Aston Martin capable of capitalising on F1 performance
By Mat Coch
Wednesday 8th March, 2023 - 1:00pm
Aston Martin team boss Mike Krack believes his operation is ready to capitalise on the performance it has shown in the early stages of the 2023 F1 season.
Fernando Alonso delivered the team third place in last weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix while team-mate Lance Stroll battled injury to come home sixth.
Their performance built on the promise shown during pre-season testing a week earlier where many in the paddock tipped the Silverstone team to feature towards the front of the field.
Aston Martin is a team that can trace its roots back to Jordan Grand Prix, which entered F1 in 1991.
Though it’s undergone a number of name and ownership changes since then, it has remained based in the original factory.
Work is currently underway to replace that with an all-new facility on the same site while a host of staff have been recruited over the past two years to bolster its ranks.
Experience to support newfound pace
“I think yes,” Krack said when asked if the team is ready to capitalise on its newfound competitiveness.
“We must not forget, we speak here about Team Silverstone, Team Silverstone is a very experienced team with a lot of fantastic people that have done that [been successful in F1] already.
“We clearly saw it [in Bahrain] in the race strategy, the key … the team did not get carried away by stopping early, trying to undercut, but sticking to its plan this tyre advantage that was built at the end of the day was, I think, instrumental also to help to pass.”
The Bahrain Grand Prix played out well for Aston Martin.
Following on from testing at the same venue the week previous, Alonso qualified on par with the teams expectations – around half a second away from the pole time set by Max Verstappen.
An engine issue for Charles Leclerc eliminated the Ferrari driver from the equation in the race while tyre degradation limited Carlos Sainz’s ability to mount a defence in the other Ferrari in the latter laps.
Solid pace and confidence when it came to strategy, as Krack eluded to, paved the way for a strong performance in Bahrain for Aston Martin.
Uncertainty ahead of Bahrain GP
“We didn’t know 100 percent where we were because in testing you never really know who does what,” Krack said.
“We then decided not to focus too much on what the others are doing but focus on ourselves, and then we did our homework.
“It was very important then not to make any mistakes either.”
There were plenty of opportunities to do so, with a red flag early in qualifying on Saturday and Stroll being called to the weighbridge, which forced the team to push his car back up pitlane.
“It was really, really important not to set the foot wrong in qualifying” Krack reasoned.
“Then, [in the race] it was a bit the same way,” he added.
“We had a plan in place. We try not to get carried away by people stopping early, because we knew that you will [have] the tyre advantage.
“At the end of the day, was really executed properly.”
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