Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Bahrain International Circuit, 2017

Vettel quickest again but Ferrari problems continue

2017 Bahrain Grand Prix second practice

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Sebastian Vettel remained on top in the second practice session for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

But Ferrari’s reliability problems continued and this time it was the world championship co-leader’s car which came to a stop. Vettel reported a “complete shutdown” of his SF70H with more than half an hour left in the session. He was pushed back into the pits and was back on the track ten minutes later.

Vettel had already set the quickest time of the session on super-softs but several of his rivals were delayed by traffic. Valtteri Bottas was just four-hundredths of a second slower in his Mercedes, despite losing the T-wing from his car during the session.

Daniel Ricciardo was a surprising third in his Red Bull, also well within a tenth of a second of Vettel’s pace. Kimi Raikkonen was fourth in the second Ferrari, the team having used mechanics from both sides of the garage to get him out after his turbo failure in first practice.

After two aborted laps, Lewis Hamilton set the fifth fastest time, with the leading five drivers covered by less than three-tenths of a second.

Nico Hulkenberg put his Renault a strong sixth. However he and Hamilton are under investigation following an incident at turns nine and ten.

The quickest Williams belonged to Felipe Massa and was just seven-tenths off the pace in seventh place. Team mate Lance Stroll was only 16th, and in considerable discomfort due to an over-heating seat.

Max Verstappen, Romain Grosjean and Daniil Kvyat completed the top ten.

It was a largely wasted session for Stoffel Vandoorne whose car was being worked on early in the session. Once he joined the action he was soon back in after further engine problems.

Pos.No.DriverCarBest lapGapLaps
15Sebastian VettelFerrari1’31.31029
277Valtteri BottasMercedes1’31.3510.04135
33Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’31.3760.06628
47Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’31.4780.16834
544Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’31.5940.28435
627Nico HulkenbergRenault1’31.8830.57337
719Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes1’32.0790.76937
833Max VerstappenRed Bull-TAG Heuer1’32.2450.93518
98Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari1’32.5051.19534
1026Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-Renault1’32.7071.39735
1120Kevin MagnussenHaas-Ferrari1’32.8541.54433
1231Esteban OconForce India-Mercedes1’32.8751.56538
1330Jolyon PalmerRenault1’32.8761.56638
1414Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda1’32.8971.58731
1511Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes1’33.3192.00934
1618Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes1’33.3612.05136
179Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1’33.9442.63434
1855Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault1’34.0722.7625
1994Pascal WehrleinSauber-Ferrari1’34.1172.80729
202Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Honda1’34.2302.9208

Second practice visual gaps

Sebastian Vettel – 1’31.310

+0.041 Valtteri Bottas – 1’31.351

+0.066 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’31.376

+0.168 Kimi Raikkonen – 1’31.478

+0.284 Lewis Hamilton – 1’31.594

+0.573 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’31.883

+0.769 Felipe Massa – 1’32.079

+0.935 Max Verstappen – 1’32.245

+1.195 Romain Grosjean – 1’32.505

+1.397 Daniil Kvyat – 1’32.707

+1.544 Kevin Magnussen – 1’32.854

+1.565 Esteban Ocon – 1’32.875

+1.566 Jolyon Palmer – 1’32.876

+1.587 Fernando Alonso – 1’32.897

+2.009 Sergio Perez – 1’33.319

+2.051 Lance Stroll – 1’33.361

+2.634 Marcus Ericsson – 1’33.944

+2.762 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’34.072

+2.807 Pascal Wehrlein – 1’34.117

+2.920 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’34.230

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

Second practice best times by tyre

Use the columns to sort times by tyre type.

DriverTeamBest super-soft timeSuper-soft gapBest soft timeSoft gapBest medium timeMedium gap
Lewis HamiltonMercedes1’31.5940.2841’32.2900.013None
Valtteri BottasMercedes1’31.3510.0411’32.6140.337None
Daniel RicciardoRed Bull1’31.3760.0661’33.1510.874None
Max VerstappenRed Bull1’32.2450.9351’32.7690.492None
Sebastian VettelFerrari1’31.3101’32.6150.338None
Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1’31.4780.1681’32.2776’09.096
Sergio PerezForce India1’33.3192.0091’34.6872.41None
Esteban OconForce India1’32.8751.5651’34.4432.166None
Felipe MassaWilliams1’32.0790.7691’34.3362.059None
Lance StrollWilliams1’33.3612.0511’34.9832.706None
Fernando AlonsoMcLaren1’32.8971.5871’34.4802.203None
Stoffel VandoorneMcLarenNone1’34.2301.953None
Carlos Sainz JnrToro RossoNone1’34.0721.795None
Daniil KvyatToro Rosso1’32.7071.3971’35.0542.777None
Romain GrosjeanHaas1’32.5051.1951’34.2862.009None
Kevin MagnussenHaas1’32.8541.5441’34.8832.606None
Nico HulkenbergRenault1’31.8830.5731’33.4841.207None
Jolyon PalmerRenault1’32.8761.5661’34.9392.662None
Marcus EricssonSauber1’33.9442.6341’35.3293.052None
Pascal WehrleinSauber1’34.1172.8071’37.5995.322None

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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45 comments on “Vettel quickest again but Ferrari problems continue”

  1. Can someone tell me why they always use that shoulder camera angle on Vettel and Hamilton’s car while with the others they are showing the t-cam every single time.

    1. Michael Brown (@)
      14th April 2017, 17:34

      I don’t know. I prefer Hamilton’s wider angle, it lets us see more of the steering wheel and the side of the car.

    2. They want the Senna cam.

    3. Xaerun I get your point. In FP1 there was no current lap screen timing, and even though the camera work is good at Bahrain there’s always those moments when they choose to always use the same angles.

  2. Michael Brown (@)
    14th April 2017, 17:35

    Will Vettel be investigated for how he brought his car back to the pits?

    1. You mean safely? No problems with doing that.

  3. What a race we are up to!!!!!!Ferrari & Mercedes are very very close,the smallest of details will make the top 4(difficult to predict as well!!).RBR seems to be in the mix and the midfield battle seems really interesting!Hulk & Massa are a bit faster than Haas,STR,F.I,while Alonso can spring a surprise!Exciting race to come(hopefully)!

  4. When will T-wings be banned? This is the 2nd time it breaks on Bottas’ car and dammaged a RB.

    1. So they should ban engines because of McLaren? If Bottas’ T-wing comes off unsafely for no reason, penalty for Bottas. Then you’ll see how fast they make it un-come-off-able.

      1. Just stop Mercedes using it would be the obvious thing to do

      2. I had exactly the same thought as that once Sky started pedalling their story about this. Everyone else with this wing mounted on the fin is fine seems it’s shoddy German build quality at play here.

    2. Michael Brown (@)
      14th April 2017, 22:45

      I don’t see why T-wings need to banned for everybody because Mercedes sucks at it

      1. Fukobayashi (@)
        15th April 2017, 11:59

        No they need to be banned because they look ridiculous and the safety argument is the best way to force it through without the whole unanimous approval rigmarole.

    3. Didn’t one of the Haas cars lose a T-wing and they just reattached with carbon fiber tape and it stayed with no problem. However, theirs was wing mounted. I think mounting it on a pylon allows it to move side to side and makes it more sensitive from vibrations. The ones mounted on the shark fins seem to move less laterally and the fin seems to help reduce vibrations. However, I am not an engineer, not have played one on TV, and never was blessed with eternal knowledge so your guess is as good as mine.

  5. Second GP in a row that Valtteri loses his T-Wing. I call sabotage, they should change mechanics.

    1. At least Bottas still gets to finish the race without the T wing :)

  6. That T-wing incident was ridiculous. Second time in a week. Either ban the one on the Mercedes or penalise them. This has to stop, it’s dangerous.

    1. @hahostolze
      Noone is interested in parts falling off the car, Mercedes will fix it without a penalty. The danger is neglectable, fins falling off happens all the time in F1.

      1. Well, they didn’t fix it last time either, so your optimism is misplaced.
        Also, not dangerous?! They could cause a high speed puncture, see how not dangerous that is.

        1. So lets ban front wing end plates and barge boards, they’re also always falling off.

          1. Last time a front wing fell off on its own?

          2. Can’t remember the last time a front wing fell off the same car for no reason 2 race weekends in a row.

          3. @ho3n3r

            Come back with that comment when the teams have 60 years of experience from the t-wings. Front wings aint exactly a new thing in F1.

      2. I see the Finns falling off pace more than anything else

        1. Me expecting that didn’t make it any less funny.. 😝

    2. It’s no more dangerous than if a wing mirror or bargeboard falls off. Ok it fell off twice, but that was in practice. You don’t see it fluttering about like the shark fin is.

      All they’ve got to do is reinforce the connectors and it will be fine. Nothing to get worked up about.

  7. Impressive pace from Ferrari, I’d say clearly 2nd unlike the 2 past weekends. On pace with Mercedes, I’m aware that Ferrari has good history on this track but this track is most definitely rear limited and power dependent, it’s also about traction, chassis as always, and coping with hot conditions, hot conditions are always a leveller as most teams can reach the tyres saturation point. Their ceiling of performance.
    Some observations, RBR running a lot less rake, cars were really slow, the pack looked really tight, I think it’s both the fact this track isn’t about aero at all, and the fact the temperatures really push the tyres to their performance grip.

  8. Happily encouraged by Ricciardo’s pace. Maybe they’re slowly catching up.

    1. I think Red bull improvement should be taken with a grain of salt. Mercedes and Ferrari focused on their long run pace today, and we all know Mercedes hasn’t used their “dark” mode yet. :)

      1. you mean the mode where parts falling of damaging cars from other teams ?

        1. Yea, like Mercedes is the first team that has ever happened to.

          1. Member the DRS on the Saubers in 2000? :-)

          2. Michael Brown (@)
            14th April 2017, 22:47

            @mrboerns I member

        2. @seth-space
          Well they tried a similar approach when they were still brawn. But back then it was about knocking out the following driver so this is definately an improvement :P

  9. It would be fab to have a 3 team pole shoot out tomorrow, let’s see what happens FP3 on quali setup runs. I would love to see a Ricciardo pole…

  10. Painful to see that Vandoorne is unable to get a good clean weekend through no fault of his own. Hopefully he will get the chance to string a few together soon

  11. Everyone close to each other.
    Shame Lewis didn’t set a proper fast lap on SS.
    My guess he will be pole again, but for the race no clue at all what will happen.

  12. Does somebody knows more about Ferrari floor being illigal?

    1. I read it on GPTODAY website. Things are getting exciting on and off track this year. Let’s see what happens.

    2. Yeah. Floor is 100 percent legal it has past all tests for 2 full race weekends and at the start of this weekends.

  13. I was looking at an artists impression from f1 racing magazine uk and it’s the same corner as this cover picture I have to say (sadly apart from the shark fin and t wing) it’s spot on and I have not been let down definitely looking forward to the rest of the season but my money’s on Hamilton in the final race

  14. Ru Chern (@)
    15th April 2017, 7:04

    Is there going to be a Friday FP2 analysis on their long stint pace?

  15. After a faltering start to the season so far, Merc are squarely on the proverbial back foot in Bahrain. Since this season’s is a developmental race, I am now uninstalling them as favourites for the WCC and WDC crowns. They even run the real risk of being overtaken by Red Bull. Early doors to be altering my assessment, I know, but the running in Bahrain showed a team stuck in the mindset of “power cures all”. This was justifiable pre regulation change, but they do not appear to be addressing the non-power deficiencies of their package. Chief among these are poor performance in low-speed corners, a seemingly greater appetite for tyre rubber, and vulnerability in dirty air and high ambient temperatures. While Ferrari aren’t immune and Red Bull have ground to make up, Merc outwardly lack the composure of a reigning champion poised to discover ways of winning under new regulations. Instead, they are scrambling to compromise and mitigate leading to what seems like a sacrifice of ultimate power to optimise stint length. They should have the edge on peak performance, as evidenced by quali, but appear limited to narrower setup parameters and, consequently car balance in race trim. My principal reasons for uninstalling Merc as favourites:
    -Continuity break in technical development with Paddy Lowe’s departure
    -Loss of the quality of engineering-actionable input ROS offered
    -Inability to unleash full power in race trim for fear of overheating and/or destroying tyres
    -Narrower setup and balance window of the overall car package relative to their closest rivals

    Allison is a gifted engineer and will come good, but he starts at a considerable deficit having not done any work of note under the new regulations. On the driver front, they lost ROS, scorer of the highest marks recorded by a driver in the engineering aptitude test and a student of the very best team-builder, MSC. They now have HAM who has effectively regressed in that area. He entered the sport with perhaps the greatest raw talent ever seen and applied himself diligently in the simulator in pre-season before subsequently showing a good appetite for the technical aspects through the first two seasons. Since then, he has repeatedly labelled this work boring and become a show-up-and-drive type. I don’t recall anyone complimenting his calibre of technical input or even ability to set up a car. ROS was able to beat him to the 2016 WDC on the strength of aspects such as starts even as HAM logged more wins and poles. BOT’s rapid bedding in suggests to me he already shows greater engineering aptitude and interest than HAM. In a development-driven season, Merc stand to lose when the driver they might look to for inspiration isn’t up to the mark and BOT has yet to fully settle in. Indeed, by acceding to his panicked calls, Merc pitted the polesitter prematurely in Melbourne and threw away track position and what would likely have been victory Down Under. I see repeats of variations on this theme throughout a season as Merc look to placate HAM.

    As for Sakhir today and tomorrow, I see Merc failing to top a single timed session for the first time in ages. Ferrari will stave off the kind of failures that plagued them on Friday and come out on top. HAM looks clueless and I expect him to continue to flounder and ultimately also get beaten by BOT for the first time in both quali and race.

  16. Wow! Such vitriolic assessment coming through. And this clueless guy is a 3 time WDC who has beaten all his team mates and was judged by the paddock chiefs as being the best driver even as he lost the championship last year.

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