Russell third fastest on final FIA Formula 2 pre-season test
George Russell set the third fastest time on the last day of pre-season testing at the Sakhir International Circuit.
The ART Grand Prix driver headed to Bahrain for the final test of pre-season, before the 2018 FIA Championship begins in just over a fortnights time.
Day one saw both Russell and teammate Jack Aitken gathering crucial long run data for an understanding of how the new Pirelli tyres work with the new F2/18 Dallara built machine. The duo didn't set any flying laps in the morning session.
The afternoon session saw increased running, which saw temperatures reach as high as 30 degrees over the course of the session. Russell amassed 65 laps on the opening day to set the 11th fastest time of the day - still focusing on race pace.
Day two once again presented itself with ideal track conditions. Russell hit the top of the times early on in the morning session before settling into the testing programme for the rest of the session - as he set the 6th fastest time of the session, completing 40 laps in the process.
The afternoon once again was prioritised by race simulations and high fuel running. Russell once again managed a large haul of laps - increasing his total of laps to 81 during day two at the end of the day.
The final day of the Bahrain test saw Russell start the day with some lower fuel running, as he popped in an early benchmark time to put himself 3rd fastest in the session. As the temperatures increased, attention once again turned to a race preparation - making the most of the conditions that the team's will most likely face when they return to Bahrain for the opening round of the season.
Russell ended the morning session with the 3rd fastest time, with a lap tally of 24 laps.
ART made full use of the final afternoon of testing, with both Russell and Aitken combining to complete 111 laps between them in a hugely productive final day of testing, maximising the time available to develop the car ready for the first race of the season. Russell covered 58 laps, the most of anybody of the test in a single session on his way to setting the 8th fastest time in the process.
George Russell "It was a productive day to end pre-season testing, with our programme completed and plenty of data collected for us to learn from going into the season. I am feeling ready for the first race of the season in two weeks time"
With pre-season testing completed, attention now full turns towards the opening round of the 2018 FIA Formula 2 Championship on the 6-8 April, when the teams and drivers return to the Sakhir International Circuit.
Russell, the reigning GP3 Series Champion - will be making his Formula 2 debut and getting his first experience of racing with pit-stops during the first race of the season, as he kicks off his 2018 campaign.
Images: Courtesy of FIA F2 Media