Nico Rosberg leads Mercedes one two in first F1 practice in Bahrain

Nico Rosberg set the fastest lap in Formula 1's first practice session for this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix, leading a Mercedes one-two

Nico Rosberg leads Mercedes one two in first F1 practice in Bahrain

On a run of four consecutive victories, Rosberg picked up where he left off in the Australian Grand Prix to comfortable outpace Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton at Sakhir.

Rosberg's lap of 1m32.292s on Pirelli's soft-tyre compound was half-a-second quicker than reigning champion Hamilton, and 0.277s up on his pole lap from last year.

The latest Mercedes one-two was streets ahead of the rest, with Kimi Raikkonen third in his Ferrari, albeit 1.834s adrift of Rosberg.

Red Bull duo Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat were fourth and fifth quickest, separated by 0.080s, but both just over two seconds down on the leading Mercedes.

In a tightly-bunched midfield, Ricciardo in fourth down to Jenson Button in 14th were covered by one second.

Nico Hulkenberg was 2.3s off the pace in sixth, ahead of the Toro Rosso pair of Carlos Sainz Jr and Max Verstappen just 0.067s apart in seventh and eighth.

Following on from his sixth place in Australia on Haas's F1 debut, Romain Grosjean was ninth quickest for the American team, 2.706s down.

Felipe Massa completed the top 10, just six thousandths of a second adrift of Grosjean, and 0.067s ahead of Sebastian Vettel in his Ferrari, albeit with his time set on used medium rubber.

Williams's Valtteri Bottas was 11th on the timesheet, followed by Esteban Gutierrez for Haas, with the Mexican three seconds down.

Gutierrez is running a new chassis this weekend after the one in Australia was cracked when lifted off track by a crane following his accident with Fernando Alonso.

Behind Button in 14th was the first of the Renault drivers in Kevin Magnussen, followed by Sauber's Marcus Ericsson and Manor of Pascal Wehrlein.

Stoffel Vandoorne, deputising this weekend for Alonso who has been ruled out with chest injuries following his crash in Australia, was 18th, and just over four seconds behind Rosberg.

Force India reserve Alfonso Celis Jr, in the first of his seven FP1 outings this year, finished 21st and almost five seconds down, with Manor's Rio Haryanto bringing up the rear for Manor, with the Indonesian 5.420s down.

The session was run in much cooler conditions than normal given the unseasonal weather in the region of late.

With air and track temperatures of 22 and 31 degrees respectively, therefore more representative of the race conditions expected on Sunday, it ensured there was more running in the session than has previously been the case, with 16 of the 22 drivers completing at least 20 laps.

FP1 TIMES

Pos Driver Car Time Gap Laps
1 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m32.294s - 24
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m32.799s 0.505s 24
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m34.128s 1.834s 16
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m34.461s 2.167s 27
5 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull/Renault 1m34.541s 2.247s 30
6 Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m34.601s 2.307s 28
7 Carlos Sainz Jr. Toro Rosso/Ferrari 1m34.793s 2.499s 21
8 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso/Ferrari 1m34.860s 2.566s 19
9 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1m35.000s 2.706s 18
10 Felipe Massa Williams/Mercedes 1m35.006s 2.712s 19
11 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m35.073s 2.779s 14
12 Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m35.174s 2.880s 21
13 Esteban Gutierrez Haas/Ferrari 1m35.309s 3.015s 19
14 Jenson Button McLaren/Honda 1m35.440s 3.146s 28
15 Kevin Magnussen Renault 1m35.490s 3.196s 27
16 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m35.728s 3.434s 30
17 Pascal Wehrlein Manor/Mercedes 1m36.371s 4.077s 26
18 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Honda 1m36.392s 4.098s 25
19 Felipe Nasr Sauber/Ferrari 1m36.719s 4.425s 24
20 Jolyon Palmer Renault 1m36.939s 4.645s 28
21 Alfonso Celis Force India/Mercedes 1m37.287s 4.993s 23
22 Rio Haryanto Manor/Mercedes 1m37.714s 5.420s 27


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