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Bahrain Grand Prix completes F1’s April back-to-back on CNBC

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Formula 1 completes the second leg of its first back-to-back stretch of races this weekend with the Bahrain Grand Prix, which this week runs on CNBC instead of NBCSN.

Sebastian Vettel won in Melbourne to kick off the 2017 season while Lewis Hamilton countered with an authoritative victory last weekend in Shanghai, to leave the Ferrari and Mercedes driver square on 43 points heading into the third round of the season.

Nico Rosberg won last year which leaves the door open for either of them to regain their Bahrain crown. Hamilton won in 2014 and 2015 while Vettel won in 2012 and 2013. So a win for either driver would be his third at the track.

Kimi Raikkonen has never won at Bahrain but the Ferrari driver has traditionally run well there. Since the race premiered in 2004, Raikkonen has eight podium finishes there (second in 2008, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 and third in 2005, 2006, 2007).

All sessions will be broadcast on CNBC, NBCSN or via the NBC Sports App. Leigh Diffey, David Hobbs and Steve Matchett are on the call with Will Buxton reporting from the pits and paddock. Times shift to a morning hour after the two late night races to start the year.

Here’s the schedule, with stream links and TV network if applicable:

Formula 2 will also be streamed this weekend online via, and here’s those links:

The next race is the Russian Grand Prix, on April 30.

Ferrari teammates Vettel and Raikkonen fastest in rainy final practice at Australian GP

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen went one-two in the final practice session ahead of qualifying at the water-logged Australian Grand Prix on Saturday.

Vettel set a best-lap time of 1 minute, 26.067 seconds, more than 2.4 seconds faster than his teammate in second.

Both Ferrari drivers switched from their intermediate tires to the super-fast, ultra-soft tires for the final few laps of the session, testing conditions on the track after a day-long downpour left it slick and filled with small puddles.

Mercedes drivers Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton did not opt to try out their soft tires, sticking to the intermediates for the entire session. They had the seventh- and eighth-fastest times, after topping the leaderboard in practice in dry conditions on Friday.

The heavy rains subsided by early afternoon, allowing the track to rapidly dry during the third practice session and making conditions safe for drivers to test their soft tires.

Still, only a few drivers completed a timed lap with the softer compounds, with Mercedes, Red Bull and most of the others staying with their intermediates.

Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson had the third-fastest time of the session on ultrasoft tires, followed by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen on intermediates.

Hamilton remains the favorite to capture his fifth straight pole position at the Australian Grand Prix in qualifying later Saturday. He had the fastest laps on ultrasoft tires in the two practice sessions on Friday, though Verstappen was right behind him.

Verstappen and Vettel both slid on the slick track early in the third practice session, but maintained control and completed their runs without incident.

Verstappen’s teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, had the sixth-fastest time of the session. The Australian’s chances of winning his fifth career Grand Prix on his home track in Melbourne took a hit late Friday when he was assessed a three-place grid penalty for Sunday’s race.

The Australian driver was penalized for driving too fast under red-flag conditions during Friday’s second practice session because of debris on the track.