MANAMA, Feb 19, 2014 (AFP) - World champions Red Bull endured another frustrating pre-season testing session after last month's Jerez ordeal at Bahrain's Sakhir circuit on Wednesday behind Force India's Nico Hulkenberg.
Sebastian Vettel's all-conquering team missed out on the first five hours of the opening day of the second series of testing before the 2014 season begins in Melbourne on March 16.
When the German world champion finally got their RB10 out on the circuit it lasted only 14 laps, his session brought to a premature end with an unspecified breakdown.
Their experience here mirrored the nightmare test they encountered in Jerez in Spain last month when they only mustered 21 laps over four days as they struggled to get to grips with the raft of new technical regulations.
Wednesday's opening day honours were taken by Hulkenburg, the German returning to Force India after a brief spell with Sauber, posting a quickest time of 1min 36.880 after completing 78 laps.
Ferrari's Fernando Alonso (1:37.879) came in next, one second behind, with Lewis Hamilton (1:37.908) third in the Mercedes.
In fourth, carrying on his impressive showing in Jerez, was McLaren's Danish rookie, Kevin Magnussen, who had the satisfaction of finishing one place ahead of Vettel (1:40.224).
The teams have three more days preparation here this week and four more next week.
Unofficial Wednesday test times from Bahrain:
1. Nico Hulkenberg, Force India, 1m36.880s, 78 laps
2. Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, 1m37.879s, 64 laps
3. Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1m37.908s, 74 laps
4. Kevin Magnussen, McLaren, 1m38.295s, 81 laps
5. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, 1m40.224s, 14 laps
6. Adrian Sutil, Sauber, 1m40.443s, 82 laps
7. Robin Frijns, Caterham, 1m42.534s, 68 laps
8. Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1m44.346s, 5 laps
9. Romain Grosjean, Lotus, 1m44.832s, 8 laps
10. Felipe Massa, Williams, no time, 5 laps
11. Jules Bianchi, Marussia, no time, 3 laps