Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll was delighted with a “very satisfying” conclusion to F1’s latest triple-header as he finished sixth at 2021 Qatar Grand Prix.
Stroll endured a difficult triple-header as he finished 14th in Mexico after taking a power unit change before retiring in Brazil with damage from a collision with Yuki Tsunoda.
The Canadian however bounced back from a tricky Qualifying session in Qatar to recover from 12th on grid to finish sixth following a late scrap with Alpine’s Esteban Ocon.
Reflecting on his race performance, Stroll admitted that he was “very happy” with his progress after making up a few places on the opening lap before settling on a consistent pace throughout the opening stint before overtaking Tsunoda then undercutting Carlos Sainz with his second stop.
Stroll added that he was pleased with eight points after a tough triple-header, as he said: “Overall, everything went perfectly for us today and scoring eight points at the end of this triple-header is a very satisfying reward for all our hard work.”
Sebastian Vettel meanwhile recovered from a “costly” opening corner error which dropped him down the order to 17th, yet was able to recover to his original grid position of 10th at the checkered flag.
Explaining what happened at the start, Vettel said: “On the approach to Turn One, there were lots of cars around me and I was squeezed. I tried to go around the outside but the track was dirtier than I expected and I slid wide.”
Vettel therefore feels disappointed to have not scored more points than the single point for his tenth-placed finish but is hurt about how his race unravelled at the start which he felt was “frustrating” given the car’s pace in clean air.
Aston Martin Team Principal, Otmar Szafnauer meanwhile was pleased with a double-points finish as Stroll and Vettel brought nine points home in total between them, from what Szafnauer described as “a complex race” featuring three front left tyre punctures for Mercedes powered cars.
Szafnauer in particularly singled out Stroll for praise following his excellent management of tyre wear and pressure as he fended off both Ferrari cars to finish sixth under “intense racing” across 57 laps from the Canadian.
Vettel meanwhile was applauded for “hard” racing to recover back to tenth and snatch the final point, which saw Aston Martin clinch their first double-points finish since the French GP in June.