Never has the Formula One paddock been more intensely pressurised than in this most unusual 2020 season.

We’re two rounds into an unprecedented run of 10 races in 13 weeks, and with the full schedule of events still undetermined, every grand prix threatens to make or break a championship.

The pressure has never been higher. Fortunately Lewis Hamilton thrives on it.

We review the Styrian Grand Prix, the Everybody Loves Raymond of F1 races, and analyse Fernando Alonso’s Renault reunion, the Hey Hey It’s Saturday of F1 returns.

Lewis Hamilton opened his 2020 victory account by converting a superlative wet-weather pole into a comfortable win at the Styrian Grand Prix to confirm Mercedes’s place at the head of the field.

Hamilton was absolutely peerless in the saturated qualifying conditions, and though Max Verstappen started alongside him on the front row of the grid, the Red Bull Racing driver never quite had the pace to challenge for the lead, and by the time of his pit stop on lap 24 that his strategy had become defensive rather than progressive.

Off the podium the battle for fourth went down to the wire, with the front of the midfield tightly matched after different strategies brought Racing Point, Renault and McLaren together in the battle for points.

Lewis Hamilton has taken his first win of the season in a one-two victory for Mercedes at the Styrian Grand Prix.

The Briton had been untouchable since recording his masterful pole position in the wet from Max Verstappen on Saturday afternoon. The Red Bull Racing driver expected to challenge Hamilton for victory come the race, but the reigning world champion never gave him a chance, acing his start and nailing the single safety car restart to keep the Dutchman at arm’s length throughout.

The margin at the chequered flag was 13.7 seconds, and Hamilton was serene in rejoining the winners circle in 2020.

Lewis Hamilton led a Mercedes one-two to take his first win of the season at the Styrian Grand Prix. The Briton had total control over the race from the start, surrendered the lead only once — to teammate Valtteri Bottas in the pit stops — to take a perfectly managed 13s victory.

Continue reading on RACER

Mercedes may have a new all-black livery, but its superiority over the field remains stubbornly unchanged, as Valtteri Bottas’s dominant pole so aptly illustrated at the season-opening Austrian Grand Prix.

Not even a trip through the gravel and a clumsy spin on the grass in his second run could keep Bottas from pole and a new track record with a time of 1 minute 2.939 seconds. It was enough to pip teammate Lewis Hamilton by just 0.012 seconds.

The margin between the quickest Mercedes and the next-best car, Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen, was a foreboding 0.538 seconds. The Dutchman said the gap was exacerbated by balance problems aboard his RB16, but even was forced to admit the Mercedes is simply in a different league.

Lewis Hamilton has put on a masterclass of wet-weather driving with a dominant pole position in saturated Styrian Grand Prix qualifying.

The superlative driving spectacle almost didn’t happen, with heavy rain cancelling Saturday practice and threatening to write off qualifying in the deluge.

But fortunately the rain eased enough to allow the track to drain sufficient to get the session underway after only a 46-minute delay, allowing Hamilton to put on a show of wet-weather excellence.

Lewis Hamilton dominated a soaking wet qualifying session for the Styrian Grand Prix, topping the time sheet in the treacherous conditions by a massive 1.2s margin.

Continue reading on RACER

Qualifying for the Formula 1 Styrian Grand Prix is in jeopardy after Saturday morning practice was called off due to persistent rain.

Continue reading on RACER

Max Verstappen topped Friday afternoon practice for the Styrian Grand Prix in a tightly contested three-way battle between Red Bull Racing, Mercedes and Racing Point.

Continue reading on RACER

Racing Point’s Sergio Perez topped the time sheet in first practice in Formula 1’s first Styrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring, narrowly edging Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen.

Continue reading on RACER

I preview the upcoming Austrian and Hungarian grands prix with last year’s podcast guests Luke Smith from Autosport and Chris Medland from Racer.