entire day with the team, however he will share duties with Felipe Drugovitch tomorrow. Nyck De Vries briefly made it a Dutch one-two with Verstappen mid-afternoon, however the AlphaTauri driver's glory was short-lived after runs from Zhou and Alonso ultimately ending down in fourth. Nico Hulkenberg rounded out the top five, completing a modest 67 laps in the Haas which were mostly race runs. The same can be said for Charles Leclerc who was eighth fastest. Elsewhere Logan Sargeant nearly matched Verstappen's effort on Day 1, completing 154 laps for Williams and ending the day seventh quickest.

Mercedes and Alpine hit problems

In what was only the second red flag of the entire pre-season testing, George Russell's day was cut short when his Mercedes suffered a hydraulic failure. The team later confirmed that he would not take any further part in the rest of the day, meaning he lost an hour and a half's worth of running. Alpine also suffered some minor problems which curtailed Pierre Gasly's day, with the team spotting problems with their rear wheels during pit stops. This meant the Frenchman only completed 59 laps by the end of the session. A third red flag was brought out briefly when Zhou stopped at the end of the pits with a problem whilst trying to complete practice starts, however this was done to enable teams to ready themselves for the practice start.

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