Formula 1 Commentary

F1 Austrian GP Live commentary and updates - FP1 & FP2

Live updates from Friday practice for the Austrian GP at the Red Bull Ring.

F1 Austrian GP Live commentary and updates - FP1 & FP2

By: Tom Howard, Stefan Mackley

Summary

Summary

  • Hamilton ends Free Practice 2 fastest, 0.189s quicker than Mercedes team-mate Bottas, with Verstappen third for Red Bull
  • Bottas on top as session reaches halfway mark
  • FP2 underway
  • Verstappen fastest in opening practice for Austrian GP
  • Ferrari team-mates Leclerc and Sainz complete top three
  • Guanyu Zhou makes his F1 practice debut for Alpine, in place of Alonso
  • Ilott (Alfa Romeo) and Nissany (Williams) also appear in FP1
Leaderboard

1. Hamilton, Mercedes
2. Bottas, Mercedes
3. Verstappen, Red Bull
4. Stroll, Aston Martin 
5. Vettel, Aston Martin
6. Tsunoda, AlphaTauri
7. Gasly, AlphaTauri
8. Alonso, Alpine
9. Norris, McLaren
10. Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo
Status: Stopped
That'll be all from us on the Live blog today, but make sure you tune in tomorrow morning shortly before 11am BST for FP3 and 2pm BST for qualifying. Can Verstappen turn the tables and continue his recent run of form, or will Mercedes reclaim pole for the first time since Barcelona? We'll see you tomorrow to find out.
Here's the full report from FP2, as Mercedes fired a warning shot to Red Bull: https://www.autosport.com/f1/news/f1-austrian-gp-hamilton-leads-mercedes-1-2-in-fp2-with-verstappen-in-third/6624118/
 
 
 
Ferrari didn't really show its hand today - Sainz 13th and Leclerc 16th leaves us with plenty of questions after the team's strong showing last weekend, including that thrilling Leclerc fightback.
A disappointing session for Perez ends with the second Red Bull driver only 11th, and perhaps facing an uphill task to disrupt the Mercedes and among the podium places.
Alonso showed he didn't miss much in FP1 with P8, as a red-faced Norris and Giovinazzi complete the top 10.
An encouraging day for Aston Martin ends with Stroll fourth and Vettel fifth, while AlphaTauri are also running in Noah's Ark formation with Tsunoda P6 and Gasly P7.
That's the end of the session - no changes at the top, so it's Hamilton from Bottas and Verstappen your top three.
Whoops - that's a moment for Norris, who runs a little wide over the kerb at Turn 1 and spins across to the grass on the inside. Asked what the damage was from his engineer, he responds: "Talent."
As we head into the deciding minutes of the session, it's a familiar scene from 2020 as the Mercedes cars head Verstappen. All are currently running on mediums, and Verstappen was fastest of the trio last time around from Hamilton and Bottas.
Alonso is up in P8, showing no signs of being affected by missing FP1 earlier on. Team-mate Ocon meanwhile is down in P12, with Norris, Giovinazzi and Perez between them.
An official warning has appeared on the timing screens that the track is slippery. Hamilton could have told them that.
 
We've got a shade under 10 minutes left in the session, and a few drivers are switching to softs for a late quali sim. Will we see any improvements?
 
No damage done, Hamilton just locks the right-front wheel into the downhill right-hander and goes straight on.
And there goes Hamilton into the Turn 4 gravel!
Slow-mo camera shots are doing a great job of picking up the rain spots. Drivers are earning their money at the moment.
Haas drivers have often been found frequenting the run-off areas this year, but this time it's Schumacher who has a moment at Turn 3 with a mid-corner snap of oversteer picking up the throttle that forces him to countersteer and run wide beyond the kerb.
Hamilton and Bottas are also having a run on the medium tyres - which, remember, was the soft last week.
The Dutchman complains to his team over the radio about the lack of grip, but he's advised to keep going and treat it as a learning exercise in case conditions are similarly slippery on Sunday.
Verstappen meanwhile has come back out again on a set of mediums.
Alonso and Raikkonen are the two most experienced drivers on the grid, but the two-time world champion isn't happy with his 2008 title-winning counterpart for baulking him at Turn 10.

"I don't f****** believe it," he mutters over the radio.
Meanwhile Hamilton has had a big lock-up on his left-front into Turn 3 (we detest calling the left-hand uphill sweep of Turn 2 a corner, but alas) and has to use the run-off area.
Now Raikkonen has had two consecutive laps deleted for track limits at Turn 10. Is there room on the naughty step for one more?
Sainz has had two consecutive laps deleted for track limits at Turn 10. Naughty step.
Norris now improves to a 1m05.466s which puts him P8 ahead of Perez and Ocon. Ahead of him are both Mercedes, Verstappen, the Astons and the AlphaTauris.
It's only a 1m04.740s from Verstappen, who stays third as his car grounds alarmingly over the Turn 9 kerb. Meanwhile, Vettel is reporting over the radio that it's starting to drizzle.
Neither of the McLarens are in the top 10 at the moment, although they're only just on the fringes outside it. Lando Norris is P11, having started off his session on the hard tyres, and is just over a thousandth of a second ahead of Ricciardo.
Hamilton now goes quickest on a 1m04.523, almost two tenths clear of Bottas. What can Verstappen do?
Gasly update: after his second track limits deletion, he pops up with a time 0.023s behind Tsunoda. That's shaping into a nice little inter-team battle.
Stroll had an eventful morning of it earlier with his pair of spins, but he's enjoying a much better time in FP2 and now goes second on a 1m05.139s. One suspects that he may not stay there for long though, as Verstappen is on an outlap with soft tyres attached to his Red Bull.
That benchmark though has now been beaten by Bottas - the first man into the 1m04s bracket with an 04.712s.
Perez, it should be noted, also set his time on the soft - yet sits almost three tenths behind his team-mate's benchmark on the medium.
This is an encouraging showing from Tsunoda, for whom this will be the first time he is racing at a track where he has already completed a full grand prix distance. Can he keep it going and enjoy a clean weekend?
Vettel, Tsunoda and Stroll are now all on the softs and occupy positions second through to fourth - Gasly briefly held fourth, but has another lap docked for track limits at Turn 10.
The short lap means things chop and change quickly at the Red Bull Ring. Perez winds up a good lap to go second, with Ocon now in third. Verstappen's benchmark time is now a 1m05.239s - will he get into the 1m04s on the softs?
Both Alfas are going well here - Raikkonen's team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi has gone fifth quickest.