Bottas beats Vettel to Austria pole, Hamilton to start from eighth

Tricia Pearson
July 9, 2017

Hamilton was third, but he will drop five places due to a gearbox change being needed on his auto, and he will fall behind the second Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen, the two Red Bull Racing cars of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen, as well as the Haas of Romain Grosjean and Sergio Perez's Force India on the grid.

"We need to focus on trying to have a good start to the race and we need to win the race", he said.

"I really enjoyed today, and we definitely had got a auto that was really nice and stable for qualifying". On that occasion, Vettel went on to win the race and Bottas finished third behind his team mate Lewis Hamilton.

The Austrian Grand Prix takes place Sunday at 8AM ET from Red Bull Ring. "And for sure Lewis can fight back from where he's starting".

It was the second time in a matter of months that Vettel faced possible sanction for his on-track behavior, with the Ferrari driver warned in Mexico for abusing race director Charlie Whiting over the team radio.

Tight at the top as Bottas, Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel duked it out for provisional pole, with the Finn holding his position at the top of the rankings.

And he looked like he had the pace to be potentially fastest then, too - which would have meant starting sixth following his penalty for an unauthorised gearbox change - but he made crucial mistakes on all his laps before a yellow flag for a stranded vehicle effectively ended the session early. The majority of drivers I have spoken to are very happy with how the stewards, and eventually the FIA, dealt with the big controversy between Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel.

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And that when former G2 champion Davide Valescchi tried rather lamely to get Vettel and Hamilton to shake hands as he interviewed them immediately afterwards, neither of them exhibited the slightest interest even though had professed their continuing respect for none another on Thursday after their controversial collision last time out in Baku. That is why I asked the Deputy President for Sport, Graham Stoker, the Head of Formula 1, Charlie Whiting, and the Head of Safety [Laurent Mekies] to speak with Sebastian Vettel to try and understand better.

FP3 came to an end with the top 10 being: Vettel, Hamilton, Bottas, Raikkonen, Verstappen, Ricciardo, Magnussen, Grosjean, Kvyat and Sainz.

In Thursday's packed press conference, Hamilton questioned the absence of Todt to explain his decision not take any further action on Vettel, who subsequently apologised for actions. "I think in the first stint it's just about length", he said.

Latest Renault news is that although Red Bull have been hoping and claiming that they are going to get an engine substantial engine power boost soon, manufacturer Renault say that they will deliver small increments of improvement from the engine in the interest of keeping good reliability so that we mustn't expect anything dramatic too soon.

Plenty of pace all round, though - it should make for a great race.

Shocker: On a track where Williams locked out the front row in 2014, Felipe Massa and Lance Stroll had to settle for 17th and 18th on Saturday.

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