Bahrain Grand Prix – Practice

My first set of notes were wiped out when the power failed, so here’s a second attempt at a summary of the practice sessions for this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, the 4th race of the 2009 season.

Practice 1: (recap)
KR slid off, through the gravel, fortunately missing the end of a tyre wall
SBu’s Ferrari engine (in his Red Bull car) suddenly died mid-corner
Lots of drivers struggled with the hairpin
LH was fastest (1:33.647) followed by NH & RK

Practice 2: (I watched this session again)
JT first on track, followed by TG
JT 1:37.591
AS runs wide in the hairpin
JT 1:37.314
RK 1:36.538
FM locks up in the hairpin and flat spots his front left tyre
JB 1:35.935
JB 1:35.558
LH runs wide out of the final corner
KR locks up in the hairpin – looks like this is going to be a difficult corner for everyone
GF 1:35.343
NP has damaged his front wing – the right side is scraping along the track, throwing up sparks as he passes the pit entrance
Replay shows NP rode over the rumble strips but it didn’t appear to be very dramatic
TG 1:33.787
30mins gone; 60mins left; order is TG, JT, RB, MW, AS, SV, JB, SBo, GF, LH, NR, HK, FM, RK, KN, NH, KR, SBu, FA, NP
JT 1:33.699
Smoke from SBu’s engine but he’s still running
JT 1:33.616
NP spins the Renault
(This is about where I got to when the power went off)
If you combined the best sector times, the lap time would be 1:33.295
(FM P10, even with KERS and fresh super-soft tyres)
60mins gone; 30mins left; order is JT, SV, TG, AS, KN, JB, RB, MW, SBo, LH, SBu, NP, FM, KR, NR, HK, GF, RK, NH, FA
NR 1:33.339
More off-track excursions for LH and TG
5mins left; order NR, JT, SV, MW, JB, FA, TG, AS, RB, NK, SBu, LH, GF, SBo, RK, FM, HK, NH, KR
The official FIA feed now has an overlay feature; they just showed JB and LH taking a corner, and the Brawn car is much quicker
Final order: NR (1:33.339), FA, JT, SV, MW, JB, AS, TG, RB, KN, LH, GF, SBu, SBo, NP, FM, RK, KR, HK, NH.

The 3rd & final practice (for this weekend) is at 4am EST, so I won’t be updating my notes live but I will be up for Qualifying at 7am. 🙂

There are high winds, and therefore sand storms, forecast for race day – that’ll make a change from the rain at the previous grands prix!

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