Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin, Autodromo do Algarve, 2021

Giving Stroll only upgrade package was “logical” choice – Vettel

2021 Portuguese Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel says Aston Martin made the right call to give Lance Stroll the team’s only upgrade package this weekend, despite out-qualifying him.

Aston Martin has put its sole upgrade package on Stroll’s car, as he was the team’s highest-scoring driver after the first two races. Vettel said Stroll’s familiarity with the car made him the right candidate for the new parts.

“Obviously he felt a lot more comfortable, straight away, with the car compared to me,” said Vettel. “So I think it was logical.”

But while Vettel made his first appearance in Q3 and took 10th on the grid, Stroll was eliminated in the first round and will line up 17th.

“Obviously we have a big split between the cars now in terms of qualifying positions, just the other way round [compared to] the last races,” Vettel acknowledged. “Ideally, we [would] have them closer together, to also work a bit more together in the race. But I think we still have to and want to improve.”

Despite his improved showing this weekend, Vettel said he’s “still learning about the car” at the moment.

“It’s going to be a long season,” he said. “But these couple of races now are very crucial to get on top of it. We’re still changing a lot of things one session to another, to just explore the limits.”

The four-times world champion said he is learning from his considerably less experienced team mate. “Lance has a different style, obviously every team mate is a bit different,” Vettel explained.

“There’s definitely in terms of the approach, driving some corners, quite a bit of a difference that I can learn from and probably also the same thing the other way around. I think he had a good start to the season and definitely was more comfortable and faster than me in the beginning. So hopefully we are closer now, for the next races.”

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Author information

Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a freelance journalist who roams the paddocks of Formula E, covering the technical and emotional elements of electric racing. Usually found at...

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9 comments on “Giving Stroll only upgrade package was “logical” choice – Vettel”

  1. Tim (@tungdil12)
    2nd May 2021, 7:54

    I’m really happy for Seb, he needed such a performance. Now i hope he also has a solid race with some nice overtakes. Just having some fun. And about the uprgades going to Stroll, its really the only thing he could say 😅.

  2. My liking of Seb has been like Portimão, a rollercoaster. Down at RedBull with his annoying little finger, up after joining Ferrari, down after his yelling at Charlie and Baku, up again since he was humiliated by Ferrari last spring. I really hope he will have a good one this race and a great season and will beat the reds!

    1. how could you not like Vettel at Red Bull ? he was the best

      1. @nickthegreek the attitude that he displayed whilst at Red Bull might have appealed to you, but evidently did not appeal to others.

      2. Multi21 Nick?

    2. For me it’s different, I haven’t watched the red bull era, then I considered him quite a good driver at ferrari, not hamilton level at least after he improved in 2018, then he started doing lots of errors while still being fast in 2018, 2019, then he lost the speed as well in 2020 and that’s when I got most annoyed at him, especially replacing perez, before I knew perez was gonna be at red bull, now a good qualifying performance, we’ll see if he can do more than 3 such performances in a whole year.

  3. Anthony Jnekins
    2nd May 2021, 9:37

    Number two to Lance Stroll- and mouthing positive team spirt stuff about it as he’s the bosses son. My how a four time Champion has fallen. As long as the cheques don’t bonce, hang in for a couple of years at a huge salary…

  4. Very nice to see him up there after the worst possible start, but let’s see if it will continue.

    I also bet the team struggling with the car is also to Vettel’s benefit, as they will likely listen and follow his suggestions more than Stroll’s.

    1. The team struggles comes from the small aero rules implemented this season… Something that affected low rake cars, since Aston Martin still a small team they cannot work faster like Mercedes to fix that… So good riddance Mr trolencio

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