Formula 1

2014 AUSTRIA GRAND PRIX – PRACTICE

The first practice sessions for the eighth race of the season took place today in Spielberg, Austria. 

• Lewis Hamilton set the best time of the day, closely followed by Nico Rosberg in their F1 debut at this circuit
• The Silver Arrows were the only two cars to post a lap time under 1:10 today, both in the second session
• Nico required a change of ERS cooling pump between the two sessions, which was completed successfully
• The drivers completed a total of 138 laps today, equivalent to nearly two race distances

Lewis Hamilton
It didn’t feel bad out there today considering this is a new track to me. Already after the first few laps I was feeling comfortable and always seemed to be finding time with new lines and improvements. To be as quick as I was considering others have already driven this track is a great feeling. It was very windy out there today, but we got a lot of running and we feel set for the race on Sunday. The high speed corners were working the rear tyres hard but they seemed to cope well. The feeling was good for both sets of tyres, even in the long runs, so if the car is like this for the race, I’m in a good place. The goal for tomorrow will be pole position but there is still a long straight up to turn two so anything can happen in the race.

Nico Rosberg
I did a lot of laps today and on a new track every lap is important for the learning process, so I’m quite happy with that. In general it was a complicated day for me, so there is still some lap time to find compared to my teammate and there is a lot of work required from me tonight. My car is bouncing a lot down the straights and that continues into my braking zones, so it was difficult there. But I’m sure we can improve on that. It is really great to be back on this wonderful track again, thanks to Bernie and Mr. Mateschitz. Austria definitely needs an F1 race. There we so many fans out there already, which is great to see.

Toto Wolff
First of all, it is a fantastic feeling to be back racing in Austria. My compliments go to Dietrich Mateschitz on a fantastic facility, which is a great international showcase for our country. It feels like a home race for our team, too; for myself and Niki of course – but also because of the fantastic support we have seen from the passionate F1 fans here in Spielberg. I am sure we can expect an incredible atmosphere tomorrow and especially on Sunday. We had a good day out on track – the car is competitive and both drivers seemed pretty comfortable out there. But it wasn’t a trouble-free day, with some small issues that cost us track time on both sides of the garage. It’s always better to find these things on Friday than Sunday, of course. But we will be working hard to make sure there is no recurrence so we can get both cars to the chequered flag as safely and competitively as possible.

Paddy Lowe
We covered the work we needed to do during first practice and, although the session was slightly disrupted by light rain showers, we managed to run the car at both high and low fuel levels. This is a great circuit and, as expected, is proving hard on brakes; similarly, the effective loss of downforce experienced from running at altitude meant lots of drivers were struggling to put together consistent laps. Nico and Lewis were both happy with the car today and able to set competitive times. Nico suffered a problem with the ERS system in P1 which we were able to fix for the afternoon. We then had to cut Lewis’ afternoon session slightly short as a precaution after he experienced a different ERS issue. The weather forecast predicts dry conditions across the rest of the weekend, so we will be working tonight to prepare the cars accordingly for tomorrow and Sunday.

GP2

Julian Leal leads the way at the Red Bull Ring

Carlin’s Julian Leal has opened the fourth round of the season in fine style: the Colombian set the quickest laptime of this morning’s free practice session in a 1:15.652 ahead of Racing Engineering’s teammates Raffaele Marciello and Stefano Coletti.
The session opened on a treacherous track as light rain fell on the Austrian circuit. The twenty-six drivers however all opted to get a taste of the Red Bull Ring on Pirelli Medium tyres. Series leader Jolyon Palmer set the early pace, but as the drivers got to grips with this new venue, the laptimes rapidly tumbled down and after ten minutes it was Alexander Rossi who was sitting pretty at the top in a 1:16.544.
Halfway through the session, Palmer was able to find some extra pace to move back up to P1 but his time was immediately bettered by Coletti whilst Marciello moved up to second. Felipe Nasr was the first man to break under 1m16s, but Ferrari’s protégé Marciello went quicker to edge the Brazilian out of the top spot. In the dying minutes, Leal put his head down and was able to set the best laptime of the session, one tenth quicker than the Italian. At the chequered flag, the rain picked up again and no one improved on their last attempt. Leal, Marciello, Coletti, Nasr, Johnny Cecotto, Mitch Evans, Daniel Abt, Rene Binder, Stoffel Vandoorne and Palmer completed the top ten.
With the weather being unpredictable and everyone still fairly new to the track, this afternoon’s qualifying session promises to be interesting.
Spielberg – Free Practice
Driver
Team
Laptime
Laps
1.
Julian Leal
Carlin
1:15.652
24
2.
Raffaele Marciello
Racing Engineering
1:15.768
20
3.
Stefano Coletti
Racing Engineering
1:15.830
23
4.
Felipe Nasr
Carlin
1:15.944
21
5.
Johnny Cecotto
Trident
1:16.189
26
6.
Mitch Evans
RT RUSSIAN TIME
1:16.192
24
7.
Daniel Abt
Hilmer Motorsport
1:16.300
25
8.
Rene Binder
Arden International
1:16.426
22
9.
Stoffel Vandoorne
ART Grand Prix
1:16.463
22
10.
Jolyon Palmer
DAMS
1:16.502
24
11.
Alexander Rossi
EQ8 Caterham Racing
1:16.544
20
12.
Stéphane Richelmi
DAMS
1:16.572
21
13.
Sergio Canamasas
Trident
1:16.620
24
14.
Rio Haryanto
EQ8 Caterham Racing
1:16.620
24
15.
Simon Trummer
Rapax
1:16.721
24
16.
Daniiel De Jong
MP Motorsport
1:16.865
22
17.
Conor Daly
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:16.888
21
18.
Arthur Pic
Campos Racing
1:17.104
24
19
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
Rapax
1:17.169
23
20.
Facu Regalia
Hilmer Motorsport
1:17.169
23
21.
Artem Markelov
RT RUSSIAN TIME
1:17.171
22
22.
André Negrao
Arden International
1:17.288
20
23.
Tio Ellinas
MP Motorsport
1:17.300
22
24.
Takuya Izawa
ART Grand Prix
1:17.370
22
25.
Kimiya Sato
Campos Racing
1:17.605
22
26.
Nathanaël Berthon
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:17.785
16