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Max in P2 after third free practice in Bahrain

Published on 04 March 2023 by Kees-Jan Koster

Max Verstappen finished the third free practice session for the Bahrain Grand Prix in second position. The Red Bull Racing driver set a time of 1:32.345 at the end of the session on soft tyres, only five thousandths of a second slower than Fernando Alonso in his Aston Martin. Sergio Perez finished third.

The third and final free practice session on the 5.412 kilometre long Bahrain International Circuit is the last session during this race weekend with daylight. This means that the track conditions are not fully representative for qualifying and the race, as these will happen after sundown.

When the lights go green, it is Lando Norris who comes out on track first, also setting the first lap time. The other drivers are patiently waiting in the pits. Max comes out of the pits for the first time after more than 20 minutes. The Dutchman sets a time of 1:33.704 on a set of hard tyres, putting him in fifth position. The four drivers ahead of him were on soft tyres. Verstappen reports of the radio that he did not have any grip on the hard tyres. Max continues to drive around, but is not able to improve his time.

Max comes out on track again with ten minutes left on the clock. This time on a set of soft tyres, setting the second time (1:32.345), only five thousandths of a second slower than Fernando Alonso. Max returns to the pits after a short stint of three laps, only coming out again at the end of the session for a practice start.

Fernando Alonso finishes the third free practice session as fastest, with Max in P2. The Dutchman did twelve laps. Red Bull Racing teammate Sergio Perez finishes third, followed by Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc, in a session without any major incidents. At 4pm Dutch time qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix will start.

Contest Bahrain GP: win a by Max signed scale 1:2 world champion 2022 helmet!

Results third free practice Bahrain:

1Fernando AlonsoALOAston Martin Mercedes1:32.340 13
2Max VerstappenVERRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:32.345+0.005s12
3Sergio PerezPERRed Bull Racing Honda RBPT1:32.446+0.106s11
4Lewis HamiltonHAMMercedes1:32.555+0.215s17
5Charles LeclercLECFerrari1:32.624+0.284s20
6George RussellRUSMercedes1:32.731+0.391s17
7Lance StrollSTRAston Martin Mercedes1:32.919+0.579s15
8Carlos SainzSAIFerrari1:32.945+0.605s20
9Oscar PiastriPIAMcLaren Mercedes1:33.045+0.705s11
10Pierre GaslyGASAlpine Renault1:33.064+0.724s12
11Esteban OconOCOAlpine Renault1:33.116+0.776s15
12Zhou GuanyuZHOAlfa Romeo Ferrari1:33.180+0.840s12
13Lando NorrisNORMcLaren Mercedes1:33.202+0.862s15
14Kevin MagnussenMAGHaas Ferrari1:33.381+1.041s20
15Nico HulkenbergHULHaas Ferrari1:33.423+1.083s22
16Yuki TsunodaTSUAlphaTauri Honda RBPT1:33.475+1.135s14
17Valtteri BottasBOTAlfa Romeo Ferrari1:33.629+1.289s13
18Logan SargeantSARWilliams Mercedes1:33.665+1.325s14
19Alexander AlbonALBWilliams Mercedes1:33.882+1.542s14
20Nyck De VriesDEVAlphaTauri Honda RBPT1:34.082+1.742s18