Australian GP | Stroll’s P6 won’t stop him from fighting “for the top positions”

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Photo: Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team

A tricky session where the threat of rain loomed throughout, tested driver skill and composure, and brought the drivers agonisingly close to each other, made the difference between the drivers getting through in Q1 and Q2 down to a tenth. Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso and teammate Lance Stroll made the cut and qualified P4 and P6 within two tenths of each other.

Making his 125th Grand Prix start this weekend, Lance Stroll was asked about qualifying and said: “It was fun out there today; it is a good track to push hard at and the car was handling well.

“I think the team put in a good performance to qualify fourth and sixth.

“It was tough to understand at which point the tyres would be in their peak operating window and we only had one set left for Q3.”

Looking to capitalise on a great start to the season after returning from his serious wrist injury, Stroll will need a good race this weekend if he intends on closing the gap to teammate Alonso who is 22 points ahead of the Canadian and sitting third in the drivers’ championship.

Ahead of the race Stroll said: “The field in incredibly tight and so we are lining up in a strong place to fight hard for the top positions tomorrow.”

Aston Martin Team Principle, Mike Krack spoke about qualifying from his perspective: “It was a tricky session with the threat of rain present throughout the whole session.

“We had to try and find the balance between saving tyres and making sure we did not miss the cut with quite significant track evolution.

“We were sensible and played it safe to ensure we progressed with both cars.”

Mike Krack continued to echo not only Strolls, but the team’s confidence heading into the race: “We head into tomorrow’s race feeling confident with our race pace and ready to fight once again.”