F1 |Gp Austria, THE POINT by Gian Carlo Minardi “It was the weekend of mistakes”

The weekend in Austria was the festival of mistakes by the teams. It began Saturday with Ferrari’s people at the wall who did not advise their driver that Sainz was arriving and today with Mercedes that did not call Hamilton into the pits under the VSC after Bottas’ retirement.

I think the marshals used a heavy hand with Vettel since Sainz had in any case reached Q3 but in all probability they did not want to set a precedent. Hamilton’s retirement at the 54th lap patched up the strategy. Despite an important technical advantage Mercedes confirmed the reliability problems of its gearbox. It was a race full of retirements caused by the very tight rhythm. We have come into a very heated month of July which from now until the end will give us another three grands prix. It will be interesting to see who will be the best at managing this tour-de-force.

Formula 1 is once more going back to the maximum competition with a large gap between the three top teams and the rest of the group. We witnessed an order of arrival that rewarded the teams in pairs with 2 Ferraris, 2 Haas, 2 Force Indias and two Saubers with the only exceptions the winner Max Verstappen with the sole Red Bull and Fernando Alonso who finished in eight place after starting in pit lane.

It was a result that surely rewarded Ferrari with an outcome that was almost unexpected. Kimi Raikonnen deserved to finish in second place having tried until the end to attack the Dutch driver, by setting fast lap times and therefore it was correct for the people at the barrier to maintain the positions of the two drivers. For the third time in as many grands prix the head of the ladder changed with Vettel in command once more.

In seven days we will be back on the track for the tenth round of the world championship at the British circuit of Silverstone which, on paper, will favour Mercedes, even if Vettel and Ferrari will come to the appointment with its morale high.

We are waiting to see what will happen.

Gian Carlo Minardi