Sebastian Vettel feels the Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team have made a ‘decent’ start to the Styrian Grand Prix weekend, with the German ending the afternoon session at the Red Bull Ring with the sixth fastest time.
Vettel has found some form in recent races, with his first points as an Aston Martin driver coming in the Monaco Grand Prix before a podium finish in Azerbaijan. Last weekend he scored a third consecutive top ten finish in France, and he is looking to build on that this weekend in Austria.
After finishing down in fourteenth in the morning session, Vettel responded well to finish sixth in the afternoon, and he is encouraged by the one-lap pace heading into Saturday’s all-important Qualifying session at the Red Bull Ring.
“I think we have made a decent start to the weekend,” said Vettel. “Our pace over one lap is looking encouraging and I think we can squeeze out more from the longer runs.
“We have a good idea of where we can make those improvements, which is the important thing. Racing in the mountains means it can be really tricky to predict the weather, so it is going to be about making sure we are on the right tyres at the right time and reacting well to the conditions.
“We have not had much wet running this year, so it would be good to experience the car in the rain.”
“The car felt good from the first lap” – Lance Stroll
Team-mate Lance Stroll finished eighth in both sessions with the Canadian feeling it was a positive day on his side of the garage.
Stroll felt comfortable behind the wheel of his AMR21 straight out of the box, and he was able to improve the car across the day and put himself inside the top ten in both sessions.
The pace on Friday has given Stroll confidence that Aston Martin can be competitive this weekend at the Red Bull Ring, whether or not the promised rain arrives.
“The car felt good from the first lap and both sessions were positive for us,” said Stroll. “We know where we can make some improvements, such as the balance in the low-speed corners, so we will go away tonight and review the data to see where we can find some further improvements.
“There has been a lot of talk about rain, but it only slightly drizzled at times today, so it was not really a factor. I love driving in wet conditions and it always mixes up the field – so I will not complain if we get some rain tomorrow or Sunday.”