Wet wet wet! The qualification for the Styrian Grand Prix is IN DOUBT because of heavy downpours as F3 is discontinued and the last practice is canceled (and the second practice classification can be used for the grid … leaving Hamilton sixth!)
- The qualification for the Styrian Grand Prix is questionable due to heavy downpours
- The Formula 3 race was stopped early due to the dangerous track conditions
- The final training for all F1 teams was suspended and then canceled due to rain
- FIA Race Director Michael Masi admits that no action may be taken on Saturday
- One possibility could be to keep qualifying on Sunday before the start of the race
The qualifying session for the Styrian Grand Prix on Saturday will be about to be cut short due to horrific downpours on the Red Bull Ring.
After the lovely sunshine during the first and second training on Friday, the rain on Saturday was heavy and grim.
Hazardous conditions and limited track visibility led to the termination of the Formula 3 race to ensure driver safety.
Heavy rain caused dangerous conditions because the Formula 3 race had to be canceled
The race format’s Twitter account was left with where the cars were due to poor visibility
Track workers tried to remove excess water, but the rain refused to stop all morning
Because conditions did not end and more rain was expected on Saturday, around 11 a.m. it was decided to suspend the last practice session indefinitely. That was officially canceled 45 minutes later and qualifying is at stake.
The FIA has plenty of options should the decision be made to cancel Saturday’s qualifying session.
One is to host qualifying on Sunday morning hours before the second race of the season starts in Austria.
Ferrari mechanics could only watch and wait and if the second grid practice grid position were taken four-time champion Sebastian Vettel would start 16th
Pierre Gasly from AlphaTauri has a face mask while he is waiting in the car to start practicing
“The latest forecast does not look good, there is currently an 80% chance of rain in FP3 and the possibility of very heavy showers,” FIA Race Director Michael Masi said in a statement on Saturday morning.
“There are many options to put it simply. If a worst-case scenario arose, we already took a look and qualifying could take place on Sunday morning.
“If we had a complete washout on Saturday, free practice three and qualifying did not take place and hypothetical qualifying on Sunday morning was not possible due to the weather, we would return to free practice twice.
“Or there is the third iteration, which is free practice three can happen, but we can’t have qualifying in the afternoon or qualifying on Sunday morning and the grid would most likely be put into free practice three times.”
The conditions in the F3 race were so bad, the last training for F1 drivers was then suspended
Lewis Hamilton would start sixth on the grid if a second practice stand were used on Sunday
SECOND PRACTICE TIMES
1 Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1min 03.660sec
2 Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 1: 03.703
3 Sergio Perez (Mex) Racing Point 1: 03.877
4 Lance Stroll (Can) Racing Point 1: 04.241
5 Carlos Sainz (Spa) McLaren 1: 04.333
6 Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1: 04.348
7 Alexander Albon (Tha) Red Bull 1: 04.437
8 Lando Norris (Gbr) McLaren 1: 04.541
9 Charles Leclerc (ma) Ferrari 1: 04.706
10 Esteban Ocon (Fra) Renault 1: 04.746
11 Pierre Gasly (Fra) AlphaTauri 1: 04.757
12 Daniil Kyvat (Rus) AlphaTauri 1: 05.050
13 Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Alfa Romeo Racing 1: 05.152
14 Antonio Giovinazzi (Ita) Alfa Romeo Racing 1: 05.365
15 George Russell (Gbr) Williams 1: 05.588
16 Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 1: 05.613
17 Nicholas Latifi (Can) Williams 1: 05.655
18 Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas 1: 05.790
19 Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas 1: 06.096
20 Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Renault No Time
If qualifying doesn’t go through at all and Friday’s second practice times are confirmed for the grid, Red Bull’s Max Verstappen would start on pole.
The Ducthman had a nightmare opening race and was the first car to retire due to reliability issues.
Valtteri Bottas, who won the opening race for Mercedes, would start second and Racing Point’s Sergio Perez would finish third.
Six-time world champion Lewis Hamilton would finish in sixth place, while struggling Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel would finish in sixteenth place after another underperformance in practice.