Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel knew his slick tyre gamble “was the wrong decision” as he saw points fall from his grasp in 2021 Turkish Grand Prix.
Vettel found himself 11th after an opening lap pass from Lewis Hamilton who had begun the race 11th himself, before benefitting from a spin for Yuki Tsunoda to move up to tenth on Lap 22.
The German then gambled on medium tyres on Lap 37 but the risk backfired instantly as he struggled in the damp conditions with no grip, which saw him fall to 18th at the checkered flag after pitting for fresh Intermediate tyres a lap later.
Explaining his decision to make a disastrous gamble post-race, Vettel said: “Something inside me was calling me to try dry tyres because there was nothing left on my Intermediate tyres and I thought the dry tyres might work, even if the track was still damp.
“But as soon as I left the pits, I knew it was the wrong decision: there was no grip and I could not make them work.”
Aston Martin CEO & Team Principal, Otmar Szafnauer echoed Vettel’s thoughts as he revealed that Vettel’s lap on the medium tyres had result in his race ultimately being “compromised too severely” to make any chance of salvaging points an impossibility.
Stroll meanwhile enjoyed a solid race as he started eighth and spent most of the race running eighth in his first stint after Hamilton had passed the Canadian, before making his stop at end of Lap 39 as he recovered to finish ninth after issues during his tyre change.
Speaking about his “happy” ninth-placed finish, Stroll felt confident that he “got everything out of the car, so it is a job well done by the team.”
Reflecting on the difficult conditions with the track not drying quickly like many other tracks, Stroll commented: “It was tricky out there because the track was so slippery. There was also the challenge of the circuit drying in some places, which was causing graining of the tyres, and the question mark about a switch to slicks was always there.”
Szafnauer praised Stroll’s performance to claim two points as Aston Martin remain a comfortable seventh in the constructors’ standings, adding: “Lance drove superbly in incredibly tricky conditions, and, despite a slow pit stop, thereby scored two valuable world championship points as a result of his excellent ninth-place finish.”