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Lewis wins the 2020 Styrian Grand Prix, with Valtteri in second ... Congrats to Red Bull for organizing 2 prefect races ... Ferrari in chaos


Spielberg, 12 July, 2020

∑         Lewis scored the 85th victory of his Formula One career, his first of the 2020 season and his second win at the Red Bull Ring

∑         Valtteri finished the race in P2, giving the team its first 1-2 finish of the 2020 season and 54th in Formula One

∑         Todayís race marked the 200th start since Mercedes-Benz returned to Formula One as a works team in 2010

∑         Valtteri (43 points) leads the Driversí Championship by six points from Lewis (37 points)

Lewis Hamilton
This has tended to be one of my weaker tracks, so I am over the moon to have a performance like this today Ė so, so happy. This feels like a long time coming since the final race of last year and it is a great step forward to come back from a difficult first weekend. The team did a fantastic job with the strategy and then it was about keeping it together, staying off the kerbs and bringing it home. I tried to get the fastest lap towards the end, but I had 40-lap old Mediums, so it was going to be difficult against someone on new, fresh rubber. A big thank you to my team and everyone back at the factories, they have done a brilliant job. I think itís easy to lose focus and determination, but I donít ever see that with this team. We know thereís a long way to go and itís a challenge for everyone, but this is a step forward, for sure.

Valtteri Bottas
Starting fourth, I think today was all about damage limitation and we managed to maximise everything available to us. Yesterday wasnít ideal so thatís why it wasnít 25 points today, but we still scored some good points, the car performance was great and Iím still leading the Championship, so itís not too bad. I had a good battle with Max, I had quite a bit more pace than him at the end as we extended the first stint to create a tyre offset, but racing closely is always fun and it was good to get the pass done. Itís been an encouraging first couple of races so Iím looking forward to next weekend.

Toto Wolff
I think we can be very satisfied with this weekend, with a great drive to victory for Lewis and Valtteri coming home to secure a 1-2 finish for the team. Itís been a tremendous job from everybody to get our worries from last weekend under control and deliver this level of performance. The gearbox issue was fixed, and the suspension concerns were still not 100% comfortable, but in the end, it was all good. This track hasnít been too kind to us in recent years, but we were never really troubled here and bringing the two cars home like this is a nice result. Now we look ahead to Budapest and the final round of this triple-header. We have been starved of motor racing for so long, so we canít wait to be back out on track again in just a couple of days. We just love the stopwatch, the brutal honesty of it and the Hungaroring is a great track and a very different challenge to Spielberg, so it will be interesting to benchmark ourselves there.

Andrew Shovlin
A perfect result: well done to the drivers and to the team! And especially to everyone who was involved in getting on top of the electrical issues that we had last week. We only had three days to understand the problem and produce parts in time for free practice, but we seem to be in a good place now which is a huge relief. That certainly helped us have a much smoother race today. The car was pretty strong, and we were able to do what we needed in stint one. Lewis built a gap to Max and Valtteri got through the traffic so that we were in position to undercut or force him into stopping. Weíd wanted to run a bit longer with Lewis on the first stint but we were approaching backmarkers so we decided to bring him in and bank the position. Valtteri stayed out to create an off-set tyre strategy to Max but again we decided to box as we approached some backmarkers at the end of the opening stint. The second stint for Lewis was straightforward, he was just managing his gap and looking after the car and power unit. Valtteri had a bit more on his plate; he lost a big chunk of time with some backmarkers who were racing each other. Despite that, Valtteri was able to put in some great laps and was forecast to catch him the end of the race, then Max suffered a bit of damage along with tyre degradation and Valtteri reeled him in more quickly, making a great pass to take the position. Itís fantastic to leave here with two wins and leading both championships; itís not been our favourite track in recent years but weíre now looking forward to getting going again in Budapest in five daysí time.

Max Verstappen
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing Honda
"Today we maximized the result with the podium and it's of course good to be back up there, but we were just too slow to really fight for the win. I pushed as hard as I could and tried everything to stay with Lewis (Hamilton) but it just wasn't possible. We have work to do and we will keep pushing as hard as we can to improve and I know how hard everyone is working. For me, it wasn't the most exciting race up until I had a lap of fighting with Valtteri (Bottas). My tires were pretty dead at that point and I knew he was going to pass me, but I wasn't going to make it easy and had a bit of fun re-passing him around the outside. I had nothing to lose as there was such a big gap behind so there was no risk. P3 is of course good points but it's still not what we want, we want to fight for victories every weekend, so I hope Hungary is better for us. With less straights, we should hopefully have more chance and maybe it will be hotter than today. For now it's time for everyone to have a few days to rest and re-set for next week."

Alex Albon
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing Honda
"The race was ok and P4 is a good amount of points for the team, especially after last week's DNF, so we definitely needed that. On my side, I was fighting a bit further back than I would have liked and my race pace wasn't amazing. There's time to find on my side but we've understood the car better this week and I think we know where to improve. With the long straights and types of corner here we struggled a little but I think Max and I both agree on where we can improve the car. Towards the end of the race, (Sergio) Perez was very quick. On the last lap he had a decent run on me into Turn 4 but I left him enough space. I think he ran a bit wide and we touched but we avoided a crash so it was ok and just hard racing. We've got a week now until Hungary to see what we can do, I think Mercedes will be hard to beat as we saw today as they're really strong, but we'll keep pushing."

Pierre Gasly
Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda
"It was a very disappointing Sunday after a great qualifying yesterday. We had a good position on the grid, so we were expecting to have a good race, but it didn't start well, as I had contact with Daniel (Ricciardo) in turn 1 and I almost spun the car. After that it was very tough, and the rear of the car just felt a bit strange. We tried what we could with the two-stop strategy, but we just didn't have the pace."

Daniil Kvyat
Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda
"I have to say that even if Friday and Saturday were quite difficult, it was a fantastic race for me today. I did my job and I brought the car home to score one point, with much fewer retirements compared to last week, so I'm happy. Everything was executed well and while I was often under attack, I was able to defend my position and I could even open the gap with the ones behind me towards the end of the race. Let's think of Hungary now, it's just around the corner."

The Scuderia Ferrari Disaster

For Scuderia Ferrari, the Styrian Grand Prix was all over after little more than 20 seconds. Following a difficult qualifying yesterday, Charles Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel were in the mid-field and collided at Turn 3 after the start. Both SF1000 cars suffered significant damage.

The German came slowly round to the pits with damage to the rear end, while Charles tried to continue, pitting for new tyres, opting for the hards. However, the damage to the floor of his car was too serious for him to be able to continue safely. Therefore, after completing one more lap, he came back in to the pits to retire.

Hungary next
After incidents like this, the saying goes that itís best to get back on track as soon as possible and the calendar ensures that will happen, as next Sunday sees the third round of the championship, the Hungarian Grand Prix, take place at the Hungaroring.

Charles Leclerc #16
ďWhat happened today is clearly my fault, thereís nothing else to say. I take full responsibility. I made a mistake and apologising is not enough. We need to take every opportunity and today we could have had one, because even though we might not have the performance to collect a lot of points at the moment, every single point is important and anything can happen in the race, as we saw last week. But we didnít bring home any points. I was so eager to do well for the team and I thought I might be able to gain three or four places and I went for it. But in fact the opportunity wasnít there. Itís not easy for the whole team who worked hard to bring upgrades here. We are going through a difficult time and we donít need this.
I have apologised to the team and to Seb, who didnít do anything wrong. I let everyone down today and I am very sorry. I will learn from this and come back stronger next time.Ē

Sebastian Vettel #5
ďI was really looking forward to racing today and had a good feeling about it. I didnít get a very good start, losing a bit of momentum off the line. Then, it was very busy in Turn 3 and I was already fighting two cars. I had the inside line so I was not expecting anyone to try anything. I could not see that Charles was coming and unfortunately, I had nowhere else to go as there just wasnít enough space. However, we are both mature enough to move on from this incident. It is very disappointing, but in my mindset,
I am generally optimistic and at least I donít have to wait long to be back in the car, so letís hope that Hungary will be a better place for us.Ē

Mattia Binotto Team Principal
ďIt is painful, very painful, to see both our cars back in the garage after just a couple of laps. Incidents like this can always happen when you start in the middle of the pack and itís pointless to apportion blame. Itís the worst possible end to a weekend that was already very disappointing. Itís true we took no real part in the race, but we canít hide behind the collision that eliminated both cars. However, now is not the time for accusations. Instead, we must just get on with our work. Difficult moments can bring out the best in people and Iím sure that will be the case now.Ē