We're streaming the 2016 Austrian Grand Prix – here's why you should watch
The 2020 Formula 1 season will finally get up and running in a fortnight's time with the Austrian Grand Prix. And to help get you in the mood for the race, we'll be streaming the 2016 Austrian GP on F1.com, Facebook and YouTube this Saturday, June 20 at 1400 UTC (1500 BST) – here’s why you won’t want to miss it.
A quick look at the facts tells you that Lewis Hamilton qualified on pole on the Saturday and took the race victory on the Sunday – but this was anything but a routine win for the Mercedes driver.
How they stood before the race
Mercedes had been dominant in F1 since the new turbo-hybrid engines had been intorduced, with the Silver Arrows and Hamilton picking up consecutive titles in 2014 and 2015.
But in 2016, Hamilton's team mate Nico Rosberg had made a flying start, winning the first four races of the season, and coming into the Austrian Grand Prix, it was Rosberg who was leading the championship by 24 points over Hamilton, and with five wins under his belt to Hamilton's two.
it was already clear this title would be fought between the Mercedes pair, with the Ferrari duo of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen next up in the standings, with Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo already a fairly distant fifth.
The talk of the paddock before the race were the new 'sausage' kerbs that had been installed on the outside of various corners to try to stop drivers abusing the track limits in order to gain time.
Max Verstappen in particular was a vocal opponent after he twice damaged his Red Bull car running over them in practice.
Verstappen wasn't the only one having trouble, with Rosberg crashing in FP3, putting him on the back foot for qualifying as Mercedes rushed to repair his car, and earning him a five-place grid penalty when he had to take a new gearbox.
He ended up second fastest behind Hamilton in a mixed wet/dry session (though he would start further back because of his penalty), but Force India's Nico Hulkenberg was the star of the day, putting in the third fastest lap to end up starting the race in second.
Four key moments
1. The start – Hamilton got away well off the line, while Saturday's hero Hulkenberg was quickly going backwards, losing out on the first lap to a fast-starting Jenson Button (fifth on the grid) and then a host of other cars that saw him begin lap 7 down in sixth, with Rosberg up to third.
2. Rosberg jumps Hamilton – Rosberg decided to pit early to try the undercut on Hamilton, coming in on lap 14, while Hamilton stayed out until lap 22. But a slow stop saw the Brit emerge behind his team mate. Advantage Rosberg.
3. Vettel crashes out – Ferrari at this point were running 1-2, but Kimi Raikkonen, who was leading, pitted just a lap after Hamilton – and then things really took a turn for the worse for the Scuderia when, on lap 27, Sebastian Vettel's right rear tyre exploded, pitching him into the barriers and out of the race. Rosberg inherited the lead as a result.
4. Last lap drama – By the last lap the two Mercedes were running 1-2, with Rosberg in the lead. But Hamilton was not ready to give up, and after getting a run at him into turn 2, he went for the move round the outside.
But Rosberg clattered into him, then they touched again as Hamilton rejoined the track, damaging Rosberg's car and leaving him to limp home in fourth as Hamilton took the win.
Hamilton gets the boos – Perhaps somewhat unfairly, the partisan crowd were none too happy about Hamilton winning, and Rosberg not even making the podium, and they booed the British driver when he was on the rostrum to collect his trophy. Hamilton's reaction? "That's not my problem, it’s theirs."
Toto was fuming – After they took each other out at the Spanish Grand Prix earlier that season, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff had just about had enough of his two drivers colliding on track.
Suggesting that he might have to impose team orders to prevent it from happening again, the Austrian ratrher colourfully said: "It makes we want to puke myself but if racing is not possible without contact that is a consequence."
Max beams, Kimi shrugs – Verstappen's second place was his second podium, having taken his first with his debut victory in Spain just a few weeks earlier. "To finish here second, as a Red Bull driver at the Red Bull Ring, is a great feeling," he beamed afterwards.
Raikkonen, in third place, was not as chuffed. The then-Ferrari driver said it was "not an easy weekend but with the speed that we had I feel that we didn’t really get what we deserved but that’s racing."
How to watch
And if you want to watch more classic Grand Prix action you're in luck, as we’re offering F1 TV Access FREE for 30 days. That’s right, 1,400 hours of unrestricted, on-demand F1 content available to stream right now, including race highlights, season reviews, on-boards, qualifying highlights and much more! Click here for more details.