Williams Martini Racing driver Lance Stroll blamed losing second place at the first turn on Lewis Hamilton’s poor start, though says he’s still pleased at his performance in today’s Italian Grand Prix.
Stroll lined up a career-best second on the grid – becoming the youngest driver ever to start a Formula 1 race from the front row in doing so – though lost out to third-placed Esteban Ocon at the first corner, the Frenchman having overtaken Stroll around the outside.
The Canadian said that Hamilton’s poor start is what led to him losing the place.
“I am very happy with the race and I think it was a good one. I really enjoyed myself.
“It was a bit of a shame at the start, as we lost position to Ocon, as Hamilton had a bad start and defended, so I had to back off.”
Following an initial battle between Stroll and Ocon, the out-of-place Scuderia Ferrari drivers, along with Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team driver Valtteri Bottas were able to make their way through.
Stroll was unable to find a way back through the pack, his race being further impeded by a long pit stop. This dropped him back into the clutches of teammate Felipe Massa and, despite some wheel-on-wheel contact, he was able to bring the car back for seventh place.
“We were in P3 and then both Ferraris and the Mercedes of Bottas overtook. I then had a big flat spot at the end of the race, so started to lose time to Ocon and then was defending from Felipe.
“All in all, the race was very positive. I finished in P7, which was what we were expecting.”
This was Stroll’s fourth points-finish of the season, bringing his total to twenty-four. He sits twelfth in the driver’s championship, on equal points (though ahead of) Romain Grosjean.