Austrian Grand Prix – Qualifying
Another race weekend is here and it’s the Austrian Grand Prix Qualifying Session.
Here, you’ll be able to see everything as it happens, before, during and after the qualifying session with some driver interviews and team reaction to follow.
Here are some snippets of what Vettel and Hamilton had to say after the press conference, talking to the media about that incident in Baku.
Vettel – “I should have kept my head together. If you make a mistake, you need to learn from it and I’ve definitely learned from this.”
Hamilton – “You need to find out the weakness of your rival, I don’t really know how I’m going to go about this…..”
NEWS – Lewis Hamilton will receive a 5-place grid penalty after an unauthorised gearbox change.
NEWS – Fernando Alonso has changed the power unit – the team won’t be receiving any penalties but they are going back a step and won’t be using the most advanced/up-to-date power unit for the race tomorrow.
Just a few minutes to go until qualifying and last minute updates are taking place on the cars before the drivers head out to the track for the Austrian Grand Prix Qualifying Session.
Qualifying 1 – Austrian Grand Prix Qualifying
One thing we know is that Lewis Hamilton won’t be starting the race in 1st place tomorrow – due to the 5-place grid penalty he has received, even if he qualifies 1st, he will drop down to 6th place for the race tomorrow.
Drivers are now getting ready, putting their helmets on and getting into their cars.
The light turns green and Qualifying 1 has begun!
Magnussen, Grosjean and Sainz are the first drivers on track.
Ferrari are out on track, Mercedes drivers are both still in the pits getting ready.
Romain Grosjean has gone off track at Turn 7 – keeping the car out of the barriers. He’s now back on track.
After setting a great lap time, Magnussen is now making his way back to the pits with what looks like a suspension problem.
Drivers are now back in the pits – Hamilton is 1st with Vettel in 2nd followed by Bottas in 3rd and Verstappen in 4th.
Raikkonen in P11 is going out on track again – he’s now set the 2nd fastest lap time.
Q1 – Knock Out Zone
Drivers are now making their way back into the pits and getting ready for Qualifying 2 – there are some clouds here and there but overall, it’s a pleasant day in Austria.
Qualifying 2 – Austrian Grand Prix Qualifying
Even though Magnussen got through to Q2, he’s out of his car due to the suspension problem which he picked up in Qualifying 1.
Hamilton is out on track – he’s looking strong but remember he has a 5-place grid penalty tomorrow.
Hamilton on the super-soft tyre (red) whereas Vettel is on the ultra-soft (purple).
Bottas sets the 2nd fastest lap time – he’s also on the ultra-soft tyres.
Everyone is pushing their cars as much as they can – At the moment Bottas is 1st with his team-mate in 2nd place.
Vettel and Verstappen in 3rd and 4th place with Raikkonen in 5th.
Drivers are now making their way back into the pits and getting ready for their final run in Qualifying 2.
With 5 minutes to go all the drivers are in the pits and waiting to go back out on track.
Vettel now makes his way on track.
Bottas sets the fastest lap time for Q2 with Vettel in 2nd place followed by Hamilton, Verstappen and Raikkonen who make up the top 5.
Q2 – Knock Out Zone
The drivers are now making their way back to the pit lane before the top 10 start their final running for Q3.
Massa – “We need to understand why we are in this place, our car performed better on the older tyres and not so much on the newer tyres.”
Palmer – “We looked a lot stronger this weekend so I don’t know why we are in this place.”
Qualifying 3 – Austrian Grand Prix Qualifying
Max Verstappen is waiting at the pit-exit, there’s 45 seconds to go until the light turns green. He’s eager to get out on track – might it start raining?
Both Red Bull’s are now waiting – the light turns green and off they go.
Hamilton has also made his way onto track.
Vettel now makes his way onto track too but Ferrari don’t seem to be in such a rush to get their drivers out compared to the Red Bull team.
Christian Horner – “The drivers are on different strategies, you’ll see as the session unfolds.”
Bottas, Vettel and Raikkonen are now coming back into the pits.
Hamilton stays out on track.
Ricciardo and Hamilton now come into the pits.
Verstappen tried to push his car further however he remains 6th fastest.
Ricciardo now makes his way back out onto-track. Verstappen comes into the pits.
Red Bull are running different strategies on their cars.
Hamilton now makes his way back out onto the track too – he needs to improve his time if he wants to reduce the ‘effect of the penalty he’s facing tomorrow.
Bottas now makes his way onto the track too along with Sebastian Vettel. Kimi Raikkonen is on his out-lap.
Grosjean is stuck on track – if he can’t get the car off track that will be it for Q3.
Verstappen has gone off-track, keeping his car out of the barriers.
Hamilton abandoned his lap prior to Grosjean’s problems however a lot of cars had issues out there including Sebastian Vettel.
Valtteri Bottas will start the Austrian Grand Prix on Pole!
Hamilton will drop down to 8th place for the race tomorrow due to his penalty.
Bottas – “Thank you for all the support, the car was getting better and better for me and it was great to drive here.“
Vettel – “I’m very happy, the car was very good and I’m very happy. It’s a great track with a lot of high speed corners and I’m looking forward to tomorrow.“
Hamilton – “Firstly congratulations to Valtteri who did a great job all weekend and congratulations to Sebastian too. I tried my best and I’m happy to be 3rd.“
Vettel – “We have to look after ourselves, Valtteri has been quick all weekend and it should be a great race.“
Hamilton – “I’ll do the best job I can, I’m on the super-soft tomorrow which are slower but they last longer.“
Bottas – “Like Sebastian said, it should be a good race tomorrow – the target is winning and I’m also sure that Lewis will come back through the race and we can score many points.“
Lots more coming soon!