WATCH LIVE: FP1 for the Bahrain GP on Live Extra from 7am ET

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Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg put on a show under the lights at last year’s Bahrain Grand Prix as Formula 1 was treated to one of the finest on-track battles in recent memory.

We look set to enjoy a similar fight at this year’s race after the fire was reignited between the two Mercedes drivers when Rosberg accused Hamilton of going deliberately slow en route to victory at last weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix.

Both drivers will be keen to do their talking on track in Bahrain, and will want to start the race weekend in the best possible fashion during the first free practice session on Friday.

You can watch FP1 for the Bahrain Grand Prix live on NBC Sports Live Extra from 7am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Besides the battle between Hamilton and Rosberg, Ferrari will also be looking to bring itself into the fight for the race win this weekend. The warmer conditions in Bahrain should suit the Italian marque just as they did in Malaysia.

Sebastian Vettel is riding high after scoring one win and two further podium finishes in the first three races of the 2015 season, and with teammate Kimi Raikkonen also feeling more comfortable this year, the Ferrari duo could be a force to be reckoned with this weekend.

FP1 will see Jolyon Palmer get his second free practice run-out of the season for Lotus after making a good impression in China last weekend. Otherwise, the field is unchanged for the first session in Bahrain.

You can read our complete grand prix preview here, and also take a look at the MST team’s picks for the race weekend.

You can watch FP1 for the Bahrain Grand Prix live on NBC Sports Live Extra from 7am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup
IMSA
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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.


QUALIFYING

Results

Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III