Styrian Grand Prix RECAP: Max Verstappen dominates in Austria to extend championship lead

Styrian Grand Prix: Summary

  • Max Verstappen started from pole and dominated from lights to flag to claim victory
  • Lewis Hamilton tried to keep pace, but eventually finished 35 seconds adrift after late pitstop to claim fastest lap
  • Valtteri Bottas held off a charging Sergio Perez to claim third
  • Charles Leclerc named “Driver of the Day” after superb comeback drive after first-lap incident

    Styrian Grand Prix: Final Classification

    1. Max Verstappen WINNER
    2. Lewis Hamilton +35.743
    3. Valtteri Bottas +46.907
    4. Sergio Perez +47.434
    5. Lando Norris +1 LAP
    6. Carlos Sainz +1 LAP
    7. Charles Leclerc +1 LAP
    8. Lance Stroll +1 LAP
    9. Fernando Alonso +1 LAP
    10. Yuki Tsunoda +1 LAP
    11. Kimi Raikkonen +1 LAP
    12. Sebastian Vettel +1 LAP
    13. Daniel Ricciardo +1 LAP
    14. Esteban Ocon +1 LAP
    15. Antonio Giovinazzi +1 LAP
    16. Mick Schumacher +2 LAPS
    17. Nicholas Latifi +3 LAPS
    18. Nikita Mazepun +3 LAPS
    19. George Russell – DNF
    20. Pierre Gasly – DNF

    Fastest Lap: Lewis Hamilton

    Styrian Grand Prix: Live Race Updates


    Lewis Hamilton puts the pedal to the metal and grabs the fastest lap on the last lap of the race. And Valtteri Bottas holds off a charging Sergio Perez for third. A crazy final lap to end a superb grand prix.

    Lap 70: Lewis Hamilton comes in for fresh rubber in a bid to put in a fastest lap on the final lap of the race and grab an additional championship point. Given his massive advantage over his team-mate, it’s a smart move, as it gives him a chance to reduce the damage of defeat to Verstappen, who is now already on his final lap of the race.

    Lap 63: A collection of dark clouds is floating over the Red Bull Ring. Could we be set for some late rain? Lewis Hamilton asked the same question over the radio and was told, “There’s nothing on the radar.” There might not be much on the radar, but there’s some pretty threatening looking clouds rolling in. A late downpour could cause havoc with this race, and if it does, we’re totally here for it.

    Lap 60: This race may be pretty set for first and second, but the battle for third looks like the most gripping fight as we enter the final 10 laps. Bottas is stuck behind Daniel Ricciardo, while Perez is putting in fastest laps as he reels in the Mercedes. The AWS stats predict Perez will be in striking distance within seven laps, which means we could be in for a grandstand finish for the final step on the podium. The cap is now 12.3 seconds and falling quickly.

    Lap 57: There’s an air of resignation in Hamilton’s radio conversations with his team. “I can’t close that gap,” he said after being told he’s eight seconds behind Verstappen. But Hamilton was told to keep plugging away, with tyre degradation Mercedes’ best hope. Meanwhile, Sergio Perez has been told it’ll be a close-run thing with Bottas by the end of the race. Bottas, for his part, has been given the hurry-up as he looks to weave his way through back markers.

    Lap 55: Sergio Perez is on a TWO-STOPPER! He comes in for fresh medium-compound rubber and wlll be told to push like hell as he sets off after Valtteri Bottas in third place. Meanwhile, Bottas is on worn, old tyres, along with Hamilton and Verstappen ahead of him. Perez won’t challenge for the win, but a podium could be within reach. He’s 20 seconds behind Bottas, but will likely start lapping considerably quicker.

    Lap 51: Mercedes have made their choice. “It’s all about getting to the end now,” Lewis Hamilton is told, with 20 laps to go. Meanwhile, Max Verstappen is getting more issues with his Red Bull and is talking about keeping away from the kerbs to avoid further issues. Apparently, the issue is with “braking while in Turn 10,” according to Red Bull’s radio. Will it be a race-changing issue? With Verstappen seven and a half seconds clear of Hamilton, it’ll have to be something pretty major.

    Lap 44: There’s contact between Charles Leclerc and Kimi Raikkonen, with the Ferrari man clipping the Alfa driver’s front wing on his way past. The Finn is ploughing on, regardless, while Leclerc will be hoping he hasn’t picked up a puncture. Meanwhile, Leclerc’s Ferrari team-mate Carlos Sainz has moved into the top six. He’s quietly having a very good race.

    Lap 39: George Russell is OUT of the race. A hugely disappointing outcome for the Englishman, who had shown so much promise throughout the weekend. A technical issue with his Williams has forced him out of the Grand Prix. Imagine what he could do in a top-drawer car with better reliability. Maybe we’ll find out next season…

    Lap 34: Max Verstappen has reported an issue with “BBW,” a reference to his brake by wire system, while Lewis Hamilton has reported lots of “de-rates,” a reference to the energy harvesting being clipped off in his hybrid engine. However, it appears Hamilton is the man making more progress. He’s pushing to close the gap and is now under five seconds. Verstappen has the cushion to consider his options, but Mercedes may let Hamilton off the leash, tell him to push flat out and potentially switch to a two-stop strategy.

    Lap 30: Verstappen is in and out in the blink of an eye as Red Bull complete a lightning-quick pitstop. Any hopes of Mercedes closing the gap at the front are scotched, with Hamilton’s team telling their man, “This is all about who makes it to the end.”

    Lap 29: Lewis Hamilton is in for his routine service, and he’s in and out in quick order, with no apparent issues. Verstappen, meanwhile, does what elite drivers do when their rival is in the pits – turn in the fastest lap of the race. He’s in on the next lap.

    Lap 27/28: It’s pitstop time in Austria, but it hasn’t gone well for a couple of notable names. George Russell was stationary for a long time as the team checked his pneumatic pressure, while Sergio Perez had a slow stop, allowing Valtteri Bottas to complete a successful undercut. He’s now in third ahead of Perez.

    Lap 26: Big moment for Lewis Hamilton, who very nearly lost the back end of his Mercedes as he exited Turn 5. It shows just how hard the seven-time world champ is pushing to keep pace with Verstappen, who is now five seconds up the road. It’s looking like Red Bull have things well under control at this stage in proceedings. But, don’t forget, it all looked comfortable for Verstappen in Baku… until it wasn’t.

    Lap 20: Both Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton have been on the radio complaining about handling, but it’s the Red Bull man who holds the advantage after 20 laps of this 71-lap Grand Prix. He leads by four and a half seconds over the world champion, with the window for pit stops about to open. Red Bull have had the edge in strategy and pit work in recent races, but Mercedes need something special here to bring Hamilton into striking distance. The next few laps could be fascinating…

    Running order after 20 laps:

    1. Verstappen
    2. Hamilton
    3. Perez
    4. Bottas
    5. Norris
    6. Stroll
    7. Alonso
    8. Russell
    9. Tsunoda
    10. Sainz

    Lap 13: Norris has been passed twice. First, Sergio Perez blew past him with ease, then Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas followed suit. But any worries about the McLaren man’s car appear unfounded at this point. It seems he’s just trying to run a sensible early pace to get as much out of his tyres as possible and potentially go long in his first stint. Up front, Verstappen is holding his lead, with the Red Bull man around 2.8 seconds clear of Hamilton, who is holding steady in second.

    Lap 8: Lando Norris is reporting that there’s a lot of debris on the track, and has asked his team to keep an eye on his tyre pressures to make sure he hasn’t picked up a puncture. The opening lap shenanigans in the midfield have caused some shards of wing to be left on the track. Norris’ team-mate Daniel Ricciardo suffered a loss of power and has dropped down the pack.

    Lap 4: Lewis Hamilton reported that “something heavy” hit his car. Could that have been a piece of Verstappen’s car? Or perhaps debris from the opening lap? Watch this space. Charles Leclerc faces a mountainous task in Austria after damaging his front wing on the first lap. He’s going to have to battle his way through the field. He’s pitted and changed his wing and is now languishing back in 18th.

    Lap 1: Verstappen gets away cleanly and leads, with Hamilton slotting into second. Sergio Perez has started superbly and squeezed past Lando Norris, who later retook the Red Bull to secure third. Pierre Gasly’s race is likely, however, after suffered a puncture and suspension damage to his rear-left.


    1:55pm: We’re just five minutes from the start, and things could get VERY interesting on the first lap. Not only do we have the battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who will duel it out for the apex in Turn 1, we also have the prospect of a racy Lando Norris looking to pull a fast one from third on the grid.

    Speaking to Sky Sports F1, even his face mask couldn’t hide Lando’s grin when he was asked about going for it and taking the fight to the front two in the first few corners. Make no mistake, the McLaren man is going to try to throw the cat among the pigeons from the start.

    The cars are just about ready to embark on their warm-up lap, then it’ll be lights out in Austria!

    Styrian Grand Prix: Starting Grid

    1. Max Verstappen  |  2. Lewis Hamilton

    3. Lando Norris  |  4. Sergio Perez

    5. Valtteri Bottas*  |  6. Pierre Gasly

    7. Charles Leclerc  |  8. Fernando Alonso

    9. Lance Stroll  |  10. George Russell

    11. Yuki Tsunoda**  |  12. Carlos Sainz

    13. Daniel Ricciardo  |  14. Sebastian Vettel

    15. Antonio Giovinazzi  |  16. Nicholas Latifi

    17. Esteban Ocon  |  18. Kimi Raikkonen

    19. Mick Schumacher  |  20. Nikita Mazepin

    The gripping title fight between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton continues in Austria, with Red Bull looking strong at their home circuit this weekend.

    Verstappen took pole position in Saturday’s qualifying session, with Hamilton only good enough for third-quickest.

    But the Brit received an unexpected bonus with the three-place grid penalty meted out to teammate Valtteri Bottas, who span in the pit lane during free practice earlier in the weekend.

    It meant the Finn was demoted from second on the grid to fifth, as Hamilton was bumped up from Row 2 to the front row, alongside title rival Verstappen.

    It means the scene is perfectly set for a thrilling race at the short, technical Red Bull Ring, where passing opportunities are available around the relatively short lap in Austria.

    The race gets underway at 2:00pm, and we’ll bring you regular updates throughout the Grand Prix. Will there be another twist in the title race, or can Red Bull and Verstappen extend their lead over Hamilton and Mercedes in the Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships, respectively? We’ll find out this afternoon!


Related Articles


Football Legend Vialli Passes Away, Souness Mourns On TV

The memory of the Scotsman, partner of the former blue striker for...


Eduardo Camavinga: the supersub ready to shape Real Madrid’s future

Eduardo Camavinga is not accustomed to waiting. This is a man for...


Rugby’s newest star Henry Arundell has the X-factor that all teams crave

A few months ago Eddie Jones turned up at an England Under-20...


Football on the front line in the Covid culture war

The tweet is as stupid as it is jarring. “I am a...