1997 Austrian Grand Prix | Some facts
The 1997 Austrian Grand Prix, held on July 20th at the A1-Ring circuit in Spielberg, Austria, was a race filled with controversy and unexpected outcomes. Let's delve into the details of this eventful race.
The 1997 Formula One season was highly competitive, with multiple teams aiming for victory. The Austrian Grand Prix presented an opportunity for teams to gain crucial points and solidify their positions in the championship standings.
The qualifying session saw Jacques Villeneuve of Williams-Renault secure pole position, followed by Mika Häkkinen in his Mclaren and a surprising Jarno Trulli in his Prost-Mugen.
As the lights went out, Jacques Villeneuve had a very bad start and Jarno Trulli took second place. After one lap this was the lead as Mika Häkkinen needed to retire.
The Prost of Trulli worked really well with the Bridgestone tyres. Barrichello followed in second place and Villeneuve was third after a few laps. Villeneuve had a long fight with Barrichello in the Stewart-Ford. Barrichello could not hold up his position and would fall down the order. Michale Schumacher was still struggling with his pace. On lap 23 Villeneuve took the opportunity to pass Barrichello.
Villeneuve started to hunt for Trulli in the Prost. Villeneuve was quicker and on lap 37 Trulli decided to come in for fresh tyres and fuel. Villeneuve took the lead at that time of course. In meanwhile Michael Schumacher worked his way up to second place.
On lap 40 Villeneuve pitted as well and was able to hold the lead while Jarno Trulli was in a nice fight with Giancarlo Fisichella for second place. Than in the 58th lap the Mugen engine of Jarno Trulli blown. He was driving a really good race but needed to retire. Trulli showed he was a true talent for the future.
With that said it made the way free for Jacques Villeneuve to claim victory with Coulthard in second and Frentzen in third. Fisichella dropped down the order in 4th. He could not hold his podium position in the end. As well Michael Schumacher as he got a 10 second penalty because of passing under yellow.
This was the top 10 in 1997:
Jacques Villeneuve (Williams-Renault)
David Coulthard (McLaren-Mercedes)
Heinz-Harald Frentzen (Williams-Renault)
Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan-Peugeot)
Eddie Irvine (Ferrari)
Mika Häkkinen (McLaren-Mercedes)
Ralf Schumacher (Jordan-Peugeot)
Gerhard Berger (Benetton-Renault)
Jan Magnussen (Stewart-Ford)
Rubens Barrichello (Stewart-Ford)
The 1997 will be remembered as an exciting race. Especially the fight between Trulli and Villeneuve. The 1997 campaign would end the whole year and would have a dramatic end in Jerez where Villeneuve claimed the world championship.