Leclerc Dominates Bahrain Test Finale

leclerc sf-24 bahrain test

Charles Leclerc finished the final day of F1 pre-season testing in Bahrain with the fastest lap, hinting at a strong start for Ferrari. The day was marked by a continuous session due to an early red flag, with teams maximizing their track time ahead of the season opener.

Between the lines

  • Leclerc’s fastest lap of 1m 30.322s on C5 tyres outpaced George Russell by a mere 0.04s, showcasing Ferrari’s potential.
  • A disrupted morning session, caused by Perez’s encounter with a drain cover, led to a non-stop run to the day’s end.
  • Track conditions in the evening mirrored those expected for the Bahrain Grand Prix, providing teams with valuable data.
  • Max Verstappen and Yuki Tsunoda showed Red Bull’s strong form, while Alex Albon racked up the most laps for Williams.
  • With pre-season testing wrapped up, teams are now analyzing data to refine their strategies for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

📊SF24 vs RB20 (and comparison with 2023 quali)

RB20’s top speed and cornering speeds were higher; yet, SF24 produced an overall quicker lap

The SF24 is still far from the SF23’s top speed and high-speed cornering performance

Source: https://twitter.com/FDataAnalysis/status/1761023500116951277/photo/1

 

Go deeper

As the sun set on the Bahrain International Circuit, the intensity of pre-season testing ramped up. Charles Leclerc’s performance in the Ferrari was not just a flash in the pan; it was a statement of intent. His lap, set on the softest compound provided by Pirelli, edged out Mercedes’ new recruit George Russell, suggesting a tight battle ahead.

The day’s proceedings were not without drama. A rogue drain cover brought out the red flags early on, but once the track was deemed safe, it was all systems go. The extended session allowed teams to cram in more performance runs and long stints, with drivers like Daniel Ricciardo completing race simulations to gather crucial endurance data.

As temperatures dipped, the track conditions offered a preview of the race environment, adding authenticity to the data collected. This was particularly beneficial for the likes of Zhou Guanyu, who finished an impressive third, and the Red Bull duo of Verstappen and Tsunoda, who were hot on the heels of the frontrunners.

Alex Albon’s marathon day saw him complete more laps than any other driver, a testament to both his stamina and Williams’ reliability. The mileage under Albon’s belt could prove invaluable as Williams looks to climb the midfield ranks this season.

With the checkered flag on testing, the focus now shifts to data analysis. Teams will pore over every detail, seeking performance gains and reliability improvements. The countdown to the Bahrain Grand Prix is on, and if testing is anything to go by, we’re in for a thrilling start to the F1 season.