Lance Stroll believes Aston Martin have come a long way as a Formula 1 team from the days when they were still called racing point.
Lance Stroll’s billionaire father Lawrence bought – as part of a consortium – the struggling Force India team back in 2018 and rebranded it Racing Point for 2019 and 2020.
In 2021, the team was rebranded once again, and became Aston Martin as Stroll Sr invested heavily in the project with the target of fighting for Championships with five years.
However the start has not been encouraging, and while 2021, the last year under the former regulations was not the team’s priority, they were not able to capitalize on the introduction of the new aero regulations in 2022, their AMR22 woefully of the pace and requiring a midseason Red Bull-inspired overhaul, that despite being an improvement was not a breakthrough.
Aston Martin evolved a lot
Lance Stroll, however believes that the Aston Martin’s ability to develop a new car, and respond to their early 2022 struggles is testament to their progress and development at a team.
“I think the team has evolved a lot,” he said, speaking to Motorsport.com. “At the factory, with the way that things are done, and how the car’s developed, I think a couple of years ago, we would have been in a much more difficult position to dig ourselves out of the hole that we were in at the beginning of the year.
“Now, I think big changes were made. We had a fully different car in Barcelona, and then upgrades from there. Then, all of a sudden, we find ourselves in some races in a much better position than before,” he added.
“I don’t think that we would have been in that position a couple of years ago, to dig ourselves out of that hole. So, I think in that sense, we’ve made huge progress.
“The whole approach as a team, we’re bonding much better than we used to in the past,” the Canadian went on. “I think we’re integrating much better than in the past. And I think back at the factory, the whole work ethic, communication, the way that everything is done, I think we’ve come a long way from where we were as Racing Point.”
Reflecting on Aston Martin’s 2022 F1 season, Stroll said: “We became much more competitive during the season, and we put ourselves in a position at many races to fight for points and challenging to get into Q3, and all those things where we were just not even close to that at the beginning of the year.
Still those odd races to sort out
“In that regard, it’s been really positive. But we still have those odd races, like, going from Austin to Mexico, one week later, where we were probably the fourth-fastest team, I would say in Texas before we had all our issues, to the ninth/tenth-fastest team in Mexico. And then in Sao Paulo, again, we were somewhere in the middle,” he explained.
“I think we still have those weekends where we kind of don’t know why we’re not, for whatever reason, as competitive as other weekends. We have ideas but we are not 100 percent sure,” Stroll admitted.
“I think that, going forward, that has to be the target: to be more competitive more often at different kinds of tracks: high efficiency, low downforce, high downforce. I guess that’s the focus.
“But when I look at where we came from at the beginning of the year, I think it’s been a big step in the right direction,” the three-time podium sitter maintained.
Fernando Alonso will be joining Stroll at the team for 2023 replacing retired four-time F1 Champion Sebastian Vettel.
Aston Martin finished the 2022 F1 season seventh in the Constructors’ Standings, while Stroll was 15th in the Drivers’ Championship. Their new car, the AMR23 will be revealed on February 13.
2023 prep in motion. pic.twitter.com/e4CaXIHuPi
— Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant F1 Team (@AstonMartinF1) January 22, 2023