Sebastian Vettel, Lance Stroll talk about their last lap battle in F1 French GP which was won by the Canadian to score a point.
For Aston Martin, their sum total of the weekend was one point scored by Stroll. From 15th on the grid, he made it to 10th on lap one. Tenth was his end result and so the precious point went to the Canadian. This included a battle with teammate Vettel.
They had one at the start as well when the two avoided the clash between Yuki Tsunoda and Esteban Ocon. And on the last lap, they went until the last corner, where Vettel went for it and found the door slammed in his face at the exit of Turn 15.
Speaking to media after, Vettel was a touch despondent and frustrated but looked at it from a team perspective too. “Obviously I was faster, I closed the gap fairly quickly but then I didn’t have much time, he was catching the car in front as well with the DRS so it was difficult,” he said.
“I had a chance on the last corner but then he hits the brakes on the apex. I nearly ran into him after that. I mean, we are fighting for one point in the end so it’s the same for the team. My afternoon was frustrating. I was stuck in traffic for the whole race – but you expect that when you start in the midfield”.
One of the main rules in Grand Prix racing is: “never clash with your teammate”. It happened to Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda at Silverstone and there have been other incidents before.
“And, with the strategy, I do not think there was really much more the team could have done there. It is clear that we need more grip,” summed up Vettel.
Meanwhile, on Stroll’s side, the Canadian noted that he had a bit of a wheelspin which perhaps caught Vettel out in the last lap tussle.
“I had a snap, like on the exit, so wheelspin,” said Stroll. “I think everyone is racing out there. And he wants to score the point the same way I do every weekend. So yeah, I didn’t do anything reckless. I just defend as if anyone was behind me”.
“It was a good day. The start set us up for a good race. It was a bit tricky on the hard tyre at the end but managed to score points so happy with that. It was just tough for me on the hard tyre really. The medium was good. And then on the hard there were a few laps where I got into a good groove and the tyre felt good”.
“And then a few laps were really tough, just overheating fronts and rears and sliding around. And then the last couple of laps after the virtual safety car, I felt like I had the momentum on Ricciardo before that to maybe get P9. But then I lost it and got pressure from Seb. So yeah, it was it was a good battle. But in the end, happy to pick up a point,” summed up Stroll.
A point for the team was better than the likes of Haas, Williams, Alfa Romeo and Alpha Tauri for that the weekend that was in it. But then it could have been very different too had something happened on that last corner. While Vettel played the team game and was pleased for Aston Martin, deep down, he would like to have got that point instead of Stroll.
Here’s the last lap battle between Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll: https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/video.2022-french-grand-prix-team-mates-stroll-and-vettel-battle-on-last-lap.1739254493137018147.html
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