For the first time this season, neither Scuderia Ferrari driver managed to get through to the final part of qualifying. Come the end of Q2 for the Austrian Grand Prix, Carlos Sainz had to settle for 11th, missing the cut by only six thousandths of a second, while Charles Leclerc was just 47 thousandths away and qualified 12th. Balancing out the natural disappointment is the fact that both drivers get a free choice of tyres for the first stint, which might play an important role in terms of strategy and prove significant when the points are awarded – the final verdict of this ninth round of the season is only handed out when the chequered flag is waved.
Laurent Mekies Racing Director:
“Of course we cannot be happy given that we didn’t get either of our drivers through to Q3, but more than ever, today’s qualifying result has to be looked at in terms of the race. Starting where we are, we can choose which tyre compound we start on, which should give us an advantage over those ahead of us who are on the Softs. That is why we tried to make the cut into Q3 on the Mediums, which we missed out on by a very small margin at the end of a session in which nine drivers were covered by less than two tenths, several of them running the softest compound. Now we are concentrating on preparing for the race in which strategy and the behaviour of the various tyre compounds will play a key role.” – the Ferrari sporting director concluded.