Massa leads shock one-two for Williams in Austria

2014 Austrian Grand Prix qualifying

Felipe Massa, Williams, Red Bull Ring, 2014Felipe Massa ended his six-year pole position drought as Williams inflicted a surprise defeat on Mercedes in qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix.

Team mate Valtteri Bottas joins him on the front row of the grid after making a mistake on his final lap which may have cost him his first Formula One pole position.

They relegated Nico Rosberg to third place and Lewis Hamilton will start ninth after spinning off twice in Q3.


The Mercedes drivers easily progressed into the second part of qualifying without having to use the super-soft tyres. They headed the times with the laps they set on the soft compound, but were split by Daniil Kvyat when the Toro Rosso driver switched to the super-soft tyres.

The stewards proved true to their word when they had warned the drivers about running wide at turn eight. Several drivers had their quickest times deleted after putting four wheels wide in turn eight.

Adrian Sutil was one of the drivers who made that mistake, and it could have cost him a place in Q2 as he was squeezed out in the final runs.

He was joined by team mate Esteban Gutierrez and the two Marussias and Caterhams as usual.

Drivers eliminated in Q1

17 Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 1’10.825
18 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1’11.349
19 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari 1’11.412
20 Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault 1’11.673
21 Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari 1’11.775
22 Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1’12.673


Fernando Alonso had a fright during Q2 when he became the latest driver to run wide at the final corner. The Astroturf and bumpy grass had punished several others during practice.

He recovered later in the session to secure a place in Q3, as did team mate Kimi Raikkonen who had been in the drop zone following the first runs.

But the biggest name which failed to make it into the final ten was Sebastian Vettel. The Red Bull driver ran wide at turn three on his final effort, meaning he failed to reach Q3 at their home circuit.

Pastor Maldonado also went out in Q2 after skidding off the track at turn five on his last attempt.

The Mercedes drivers headed the times with Rosberg ahead this time, though he remained slightly unhappy with the balance of his car heading into the shoot-out for pole position.

Drivers eliminated in Q2

11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1’09.754
12 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’09.780
13 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’09.801
14 Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 1’09.939
15 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1’10.073
16 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1’10.642


Two sectors into his first flying lap in Q3 everything was looking good for Hamilton. He was fastest of all through both of them, but as he arrived at the troublesome turn eight his car snapped sideways, pitching him onto the run-off.

Ordinarily that would have paved the way for Rosberg to take pole position but the Williams pair were flying on the super-soft tyres and it was Bottas who led the way.

However he failed to improve with his final run as he put two wheels onto the grass in turn seven. That presented an opportunity for Mercedes to take their usual one-two – but they weren’t able to take advantage.

Heading towards turn two, Hamilton’s rear brakes locked, sending him spinning off for the second time in Q3. There was more bad news for the team as Rosberg was not far behind him and, in circumstances not unlike what happened in Monaco, he had to back off for the resulting yellow flag.

But while the Mercedes team were unable to capitalise Bottas’s team mate could. Massa’s lap was slightly scruffy, but it was clean enough for him to claim his first pole position since the 2008 season finale.

Hamilton’s failure to set a time drops him to the fifth row of the grid which he shares with Nico Hulkenberg, whose final time was deleted for running wide.

Top ten in Q3

1 Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1’08.759
2 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1’08.846
3 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’08.944
4 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’09.285
5 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1’09.466
6 Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes 1’09.515
7 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 1’09.619
8 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1’10.795
9 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
10 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes

2014 Austrian Grand Prix

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Image © Williams/LAT

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96 comments on Massa leads shock one-two for Williams in Austria

  1. Ads21 (@ads21) said on 21st June 2014, 16:06

    So on the same day as Massa gets a pole position Alonso beats his new “two roosters in the same hen-house” team mate by 1.5s on the shortest track of the year. Ferrari’s decision to replace Massa with a driver they’d previously fired for being slower than Massa doesn’t seem to be working out so well.

    • Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall) said on 21st June 2014, 22:19

      I think Kimi may have messed up his last lap as they weren’t that far apart in any other session. Nonetheless he is doing a great job.

  2. Fixy (@fixy) said on 21st June 2014, 16:14

    I had almost givne up any hopes of seeing Felipe top a qualifying or race session… this is a very happy moment for me, even if by tomorrow it will count nothing! It will be hard to keep the lead…
    I also liked his celebration, he was clearly emotional and rushed to his family. I saw most teams on Twitter congratulated him, Smedley was about to cry with joy and the whole F1 paddock and fans must have been cheering for him, like they did when he waved at them. Six years! He had looked a step behind Bottas all weekend, but he set his best time when it counted most…

  3. Lars (@lars) said on 21st June 2014, 16:54

    Great qualifying from K Mag

  4. GongTong (@gongtong) said on 21st June 2014, 17:05

    I think the last time we locked out the front row was also the last year this circuit was used. And I was barely old enough to drink.

    Can’t wait until tomorrow.

  5. Andrei (@crandreico) said on 21st June 2014, 17:29

    I dare say that this was a quali where the driver who committed the less mistakes won.

  6. Peter said on 21st June 2014, 17:38

    Never mind the drivers, where is the picture of Frank’s smile?

  7. Sumedh said on 21st June 2014, 17:54

    What an own goal by Mercedes. First the Canada race, now this. They better perform to the potential of the car soon otherwise Red Bull and Ricciardo will be on their heels soon.

  8. trotter said on 21st June 2014, 17:59

    Raikkonen is 1.5 seconds behind Alonso. How is he pulling that off?! I mean Kimi. It’s almost as if he’s trying to be slow. Vettel ain’t doing much better against Ricciardo, although he had some genuinely good qualis where he was faster than Ric.

    I’ve just realized that the only time this year that Vettel finished in front of Ric was in Malaysia where Ric retired, although Vettel was in front anyway. In other races Vettel had problem more then a few times, but I can’t believe that he NEVER finished in front of Ric in a race they both finished.

  9. troutcor said on 21st June 2014, 19:12

    Finish will be:
    Rosberg, Ricciardo, Alonso after Williams drivers once again manage to screw up and Hamilton’s car once again fails him.
    This should be the last season for Massa and Putt-Putt Button – and Kimi better decided if his heart is in this thing or not, too.

  10. reiter (@reiter) said on 21st June 2014, 19:16

    Boring quali session. How can we like this “new Formula” when there are no sparks under the cars, no NOIZEEEE, and no Ferraris on pole? This season is a disaster. I’ll stop watching until all the teams are using the same engine, no fuel flow restrictions, sprinklers in order to make boring qualis like this more exciting, and when there are way less teams on the grid to keep track of. This is all just too complicated for me; good bye forever.

  11. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 21st June 2014, 19:43

    Couldn’t be happier for Williams and Massa, it’s like 1996 all over again. :)

  12. Jorge Lardone (@jorge-lardone) said on 21st June 2014, 19:53

    Six diferent teams in the seven first places! I like that.

  13. Timothy Katz (@timothykatz) said on 21st June 2014, 21:00

    The last time I remember cars that were mostly white being on the front row, they were Brawn’s.
    And when was the last time that Vettel wasn’t in Q3?

  14. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall) said on 21st June 2014, 21:13

    Vettel will struggle tomorrow. Driving a car with poor straight line speed requires a good qualification to stand a decent chance of a result but starting on the backfoot gives no chance to recover.
    I hope that Merc’s don’t breeze past the Williams cars with DRS.

  15. SauberS1 (@saubers1) said on 21st June 2014, 23:40

    Hi everyone!

    I’m looking for a pen-friend about F1 topic. My english knowledge is not too much, but I will try to improve it.
    My favourite driver is Kimi, but if your favourite driver is not Kimi, it’s not a problem.

  16. Sun Siyuan (@peking901) said on 22nd June 2014, 4:16

    Sooooooo happy for Massa!

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