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Austrian GP: Practice team notes - Pirelli

NEWS STORY
03/07/2020

Lewis Hamilton went fastest in both free practice sessions today using the P Zero Red soft tyre: faster than the equivalent time last year in both sessions. His team mate Valtteri Bottas was second in both FP1 and FP2.

Ferrari decided not to use the soft tyres in FP1 and only ran them in FP2 for the first time, with Sebastian Vettel classified fourth overall in the afternoon.

The fastest non-Mercedes today was Racing Point, with Sergio Perez third overall in FP2, also on the soft tyre.

Pirelli's 18-inch P Zero tyres made a successful competition debut today in free practice and qualifying for Formula 2. Formula 1 will adopt the same rim size in 2022.

Mario Isola: "As expected, there was a relatively small gap in terms of performance between the three compounds at the Red Bull Ring, with a short lap that's covered in just over a minute. Despite a very long time since the drivers were last on track, the fastest times in both free practice sessions today were slightly faster than their equivalents last year, confirming the development of the cars with exactly the same tyres as 2019. There was plenty of track evolution following some overnight rain, which led to the intermediate tyres being run briefly in FP1.

"With more teams challenging for the top 10, it's more likely that the soft will be needed to guarantee a chance of progressing to Q3, which is probably why we saw a lot of drivers concentrating on long runs with the soft tyre as well as the medium today. At such a finely-balanced circuit such as the Red Bull Ring, the smallest detail will count even more than usual."

Check out our Friday gallery from Spielberg, here.

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