Hamilton on pole, Vettel beats Leclerc – after all
Red cucumber salad is still on the menu in Spielberg. In rainy qualifying for the Styrian Grand Prix, Sebastian Vettel made it to Q3 for the first time in 2020 and goes from 10th place to the second race of the season, while teammate Charles Leclerc did not get past 11th place. Despite all the setup problems, the measure of all things was Lewis Hamilton. The world champion whipped his “black arrow” to pole position in 1.19.702 minutes – with a 1.2 (!) Second lead over the second Max Verstappen in the Red Bull.
Hamilton the water pistolero
After the 3rd free practice fell victim to the heavy alpine rain, the Pole-Hatz could only start with a delay of 45 minutes. Since the Red Bull Ring was more like a swimming pool, of course all drivers drove out in full wets in both Q1 and Q2 – and thus have free choice of tires for the race on Sunday (3.10 p.m. live on RTL on TV and on TVNOW), it should be dry.
It became apparent early on that Mercedes wore his pants even in the rain. Hamilton in particular presented his driving skills under difficult conditions and popped one magic time after the other out of the water pistol – no trace of setup problems from the Friday sessions. “It was incredible. I feel like I’m back,” Dominator Hamilton sparked into the box.
In the video: 1.2 seconds of amazement at Mercedes Motorsport Director Wolff
Verstappen’s last attack ends in the paddling pool
In terms of pace, the Briton, who had missed the podium at the Austrian Grand Prix a week ago, could not hold a candle to his monster comeback. Verstappen’s last-second attack on Hamilton ended in the run-out zone – the Dutchman wanted too much and ended up in the paddling pool beyond the curbs shortly before the end.
Mercedes colleague Valtteri Bottas only finished fourth, more than 1.4 seconds behind. Third came Carlos Sainz, who confirmed McLaren’s top form.
In the video: King, Water and Danner work on rain thrillers
Vettel: “Just too little today”
“All in all, we weren’t fast enough, it was easy, in the end it rained heavily, there was aquaplaning, it was just too little today,” said Vettel, who could hardly buy more for 10th place than for 11th place last weekend . Vettel and Hamilton ended up almost 2.4 seconds apart. Perhaps the tiny victory against the Monegasque is at least a bit of balm on Vettel’s wounds.
In the video: This is what Sebastian Vettel says about his performance in qualifying
Perez smears off at Russell premiere
Williams pilot George Russell made it to Q2 for the first time. Sergio Perez could only dream of that. For the racing point man, who was surprisingly third in the second free practice session, the day was over after the first qualifying session.
“It was extremely difficult for us to get the tire temperature right. Now we have to fight from behind, that will be a big challenge,” said the Mexican.