Lance Stroll felt it was a good Friday for himself and the Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team at the Red Bull Ring, with the Canadian ending the afternoon practice session fourth fastest.
It had been a tricky and eventful morning in Austria for Stroll, with two wild spins, first at turn six and then at the final turn seeing him facing the wrong way.
But it all came good for Stroll and for Aston Martin as they found a lot of time in the afternoon session, although he knows it will be important to extract the maximum from his AMR21 when it matters in Qualifying.
“It has been a good day for us,” said Stroll. “The morning was a little more eventful for me, but I think we managed to put together plenty of clean laps and we have learned a lot.
“One of the key factors this weekend will be the softer range of tyres that Pirelli has chosen. I think it is a good call because it could mix things up on Sunday and create some strategy variance. In a tight midfield battle, that could be exciting.
“On our side, the car feels good on the softer tyres. All in all, we can be happy with our work today. Now it is about extracting the maximum for qualifying tomorrow.”
“We have done our homework after last weekend’s race” – Sebastian Vettel
Team-mate Sebastian Vettel admits it was nice to find himself inside the top five in the afternoon session, but he knows the important work is yet to come as they bid to secure a place in Q3 on Saturday afternoon.
The German ended down in fifteenth in the morning but improved significantly in the afternoon to place fifth, although he was 0.129 seconds back on Stroll’s best time.
Vettel says Aston Martin have done their homework and have found some performance since last weekend’s Styrian Grand Prix, which was held at the same circuit.
“Firstly, it was very nice to see fans at the track again and that they are keeping safe,” said Vettel. “It was interesting conditions out there today because we have a softer range of tyres this weekend and it was much cooler conditions.
“There was also some drizzle at the end, although it did not affect us very much. We have done our homework after last weekend’s race and we tried a few different things today, too.
“It was nice to be in the top five in the afternoon, but the focus is on making sure we show some good pace in qualifying and reach Q3 to give ourselves the best possible chance of points.”