Haas F1 Team Bahrain Grand Prix Practice Recap

Mark Sutton / Sutton Images

Event: Free Practice 1 & 2 for the Bahrain Grand Prix – Friday March 3

Location: Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir

Layout: 5.412-kilometer (3.363-mile), 15-turn track

FP1 & FP2 Weather: Sunny / Clear

Drivers: Kevin Magnussen, Nico Hulkenberg

Free Practice 1 (FP1) Rundown:

Magnussen: 7th overall (1:34.402), 20 laps completed

Hulkenberg: 14th overall (1:35.043), 22 laps completed

Fastest: Sergio Perez of Red Bull Racing (1:32.758)

Free Practice 2 (FP2) Rundown:

Hulkenberg: 5th overall (1:31.376), 25 laps completed

Magnussen: 16th overall (1:32.110), 18 laps completed 

Fastest: Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin (1:30.907)


The opening round of the record-breaking 23-race 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, starting with Sunday’s 57-lap Bahrain Grand Prix, kicked off on Friday with practice at the Bahrain International Circuit.

MoneyGram Haas F1 Team drivers Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg ran identical plans in FP1 – both drivers utilizing two new sets of Pirelli’s P Zero Red soft tires during the 60-minute afternoon session. Each driver commenced their track runs in the VF-23 with an installation lap followed by a baseline run on the softs. Magnussen clocked a 1:35.420 with Hulkenberg posting a 1:35.865. Bolting on their second set of tires, Magnussen improved his fastest lap time by the checkered to a 1:34.402 (P7), while Hulkenberg logged a best tour of 1:35.043 (P14).

With the floodlights powered on around the 5.412-kilometer (3.363-mile), 15-turn track, FP2 got underway at 18:00 local time – Magnussen and Hulkenberg starting the evening session on the Pirelli P Zero Yellow medium rubber. A switch to new softs followed for their respective qualifying sims – Hulkenberg setting a fast lap of 1:31.376 placing the German P5 on the timesheet, Magnussen taking P16 – the Dane with a best lap of 1:32.110. A lengthy set-up change on his VF-23 kept Magnussen in the garage before a final shortened high-fuel stint returning on the medium compound. Hulkenberg wrapped up with a high-fuel distance run utilizing both his sets of the medium and soft rubber.

MoneyGram Haas F1 Team ran a total of 85 laps on Friday across FP1 and FP2 – 47 by Hulkenberg and 38 by Magnussen.

Kevin Magnussen:

“FP1 was looking pretty good for us, we’ve been testing quite a bit today and we’ll put it together tomorrow. Some of the things the team have been working on between the test and now, we’ve tried them out and got a few answers. There’s a lot more to try – it was only two practice sessions – but I think we’re in a decent spot. I don’t want to jinx anything, but as usual, it will be very close, and it could be anything.”

Nico Hulkenberg:

“One lap pace is fun but if this is where we are come Sunday, that’s where the gold is, that’s where it matters. That’s where we still have a lot of work to do and some homework – to find pace and work on degradation. It’s going to be difficult but it’s the same for everyone, we need to come up with the best compromise set-up for one lap and for the race. Overall, it’s been a good Friday with things to take away to build on and progress.”

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal:

“Everything we learned at the test, today we could use. For FP1 we went out and made some set-up changes while continuing to learn. In FP2, which is obviously closer to the conditions we’ll have in qualifying, Nico did a very good job and Kevin worked around some further set-up changes, and I think there is more to come from him tomorrow. Hopefully it will be a good day, but all-in-all we’re making good progress in learning about the car – the car is very reliable, which is a plus.”

Next Up:

Saturday March 4 – Final practice runs 14:30-15:30 local time before Bahrain Grand Prix qualifying 18:00-19:00.

Haas F1 Team PR

Spread the love