F1 Race Event: Bahrain Grand Prix
Race Track: Bahrain International Circuit

First Free Practice Results 2023 Bahrain F1 GP

Max Verstappen driving the RB19 in front of Fernando Alonso driving Aston Martin AMR23 practice ahead of the 2023 F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain

Weather: dry  27.4°C
Tarmac: dry  42.7°C
Humidity : 11.0%
Wind : 12.6 km/h NW
Pressure: 1016 bar

The 2023 Formula One season kicked off in Bahrain with the first FP1 session. As teams took to the track for the first time, there were plenty of interesting developments to follow.

Several teams began the session with an aerorack bolted onto their car to check wind tunnel correlation. Meanwhile, the first driver out on the track was Alex Albon, piloting the Williams FW45 on a set of Medium tyres.

After just ten minutes, Fernando Alonso set the fastest lap time with a 1:35.048 on a set of Medium Pirelli tyres. However, it wasn't until 13 minutes into the session that Williams rookie Logan Sargeant reported smelling something burning in his car.

At that point, Sergio Pérez had taken over as the quickest driver, clocking a 1:34.343 on a set of Medium compound tyres. Alonso had improved to a 1:34.867 but was still second-fastest. In total, fifteen drivers had set a lap time.

Ferrari was also in the midst of testing a new rear wing with just one pillar instead of two. However, after a lot of wobbling, they quickly switched back to the old version.

First Free Practice Results 2023 Bahrain F1 GP

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Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin AMR23

Halfway through the session, the top 10 order was as follows: 1. Pérez, 1:32.758 min (S), 2. Verstappen, +0.617s (S), 3. Alonso, +2.109s (M), 4. PIastri, +2.239s (S), 5. Hamilton, +2.256s (M), 6. Magnussen, +2.662 (S), 7. Gasly, +2.913s (M), 8. Hulkenberg, +3.107s, (S), 9. Lelcerc, +3.233s (M) 10. Russell, +3.241 (M).

In the final 15 minutes of the session, more cars were fitted with a set of Soft tyres. Pérez remained the fastest, with Verstappen in second and Lando Norris of McLaren in third, 1.407 seconds behind. Both Alfa Romeo's were fifth and sixth. Interestingly, neither Mercedes nor Ferrari had tried out the Soft compound tyres up to that point, saving them for cooler conditions.

With nine minutes left in the session, Alonso lapped the Bahrain circuit on a set of Soft tyres with the Aston Martin, finishing just 0.438 seconds behind Pérez and securing the second-fastest lap time.

In the final five minutes of the session, Lance Stroll in the Aston Martin (sixth) and Kevin Magnussen (seventh) moved up a few places thanks to the Soft tyres.

Finally, it's worth noting that the fastest lap time of last year's FP1 in Bahrain was 1:34.193 min, clocked by Pierre Gasly with the AlphaTauri AT03. As teams continue to test and improve throughout the weekend, it will be interesting to see if they can beat that time this year.

FP1 Times Table 2023 Bahrain GP

P No Driver Team Time 1st Gap Laps Tyres
1 11 Sergio Pérez Red Bull 1:32,758 21 🔴S
2 14 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:33,196 +0,438s 22 🔴S
3 1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:33,375 +0,617s 21 🔴S
4 4 Lando Norris McLaren 1:34,165 +1,407s 21 🔴S
5 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:34,257 +1,499s 17 🟡M
6 18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1:34,298 +1,540s 17 🔴S
7 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:34,402 +1,644s 20 🔴S
8 24 Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo 1:34,575 +1,817s 18 🔴S
9 77 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1:34,689 +1,931s 20 🔴S
10 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:34,917 +2,159s 13 🟡M
11 63 George Russell Mercedes 1:34,966 +2,208s 20 🟡M
12 81 Oscar Piastri McLaren 1:34,997 +2,239s 24 🟡M
13 22 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:35,015 +2,257s 20 🟡M
14 27 Nico Hülkenberg Haas 1:35,043 +2,285s 22 🔴S
15 31 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1:35,105 +2,347s 20 🟡M
16 21 Nyck de Vries AlphaTauri 1:35,402 +2,644s 25 🟡M
17 10 Pierre Gasly Alpine 1:35,455 +2,697s 22 🟡M
18 2 Logan Sargeant Williams 1:35,749 +2,991s 24 ⚪H
19 23 Alex Albon Williams 1:36,018 +3,260s 15 🟡M
20 55 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:36,072 +3,314s 21 🟡M

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