Aston Martin and Haas drivers to start United States Grand Prix from pits

Formula 1

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Both Aston Martin drivers will start today’s United States Grand Prix from the pit lane, the team has confirmed.

The team intends to make set-up changes to their cars which will require them to be taken out of parc ferme conditions. Haas will do the same, leaving just 16 cars on the grid for today’s race.

Aston Martin have endured a troubled weekend after bringing an upgrade package for its AMR23s. It ran into trouble early in first practice.

Lance Stroll’s practice session ended early after suffering a brake problem in the opening stages. A similar fault affected Alonso’s car but he was able to carry on.

“In FP1 we effectively, because of a mistake on the simulation, put too much blanking on the front brakes, so they caught fire,” deputy technical director Eric Blandin explained.

“That’s the reason why we couldn’t run more than two laps with Lance in the morning. And that really put us on the back foot for the work we’ve done.”

Both drivers were eliminated in Q1 on Friday. They improved slightly on Saturday, reaching the second round of qualifying for the sprint race. But Alonso finished out of the points in 13th and Stroll retired after reporting more problems with his braking.

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“With the new package, you have to effectively optimise the brake balance, it’s a very different characteristic,” Blandin explained.

“He struggled a bit, more or less since the beginning, to really optimise his brake balance shaping et cetera.

“So he struggled a lot with the braking in the race yesterday, but we retired time the car because we had an issue with the water pressure and that’s the reason why we had to retire the car.”

Following their problems, the team has decided to run its cars in different specifications during today’s grand prix.

“We learned that the package is actually performing as we were expecting,” said Blandin. “But we haven’t been able to optimise the set-up so one thing we have decided to do is to start both cars from the pit lane.

“We are effectively changing the set-up because we think there is a lot more performance to come from the car. But we have took the pragmatic approach to start both car one with the Qatar spec and the other one with the new package.”

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Author information

Ed Hardy
In 2019, Ed started working on Formula 1 writing articles during race weekends. Alongside that, he also built up experience in football working on...
RJ O'Connell
Motorsport has been a lifelong interest for RJ, both virtual and ‘in the carbon’, since childhood. RJ picked up motorsports writing as a hobby...

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4 comments on “Aston Martin and Haas drivers to start United States Grand Prix from pits”

  1. They are simply paying for having a good start to the year thanks to the anti-f1 success penalty system we have now.

    It’s hard to develop your car further when you have half the time to do so that you had at the start.

    And it gets worse for you when you have other teams like McLaren who started out slower and as a result now have more time to develop there car.

    It’s a success penalty & anyone that thinks otherwise is blind or just buys into the Liberty show over sport philosophy.

    1. Liberty show over sport philosophy

      Wouldn’t the show be better if AM were competitive?

  2. Giving Stroll the new spec and Alonso the old spec is the stupidest thing they’ve done (after keeping Stroll for so long, of course).
    I wonder if Haas will be able to beat Aston today? They still have issues with tyre degradation, so maybe they can get just one car.

  3. I expected that Stroll might start from the pit lane, but not the three others.

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