Daniel Ricciardo topped the time sheet for the morning session of the first day of the three days of pre-season testing in Bahrain.
Ricciardo, who joined McLaren from Renault at the end of 2020, completed 45 laps around the Bahrain International Circuit and set a best time of 1:32.203 using Pirelli’s new C2 tyres.
Pierre Gasly recorded the second-fastest lap time – with his best effort being just 0.028s slower than Ricciardo’s fastest time – and completed 74 laps in his AlphaTauri, the most of anyone.
Max Verstappen finished the morning session in P3, with him completing 60 laps but struggling with the seemingly wind-sensitive Red Bull RB16B.
“I’m at Turns Six and Seven, where the cars in the intermediate stages suffer a lot from the wind,” Karun Chandhok said during Sky Sports’ coverage of pre-season testing today.
“You can see that some cars are more sensitive to the wind than others. Verstappen has already had a few moments in the mid-stage of this corner.
“That car is fast, but also very tricky in this section. AlphaTauri is just very strong in this section. Pierre Gasly really goes into this corner with a lot of confidence,” the ex-F1 driver added.
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc brought out the red flags after his SF71, which was unveiled by the Scuderia just a couple of days ago, ground to a halt with seven minutes of the morning session remaining.
2021 Pre-Season Testing – Friday Morning Classification
1. Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren, 45 laps, 1:32.203
2. Pierre Gasly, Scuderia AlphaTauri, 74 laps, +0.028
3. Max Verstappen, Red Bull, 60 laps, +0.042
4. Esteban Ocon, Alpine, 55 laps, +0.756
5. Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, 59 laps, +1.039
6. Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo, 63 laps, +1.117
7. Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin, 51 laps, +1.539
8. Roy Nissany, Williams, 39 laps, +2.586
9. Mick Schumacher, Haas, 15 laps, +3.924
10. Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, 6 laps, +4.647