While the Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing Teams in the NLS will now have to wait a little longer for their season to start, the 2021 F1 campaign got underway with a veritable floodlit spectacular in Bahrain.
- This is what happened: Results and facts
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This is what happened: Results and facts
- F1: Lewis Hamilton wins season opener in Bahrain; Valtteri Bottas joins him on the podium in P3
- 24H Series: Impressive recovery by the #85 Mercedes-AMG GT3 at Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello
Facts & figures from Bahrain: The 72nd F1 season got underway last weekend with a spectacular curtain-raiser in Bahrain. A duel to the finish line culminated in reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton securing his fourth consecutive victory at the Bahrain International Circuit and his fifth overall. Lewis now ranks as the most successful contestant in the Bahrain Grand Prix. In the course of a thrilling race, with Max Verstappen in the Red Bull giving him a hard time right through to the chequered flag, Lewis set another record in terms of lead laps. His tally of 5,126 takes him past previous record holder Michael Schumacher’s 5,111. Valtteri Bottas finished his 80th Grand Prix for the Mercedes factory team in third place, which was enough for Mercedes to take over at the top of the all-time leaderboard for podiums in the Bahrain GP, with 15 to their account.
Fight-back in the 12H MUGELLO: Customer Racing team CP Racing put in a consistently strong performance in the 12-hour race at the Mugello Circuit, which constituted the second round of this year’s 24H SERIES. The number 85 car, one of three Mercedes-AMG GT3s on the grid, mounted an impressive charge through the field. Having qualified in P10, the driver quartet of Charles Espenlaub, Joe Foster, Shane Lewis and Charles Putman (all USA) worked their way up into the Top Five overall before eventually having to settle for seventh place at the end of the 328-lap distance. The number 58 car of MP Racing finished eleventh, while Zakspeed were disappointingly obliged to park their car after only 49 laps.
NLS season opener cancelled: The Mercedes-AMG Customer Racing teams will now have to wait until 17 April for their first competitive outing in the Nürburgring Endurance Series, after round one of the series was cancelled due to inclement weather. When the five Mercedes-AMG GT3s and three Mercedes-AMG GT4s put in their first laps on the Nordschleife during last Friday’s test sessions, the weather looked promising. However, the onset of snowfall in the Eifel region put a stop to qualifying on Saturday morning. When it started snowing again later, the stewards decided that the track conditions were not safe enough on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife for the race to proceed.