PRIXVIEW – Austrian Grand Prix

Features Prixview

Round ten of the season sees Formula One head to the spectacular Styrian Mountains for the Austrian Grand Prix. The Red Bull Ring as its known now was originally built in the late 1960’s to replace the nearby Zeltweg Air Base which closed in 1969.

The Österreichring, as it was called originally, was built against the backdrop of the hills, to this day the circuit remains high speed and flowing. The circuit build in a natural basin is fast flowing and remains a challenge as one of the fastest circuits in Formula One, the first race was won by Jack Brabham.

After 1970, the race moved to its current location with Jochen Rindt dominating most of the race only to lose out to Jacky Ixcks. Rindt would be killed later that week in practice for the Italian Grand Prix,  becoming the sport’s first, and to date the only, posthumous world champion.

The following season Jackie Stewart won his second title, but disaster would follow in 1975, with the fatal accident of American Mark Donohue, and the race itself was rain-soaked and was won by Vittorio Brambilla, winning the only F1 race of his career. He crashed when he crossed the finish line when the race was stopped early because the rain got worse.

Racing would come to a halt a few years later because of safety fears, the race would, however, return in 1997 following the re-development of the now A1 Ring. The circuit had been redesigned by Hermann Tilke, much of that design which features long sweeping corners remains to this day.

During the third spell, the most memorable race was in 2002, after Ferrari instructed Rubens Barrichello to cede his victory to Michael Schumacher. It caused public embarrassment for all involved and prompted a ban on team orders. The circuit was redeveloped after 2004.

Brought by Red Bull, much of the circuit was demolished and as the cost got out of control after talks with other investors collapsed. That deal then fuelled reports that Red Bull and Toro Rosso could develop the circuit as a test track for there motorsport operations.

Facts and figures

Race        

Formula 1 Eyetime Grosser Preis von Ostereich 2018

Venue

Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Styria, Austria

Circuit Length

4.318 km (2.683 mi)

Laps

71

Race Distance

306.452 km (190.420 mi)

Lap Record

1:07.411 (Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08 EQ Power+, 2017, Formula One)

Most wins drivers

Alian Prost (3)

Most wins manufacture

McLaren (6)

Fast facts

  • Niki Lauda is the only Austrian driver to have won his home race. He did this in 1984, the year he took his third and final World Championship. Lauda also took three pole positions at the Österreichring.
  • Stefan Johansson suffered one of the strangest F1 accidents ever in 1987 during practice. He struck a deer on a blind crest at 180 mph (290 km/h). Very lucky to have only suffered a few broken ribs, Johansson bravely competed in the race and finished in 7th place.
  • More deer-related chaos followed in 2001 when the animal somehow made it into the venue and dashed across the track, and incident fondly remembered for a hilarious team radio conversation between Juan Pablo Montoya and his Williams
  • Ten drivers have taken a maiden podium finish at the Austrian Grand Prix. Bob Anderson in 1964, Regazzoni and Rolf Stommelen in 1970, Tim Schenken in 1971, Carlos Pace in 1973, Vittorio Brambilla and Tom Pryce in 1975, Alan Jones in 1977, Gilles Villeneuve in 1978 and Valtteri Bottas in 2014
  • The likelihood of a Safety Car is low, largely due to the acres of asphalt run-off giving the drivers room for manoeuvre. However, there was a six-lap Safety Car period in 2015, following a collision at Turn 2 between Fernando and Kimi.

Event timetable

Session

Local

BST

Friday

P1

11:00-12:30

10:00-11:30

P2

15:00-16:30

14:00-15:30

Saturday

P3

12:00-13:00

11:00-12:00

Qualifying 

15:00-16:00

14:00-15:00

Sunday

Race

15:10

14:10

What happened in 2017?

Valtteri Bottas put ion a dominant performance to beat Sebastian Vettel, by less than a tenth of a second to take his second career win. The Finn pulled way despite claims he had jumped the start, he then gained almost half a second in traffic three laps from the end and made no mistake during a tension-filled final lap.

Lewis Hamilton charged from eighth to third, after being awarded a gearbox penalty. However became frustrated in the closing stages as he failed to get past the Red Bull, he did get past on the final lap however he couldn’t make the move stick.

Max Verstappen’s race was over before it had really begun. The Dutchman only made it to the first corner, before being hit by Fernando Alonso’s McLaren, as a result of the Toro Rosso of Daniil Kvyat misjudging his braking and hit pushing it into Verstappen

What to watch for?

Mercedes have dominated the Austrian Grand Prix since it returned to the calendar in 2014. Since this circuit opened in 1969, the race has been one where power has been very important as Mercedes have shown in recent years. Red Bull haven’t had the power from the engine in recent seasons to be in the mix at there home race, and that doesn’t look to change this weekend.

We need to bare in mind that we are in the triple header, all these circuits require good downforce and speed. Mercedes while they have dominated here since the race returned to the calendar the advantage the team has not had that edge this season.

The pressure will naturally be on Red Bull, with this being there home race in more ways than one. However the first race here has seen the team has struggles to fight with Mercedes as the Renault power has struggled here. Ferrari should be in the mix as we seen all season they have been a match for Mercedes, the

2017 vs 2018 Race Data

 

P1 Fastest

P2 Fastest

P3 Fastest

Q1 Fastest

Q2 Fastest

Q3 Fastest

Race Time

Fastest Lap

2017

01:05.975

01:05.483

01:05.092

01:05.064

01:04.316

01:04.251

01:21:48.523

01:07.411

Diff

-1.398

-2.484

-2.009

-1.452

-1.912

-3.741

06:10.405

-1.000

2016

01:07.373

01:07.967

01:07.098

01:06.516

01:06:228

01:07.922

01:27:38.107

01:08.411

Data Profile

A lap of the Red Bull Ring  

Across to the outside for Hamilton for the short Turn One which he hits the apex beautifully before going to the outside on the exit of the corner. Through the kink and the track appears to be damper than at One but good thought two dropping to second. Goes to third for turn three taking a bit of kerb on exit.

Bit of oversteer through four but goes through OK on the short run to five which he does perfectly and six as well. Good through seven going to the inside before darting back across for eight running to the line and a 01:07.922.

Tyres

Driver

Team

Ultrasoft

Supersoft

Soft

L. Hamilton

Mercedes

8

3

2

V. Bottas

8

4

1

S. Vettel

Ferrari

9

2

2

K. Raikkonen

9

1

3

D. Ricciardo

Red Bull – Tag Heuer

8

3

2

M. Verstappen

8

3

2

S. Perez

Force India – Mercedes

9

2

2

E. Ocon

9

2

2

S. Sirotkin

Williams – Mercedes

10

2

1

L. Stroll

10

1

2

F. Alonso

McLaren – Renault

8

2

3

S. Vandoorne

8

2

3

P. Gasly

Toro Rosso –Honda

8

4

1

B. Hartley

8

4

1

R. Grosjean

Haas – Ferrari

7

5

1

K. Magnussen

7

4

2

N. Hulkenberg

Renault

10

2

1

C. Sainz

10

1

2

M. Ericsson

Sauber – Alfa Romeo

9

2

2

C. Leclerc

9

1

3

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Jack

Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

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