Styrian Grand Prix – Race

After Qualifying TSU was penalised 3 grid places for blocking BOT in Q3, so in addition to BOT’s 3-place penalty for his pit lane spin in FP2, here’s the grid: VER, HAM, NOR, PER, BOT*, GAS, LEC, ALO, STR, RUS, TSU*, SAI, RIC, VET, GIO, LAT, OCO, RAI, SCH, MAZ

Pit lane is open; cars can make their way to the grid
Everyone finds their grid spot without incident

Air temperature 26°C; track 53°C; doesn’t look like it’ll rain
FIA say risk of rain during the race is 40%

VER lead everyone away on the formation lap
Mostly mediums, except NOR, PER, GAS, LEC, ALO, STR and TSU all on softs, and just RAI on the hard compound

01/71: VER leads into Turn 1
GAS, LAT and MAZ collide in Turn 3

02: LEC pits with a damaged front wing
TSU all over the rear of RIC
LAT and GAS put too
GAS’ left rear suspension is broken

03: VER fastest lap 1:10.031
Radio from HAM reporting debris (from lap 1 incident) hit his front left tyre
Oh, HAM thinks the debris came off VER’s car

04: VER f/lap 1:09.834
Replay of the start shows LEC tapped GAS twice

05/71: VER, HAM, NOR, PER, BOT, ALO, RUS, RIC, TSU, SAI, VET, RAI, OCO, GIO, MAZ, SCH, LEC, LAT, STR; out: GAS
Timing screen error: STR is actually P6, behind BOT
No investigation necessary for lap 1 Turn 3 incident

07: TSU takes P9 from RIC
RIC falling down the order – he’s dropped all the way down to P13

09: (Delayed) Radio from RIC, “No power, no power”; “We think it’s recovered”

10/71: VER, HAM, NOR, PER, BOT, STR, ALO, RUS, TSU, SAI, VET, RAI, RIC, OCO, GIO, MAZ, SCH, LEC, LAT
PER takes P3 from NOR; an easy pass at Turn 3

11: BOT closes up and breezes past NOR for P4

12: HAM consistently ~2.5-3sec behind VER

13: Radio for NOR, “Plan A, looking to extend”
TSU closing on RUS
LEC finally past SCH for P17 after LEC pitted on lap 2

14: LEC takes P16 from MAZ

15/71: VER, HAM, PER, BOT, NOR, STR, ALO, RUS, TSU, SAI, VET, RAI, RIC, OCO, GIO, LEC, MAZ, SCH, LAT; out: GAS

17: Will Mercedes try to pit first and undercut the Red Bulls?

18: Radio for RUS, “Plan B due to reliability” – sounds like Williams want to move to 2-stop; is the car overheating?

19: GIO all over the rear of OCO, harrying him for P14
Radio from HAM and VER suggests they’re both struggling for grip
TV zooms in on their tyres; seems ok

20/71: VER, HAM, PER, BOT, NOR, STR, ALO, RUS, TSU, SAI, VET, RAI, RIC, OCO, GIO, LEC, MAZ, SCH, LAT

21: VER f/lap 1:09.585
SCH dives inside teammate MAZ into Turn 3 but MAZ hangs on to P17

22: VER f/lap 1:09.564
MAZ pits

24: LEC takes P15 from GIO

25/71: VER, HAM, PER, BOT, NOR, STR, ALO, RUS, TSU, SAI
GIO pits
LEC tucked up behind OCO… and around the outside at Turn 4 to take P14
HAM pushing hard, touched the gravel but catches it before it spins

26: RUS pits from P8; hard tyres go on; slow stop – topping up air?; rejoins P17

27: PER pits from P3; hard tyres go on; rear left slow coming off; rejoins P5

28: BOT pits; hards; rejoins P4, clearly ahead of PER
ALO and VET pit too

29: HAM pits; hards; rejoins still P2

30: VER pits; hards; rejoins still P1
BOT f/lap 1:09.071

31: HAM f/lap 1:09.066

32: VER f/lap 1:09.041
NOR pits; hards go on; rejoins P7, right behind RAI … and then passes him for P6
Radio from VER, something about BBW (brake by wire)

33: VER f/lap 1:08.992
HAM f/lap 1:08.362
Radio from HAM, “Lots of de-rates everywhere” (that’s probably due to the battery charging)

34: Radio for VER telling him “These are the critical laps for the stint”
Tweet from Williams says they’re managing a power unit issue on RUS’ car

35/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, SAI, NOR, RAI, RIC, LEC, OCO, STR, ALO, TSU, VET, GIO, MAZ, SCH, RUS, LAT; out: GAS

Half distance

36: Radio from HAM asking if he needs to manage more; “No, we’re thinking in the opposite direction”

37: Radio for RIC, “Box to overtake RAI”
RAI and OCO pit … so RIC is told to stay out
LEC pits

38: Radio from HAM, “How do I reset my dash – delta?”; sounds like quite a lot of fiddling
RUS pits and is pushed into the garage

40/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, SAI, NOR, RIC, STR, ALO, TSU, VET, GIO, RAI, LEC, OCO, MAZ, SCH, LAT; out: RUS, GAS
VER laps VET (P11)

41: Radio for TSU telling him to push; TSU snaps back that he is

42: SAI pits from P5; rejoins P7
LEC gets close to RAI as he takes P13
RIC pits too; rejoins P15
SCH takes P16 from teammate MAZ
Radio from RAI concerned that LEC hit his front wing

44: Radio from ALO, furious that letting VER lap him meant SAI could pass him

45/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, NOR
SAI takes P6 from STR

46: Radio from HAM asking how much time he’s losing on the straights; “2.5 tenths”
LEC inside GIO to steal P11

47: Next for VER to lap is NOR (P5)

48: PER closing on BOT; he’s ~1.5sec behind

49: TSU shouting at his engineer again… or maybe that’s just how he is normally

50/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, NOR, SAI, STR, ALO, TSU, VET, LEC, GIO, RAI, OCO, RIC, SCH, MAZ, LAT; out: RUS, GAS
VET locks up; LEC closes right up; with DRS, he easily passes the Aston Martin for P10

51: Clouds are getting a bit darker

52: Radio from VER, something about his brakes again; he’s advised to stay off the kerbs; VER frustrated

53: Radio for VER clarifying it’s braking for T10 on the kerbs

54: VER laps NOR (P5)
LEC has a go at passing TSU but the AlphaTauri hangs on to P9

55/71: PER pits; mediums go on; rejoins still P4
RIC takes P14 from OCO

56: LEC closes on ALO; takes P8

57: Radio for HAM telling him the gap to VER is 8.8sec; “What do you want me to do? I can’t close that gap”
PER f/lap 1:08.049

58: PER f/lap 1:07.894
Radio for HAM telling him he’s exceeding track limits at Turn 10 again

59: LEC closing on STR
RIC takes P13 from GIO

60/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, NOR, SAI, STR, LEC, ALO, TSU, VET, RAI, RIC, GIO, OCO, SCH, MAZ, LAT; out: RUS, GAS
LEC takes P7, so now he’s behind teammate SAI

61: Radio from VER because he’s seeing big black clouds at Turn 3

62: Radio from HAM asking about rain; told there’s nothing forecast

63: HAM is 12sec behind VER, 28sec ahead of BOT – enough for a pit stop?

64: BOT is behind RIC (P13) but their lap times are almost the same

65/71: VER, HAM, BOT, PER, NOR, SAI, LEC, STR, ALO, TSU, VET, RAI, RIC, OCO, GIO, SCH, LAT, MAZ

66: SAI passes HAM to unlap himself

67: PER 7sec behind BOT and closing up as BOT struggles with backmarkers (well, midfield markers)

68: Radio from HAM asking if BOT is under pressure; what’s he planning?

69: RAI takes P11 from VET
Radio for NOR warning him there’s a few drops of rain possible

70/71: HAM pits; softs go on; rejoins still P2 but alongside STR (P8)

71 = final lap: PER under 2sec behind BOT

VER takes the chequered flag
HAM P2, f/lap 1:07.058
BOT P3 with PER right behind him
…and now it starts to rain 🙂

Interviews:
VER: “Straightaway I felt a good balance in the car, was good to manage the tyres from the start. We just kept on going, hit our lap times. I’m looking forward to next week!”
HAM: “Bit of a lonely race really, just trying to keep hold of these tyres.”; “They’re faster, there’s not much I can do in that respect. We need to find some performance from somewhere.”
BOT: “From where I started, this was the maximum today. Damage limitation. It was getting a bit close at the end [with Perez] and I’m glad we could defend as it’s been a while since I’ve been on the podium.”

Provisional result: VER, HAM*, BOT, PER, NOR, SAI, LEC, STR, ALO, TSU; RAI, VET, RIC, OCO, GIO, SCH, LAT, MAZ
DNF: RUS, GAS
*HAM fastest lap

[2021 calendar] [2021 line-up] [Points standings]

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