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How all 10 teams fared in Bahrain's Official Pre-Season Test

Special Contributor

Becky Hart
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Three days of pre-season testing in Bahrain stood between the teams and the opening race of the season. Conditions were vastly different to the cool spring temperatures of Barcelona, and as the heat took hold, reliability issues started to crop up. Add in some pretty major car evolutions since the 2022 machines were last on track, and there was plenty to discuss ahead of the opening race of the season. Here's how all 10 teams got on in Bahrain, in lap count order.

Mercedes

Total Laps – 384

Fastest Lap – 1m 32.759s (Russell)

It was a mixed bag for Mercedes in Bahrain. They topped the lap charts with a whopping 384 circuits around this desert track, but they didn’t trouble the top of the timing sheets. What they did do is cause the biggest stir of the whole of testing when they unveiled their very sleek sidepods on Day 1, going in a completely different design direction from everyone else. But it didn’t seem to help their porpoising issues, and they seem to have their work cut out ahead of the first race of the season.

ANALYSIS: first look at Mercedes' astonishing new update for the Official Pre-Season Test

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 12: George Russell of Great Britain and Mercedes prepares to drive in the garage during Day Three of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 12, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

AlphaTauri

Total Laps – 370

Fastest Lap – 1m 33.002s (Tsunoda)

Lots of laps for AlphaTauri and no real reliability concerns. So far so good for the team, and in Pierre Gasly they have a proven performer who is just getting better and better with age. Yuki Tsunoda has said he has grown in confidence, and with a season under his belt, is well placed to kick on. The only question marks are over the car, with nothing particularly eye-catching on show. But with some of their rivals struggling, they could be well placed to make a bid for the top of the midfield.

READ MORE: Gasly says battle with Hamilton on Day 3 of Bahrain testing shows 2022 cars are 'clearly' more raceable

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 12: Pierre Gasly of France driving the (10) Scuderia AlphaTauri AT03 makes a pitstop during Day Three of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 12, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mario Renzi - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Ferrari

Total Laps – 349

Fastest Lap – 1m 32.415s (Leclerc)

Ferrari were the talk of the town on Day 1 and 2, consistently quick laps being laid down by both their drivers. Everyone was in rare agreement in the paddock that they were fast, and they didn’t appear to have any reliability problems. They might have been pipped by Red Bull right at the end of Day 3, but nonetheless the Scuderia looks well placed to mount a charge this season.

READ MORE: Leclerc says Ferrari's porpoising problem is 'much better' in Bahrain

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 11: Charles Leclerc of Monaco driving (16) the Ferrari F1-75 on track during Day Two of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 11, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mario Renzi - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Alfa Romeo

Total Laps – 343

Fastest Lap – 1m 32.959s (Zhou)

After troubled running in Barcelona, with plenty of mechanical issues, Bahrain went much more smoothly for Alfa Romeo. Zhou Guanyu got plenty of laps under his belt and even a practice standing start, while Valtteri Bottas likewise spent a fair amount of time on track. The Finn did stop twice though, with the hydraulics playing up, but those looked relatively minor issues compared to the problems of Barcelona.

READ MORE: Bottas 'much happier' after Alfa Romeo enjoy productive opening day of Bahrain test

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 12: Valtteri Bottas of Finland driving the (77) Alfa Romeo F1 C42 Ferrari on track during Day Three of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 12, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Dan Istitene - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Aston Martin

Total Laps – 339

Fastest Lap – 1m 33.821s (Vettel)

This was a good test for Aston Martin, another team to sail through relatively untroubled. The only fly in the ointment was a stop out on track for Sebastian Vettel on Day 2, but the German wasn’t confined to the pits for long once the team recovered his car, with the issue a relatively minor one. Their pace remains a slight unknown, but there is certainly no major cause for concern with the first race just days away.

MUST-SEE: Stroll and Alonso get racy on Day 1 of Bahrain testing

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 11: Sebastian Vettel of Germany driving the (5) Aston Martin AMR22 Mercedes locks a wheel under braking during Day Two of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 11, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Red Bull

Total Laps – 319

Fastest Lap – 1m 31.720s (Verstappen)

Red Bull quietly but assuredly cracked on with their programme on the opening two days, there or thereabouts. Roll on Day 3 and they ran a very different looking car after a raft of upgrades arrived, including a different sidepod design. And whatever they’ve done – it worked. Sergio Perez topped the morning session, and Max Verstappen was comfortably quickest under the lights. So much so that a spin for the Dutchman was soon forgotten.

ANALYSIS: Exploring the updated Red Bull RB18 that broke cover on the final day of testing in Bahrain

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 11: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing prepares to drive in the garage during Day Two of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 11, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Alpine

Total Laps – 299

Fastest Lap – 1m 32.698s (Alonso)

Esteban Ocon shone on Day 2, topping the timing sheets in the morning session despite the temperatures absolutely soaring out there. With plenty of long runs under his belt, it was a good showing by the Frenchman and one that Fernando Alonso was able to match on the final day. No obvious reliability problems, the Spaniard put down a quick lap late on under the lights on Day 3 to raise a few eyebrows out there.

READ MORE: Alonso ‘delighted’ to welcome Szafnauer to Alpine – as new Team Principal hails 'great potential' of squad

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 12: Fernando Alonso of Spain driving the (14) Alpine F1 A522 Renault in the Pitlane during Day Three of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 12, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mario Renzi - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Williams

Total Laps – 258

Fastest Lap – 1m 33.959s (Zhou)

Williams had a good opening day, but it went awry on Day 2. Nicholas Latifi was in the car when the brakes caught on fire, causing him to spin. Things evolved quite rapidly from there, so much so that the team couldn’t get the car fixed in time to run again and the Canadian was limited to just 12 laps. But roll on Day 3 and he more than made up for his lack of running with a mighty 124 laps. Alex Albon had a quiet but composed test, and seems to have bedded in well with his new team as the first race looms large.

WATCH: Nicholas Latifi's Williams stops in flames on the morning of Day 2

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 10: Alexander Albon of Thailand driving the (23) Williams FW44 Mercedes during Day One of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 10, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

McLaren

Total Laps – 199

Fastest Lap – 1m 33.191s (Norris)

They were one of the picks in Barcelona, but on Day 1, things started to unravel for McLaren. First, Daniel Ricciardo was unable to drive after feeling unwell, later being diagnosed with Covid which meant he missed all three days. Then Lando Norris encountered braking issues, with overheating looking a problem for the team. It couldn’t be fully fixed and cost the youngster plenty of running across the three days, not to mention limiting his longer runs to just the final day. Can they fix the problem before the first race? That’s the big question, as when they are running, McLaren do look quick.

READ MORE: Norris says Official Pre-Season Test has been ‘less than ideal’ for McLaren

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 11: McLaren Chief Executive Officer Zak Brown looks on in the garage during Day Two of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 11, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Dan Istitene - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Haas

Total Laps – 253

Fastest Lap – 1m 32.241s (Schumacher)

Haas’s test got off to the worst possible start. Freight delays through no fault of their own meant they couldn’t take part on the first morning, but the FIA later agreed that they could run late on Day 2 and 3, and also early on Day 3, to make up for that lost time. Once on track, niggling reliability issues limited their laps in every session, but every problem was fixed relatively quickly and didn’t prove terminal. And the good news? Like McLaren, when they were on track, they looked quick. Comeback kid Kevin Magnussen also didn’t waste too much time getting back up to speed, although he did say his neck was feeling the strain…

READ MORE: 'I didn’t know I missed F1 that much' – Magnussen on his remarkable return to Haas

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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - MARCH 10: Pietro Fittipaldi of Brazil driving the (51) Haas F1 VF-22 Ferrari on track during Day One of F1 Testing at Bahrain International Circuit on March 10, 2022 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)
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