Claude Camilleri emails with his engine view: “To the new Honda engine. I think it will be inevitable that a new PU will have more power. Such advantage cannot be had only from a rear wing upgrade surely. I consider it a huge risk to change PU and risk being judged to have gained an advantage and lose all the points retrospectively. I really think that the upgrade of the wing coincided with the change of the PU to put the advantage gain on the wing. If the upgrade is made to improve reliability when and how often have had problems with their Honda engine recently? Reliability is a very lame excuse.”
There is a man in Austrian getup singing the anthem of Styria. It sounds quite aggressive but lots of picturesque shots of valleys and water provide a calming background.
1 Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
3. Lando Norris (McLaren)
4. Sergio Perez (Red Bull)
5. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
6. Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri)
7. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
8. Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri)
9. Fernando Alonso (Alpine)
10. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin)
11. George Russell (Williams)
12. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari)
13. Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren)
14. Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin)
15. Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo)
16. Nicholas Latifi (Williams)
17. Esteban Ocon (Alpine)
18. Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo)
19. Mick Schumacher (Haas)
20. Nikita Mazepin (Haas)
Lewis Hamilton is concerned by Red Bull’s straight-line speed, which seems to be coming from their new engine, which was introduced last weekend. Some conspiracy theorists believe it has a performance upgrade which is forbidden.
But Verstappen says the improvement is down to the rear wing. “I get this question that we are really quick in the straight, and yes we are, but look at our rear wing, it is not the same,” he said.
“Our engine is all about reliability improvement and no clear advantage on pure power so I am going to fire up my printer next time and bring a print-out of the rear wing difference that we are running compared to other teams.”
“I stopped being interested in F1 when it stopped being competitive – years of undiluted Schumacher, then Vettel, then Hamilton,” Richard Hirst says. “ I’ve always found the worship of Hamilton somewhat excessive: he’s clearly a good guy with his heart, and actions, in the right place, but he’s mainly only had to beat his teammate, such has been the superiority of his car. Now his car is not the best he’s not winning. I know this will be sacrilege to many people but so be it.”
We do not mind sacrilege here.
Lewis Hamilton has a cunning plan to help beat Max Verstappen … rain.
“Max has had a quarter of a second on us all weekend,” said Hamilton. “I don’t think we have the raw pace to overtake him, that’s for sure. We might just be able to keep up.
“I go into the race for a fight and I will be giving it everything. Maybe we will get a surprise. Maybe it will rain.”
Max Verstappen is on pole as the greatest threat to Lewis Hamilton dominance of the sport continues to prove he is up for the challenge, with the Dutchman 12 points clear at the top of the Drivers’ Championship. The Red Bull driver has looked in fine form on Friday and Saturday, thanks to his impressive work when cornering. Verstappen has won on this circuit twice already, so will be more than confident he can do it again.
“I got into qualifying and the car didn’t feel as good as it did in third practice,” Hamilton said after finishing third in qualifying, although he will be alongside Verstappen at the front of the grid following Valterri Bottas’ dangerous driving in the pit lane. Hamilton will be looking to win for the first time in four races, a surprisingly long drought for the world champion.
Lando Norris will start in third after some fine qualifying, as he looks to secure a position on the podium but it’s a very tough ask.
Let’s hope it’s a fun race.