Lance Stroll pleased with recovery to points in F1 Imola GP, as Fernando Alonso was forced to use the race as a test session.

It was a different situation at Aston Martin in F1 Imola GP where the hopes for points was with Stroll as opposed to Alonso. The Spaniard’s FP3 crash led a disaster of a qualifying where the was resigned to start from the last row of the grid.

They opted for a pitlane start to go in a different direction and experiment. Starting on the soft tyre was part of it, but it didn’t work out for Alonso, who was hoping for a safety car and or red flag to get himself back in contention for points results.

None of it came which left Alonso to continue with his experiment which also included an aide to teammate Stroll by pitting early and starting a chain reaction. The Canadian went deep and after he switched tyres late, it helped him pass couple of cars.

The late states saw Stroll pass Nico Hulkenberg and Yuki Tsunoda to end up ninth. “We were hoping for a safety car for a very long time and at the end it was fun to pass some cars,” he said. “It’s good to come away from Imola with a couple of points. We elected to extend our first stint on the Medium compounds hoping for a Safety Car, but that never came and so we had to make up positions on track.

“That early tyre management meant I had the advantage of newer Hards towards of the end of the race, giving me the pace to pass Nico and Yuki which was fun. This weekend has been tough though. We know we’re not as competitive as we want to be, and we’ll have to push hard to find the performance we’re missing,” summed up Stroll.

On his teammate’s side, he is not certain yet about the performance either as his job was more of data collection. They will go back and analyse to understand what worked and what didn’t. The whole weekend was more like an experiment weekend for the team.

“It was as predicted, unfortunately in this race, you only hope for a safety car, a red flag or something which can mix a little bit of the race,” said Alonso. “But it didn’t happen, so it was a little bit boring from behind, always in traffic, trying different strategies, multiple pit stops, all these kinds of things to get some data for the team.

“For the driver itself there’s not much you can do. When you start at the back and nothing happens, so you use the race as a test. I felt the car similar to be honest when compared to the rest of the weekend. Obviously, the team has all the sensors, all the tools to analyse better the car performance, so we have to wait and see what the numbers says and we will find the direction for the next few races.

“We experimented a lot, in FP1, in FP2 with Lance’s car with different packages, FP3 was another experiment, another one in the race taking the opportunity of my car to start from the pitlane, so I think it is early days to make conclusions and it is question for the team with all the data they have, as I said, that will give more precise information.”

Amid the data collection, there was a brief moment of scare for Alonso and Aston Martin. Due to the heat situation, the Spaniard’s left-front brake caught fire after pit stop. It eventually doused in itself but took a bit longer.

“I was convinced that the fire will stop as soon as I pick up the speed, the ventilation will play its part but this is the longest pitlane until you release the pit limiter, so it felt long in the car but I think everything was fine,” stated Alonso.

Here’s how F1 Imola GP panned out

Here’s link to a F1 Discord channel, join in to interact