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Ferrari prances to one-two finish with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr at Bahrain Grand Prix

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Formula One kicked off its 2022 season within the kingdom of Bahrain on Sunday. And whereas there have been loads of similarities with final season’s notorious finale within the UAE, this felt like a brand new starting for the game. A brand new period. A brand new order.

Ferrari, extra pranging horse than prancing horse in recent times, in the end claimed a superb one-two by way of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr. But that tells solely half the story of an interesting first race which threw up no finish of drama, together with each Red Bulls retiring within the ultimate laps with suspected gasoline pump points, gifting Lewis Hamilton an sudden podium finish despite his Mercedes “porpoising” – bouncing up and down due to the airflow beneath the automobile.

A new era: Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr after their one-two finish at the Bahrain Grand Prix.

A brand new period: Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr after their one-two finish at the Bahrain Grand Prix. Credit:Getty

Karma? That relies on the place you stand on Abu Dhabi. But Hamilton’s military of followers will little question have loved Red Bull’s twin DNFs, which staff principal Christian Horner described because the staff’s “worst nightmare”. They will even have loved the best way world champion Max Verstappen misplaced his rag at his personal staff over their technique within the mid-part of the race as he tried however failed to get the higher of Leclerc. Afterwards, Verstappen mentioned he felt that they had value him an opportunity of victory. As for the DNFs, he was even much less impressed.

“Problems can happen, and you might retire but at this level it shouldn’t happen,” he noticed.

Verstappen won’t have been pleased, however impartial followers shall be ecstatic there are genuinely three groups within the championship combat. And whereas it’s too early to draw conclusions concerning the brand new automobiles, which have been designed to encourage extra on-track motion, the indicators are promising.

Verstappen and Leclerc engaged in some fantastic wheel-to-wheel racing within the center rounds, swapping locations 5 instances in two laps at one level, whereas, behind the leaders, there have been battles all the best way down the sphere. These new laws have definitely shuffled the pack. No one may have predicted just a few months in the past that Haas and Alfa Romeo would finish fifth and sixth at the primary race, making life troublesome for Mercedes, whereas the 2 McLarens could be 14th and fifteenth.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc leads Max Verstappen and the rest of the field.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc leads Max Verstappen and the remainder of the sphere. Credit:Getty Images

Hamilton had predicted that he would go backwards from his beginning place of fifth, with Ferrari and Red Bull “in another league” due to Mercedes’s teething issues. In reality, he went ahead, passing Red Bull’s Sergio Perez early on. But he didn’t have the tempo to keep with the leaders. Perez reclaimed place on lap 11, by which stage Hamilton was complaining about tyre degradation.

Meanwhile, the race between Leclerc and Verstappen at the entrance was riveting. Verstappen twice got here in for brand spanking new rubber, and on each events was Angry that he was not allowed to push on his out lap to attempt to put stress on the Frenchman. The Dutchman’s race engineer, Gianpiero Lambiase, discovered himself on the receiving finish of a tongue lashing. “OK, this is two times that I have taken it easy on the out lap when I could have easily been in front,” Verstappen shouted.

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