Who’s hot and who’s not heading into the Austrian GP

Valtteri Bottas and Nico Rosberg should both be expecting strong results this weekend in Austria.

Sam Bloxham

Formula One heads to the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg, Austria, this weekend for the ninth round of the 2016 World Championship.

The series is now approaching the halfway point of the season and we’re beginning to get an idea of which drivers are having good years and which are not.

While the Red Bull Ring has only been back on the F1 calendar for two years, those two races have provided an indication of whom we should keep an eye on this weekend, and who we could perhaps ignore.

Nico Rosberg – HOT

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Nico Rosberg demonstrated in Baku that he wasn’t ready to let his Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton just run away with this championship. A dominant performance by the German has given him a handy lead in the points again. Additionally, Rosberg is the only current driver to have won at the Red Bull Ring before, having won both races since the track returned to the schedule. He’ll be hoping for more of the same and a bigger point lead after this weekend.

Williams – HOT

This circuit has suited the Williams Martini Team well in recent years, with Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas locking out the front row in 2014. In both races since the track returned to the schedule, both drivers have placed in the top five. The Mercedes-powered team has been coming on recently, and a podium finish should not be out of the question for them this weekend.

Red Bull – NOT

Despite being called the Red Bull Ring, this Austrian circuit has not suited the Red Bull Racing team well in the past couple of years. Additionally, while Max Verstappen won in Spain and Daniel Ricciardo almost won in Monaco, the teammates have not fared well in the past couple of races in Canada and Baku.

Sergio Perez – HOT

The Mexican Force India driver has finished in third position twice in the past three races which, despite having done a year in McLaren, is the first time the 26-year-old can say that in his Formula One career. Additionally, Perez has finished in the points in both of his previous starts at the Red Bull Ring.

McLaren – NOT

While the McLaren-Honda team is doing far and away better than what it did in 2015, things have fallen south for them a bit in the past couple of rounds. It doesn’t help matters that both of their cars failed to finish the race at this circuit last year. However, almost incredibly, while McLaren hasn’t finished in the points in the past consecutive two rounds – it’s the first time that they can say that this year.