Otmar Szafnauer speaks on Lance Stroll learning from Sebastian Vettel during the course of 2021 F1 season as he adds on how he progressed during the year.

Aston Martin Racing’s Stroll has been in the Formula 1 since 2017 when he started his career with Williams Martini Racing back then at age of 18. Today, he’s 23 with more experience as he faced the ups and downs of the sport.

In 2021, the Canadian finished 13th although the closest finish to the points was in 2020 when he finished 11th with BWT Racing Point F1 team. After racing against Sergio Perez, Stroll had the chance to race alongside Sebastian Vettel this year.

It was an enriching for Stroll as Aston Martin team principal Szafnauer explained how the Canadian learned from Vettel and the way he developed his skills and performed in latest races. “He’s learned from Seb how to approach a weekend,” he said. “We’ve learned from Seb. We’ve changed the engineering structure slightly to help both drivers, including Lance, but we have changed internally how we run things, that was brought to us by Seb and Lance has benefitted from that.

“He’s learned and he’s grown, and he’s young. He’s still learning, but he’s supremely talented. He’s got great car control. Loves driving. And the rest of it just comes with experience. Some of the stuff you can shortcut,” summed up Szafnauer. However, the team had been the slowest of the mid-filed cars if we compare to McLaren, AlphaTauri and Alpine. Only faster than the three back-markers of Williams Alfa Romeo, and Haas.

The Canadian’s best race was in Qatar where he finished in sixth place and scored eight points in the standings. Stroll managed his tyre wear in Qatar GP and successfully managed to stay calm ahead of the two Ferrari’s pressure in an intense race.

“Lance did a great job in Qatar, didn’t put a foot wrong from the start of the race,” said Szafnauer. “Towards the end, he had both Ferraris breathing down his neck, two good drivers at Ferrari, in the Ferraris. He held them off brilliantly. He knew exactly what to do on every lap to be able to hold them back and hold position.

“They weren’t much quicker than us. Lance, yeah, he didn’t put a foot wrong. That’s very impressive, to have all that pressure. Towards the end of the race, you probably don’t know, but we’re asking him to lift and coast to save a bit of fuel. So not only did he have the pressure from the Ferraris, he also couldn’t go as fast as he normally would because he was fuel saving. And he did it brilliantly,” summed up Szafnauer.

Aston Martin failed to score in the last two Grands Prix of 2021, but collected 77 points with 43 points by Vettel and 34 points by Stroll putting them seventh in the 2021 Constructors Championship.

The story was written by Oprah Sagal

Here’s Nick Yelloly on his test with Aston Martin