The circuit previously held the Austrian Grand Prix between 1970 and 1987, when it was known as the Österreichring. Due to safety concerns it was removed from the calendar and did not return until 1997, with a new layout and name – the A1-Ring.
The track held its last Formula 1 race in 2003 and was then left unusable for several years, before it was purchased by Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz, rebuilt and re-named the Red Bull Ring.
“I have great memories of the Red Bull Ring,” Vettel said when looking ahead to the next race in Austria. “I was 13 years old when I first drove around it. I had the chance to test a Formula car from the Auinger family.
“That is a huge step if you’re coming from a karting background. It was something completely new and it took me a while to get used to it. I’m really happy that we will race there. The circuit is actually very pretty, not only the track, but the whole area. The circuit’s set amid a beautiful natural landscape.
“There are not many distractions there – it’s just about racing. The Red Bull Ring is a short track, with only a few turns, but it’s very challenging. There are also a lot of elevation changes, which makes it interesting and fun. The fans will have a great time as every grandstand offers a great view of the circuit.”
Explaining some of the challenges of the circuit, his team-mate Daniel Ricciardo added: “It’s a tidy circuit, not the longest and not many corners, but what is there is good.
“Turn One is cool as it climbs up the hill. It looks tight, but actually isn’t. Turn Two is quite a tight right-hand corner, going uphill and off-camber as well. Then it drops back down all the way through the rest of the track.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic