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Sports Articles: Formula 1: Austria Talking Points

Formula 1: Austria Talking Points
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Formula 1: Things To Think About After Race 9 In Spielberg


1. Lowe Leaving Williams

Williams struggles continue as chief technical officer Paddy Lowe has stepped down with the car being the worst in the field by a margin. A once dominant team, now they are usually 2 seconds a lap behind even the worst of the rest. Will they ever recover? It is possible, after all Frank Williams had similar struggles when he first took charge of the team and they are currently believed to be making great strides forward in the aerodynamics department.


2. Leclerc On Pole

Is he finally going to start achieving his potential with the Ferrari, which we know is probably actually the fastest car on pure pace? It would be a good time to start picking up the wins, with Vettel's reputation sinking fast, he could easily change Ferrari's focus to backing him primarily.


3. McLaren Looking Good In Qualifying

Augurs well for the rest of the season and the future. Their engine is the weakest of the four but even that is beginning to show signs it can compete, just as the chassis is making headway. Unlikely they will challenge the top 2, but they could make a play for 3rd in the constructors' over the final races.


4. Vettel's Overtake On Norris

Looked like Vettel made another mistake which nearly resulted in a major crash as he just drove across almost into Norris. It was Norris's quick reactions that saved him. I was surprised that was not looked at, it looked like Vettel cut him off, but I would assume the stewards would have known if that was true with all the data they have available, so it must have been an accident.


5. Vettel Pit Stop

Never even had the tyres ready! How can Ferrari be so consistently inept when it comes to pit stops? Strategy is one thing, but pit stops should be a simple matter of just constant practice and preparation, yet they always seem to get something wrong. In this case badly wrong. And the second one seemed a waste of time as it just put him back behind Hamilton with no chance of getting a fastest lap.


6. McLaren Asking Norris To Keep Ricciardo In DRS Range

Has to be one of the most bizarre radio calls of all time, McLaren asking Lando Norris not to just drive away from Renault's Daniel Ricciardo, but to let him stay within DRS range. Norris's incredulous "forever?" reply summed it up nicely. Just shows how much power engine manufacturers have over customer teams!


7. Gasly Embarrassing

Getting lapped by your team-mate while failing miserably to make any real headway in a car quick enough to win is another in a string of poor performances by Gasly. I am sure Red Bull will be looking to replace him as soon they can find a replacement. He has not worked out at all well there and looks miles away from Verstappen.


8. Sainz Recovery

Did so well to make his way up from the back, making his first set of tyres last long enough he could throw on a new set late and charge over the final laps. Shame he could not quite do enough to get at Gasly as well, it would have been interesting to see those two race. Still, an excellent day for McLaren, especially as Norris stayed in the top 6.


9. Verstappen!

Brilliant driving right up until the overtake when he looked to deliberately let the lock open up a little to drive Leclerc off the road. It is difficult to defend Verstappen on that one, it was clear that he did lessen the steering angle when it would not help him make it round the corner. It could well cost him the win. In fact, it probably should which would be such a shame as there was no need for him to do it. The pass would have happened anyway, Leclerc could simply not live with him.


10. Hamilton Error

Unlike Hamilton to make such a basic error, but he was clearly on the ragged edge to try and compete and just overdrove it lap after lap until he broke the front wing. It was a poor weekend for Mercedes all round, with Bottas once again just offering nothing really, though he did still finish 3rd, despite doing nothing in the race.

Written by Tris Burke June 30 2019 16:43:07