Max Verstappen dominated the 2024 F1 season-opener in Bahrain GP from Sergio Perez in Red Bull 1-2, with Carlos Sainz in third.

It was a clean start at the front in F1 Bahrain GP as Red Bull’s Max Verstappen led the way from pole ahead of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Mercedes’ George Russell. Just behind them, Red Bull’s Sergio Perez passed Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz for fourth.

Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso steadied in at sixth from McLaren pair of Lando Norris and Oscar Piastri, as Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Visa Cash App RB’s Yuki Tsunoda rounded the Top 10 after Haas’ Nico Hulkenberg had a slow start from 10th.

The German tapped the back of Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll to send him into a spin. It also caught out fast-starter Stake F1 Team’s Valtteri Bottas. It did not need any interference as Norris passed Alonso for sixth at Turn 1 when Russell made a move on Leclerc at Turn 4.

He moved up to second with Perez following suit in to take fourth. Piastri, meanwhile, cleared Alonso for seventh. At the front, Sainz started to catch his teammate Leclerc and eventually made the move at Turn 1 and Turn 2 sequence in a close fight.

Hamilton too cleared Alonso for eighth as the pit stop melee kick-started at the front. There was a moment for Williams’ Logan Sargeant who locked-up and went off. It seemed like he would stop but he managed to keep the engine running and got going eventually.

He was seemingly managing a steering wheel issue as he lapped quite slowly at the back. The pit stop saw Sainz lose out to Leclerc but he wasn’t wasting time. He made a big lunge at Turn 1 to take track position while the Monegasque struggled with lock-ups.

Sainz then waited a couple of laps to clear Russell for third and stretch away, while the Brit had Leclerc to fend off. Norris steadied in sixth from Piastri and Hamilton, with Alonso in ninth from Stake F1 Team’s Zhou Guanyu who was 10th from Tsunoda.

There was a moment for Visa Cash App RB’s Daniel Ricciardo at Turn 10 when fighting Alpine’s Esteban Ocon, who he cleared eventually. The Turn 10 also caught out Hamilton at later stages of the grand prix while running at a distant ninth.

The gap in front was solid with Verstappen leading Perez well, while Sainz was behind in third. Russell steadied in fourth while managing a power unit issue, but stayed in front of Leclerc and the McLaren pair of Norris and Piastri.

The second round of pit stops started where Verstappen and Perez opted for a soft tyre run rather than hard which Sainz put in third from Russell, Leclerc and Norris. His teammate Piastri’s slow stop and Hamilton’s fast out lap allowed him to attack the Australian.

He eventually took seventh from Piastri, with Alonso in ninth from teammate Stroll who climbed back up after his spin early on. The Spaniard stopped late on to drop out of the Top 10, but he managed to pass Guanyu quickly to get back in 10th.

He was then chasing teammate Stroll for ninth, as Leclerc closed in on Russell in the fight for fourth. The Monegasque pressed the Brit for a couple of laps as he finally had a lock-up at Turn 10 which allowed the Ferrari driver to get past him for fourth place.

There was a late drama at Visa Cash App RB where they asked Yuki Tsunoda to give the place to Ricciardo, with the Australian being on the different tyre. The Japanese driver resisted but gave way for him to try and get through Haas’ Kevin Magnussen for 12th.

It was not before a spicy radio from Tsunoda. At the front, Verstappen was dominant all-through to open 2024 F1 season with a win in Bahrain GP by 22.457s over teammate Perez in a Red Bull 1-2 finish, with Sainz a distant third to round out the podium.

Leclerc was fourth from Russell with Norris a close sixth from Hamilton, Piastri, Alonso and Stroll in the Top 10. Guanyu did well to be 11th from Magnussen who resisted Ricciardo’s pressure eventually to retain 12th, with an angry Tsunoda in 14th.

Williams’ Alexander Albon was 15th from a recovering Hulkenberg ahead of Alpine pair of Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly, as Bottas and Sargeant rounded all of the 20 finishers. Everyone from Guanyu until Bottas finished a lap down, with Sargeant ending up two laps down.