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POWER RANKINGS: Who stood out for our judges in a stunning Spielberg spectacle?

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It was an epic Spielberg showdown last weekend as George Russell claimed Mercedes’ first victory since the 2022 Sao Paulo Grand Prix – but it was the clash at the front between Max Verstappen and Lando Norris that got everyone talking. Which drivers impressed our Power Rankings judges most at the Red Bull Ring? The scores from Austria are in…

How it works

  • Our five-judge panel assess each driver after every Grand Prix and score them out of 10 according to their performance across the weekend – taking machinery out of the equation
  • Our experts’ scores are then averaged out to produce a race score – with those scores then tallied up across the season on our overall Power Rankings Leaderboard (at the bottom of the page)
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The Mercedes man was there to – as he put it himself – ‘pick up the pieces’ after the battle between Norris and Verstappen ended up with both drivers getting punctures. But you’ve got to be in it to win it, and Russell’s work to initially hold onto P3 impressed our judges and ultimately paved his way to Grand Prix glory. As the Mercedes man pointed out: “It’s not over until it’s over.”

READ MORE: ‘The single dumbest thing I’ve done’ – Wolff reflects on ‘embarrassing’ radio message that ‘could have taken’ Russell out of Austrian GP

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The results will always have this as last for Norris, but the McLaren man had a second career Grand Prix victory in his sights until it all came crashing down on Lap 64. After an electric battle with the leader Verstappen, which included several attempts to overtake, the resulting contact between the pair took them out of contention. While Verstappen would drop to fifth at the flag, despite his 10-second penalty for causing a collision, Norris's car was too damaged to continue. Nonetheless his efforts in taking the fight to Verstappen earned him high praise from our judges.

READ MORE: ‘I feel let down’ – Norris says Verstappen ‘in the wrong’ as both drivers give their take on Austria clash

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Haas enjoyed an incredible double-points finish in Austria with Hulkenberg coming home in P6 to score the team’s best result in a Grand Prix since Mick Schumacher finished sixth at the same track in 2022. This was also Hulkenberg’s best result since the 2019 Italian Grand Prix. Understandably our judges were impressed with the German’s efforts.

READ MORE: Hulkenberg and Magnussen hail ‘amazing team performance’ as Haas score double points finish in Austria

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The Australian may have scored his fourth F1 podium here at the Red Bull Ring, but he was ultimately left disappointed with his second-placed finish. Had there been a few more laps to go of the race, there is every chance the Australian could have caught Russell ahead. However, our judges rewarded the 23-year-old with a high score from a weekend in which he also scored P2 in the Sprint.

READ MORE: ‘It hurts a little bit’ – Piastri disappointed to miss out on win in Austria

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There was another intense on-track battle between the Alpine team mates in Austria, but it was Gasly who ultimately got the better of Esteban Ocon as he managed to nab the final point on offer in P10. That marked the Frenchman’s 400th point in F1 and also his fourth consecutive points finish. Not a bad way to celebrate his new extension with the team.

EXCLUSIVE: Gasly and Famin on the driver’s decision to stick with Alpine – and the plans for the second seat

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The Spaniard was undeniably happy with his ‘bonus’ podium in Austria – he admitted himself he’d likely have been P5 had the events at the front not transpired. Prior to the Grand Prix he’d made more appearances at the Red Bull Ring than at any other circuit without ever finishing on the podium so that run has at least ended.

READ MORE: Sainz happy with ‘bonus’ podium in Austria while Leclerc reflects on first-lap clash with Piastri and Perez

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It was a solid performance for the RB man in Austria, with our judges' scores reflecting that. The Australian took P9 and admitted both he and the team probably “overachieved” with that result – something they worked extremely hard for.

READ MORE: Ricciardo says he and RB ‘overachieved’ with ‘hard-fought’ run to P9 in Austria

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While Hulkenberg’s result was the Haas headline grabber, his team mate’s finish can’t be discounted either as Magnussen bagged four points for the American squad with his P8. Scores like that can be invaluable to a team like Haas, and the judges duly rewarded the Dane with a spot in our top-10 performers.

READ MORE: 5 Winners and 5 Losers from Austria – Who took advantage in an action-packed Spielberg blockbuster?

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There may have been no points for Ocon, and he may have lost out to his team mate in the aforementioned battle between the pair, but P12 is still a respectable finish. Considering where Alpine began the year compared to where they are now, that represents a solid level of progress.

READ MORE: Doohan to take over Gasly's car for FP1 at Silverstone as Australian gets latest opportunity

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The final driver to make it into our top-10 performers is Hamilton, who just missed the podium in Austria. It was a challenging race though for the Mercedes man, who had to contend with damage and a five-second penalty for crossing the pit entry line. Compared to his own high standards, he labelled his performance as “pretty shocking”, but these were still some worthwhile points gained for the Silver Arrows.

READ MORE: ‘Pretty shocking’ – Hamilton blasts his own Austrian GP performance despite P4 finish

MISSING OUT

Behind Hamilton on the scoreboard, we have the trio of Charles Leclerc, Alex Albon and Yuki Tsunoda who were all tied on a score of 6.2. And after looking favourite for the win in Austria for much of the weekend, Verstappen is behind them with a score of just 6.0 – his lowest Power Rankings score of the season.

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