FERRARI DRIVER SEBASTIAN VETTEL FASTEST IN FREE PRACTICE
ON P ZERO RED SUPERSOFT
SHORT CIRCUIT LAYOUT IN AUSTRIA LEADS TO LOW WEAR AND DEGRADATION, WITH JUST 0,7 SECOND BETWEEN THE TWO COMPOUNDS
COOL WEATHER FOR FREE PRACTICE: RAIN EXPECTED AT SOME POINT DURING THE REMAINDER OF THE WEEKEND
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel set best time at the end of free practice with the PZero Red supersoft tyre.
Despite skies that threatened rain, both free practice sessions today remained dry, with FP2 – run at the same time as the qualifying and the race – getting underway with 22 degrees of asphalt temperature and lately reaching 25°.
The rapid warm-up of the supersoft tyre meant that drivers were able to extract the maximum performance from the compound straight away, even though conditions remained ‘green’ and slippery during the first free practice session in particular, during which only the soft tyre was used.
Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen was the first to try the supersoft tyre this afternoon, 30 minutes into the hour and a half session. As more drivers switched to the softer compound for race and qualifying simulations, a performance gap of 0.7 second between the two tyres was recorded.
Tyre wear and degradation was low during both sessions, and is set to decrease for the rest of the weekend as more rubber is laid down and the cars slide less.
However, there is a risk of rain throughout the rest of the weekend – particularly for tomorrow’s qualifying session – that could have a profound effect on race strategy, with the only up to data from the circuit existing from last year, when Austria returned to the championship.
As a result, teams sought to maximise the dry running today and run through as many different scenarios as possible, in order to be as best prepared as they can be for any possibility.
Paul Hembery, Pirelli Motorsport Director: “It’s a short lap here at the Red Bull Ring, taking less than 70 seconds to complete. We’ve seen the load on the tyres to be quite low, and a performance gap of 0.7 second between the two compounds. The biggest factor though will be the weather: there’s a risk of rain tomorrow and a slightly smaller possibility of rain on race day. This would clearly have a major effect on tactics, so all the signs are for an unpredictable weekend.”
|1.Rosberg||1m10.401s||Soft new||1.Vettel||1m09.600s||Supersoft new|
|2.Hamilton||1m10.709s||Soft new||2.Rosberg||1m09.611s||Supersoft new|
|3.Raikkonen||1m11.028s||Soft new||3.Raikkonen||1m09.860s||Supersoft new|
Tyre statistics of the day:
|kms driven *||1656||4105||0||0|
|sets used overall **||19||59||0||0|
|highest number of laps **||33||35||0||0|
* The above number gives the total amount of kilometres driven in FP1 and FP2 today, all drivers combined.
** Per compound, all drivers combined.
Pirelli fact of the day:
In the circuit’s history as first the Osterreichring and then the A1-Ring, Alain Prost is the most frequent winner of the Austrian Grand Prix. The four-time world champion triumphed on three occasions, winning first for Renault in 1983 and then with McLaren in 1985 and 1986.