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Maini on top, Norris second in first F2 practice session of season

by Ida Wood

Photo: FIA Formula 2

Trident’s Arjun Maini topped the first practice session of the 2018 Formula 2 season at Bahrain, with Carlin’s Lando Norris and Sergio Sette Camara going second and third fastest.

European Formula 3 champion Norris and team-mate Sette Camara topped the early running for the returning Carlin team, with DAMS driver Alexander Albon and ART Grand Prix’s George Russell third and fourth.

Haas development driver and Karun Chandhock protege Maini went fifth with his first flying lap, and set the session topping time with 17 minutes to go.

Norris, Sette Camara, Albon and Russell all failed to better their best laps, meaning Albon and Russell ended the session in fourth and fifth.

Returning Russian Time driver Artem Markelov, who finished runner-up to Charles Leclerc last year, was sixth fastest, with former Formula 1 driver Roberto Merhi, European F3 graduate Maximilian Gunther, Ferrari junior Antonio Fuoco and Sean Gelael completing the top 10.

Expected title challengers Jack Aitken, Nicholas Latifi and Nyck de Vries could only manage 11th, 12th and 13th, although all were less than eight tenths off the pace.

Free Practice results?
Pos Name Team Time
1 Arjun Maini Trident 1m44.549s
2 Lando Norris Carlin +0.051s
3 Sergio Sette Camara Carlin +0.104s
4 Alexander Albon DAMS +0.220s
5 George Russell ART Grand Prix +0.263s
6 Artem Markelov ?Russian Time +0.312s
7 Roberto Merhi MP Motorsport +0.456s
8 Maximilian Gunther Arden +0.461s
9 Antonio Fuoco Charouz Racing System +0.531s
10 Sean Gelael Prema +0.665s
11 Jack Aitken ART Grand Prix +0.719s
12 Nicholas Latifi DAMS +0.742s
13 Nyck de Vries Prema +0.780s
14 Tadasuke Makino Russian Time +0.782s
15 Luca Ghiotto Campos Racing +0.795s
16 Santino Ferrucci Trident +0.870s
17 Ralph Boschung MP Motorsport +1.015s
18 Nirei Fukuzumi Arden +1.300s
19 Louis Deletraz Charouz Racing System +1.409s
20 Roy Nissany Campos Racing +1.858s