Formula 1: Sainz tops final practice

BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN – MARCH 01: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB20 on track during final practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain at Bahrain International Circuit on March 01, 2024 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202403010405 // Usage for editorial use only //

Finishing the final practice in Bahrain the way he finished pre-season testing, Carlos Sainz topped the timesheets Friday afternoon ahead of countryman Fernando Alonso and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen. Sainz posted a 1:30.824s lap with under 10 minutes remaining on the soft compound tire as teams were slow to exit their garages during the warm and gusty session.

The uneventful session saw Thursday’s fastest driver – Lewis Hamilton – lead the way out of the garages during the session with others soon behind. Hamilton, in contrast to Thursday, would finish the session in 12th having run the day on used tires and higher fuel loads as the Mercedes team worked through it’s race-pace program.

Charles LeClerc ended 4th fastest on the day ahead of the McLaren duo of Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri – in 5th and 7th while George Russell slotted in 6th between the pair. Sergio Perez ended his program in 8th position ahead of the Haas of Nico Hulkenburg – the man who was 19th on day one – and Lance Stroll rounded out the top 10.

Qualifying begins at 1900 local time as teams now prep for the first session of the year.  You can see the full schedule below.



DateSessionTime (Local Circuit)
Feb. 29thPractice 114:30 – 15:30
Practice 218:00 – 19:00
Mar. 1stPractice 315:30 – 16:30
Qualifying19:00 – 20:00
Mar. 2ndRace18:00

Free Practice 3 Results:

155Carlos SainzFERRARI1:30.82418
214Fernando AlonsoASTON MARTIN ARAMCO MERCEDES1:30.9650.141s18
31Max VerstappenRED BULL RACING HONDA RBPT1:31.0620.238s16
416Charles LeclercFERRARI1:31.0940.270s17
54Lando NorrisMCLAREN MERCEDES1:31.1180.294s12
663George RussellMERCEDES1:31.1900.366s12
781Oscar PiastriMCLAREN MERCEDES1:31.2100.386s13
811Sergio PerezRED BULL RACING HONDA RBPT1:31.2480.424s17
927Nico HulkenbergHAAS FERRARI1:31.2780.454s13
1018Lance StrollASTON MARTIN ARAMCO MERCEDES1:31.3960.572s17
113Daniel RicciardoRB HONDA RBPT1:31.4490.625s13
1244Lewis HamiltonMERCEDES1:31.4520.628s20
1322Yuki TsunodaRB HONDA RBPT1:31.6310.807s14
1420Kevin MagnussenHAAS FERRARI1:31.6710.847s20
1523Alexander AlbonWILLIAMS MERCEDES1:31.9651.141s17
1624Zhou GuanyuKICK SAUBER FERRARI1:32.0001.176s17
1777Valtteri BottasKICK SAUBER FERRARI1:32.0961.272s16
1831Esteban OconALPINE RENAULT1:32.1241.300s11
192Logan SargeantWILLIAMS MERCEDES1:32.1251.301s16
2010Pierre GaslyALPINE RENAULT1:32.3821.558s14