Austrian Grand Prix – Hamilton and Russell: Mercedes to pieces on Friday to score points on Sunday

The third and fourth is surely the best Mercedes could expect on Sunday at this Austrian Grand Prix. The W13s of Lewis Hamilton and George Russell were not yet in the same league as the first two of the day, Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) and Max Verstappen (Red Bull), although the seven-time world champion sometimes rode since of Monaco. .

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Lewis Hamilton finished 41 seconds behind F1 75 number 16 and George Russell 58 seconds behind. So there is still work to be done, as the void seen at Silverstone once again looked like a ditch. At the heart of his longest series of failures in Formula 1 (12 races), Lewis Hamilton clings to the satisfaction of having achieved a third consecutive podium, and the German team of having added more points this time. week, with 38 units. In fact, Ferrari and Red Bull lost a car during the route on Sunday.

Injured during Q3 on Friday, embarked on the sprint on Saturday with a car damaged by a Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri) error from the start, Lewis Hamilton was able to enjoy at least 71 laps with little or no history on Sunday. .

“Keep eating”

“It was difficult in the Sprint, but today it has gone bettersaid the seven-time world champion. We had a decent pace at various times in the race, although I ran a bit on no man’s land. It was a somewhat tough weekend for the team, but I’m grateful to have finished third and fourth. These are big points, and we have improved the car. Now we have to keep itching to get back to the front. “

Penalty 5 seconds for a contact – the commissioners could have also concluded about the incident of the race – that put Sergio Pérez (Red Bull) in the background of turn 4 in the first lap, George Russell was in fact doubly sanctioned already which had to go immediately through the pit box to change its front spoiler. Back on the track in 19th place, he regained 15 places – better than Sergio Pérez on Saturday – to allow himself a top 4.

“For me, it was a racing incident”

“I started P4 and finished P4, and I probably would have signed for it before the raceexplained George Russell. But I’m a little disappointed with how it all turned out. In the first round, Czech [Pérez] he jumped outside on turn 4, then made a tight trajectory. I had Sainz in front of me and I had to go over the curb. I thought the sanction was severe – for me it was a racing incident. But after that, we optimized the race well from the second lap. “

“On the plus side, we pitted for 20 seconds at the start and finished about 15 seconds off the podium; I climbed the field from P19 to P4.”, he concluded. Without the intervention of the security car (virtual only on Sunday), its performance should be highlighted.

Andrew Shovlin agreed with him regarding the accident with Red Bull. “We think George ‘s penalty is severe: he was on the top edge and left more than enough spacebegged the chief engineer. We had to change the front spoiler after the contact, so it was a very long stop. He had to go up to the group twice, but he rode excellently and made the most of the opportunity. “

Replace spare parts

For the head of the Grays, Toto Wolff, it is even a bit unexpected that his drivers have returned. “When you think we had two cars in pieces on Friday afternoon, it’s a great resultinsisted the team director. But we lack 0 “2 or 0” 3 to get ahead. We see a glow coming out of the tunnel with the car, then disappearing again, and that needs to be fixed. Today in a relay we have been more competitive than yesterday. It is a pleasure to see Charles again [Leclerc] at the highest step. He was very unlucky, and the fight resumes in front. “

“It’s not a clue that has come to us in recent yearsrecalled Andrew Shovlin. Despite the lack of pace compared to Ferrari and Red Bull, it encourages us to go in the right direction. We have a few busy days in the factory as far as the spare parts situation is concerned, this weekend has not been great on this side! But we will replenish the stock in time for Le Castellet. We want a track that fits the car. “

The smooth track and the great curves of the Var circuit have it all so that the Mercedes can drive with a minimum distance to the ground like a Silverstone.

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