Davide Valsecchi set the pace in free practice ahead of qualifying for the second race weekend of the GP2 Series season at the Sakhir circuit in Bahrain.
Valsecchi, who somersaulted out of the sprint race at the previous event at Sepang, lapped his DAMS machine in 1m41.417s. His time was 0.671 seconds faster than Max Chilton's Carlin machine, which lapped in 1m42.088s.
In hot conditions, with the air temperature topping 30C, it was reigning British Formula 3 champion Felipe Nasr who set the early pace, a couple of tenths ahead of DAMS team-mate Valsecchi. Addax's Johnny Cecotto Jr then hit the front before Valsecchi set his never-to-be-beaten lap, which was eight tenths clear of the opposition at the time.
Cecotto ended the session third on 1m42.294s, ahead of Nasr's fourth-placed 1m42.320s. Points leader Luiz Razia (Arden) was fifth fastest on 1m42.390s, but after setting his time he wandered into the path of a flat-out Nasr - immediately waving to apologise for almost causing a high-speed accident. The stewards will no doubt want a word with him after the session; Nasr was livid.
Fabio Leimer was sixth quickest for Racing Engineering, ahead of Lotus duo Esteban Gutierrez - who had a number of off-track adventures - and Sepang sprint race winner James Calado.
Series returnee Dani Clos, who replaces Josef Kral at Addax this weekend, was ninth fastest, 1.5s off the pace.