Five talking points from the Austrian Grand Prix

Red Bull Ring

The Austrian Grand Prix produced a surprise pole for Felipe Massa, another one-two for Mercedes and a maiden podium for Valtteri Bottas.

Here are five stories worth talking about following Formula One's return to the Spielberg mountains.

Mercedes victorious on and off the track 

Nico Rosberg won his third race of 2014 at the Red Bull Ring, but some have suggested that Mercedes are using pitstops to manufacture the results in his favour. That’s just crazy - isn’t it?

READ MORE: Rosberg success sparks conspiracy theories

Whatever’s happening behind the scenes, Merc made the most of their win on Red Bull’s home ground with a cheeky post-race advert and some guerrilla PR at the Austrian circuit. Fast on the track, fast-thinking off it.

READ MOREMercedes poke fun at Red Bull after crushing them at their own circuit

Seb’s still struggling

There’s no denying that Sebastian Vettel has had a lot of bad luck this season. That continued in Austria, where his engine let him down yet again, forcing him out of the race after 34 laps.

But it should also be noted that team-mate Daniel Ricciardo once again beat the four-time world champion in qualifying at the Red Bull Ring, making it 6-2 to the Aussie in 2014.

So while he’s clearly low on luck, you could also question just where Seb’s one-lap pace has gone this year.

READ MORE: Has Sebastian Vettel been found out?

Red Bull rail against ropey Renault

Regardless of how their drivers are fairing, it’s clear that Red Bull’s Renault engines aren’t up to their usual standard. Another failure for Vettel in Austria was clearly too much for team boss Christian Horner, who made his frustrations clear post-race.

"The reliability is unacceptable,” said Horner. “The performance is unacceptable. There needs to be change at Renault. It can't continue like this. It's not good for Renault and it's not good for Red Bull."

Meanwhile motorsport advisor Helmut Marko has admitted that Red Bull building their own engines remains a possibility, though Horner later poured water on that notion. Still, could this ultra-successful partnership be nearing its conclusion?

READ MORE: Red Bull slams Renault engines - but is there an alternative?

Williams' pace pays off at last

The Williams cars have been quick all season, thanks in no small part to their mighty Mercedes engines.

Until Austria the team had largely failed to make good on that performance, but that changed at the Red Bull Ring, where Felipe Massa bagged his first pole position in almost six years before Valtteri Bottas scored his maiden podium in the race.

The circuit was ideally suited to the team, so repeating that result won’t be easy. Still, most F1 fans will have been pleased to see one of the sport’s most storied teams back at the sharp end.

READ MORE: Bottas podium extends remarkable Finnish success streak

Alonso stars again - but he’s sick of it

On the face of it Fernando Alonso had a very tidy Austrian Grand Prix. His was by far the best non-Mercedes car, and after a race which he described as “71 qualifying laps” he beat team-mate Kimi Raikkonen by half a minute - not too shabby.

But the Spaniard is sick and tired of impressing everyone without any real reward. After the race he said he would trade the respect he’s earned for more on-track success, but with Ferrari admitting they won’t be able to close the gap to Mercedes this season his hopes of landing significant silverware appear slim.

READ MORE: Fernando Alonso desperate for results, not respect