Bottas took pole position after setting the fastest lap during the first round of times in Q3, but couldn't improve on his second attempt after he found himself skating through the gravel in the middle sector.
His teammate Lewis Hamilton, who topped the opening three practice sessions ahead of qualifying, slotted into second place with a time that was 0.012s slower than Bottas'.
Red Bull's hopes of sealing pole position were dashed as Max Verstappen was over half a second down on Bottas. However, the Dutchman managed to progress from Q2 on the medium compound, meaning he will be on the more durable tyre for the start of Sunday's race.
Ferrari understood that it would be off the pace compared to the top teams heading into the weekend, however its dramatic lack of pace will see it ask serious questions as it prepares to introduce an upgrade in Hungary.
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing
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