Stroll has total faith in son’s “raw young talent”

2021 F1 season

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Lawrence Stroll says he has no doubts over his son’s capabilities as a Formula 1 driver, and described Aston Martin’s driver line-up as “perfect”.

His son Lance Stroll is in his fifth season as a Formula 1 driver and third since joining his father’s team, which was previously known as Racing Point.

Last year Stroll was out-scored by his more experienced team mate Sergio Perez by 125 points to 75. He is now partnered with four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel, who has out-scored Stroll 30 points to 14 over the first nine races of the season.

Speaking in an interview yesterday his father, Aston Martin executive chairman Lawrence Stroll, said the team have “a perfect driver line up” in Vettel and Stroll: “A blend of championship-winning experience and know-how with Seb and raw young talent as Lance keeps demonstrating.”

Since stepping straight from Formula 3 to Formula 1 in 2017, the younger Stroll has scored a pole position – at Istanbul Park last year – and achieved a best finish of third on three occasions.

“I think Lance has done an extraordinary job,” said his father. “He’s all of 22 years of age. Whether his performances on pole or the several podiums… he is competing this year with Sebastian, they’re probably about even I think.

“So I don’t have any concerns or feelings that Lance has a lack of performance. I think as he grows he will get more experience. As he gets more experience he – like everyone else his age – will get stronger, that’s not exclusive to him. So I have absolutely no concerns.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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31 comments on “Stroll has total faith in son’s “raw young talent””

  1. Lance does seem like a pretty good driver these days.

    He’s clean, consistent and a very good starter.

    We just need a crazy race of attrition to see the best from him. For some reason that’s where Lance really stands out

    1. @napierrailton Yes, especially a wet one

    2. Rain increases strategy gambling and everyone wants to make the perfect moment.

  2. Gee I wonder what was the purpose of this article..

    1. Don’t you think it’s newsworthy when a father has faith in his son?

  3. To be successful you need to act with confidence in your success, Lawrence nails that point, rightly or wrongly.

    Then Lance is doing alright. Not on a level with Max, Lando, Charles, Carlos and George, but far removed from Nicholas and Nikita.
    The rest of the younger drivers are reasonably matched to Lance, unless it rains. Lance knows where to find grip on a sodden track, which means he must be quite clever even if his skills are less refined in other aspects.

  4. petebaldwin (@)
    14th July 2021, 9:51

    Raw young talent? He’s started 87 grand prix! I can accept saying someone has the raw skills but hasn’t figured out how to make the most of them after a handful of races (like we’re seeing with Tsunoda at the moment for example) but once you’re nearing 100 GPs, I don’t think you can really use inexperience as an excuse anymore.

    1. Indeed, the same was true for verstappen, he started f1 very young, so somewhere in 2019 I think the low experience excuses ran out, and he generally only had a bad patch mistake-wise early on in 2018.

  5. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    14th July 2021, 10:46

    He’s certainly not bad. You don’t get a pole and a couple of podiums entirely by luck. But that said he’s actually quite experienced? Acting like he’s still ‘learning’ is a bit weird when he’s been in the sport for several seasons now. I don’t consider him a ‘young driver’ at all anymore.

    Overall he’s just ‘ok’. He’s not terrible, he’s not brilliant. He’s bringing home decent points, excelling sometimes but mostly has a level that seems to be his and that’s also ok. But with the experience he has that’s the minimum expected of him. Being a bit cold, he should be a lot better than he is. But that isn’t to say he’s bad at all, just kinda good ‘enough’. I do think if Aston Martin really want to move forward then they would have to consider replacing him, but they can’t because he’s the son of the boss. So we’re going to have a lot of years of Lance Stroll.

    1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
      14th July 2021, 11:52

      He’s still at the right age to still be learning stuff. The number of races surely doesn’t limit how much more you can learn. I don’t see how you don’t consider him a young driver “at all” Hamilton started his F1 career at around the age Stroll is now. Did hamilton not start at a young age “at all” ?

      If he can’t possibly be considered young, then may i question just how “very old” Alonso and Kimi are? They are nearly twice his age.

      You seem to imply that he isn’t still learning. Surely he can still develop over time which effectively is the same thing. If drivers like Hamilton have still shown signs of development at over 30 years of age, I can’t see it being impossible for Stroll to progress further than he has. 10 years on from Hamilton’s first season, I think since Rosberg beat him, he’s been still getting a bit better each year. However, i think he’s gone a bit backwards this season.

      I can’t deny Stroll is now pretty experienced, but he also is still very young given we still have very good drivers like Hamilton that are well over 10 years older than him. I still think he does have things to learn, and as I said is still at a decent age to learn. Hamilton progressed well from this age. I certainly don’t expect Stroll to be anywhere close to Hamilton, but if he’s still in F1 many years later, I do expect him to get a fair bit better than he is now.

      1. Adam (@rocketpanda)
        14th July 2021, 12:19

        I think you’re defending him more than needed. I’m not saying he’s bad, just that he should be better than he is for his level of experience. The age thing doesn’t really come into it when you have drivers like Verstappen, Leclerc, Norris & Russell who in some cases had significantly less backing and experience and are as young if not younger, coming into F1 and are very obviously on a different level. I’m not implying he’s not learning anymore, just that his skill ceiling is a lot lower. And that’s okay! F1’s history is full of drivers who are good. He’s one of them, he’s good. But he’s not great.

        Obviously he’ll improve as he stays in F1 but he’s obviously not going to reach the heights of a Hamilton, an Alonso or a Raikkonen. Or even his own team-mate. And that’s absolutely okay! If anything I’m just confused why people give him a pass as inexperienced and ‘learning’ but destroyed drivers like Albon, Kvyat & Gasly who were vastly less experienced, vastly less prepared and with vastly less support and were chewed up. But Stroll gets a pass? Nah. If they weren’t good enough he certainly isn’t as all three showed stronger ability than him. There’s nothing wrong with being just good and that’s what he is. He’s good. Might even win a few races in a few years. But that’s part of the icky thing with him, we WILL see this because of his father, not his talent while other drivers are gone despite arguably having a stronger potential.

        1. Keep in mind that kvyat and albon WOULD have stayed in f1 if they had remained in toro rosso, or, if red bull still wanted to try out new drivers while having ricciardo and verstappen on main team, they’d have had to do something like sainz, going to another midfield team, they’re good enough.

          What destroyed them is joining red bull and underperforming, or well, only albon really of these 2, and in red bull the pressure is higher.

          This also happened with gasly, but unlike kvyat, following the demotion he kept performing at the level he was before in toro rosso, and hence he’s still in f1, kvyat was very unlucky that verstappen was coming up when he made a couple mistakes, in any other situation kvyat’s red bull performance would’ve been accepted.

        2. So stroll is good as long as he stays in a midfield team, in a big team he might struggle and if his father wasn’t team leader, might end up like albon.

    2. Drivers with fewer Grand Prix starts than Lance Stroll:
      Dan Gurney
      Jim Clark
      Gilles Villeneuve
      Charles Le Clerc
      Jochen Rindt


  6. Yes, he’s doing “okay”, but he’s actually slower than any driver we could ever compare him to. Perez used to overtake him even in slower car last season (with much older or slower tires, happened at least twice and on pure pace, not strategy). I believe he’s better than Mazepin and Latifi, but can we honestly say we’d pick him over anyone else than those two pay drivers? He’s “best of the rest” and that rest is the back of the grid. His talent is limited, he’s got a lot more opportunities and better conditions to develop in his early age than any other driver on the grid (except Mazepin…). That probably means that he’s going to hit his limit sooner than those who came to F1 less prepared and with thousands of laps done less than him. Who’s he better from or seems the better prospect for the future? Gasly? Tsunoda? Perhaps Leclerc, Norris, Sainz or Russel!? If his daddy didn’t own the team I’m sure Russel would’ve had his seat or at least 10 other drivers before him. Certainly they would never replace Ocon with Stroll.
    P.S. I know I’m stating the obvious. The thing is, there’s no amount of brainwashing that will change my mind, because I’d rather believe my own eyes.

    1. I think he is better than Ocon at the moment.

    2. Faster than Tsunoda and the Alfa duo too, probably.

    3. Raikkonen, he’s pretty old and at this point I think stroll is better. I was never a big fan of him, but I’m pretty sure 2018 version was better than stroll.

  7. Stroll has been in F1 for 4.5 years now. Generally, after someone has been in F1 that long, we don’t often see someone getting much quicker. What tends to improve is their decision making and racecraft (like Hamilton, Max etc.), but it’s very rare they step up another gear pace-wise after nearly 5 years in F1. And say what you will, Stroll isn’t very fast or consistent. He has his moments, but so did Maldonado. If Aston have any true aspirations of challenging for the top honours, Stroll definitely represents a barrier to breaking through to that level.

    1. He could be a number 2 driver though, if you have high aspirations you might want to change the top driver, not sure if vettel is what they need, despite some good races this season, but as long as this is the performance level of the car, don’t need better.

  8. Never been part of the Lance Stroll haters club (of which there seem to be many members). The guy has genuine pace. He has throughout all his junior career. His consistency has been the main weakness over the last few years. That will iron out over time, as it seems to be now.

    Think he’s quietly going about the job this year and performing under the radar against a top quality team mate. I actually think he’s got a lot of potential.

  9. I’d be a bit concerned if Lawrence didn’t have faith considering he’s likely forked over more than $200m into his sons career at this point.

  10. Those lessons with Rob Wilson are paying off

  11. Stroll is not bad. I am tired to see so many people mocking him even now. He is not championship material, true, but if Lawrence builds the right team around him, he could even become a race winner sometimes. He is kind of a Jarno Trulli, he could be fast but most of the times he is just average.

    1. Yes, think I agree, the best car he ever had so far was capable of being 3rd best team of the year, last year’s force india, and he managed to get podiums on crazy races, and I really wonder what would’ve happened without those tyre issues, he led turkey 2020 for majority of it and had a sizeable gap too on perez!

      I think hamilton would’ve eventually got past him too, but he probably would’ve had a 2nd place, which isn’t bad at all, so he should be able to win a chaos race, however drivers of his talent aren’t usually given better than the 3rd best car of the year, so winning on merit is probably impossible when you have 4 drivers who should automatically finish ahead cause of significantly faster cars, will be interesting to see what happens next year with the budget cap.

  12. “raw young talent”? Daddy billionaire needs to stop smoking the opium..almost 5 years in f1 approaching 100 races his spoilt son that has had everything handed to him on a plate is a Joke.

    It makes me throw up that driver like Kamui Kobayashi is rotting away due to not having enough sponsor cash to stay in F1 whilst talentless hacks like MAZ and $troll are guaranteed a seat for life due to their billionaire daddies purchasing a race team for them.

    I personally despise $troll because he is precisely what is wrong with modern F1. Overhyped nepotism driver with a daddy billionaire who brought a team for him to guarantee a seat for life. Daddy also makes sure the car is built around him getting the latest parts first.

    This will only get worse with mediocre drivers taking valuable seats away from talented ones. talentless Roy Nissany will take Russels place when he goes to merc due to his huge Israeli backers and state sponsored Guanyu Zhou
    will be racing for alpine soon bringing with him €100’s millions in cash from the ccp.

    1. There’s Aitken you know?

  13. ‘about even with Seb’ and ’30 to 14 points’ are two quotes I got from this.

    Seb is struggling in the new team, after years of struggling with the old team..

    Being about even is hardly great.

    We expect Seb to improve if he wants to get near his great former self.

    How much more can Lance improve after 5 years of mediocrity?

    Lance is just a step bellow the not good enough to be great level.

    Much, better than other pay drivers, he coul probably race at lower part of the field without pay.

    Winning titles is out of reach facing current driver and team competition.

    And thus he is doing quite well from his position. 2 levels from great.

  14. I have a strange feeling about AM. They hire people from other brands to strengthen there technical staff.
    They brought SV to AM and by doing so increasing there status. But LS seems to me a bit naive about what the return on investment will be. First: his current senior management seems to be afraid for LS what can be a good thing but often don’t result in the best decision making. Second: his current senior management seems to be out of there dept now the company start growing. Third: his drivers line up don’t belongs to the very best on the grid.
    And least but not last; how will the team and all new people brought in will blend and work together with one aim; to win the WDC. If i was LS i should take a good look at mine senior management (Green/Szafnauer) because they are in mine opinion not up for the job. And if and when the organisation function it’s easier to hire the right drivers and people because good people don’t only take a look at the check book but also look at the environment they have to work in and with who.

  15. Put him on the market and let’s see how many offers he gets

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