Formula One statistics for the Styrian Grand Prix

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With drivers told the rain would soon get heavier, they were advised to post a solid time quickly in order to get into the second part of qualifying. The curtain of water that lifted each vehicle tested the visual acuity of the drivers.

"We were strategically sharp, very strong and it was a shame we won no points for it".

"Video evidence and telemetry data clearly showed that the driver of auto 26 was impeded by vehicle 16 in turns 9 and 10".

"I know these things happen with cars and in Formula 1, so it's not out of the ordinary". That was just because I couldn't feel properly what the auto was going to do. We'll just move on. "Just a different auto, in terms of the way it feels. The second session would have been interesting, so we'll just have to find out our pace tomorrow or Sunday".

Hamilton's Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas could only qualify in fourth place after taking pole position and winning last Sunday's Austrian GP.

Carlos Sainz of McLaren was third best. However we look at it we are just too slow at the moment. The auto is in a good window, we've still got a bit of work to do but we're there and we can fight - that's the main thing. The Dutchman finished 1.2sec off Hamilton, who improved on his last attempt despite not needing to as more rain fell. Hamilton spent a chunk of time in the garage while his team worked on his auto.

On Thursday, he said he was hoping to be able to take the knee again - as he and 13 other drivers did before last Sunday's race - and was seeking a way to make this possible.

Lewis Hamilton celebrates pole position
"I love these days Hamilton was happy to grab pole in the tricky conditions

It was another disappointing day for Ferrari, with Sebastian Vettel coming 10th and Charles Leclerc missing out on Q3 to start 11th.

Moments at Turn Five and Turn Seven turned into a spin at Turn Nine, when he understeered wide because he was behind Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, got onto the kerb and lost the vehicle.

However, for Albon and Red Bull, the plan is to take the fight to Mercedes who were the dominant team throughout the opening race of 2020.

The Russian Grand Prix will return to the resort city of Sochi for the sixth time since 2014, perhaps marking the end of the original 2014-2020 agreement to hold F1 races at the venue.

Hamilton had a hard race in Austria last weekend.

The first-ever Styrian Grand Prix has been marred by torrential rain today, with qualifying looking unlikely after the third practice session was cancelled.

If track and cloud conditions fail to improve throughout the day, the qualifying session will be moved to Sunday morning at 10:00AM, which is now forecast to be dry.

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