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PRACTICE DEBRIEF: No one expected Mercedes at the top – is the Red Bull challenge on?

F1 Correspondent & Presenter

Lawrence Barretto
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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - FEBRUARY 29: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain driving the (44) Mercedes AMG

Formula 1’s first representative practice session of 2024 featured an unusual final classification, with Mercedes locking out the top-two spots, four different constructors’ in the top-five and the best Red Bull only sixth. But how much can we read into any of that?

Mercedes could be in the fight for the front row

No one was expecting Mercedes to trouble the top of the timesheets in FP2, when teams got down to business with their first proper low-fuel runs on soft tyres of the weekend – but that’s exactly what transpired, as Lewis Hamilton headed George Russell.

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