Austrian GP 2022 Preview: Red Bull and Verstappen arrive at their Styrian stronghold

Just four days have passed since the end of the British round and the Austrian F1 GP 2022 is already upon us. This weekend (July 8-10), the Red Bull Ring Circuit in Spielberg will be hosting the eleventh round of a World Championship that is ever so even. 

After finishing seventh at Silverstone, Max Verstappen leads in the standings 34 points ahead of Checo Pérez and & 43 over Charles Leclerc (Ferrari). 

Those three leaders, together with the Carlos Sainz (Ferrari), will be fighting it out for glory at the Styrian track. The Spaniard is facing this weekend in excellent spirits after claiming the first F1 pole and victory of his career. He will, however, still have to deal with his teammate and great rival, Charles Leclerc.  

The situation at La Scuderia is red hot following events in the UK where the young Monegasque flew into a rage, blaming team strategy for him losing the victory.

This, together with the Spaniard’s refusal to comply with the (controversial) team orders, robbed Leclerc of the top prize. After the race, his anger was such that team manager Mattia Binotto, had to reprimand him in public in order to calm him down. 

 

Ferrari: Red hot 

Several days have passed since the British F1 GP 2022 but emotions are still running high in Ferrari. So much so that Binotto had to make a quick trip to Monaco this week to have a chat with his rebellious pupil. It is widely known that the management of infighting in the team is one of Maranello’s weakest points. 

The two ‘roosters’ of the Italian team are now separated by a mere eleven points in favour of Leclerc, who has been going through a slump for the last two months. Immersed in that tension, we can expect some high-staked parallel duels inside and outside the red team. 

Despite its inside hostilities, Ferrari will be eager to avenge Red Bull’s 1-2 humiliation in Imola. Defeating them at home would be the perfect way of vindicating that insult in the eyes of the Tifosiand a leap forward in the battle for the World Championship. Leclerc is currently 43 points behind Verstappen and Sainz, 54. 

For all of this, Ferrari will be chasing its fourth win of the season  tooth and nail at the Austrian F1 GP 2022. The Styrian event will be a great opportunity to see if the F1-75 can defeat the blue missile under normal conditions. 

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Red Bull & Verstappen: To get back on track after the English round 

Red Bull are still favourites for Austrian F1 GP 2022. It was just a fragment of Alpha Tauri‘s AT03 which got embedded into the Dutchman’s RB18 that prevented him from claiming his third and his team’s seventh consecutive win of the season. 

Up until then, Verstappen was leading the Silverstone race. In the end, he had to make do with seventh place, so not all was lost in terms of points. The Flying Dutchman is the contender to beat in Styria where he has won three of the last four editions (2018, 2019 and 2021). 

Similarly, his teammate, Checo Pérez, arrives at this weekend’s round in top form. Following a spectacular comeback from last to second at Silverstone, the Mexican driver will try and continue to close the gap with his Dutch teammate. 

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 Mercedes: In hostile territory 

Below, but progressively closer to Red Bull and Ferrari comes Mercedes for the Austrian F1 GP 2022 . The team left Silverston with very good sensations, evidence of the favourable evolution of the W13. Lewis Hamilton has taken two of his three podiums so far in the last two rounds (Canada and England). 

The Germans, however, remain cautious in the face of the Austrian GP 2022. They are aware that the layout of the short Spielberg track, uneven and with a number of slow curves, could play against the strengths of the silver car. 

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Images of Austrian F1 GP 2022: Red Bull Racing.

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