The result of the Austrian Grand Prix remains provisional as of Sunday evening due to a protest from Aston Martin regarding the punishment of track limits violations. Out of the 20 drivers, only George Russell from Mercedes and Fernando Alonso from Aston Martin managed to avoid any incidents of track limits breaches. Most of the violations occurred in Turns 9 and 10, which are high-speed right-handers. The FIA has disclosed that over 1200 cases of cars leaving the track boundaries were reported to race control during the race. This overwhelming number of reports created an unprecedented situation, making it impossible for the FIA to review all potential infringements during the Grand Prix.
According to an FIA spokesperson, the track limits infringements at the Austrian Grand Prix presented a unique challenge due to the circuit layout and the tendency of many drivers to repeatedly go beyond the track boundaries. The FIA had already initiated a full review of the track limits infringements before the protest was lodged. Throughout the race, race control had the task of reviewing over 1200 instances where cars were potentially reported as leaving the track. The results will be updated once the review of the cases that couldn’t be reviewed during the race is completed.
Teams were frustrated by the delayed enforcement of track limits during the race, which potentially left them unable to warn drivers when they received a black-and-white flag, indicating that they were one strike away from a five-second penalty. The FIA has emphasized that it will urge the management of the Red Bull Ring to install gravel traps, similar to the ones at Turn 4, to better define the final two corners. However, previous resistance to this measure was due to the Red Bull Ring also hosting motorcycle racing events, including the premier MotoGP series. Despite this, the FIA intends to recommend the addition of gravel traps at Turns 9 and 10 to tackle the issue in future events, citing the effectiveness of such traps at other circuits facing similar problems.