Force India continued their impressive form in the Austrian Grand Prix qualifying, as Nico Hulkenberg finished third fastest on Saturday. But the driver will be second on the grid after Mercedes' Nico Rosberg, who was second quickest, received a five-grid penalty for gearbox change after a crash in practice. However, all eyes will be on Lewis Hamilton, as he will start on pole position on Sunday.
Hamilton looked brilliant during the qualifying, and the defending champion will be keen to impress during the race as well. The British driver has not able to perform well this season, with engines and accidents leading to problems. If nothing of such happens in the Austria Grand Prix raceday, he is expected to win his third race of the season, and close the gap on leader, Rosberg.
Though Rosberg might start in seventh place on the grid, the driver is expected to battle it out for a top finish in the Austrian Grand Prix. Rosberg will be confident going into this race as he emerged victorious in the last two editions of the Austrian Grand Prix. Despite the penalty, Rosberg wants to give it his best shot, and cross the chequered flag first.
"The five places will be quite costly... well, very costly of course for tomorrow, unfortunately. I'll make the best of it anyways and try to get a good race from there," Formula One's official website quoted Rosberg as saying.
With the form Rosberg has shown this season, winning five races including the European Grand Prix, one should not be too surprised if the German shows his class and challenges Hamilton in Austria.
Though most of the focus during the Austrian Grand Prix may lie on Ferrari and Mercedes, Hulkenberg will be keen to finish in the podium. The German is also looking for his first podium finish, and Hulkenberg will be keen to make this Austrian Grand Prix a memorable one, finishing in the top three.
"First of all I'm happy and excited about today. Special circumstances obviously with the rain in Q3 and then the drying-up track but for sure starting second is a very good starting position. Tomorrow we'll do what we can. I'm not thinking too hard about that now," Hulkenberg said.
"We'll do that in the next couple of hours and tonight and tomorrow but our car has made huge steps forwards since Barcelona really and ever-since we've scored a lot of points and a few podiums so yeah, we're on a good slope, we have good momentum and just try to carry it into tomorrow and make it into another good Sunday."
With Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, and Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo, who have been in great form this season, Hulkenberg has his task cut out. And with Rosberg starting the race in seventh place, the Austrian Grand Prix is expected to be action-packed on Sunday.
Where to watch live
The Austrian Grand Prix is schedule for 2 p.m. local time, 5:30 p.m. IST, 1 p.m. BST start.
|India||Star Sports 4, Star Sports 4HD|
|United Kingdom||BBC, Sky Sports|
|Middle East and North Africa||Bein Sports Arabia|
|Germany, Italy||Sky Sport|
|India||Star Sports Online and Hotstar|
|US||NBC Sports Online|
|UK||Watch Sky Sports|
|Middle East||BeIN Sport Connect|
|Asia||Fox Sports Online|
|Italy||Sky Go Italy|
|Germany||Sky Go Germany|