Lance Stroll ended up in the gravel trap at the end of the opening segment of Qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix, with the Canadian finding himself slowest of all nineteen drivers who participated in the session.
The two Williams Martini Racing drivers have been at the back of the field in every session this weekend and Qualifying was no exception, with Sergey Sirotkin eighteenth ahead of Stroll, with only Brendon Hartley behind them after the New Zealander missed the session due to his heavy crash in final practice.
Stroll admitted it was always going to be difficult to escape Q1 at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, and even if he had completed his final lap, which was faster than he’s ultimate best, he would have still have been near or at the back of the grid.
“I was on a much better lap, but I just lost it going for every little bit right at the end,” said Stroll, who will start eighteenth on Sunday when Sirotkin takes his grid penalty. “I am not going to beat myself up when I know this is realistically where we are today.
“I was on an okay lap but nothing to get out of Q1, which was expected all weekend.”
Stroll says the improvement Williams saw during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix has not translated into a strong car this weekend, but he has hopes that the team can rectify the pace deficiencies sooner rather than later and become regular points scorers once more.
“We saw an improvement in Baku, but this weekend we are right back to where we were,” said Stroll. “I think it is something we just need to keep chipping away at, so hopefully we will get there sooner rather than later.
“The circuit here for sure doesn’t suit our car.”