Mercedes played down their chances in this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix and I wasn’t sure how well they would do in qualifying but seeing their lap times in Q1 and 2, I was very surprised and felt they could be contender for a P3 or P4 position if not better.
Unfortunately Lewis Hamilton put his Mercedes in the wall in Q3 in a rare crash for the 7-time champ which brought out the red flag and at session restart, his teammate, George Russell, promptly put his Mercedes in the wall at turn 10. A very expensive Friday for the team.
Both cars experienced snap oversteer and it does make you wonder if they were experiencing an issue in setup or if both drivers were simply pushing hard to try and get on the front row. Regardless, they may be out of position for the sprint race but given their pace, they may remedy that on Saturday.
Max Verstappen took pole fin his Red Bull or the Sprint race with his teammate Sergio Perez starting down in 13th due to crossing the white line during Q2. Sergio qualified P4 on track. Max was followed by a brace of Ferrari’s with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz with just a tenth between the top three.
Austrian GP Qualifying Results:
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||1m05.852s||1m05.374s||1m04.984s|
|3||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Ferrari||1m05.66s||1m05.576s||1m05.066s|
|4||Sergio Pérez||Red Bull||1m06.143s||1m05.805s||1m05.404s|
|11||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri-Red Bull||1m06.589s||1m06.16s|
|13||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo-Ferrari||1m06.442s||1m06.319s|
|14||Yuki Tsunoda||AlphaTauri-Red Bull||1m06.463s||1m06.851s|
|17||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin-Mercedes||1m06.847s|
|18||Guanyu Zhou||Alfa Romeo-Ferrari||1m06.901s|
|20||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin-Mercedes||1m07.083s|