Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll is disappointed with a “tricky” 14th place after enduring a “difficult 2021 Mexico City Grand Prix.
Stroll came into this weekend knowing that he was starting near the back of the grid and endured a tough Friday Practice as he finished 13th in FP1 then 17th in FP2 due to focusing on long run simulations.
FP3 brought improvement but Stroll’s Qualifying session ended in disappointment when he lost the rear of his Aston Martin out of the Peraltada, which sent him spinning heavily into the barriers as he qualified last on the grid.
Reflecting on what happened post-Qualifying, Stroll said: “I was a little bit too wide at the final corner, it was a bit dirty out there, and I lost the car at the exit due to a lack of grip.
“I wanted to see what we could do in qualifying and see how the car felt, even though we were set to start at the back of the grid anyway.”
Stroll however found himself struggling in the race despite battling both Williams drivers but eventually finished 14th after benefitting from slow stops for Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas, although he did admit that his race was very “tricky” after starting from last place due to the “difficult” level of overtaking.
The 23 year-old however took positives from the result as he said: “The car felt good, but we were on the back foot from the start. We were hoping things would happen in front of us to help us gain places, but we needed more to go our way.
“The highlight of my race was the move on George [Russell] late on, but there was not much more we could do today. Now we focus on Brazil and aim to fight for points there.”
Sebastian Vettel meanwhile enjoyed a strong race as he drove from ninth to seventh on the grid after benefitting from Bottas’ issues and Daniel Ricciardo’s first-lap incident with George Russell.
Reflecting on his race, Vettel admitted to feeling “quite happy” as he proceeded to explain; “We had shown competitive long-run pace on Friday and I knew that if we could hold position on lap one, we would be able to stay there and score points.
“We obviously benefited from the spin for Valtteri [Bottas], although it actually held me up a bit, and the damage to Daniel’s [Ricciardo] car, but we managed to recover a position from [Antonio] Giovinazzi using the strategy.
“After that, I was on my own for most of the race with decent pace. It was a solid weekend by the team and I am pleased we could score some good points.”