No repeat of 2014 front-row lock-out in Austria for Williams as Massa and Bottas struggle in Q3


Williams drivers Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas made no secret of their disappointment after qualifying fourth and sixth respectively for the Austrian Grand Prix on Saturday.

The two drivers locked out the front row of the grid at last year’s race in Austria, providing one of the biggest upsets of the 2014 season by denying Mercedes pole position.

Although Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg both spun off on their final qualifying laps, the Williams drivers were unable to capitalize on this, and were in fact hindered by the yellow flags that were shown as a result.

“My best lap could have been quicker,” Massa admitted after qualifying. “I made a mistake and also the tires would have been quicker for our final attempt, plus we would have had less fuel.

“That’s not to say we would have been higher than P4 though, and these things happen in qualifying. The conditions were good, so we hope it stays like that for the race tomorrow. Our long run pace looks strong and that could be key.”

Bottas was unable to better his lap time with his final run due to the yellow flags shown for Hamilton and Rosberg, and the Finn is confident that he would have qualified higher up the order.

“Sixth isn’t totally representative of the pace of the car considering there is only one Ferrari in front,” Bottas said. “We suffered a lot with the yellow flags and so I am a little disappointed with where we will start from tomorrow.

“Saying that though, we have a very quick car in race trim and so can still have a good fight for the positions ahead.”

The Austrian Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 7:30am ET on Sunday.