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Verstappen sets the quickest lap time at the beginning of 2023 F1 testing.



Verstappen tops 2023 F1 testing

On the first morning of the 2023 Formula 1 testing in Bahrain, the world champion Max Verstappen placed Red Bull and its highly awaited RB19 at the pinnacle of the times.

The RB19, which had only been seen officially in a blurry video clip shown by Red Bull, was unveiled in the Bahrain pitlane and immediately lived up to its reputation. Verstappen swiftly confirmed its pace, lapping 0.294 seconds quicker than any other car.

Verstappen clocked the fastest time, recording 1m32.959s in the last hour of the session. He achieved this time on the mid-range, yellow-sidewalled C3 compound tires from Pirelli, which most drivers used to set their best times.

Alex Albon from Williams stood out in this aspect by registering the third-fastest time on a set of the softest C5 compound tires. He recorded a lap time within half a second of Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari, which secured second place and clocked its time on the C3 tires, just like Verstappen’s Red Bull.

Despite the compound offset, it was still a remarkable morning for Williams. Albon covered a session-high 74 laps, two laps more than Sainz, who had the second-highest lap count.

In the first hour of the session, Sainz’s Ferrari, which had a dimple in its nosecone, dominated the leaderboard for a considerable duration.

The deformation was not intentional, and it likely occurred due to air pressure. Although the dimple is not a structural issue, Ferrari will probably aim to strengthen the nosecone to prevent similar occurrences in the future.


Zhou Guanyu secured the fourth position for Alfa Romeo, finishing within one second of Verstappen’s time. The black W14 of Mercedes followed in fifth place, with George Russell lapping 1.215 seconds slower than Verstappen’s pace.

Russell used the hard C1 tire for a more extended period than most other drivers at the beginning of the session. Nonetheless, he still recorded his quickest lap time on the C3 tire, and the W14 car showed minimal visible porpoising. Its predecessor was among the most severely affected designs of 2022 by this phenomenon.

Nico Hulkenberg, who made his debut for the Haas F1 team in the post-season test at Yas Marina in 2022, finished sixth on his second test outing for the team.

Hulkenberg drove the Haas VF-23, completing 51 laps. Along with seven other drivers, he managed to exceed a half-century of laps during the morning session.

Felipe Drugovich from Aston Martin was one of the drivers who did not exceed a half-century of laps during the morning session.

Aston Martin’s AMR23 has been the subject of conversation in recent days, but the start to testing was the least promising. During his first installation lap with the car, Felipe Drugovich came to a stop on the track.

Felipe Drugovich, the reigning Formula 2 champion, was given the opportunity to drive for Aston Martin on the opening morning of testing in place of the injured Lance Stroll. Despite an electronics issue that stopped him during his first installation lap, he was able to complete some substantial running later. He eventually finished the session in seventh place after improving his times towards the end.


For the afternoon session, Drugovich will pass the car to two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso. Aston Martin, however, has not yet revealed its plan for deploying its drivers over the second and third days of testing.

At the bottom of the timesheet was rookie Oscar Piastri, who managed to complete 52 laps in the McLaren MCL60.

Yuki Tsunoda from AlphaTauri was the other driver who completed fewer than 50 laps, finishing 46 laps. Despite this, he managed to finish ahead of his former teammate Pierre Gasly, who is now driving for Alpine. The bottom of the leaderboard was occupied by rookie Oscar Piastri, who drove the McLaren MCL60 and completed 52 laps.

here are the morning times for Day One of the 2023 Formula 1 testing in Bahrain:

1VerstappenRed Bull1m32.959sC371
4ZhouAlfa Romeo1m33.723sC367
7DrugovichAston Martin1m34.564sC340

Verstappen tops 2023 F1 testing Verstappen tops 2023 F1 testing Verstappen tops 2023 F1 testing

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