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    On Thursday, AlphaTauri driver Pierre Gasly clocked in the fastest time in Formula One pre-season testing. However, a lot of the focus was on the new-look Mercedes car and American team Haas missing the morning start after some of its equipment didn’t arrive on time. Gasly clocked in with a quick 1 minute, 33.9 seconds on the 5.4 kilometre desert track in Sakhir.

    The testing session under floodlights ended a few minutes early with a red flag after Red Bull driver Sergio Perez got stuck in the gravel trap. Gasly finished ahead of Ferrari drivers Carlos Sainz Jr. and Charles Leclerc. Lewis Hamilton, the seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton finished 11th in the sleeker Mercedes W13.

    Four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel wore a white helmet with “no war” written on one side and a dove of peace on the other. The Mercedes car has attracted a lot of attention because it features a much narrower sidepod compared to their car tested two weeks ago. There is a triangular slit for the radiator inlets that could improve airflow by providing a higher cooling speed and improve downforce.

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