LEWIS HAMILTON ended practice two in a disappointing sixth place as Max Verstappen took the lead in a crucial session.
With torrential rain forecast all day today, there is a chance that qualifying may not be held at all with yesterday's positions forming the grid on Sunday.
- Practice one result: 1) Verstappen 2) Bottas 3) Perez
- Daniel Ricciardo taken to hospital after spinning into barriers.
- Lando Norris received three-place grid penalty.
- Rain forecast all day today.
Follow all the latest build-up in our live blog below…
Tuning in tomorrow?
Free Practice 3 gets underway at 11am UK time.
Then qualifying begins at 2pm with big fears over potential thunderstorms in the Styrian Mountains at that time.
Also scheduled, weather permitting, are the F2 and F3 support races.
The F3 race starts at 9.20am before F2 lights out at 3.35pm, with both series featuring two races over the weekend.
Daniel Ricciardo accepted responsibility for the FP2 shunt that has set his Styrian GP hopes back quite a bit.
After a disappointing first weekend, the Aussie was seen limping away from his Renault after it hit the barrier at speed at the penultimate corner.
Ricciardo said: “It was a mistake, it all happened very quickly so I'm not sure what went wrong. I turned in and just lost the car straight away.
“I know these things happen with cars and in Formula One, so it's not out of the ordinary. I'm OK, however, I feel bad for the guys. We'll just move on.”
A very busy and potentially very decisive FP2 session in the books this afternoon.
EYE ON THE SKY
Tomorrow’s weather is set to play a huge part in the race outcome with rain predicted to hit the qualifying session.
So what is the current forecast?
Accuweather rate the chances of precipitation in Spielberg tomorrow as 76 per cent, with 45 per cent chance of thunderstorms.
Any thunder and lightning would likely stop the running in its tracks.
The morning/afternoon splits place slightly more emphasis on the chance of rain after lunch, making for a worrisome wait to see how the weather holds up.
And, of course, with the Red Bull Ring in the mountains there is always that extra level of unpredictability to consider…
Lando Norris has complained of a severe back pain that forced him to limit his time on track during practice for the Styrian GP.
The Brit, who took his maiden podium here at the Red Bull Ring last Sunday, has been left baffled by the agony.
He said: “I don't know where the pain is in my chest, and yeah I hit the brakes and the compression spikes up massively. So I'm just afraid to brake massively, which is not ideal around here.
“I feel fine now, and walking around, but it's something that when I'm driving just causes me a lot of pain, particularly in the high-speed corners and when I'm braking.
“I've spoken to my specialist and he tried to figure it out but it's not as obvious as just pointing it out and so on.
“I've been on painkillers and whatever but it's been setting me back a lot. It's been pretty frustrating.”
LEW'D HOPE NOT
Lewis Hamilton hopes tomorrow's qualifying does not get wiped out by adverse weather conditions.
The FP2 result will be instated as the race grid if qualifying is a wash-out and an alternative time on Sunday cannot be found – leaving the Mercedes man in sixth.
He said: “If we have to start in sixth, that would suck. I would be starting further back than I did last week, so it would make it challenging.
“We have a lot of work to do in the background to figure out why the car felt good in first practice and then dropped off.
“The others were quick and Valtteri had good pace, so hopefully we will be in a better position tomorrow.”
CLEAN BILL OF HEALTH
F1 have confirmed there have been no positive tests for the coronavirus in another week of testing.
A statement said: “The FIA and Formula 1 can today confirm that between Friday 3rd July and Thursday 9th July, 4566 tests for COVID-19 have been performed on drivers, teams and personnel.
“Of these, zero people have tested positive.”
Here's how the drivers line up after FP2… and potentially for Sunday's race.
VERSTAPPEN TOPS FP2
Max Verstappen tops the timesheets ahead of Valtteri Bottas while Sergio Perez is third.
Hamilton only sixth fastest and is not happy. Plenty of work to do for Mercedes.
But what about Ferrari? Leclerc is ninth and Vettel 16th, behind the Williams of George Russell.
That is a shocker for the Italian team.
WOW, FERRARI ARE POOR
Vettel gets a crack on soft tyres but is released into the path of Nicholas Latifi.
The Williams rookie blasts past Vettel and says over the radio “I don't know what the Ferrari is doing.”
Neither do they, it seems….
FIVE MINUTES TO GO
And, Vettel's Ferrari is BEHIND George Russell's Williams.
That's incredible. Yes, I know it is practice, but still…
It shows you just how far Ferrari have fallen.
HAMILTON IS NOT HAPPY
This from Mercedes –
Lewis isn’t happy with the car, as can be seen from the gap to the front on a single lap.
We completed a set down in the garage to check what we can in session in terms of alignments etc.
We will make best use of the rest of the session on track and then be able to investigate more thoroughly this evening.
Another high-profile error for Alex Albon, who spins off the track.
No blame for Lewis Hamilton on that occasions.
And what on the world champion? He is currently sixth quickest.
A WORD ON PIERRE GASLY
Who does not get many mentions here, but he is super angry at his AlphaTauri team.
Feels he is being used to give his teammate, Daniil Kvyat a tow and giving the Russian a better lap time.
Gasly is in 11th and Kvyat in 12th.
UNDER 40 MINUTES TO GO
Mercedes and Racing Point looking good.
McLaren also in the mix.
Still some work to do for Red Bull.
Not looking good for Ferrari, Renault, AlphaTauri or Haas.
RACING POINT 1-2
Perez leads Stroll in a lockout for Racing Point.
The small team from Silverstone are bossing this. Incredibly effort.
STONKING LAP FOR PEREZ
Sergio Perez clocks a lap of 1:03.877 to move half a second clear of Bottas in second.
That was a mega lap from the Mexican.
That pink Merc is doing the business.
MAX BLASTS AT BOTTAS
Max Verstappen is on the radio complaining about being held up by Valtteri Bottas.
He is furious.
PROBLEMS FOR ALBON
Another worry for Red Bull, this time as Alex Albon is moving slowly. TV replays show he spun. He's now back up to speed.
VERSTAPPEN IS HEADING BACK TO THE PITS
Power issues for the Red Bull man, that's not great news for his team or engine suppliers Honda, especially after a double DNF last weekend.
The marshals have recovered the broken Renault and patched the tyre wall that was smashed up by Ricciardo.
Verstappen is on track and says “I am not having a lot of power…”
RICCIARDO IS LIMPING
Ricciardo is out of the car, but walking very gingerly.
He will need checking out by the medics as that was a big impact.
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