Formula 1 Livefeed

Live: F1 Bahrain GP commentary and updates – FP3 & Qualifying

Follow the live action as the Formula 1 Bahrain Grand Prix continues with Saturday practice and qualifying.

Live: F1 Bahrain GP commentary and updates – FP3 & Qualifying

After the intense three-day pre-season test at the same track last week, the 2023 F1 season begins this weekend with the Bahrain GP.

Having missed the pre-season test due to a wrist injury, Lance Stroll is making his comeback for Aston Martin alongside Fernando Alonso, with the Spaniard going quickest on Friday.

Bahrain GP final practice begins at 11:30am GMT followed by qualifying which starts at 3:00pm GMT and the race takes place on Sunday at 3:00pm GMT.

By: Stephen Lickorish, Megan White, James Newbold, Haydn Cobb



  • Verstappen on pole for 2023 F1 opener in Bahrain
  • The reigning champion leads a Red Bull 1-2 in qualifying ahead of Ferrari pair Leclerc and Sainz
  • Alonso qualifies fifth for Aston Martin in front of both Mercedes
  • Out in Q2: P11 Norris, P12 Bottas, P13 Zhou, P14 Tsunoda, P15 Albon 
  • Out in Q1: P16 Sargeant, P17 Magnussen, P18 Piastri, P19 De Vries, P20 Gasly


  1. Verstappen, Red Bull, 1m29.708s
  2. Perez, Red Bull, 1m29.846s
  3. Leclerc, Ferrari, 1m30.000s
  4. Sainz, Ferrari, 1m30.154s
  5. Alonso, Aston Martin, 1m30.336s
  6. Russell, Mercedes, 1m30.340s
  7. Hamilton, Mercedes, 1m30.384s
  8. Stroll, Aston Martin, 1m30.836s
  9. Ocon, Alpine, 1m30.984s
  10. Hulkenberg, Haas, No time
Status: Stopped
Thank you very much for joining us today, as ever. We'll be back tomorrow with build up to the Bahrain Grand Prix - don't miss it! See you then.
A few of our questions have been answered, but plenty more remain - not least how the cars will fare in race trim when tyre degradation becomes a factor. So there's plenty more to look forward to tomorrow as the first race of the season finally gets going.
So, what to make of that? Red Bull, as expected after testing, has the edge. And for all of Fernando Alonso's promising form in practice, Aston Martin wasn't able to usurp the Ferraris as the nearest challenger to the RB19. But he was ahead of the two Mercedes, who have plenty of work to do.
A tactical decision, it appears, was behind Leclerc's decision not to head out for a second Q3 run. It didn't cost him a position, as he remained third - so could keeping a set of tyres back prove key? Red Bull didn't do a second run at the end of Q2 though, remember.
Ocon too you expect will be chuffed with ninth. Alpine may face a fight to stay at the head of the midfield bunch given Aston's form, but the incumbent has kept the French cars at the sharp end. A disappointing day for Gasly meanwhile means the Alpine newcomer will start last.
Although Hulkenberg lost his best lap for a track limits breach, it didn't cost him a position as his best effort was still slower than Ocon in ninth. A grand effort all the same from the German, who starts seven places ahead of his team-mate.
Aston will be heartened by making Q3 with both cars, although Alonso's deficit to pole ended up at a yawning 0.628s after topping FP2 and FP3. That just goes to show that practice is practice, and qualifying is an entirely different ball game.
So Red Bull starts 2023 much as it ended 2022, with a 0.292s gap to the next-best machine in third.
Sainz improves to fourth on a 1m30.154s but is 0.154s shy of Leclerc in third. Then Alonso will start fifth ahead of Russell and Hamilton.
Verstappen improves again and consolidates his pole position. It's a 1m29.708s for the world champion, who will be joined on the front row by Perez who manages a 1m29.846s.
Stroll improves but remains eighth. It's enough to keep him ahead of Ocon as the flag comes out.
Hulkenberg meanwhile has had his time deleted for track limits.
Ocon is yet to set a time and is going for his only run of this Q3 session, joined on the track by Stroll, Sainz and the Rrd Bulls.
The Red Bulls and Sainz return to the track, but Leclerc is out of his car.
It's fifth for Russell, but Hamilton is only seventh!
Hulkenberg beats Stroll into sixth - but what can the Mercedes muster?
Alonso goes provisionally fourth, slotting in ahead of Sainz!
Stroll is fifth and slowest of those to have set a time. Now here come the Mercedes, Alonso and Hulkenberg.