Well, that was a pretty similar race to the Russian Grand Prix, wasn’t it? Nothing happened for 95 per cent of the race and then Valtteri Bottas came under late pressure from Sebastian Vettel for the win.
Sure, there wasn’t whole lot of action or overtaking, but then again not every Grand Prix can be like Baku. There were still plenty of things going on in the Austrian Grand Prix though; here are 10 of its most memorable moments.
It was clear that Bottas had made an awesome start, but just how good had it been? Both Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo questioned whether he’d jumped it, and although the replays showed it was very, very close, the stewards decided he hadn’t jumped it and the Mercedes driver was able to carry on at the front of the field. It was definitely close, though!
Behind Bottas and his lovely launch things got a bit chaotic. Max Verstappen got a terrible start when his anti-stall kicked in, but it wouldn’t be long before his race got even worse. Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat went hurtling into turn one, locked up his front wheels and bundled into Fernando Alonso who in turn hit Verstappen.
Both Verstappen and Alonso were out – for Max that’s his fifth retirement in seven races and for Alonso…hey, at least he wasn’t in the race long enough to be put out with engine failure, right?
Lewis Hamilton hadn’t made the greatest of getaways, passing only the slow-starting Verstappen and ending the first lap in seventh place. He started to pick up his pace though, and on lap six he swept past Sergio Perez; two laps later he was ahead of Grosjean to be fifth.
From then on he set off after Kimi Raikkonen, but he couldn’t get ahead of him on track, and had to wait until the pit stops to move up to fourth.
Unsurprisingly the stewards deemed Kvyat to be completely at fault for causing the turn one incident and he was issued a drive-through penalty and two points on his licence.
It’s far from the greatest thing Kvyat’s ever done, and it brought back the old ‘Russian torpedo’ comments from when he did something similar in the Russian GP last year.
Also, the crash eliminated stablemate Verstappen at Red Bull’s home race…doesn’t look good, does it? I wonder whether or not anything will happen to Kvyat as a result. After all, he can’t exactly be demoted to Toro Rosso this time…
Kevin Magnussen was looking pretty good this weekend but unreliability from the Haas prevented him from being up there with teammate Romain Grosjean. A suspension failure in qualifying left him down in 15th, and he was chasing the two Williams for the final points positions in the race when an apparent hydraulic failure left him coasting back to the pits to retire.
His frustration was apparent on team radio, and the FOM guy with the bleep button missed the Dane dropping an F-bomb. The race was pretty dull up to that point, maybe he’d fallen asleep?
Verstappen out, Alonso out…the Austrian GP was going true to the format of all F1 races in 2017, but something seemed missing as the race went past half distance. What was it? Ahh yes, we hadn’t had a proper team radio rant from Kimi Raikkonen!
That changed on lap 38 however when he came on the blower to moan about blue flags after being held up by Stoffel Vandoorne. He shouted:
“How can it take so long?! If it’s a solid blue they should move out of the f—-ing way!”
Vandoorne later was given a drive-through penalty for ignoring blue flags whilst Kimi continued on, having apparently satisfied the requirement for him to shout about something. Is it written into his contract or something?!
After many, many laps of nothing really happening during the race, Hamilton started to close in on third-place Daniel Ricciardo, setting fastest lap on the way. On the penultimate lap he was right with the Red Bull driver and had a go at passing him down into turn four.
Ricciardo fended him off and although Hamilton was clearly quicker, he didn’t get another opportunity and had to settle for fourth.
After 69 laps of nothing happening, suddenly we didn’t know where to look! As well as the Hamilton/Ricciardo battle, up at the front we also had Vettel closing in on Bottas, the Mercedes driver suffering with blistering tyres.
Vettel got into the DRS zone on the last lap but couldn’t mount enough of an attack despite his best efforts, and Bottas took the win by just six-tenths of a second – the same gap he beat Vettel by when he won his first GP in Russia earlier this year!
A couple more laps and the result could have been different but hey, at least we got some excitement out of the race, even if was only in the closing laps!
Third place was a great result for Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull – not just because it’s his fifth consecutive podium, but because he was only six seconds away from race winner Bottas.
Ricciardo was clearly pretty happy with the result (though to be fair, when is he ever not happy?!) and made some unusual celebratory noises about it over the team radio. Oh Daniel!
With Ricciardo on the podium that of course meant there’d be a shoey or two, though it was somewhat surprising when podium interviewer Martin Brundle actually asked for one!
Brundle’s intentions were sound though as he wanted everyone to do one and have the shoes auctioned off for charity. But at the first suggestion of it Bottas hilariously noped right out of there with Vettel in hot pursuit. Spoil sports!
In the end it was just Brundle who sipped champagne from the shoe before Ricciardo properly chugged down the rest. Still, great TV though!