According to Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin missed out on the second row due to unpleasant DRS problems in Azerbaijan.
What happened to Aston Martin during Friday’s qualifying session for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix is a painful irony. Their team put aside other planned improvements for the sprint event and brought one new element to Baku: a new rear spoiler. The goal was to improve on their biggest weakness so far this year, their top speed. But in the end, it was the wings that were the slowest in the strait…
The spoiler with less air resistance was not an aerodynamic problem, but a mechanical one: already during free practice, DRS stuck it out. As a result, Fernando Alonso lost their positions in practice, and since the rear wing did not open on his or Lance Stroll’s car in several instances during qualifying, the mistake also likely cost Aston Martin pole positions. Alonso finished the third quarter in sixth, and had a ninth-place outing.
“I think I can be satisfied. It could have been better, but we have problems with DRS already in the first free practice and qualifying practice. It cost us tens of thousands. And the competition is so close that it makes a difference in terms of the result” Alonso mentioned.
He also said how much he might have lost with this problem.
“Maybe we could have done a little better, fourth place instead of sixth. But I’m happy with sixth place after having trouble with the DRS all day.”
He noted that since this happened on Friday and they still have a long weekend ahead of them, they still have a lot of ways to improve. Also on DRS and rankings.
The lack of DRS was also caught by Strollo, who at the end of the third quarter led the same time as 10th Oscar Piastri. Since he ran his lap first, he got ninth. However, he could not defeat Lando Norris and Gouki Konoda. “It was tight, and the car felt pretty good, but we had a problem with the DRS. I didn’t have DRS in Q3 and that cost me time. That’s free lap time in the straight. It was frustrating. We have to work it out tonight.”
Aston Martin haven’t had a strong point in qualifying yet, but this time they did a little worse than usual. One of the Mercedes (George Russell) was beaten anyway, but Ferrari’s overtaking was unattainable even with DRS. Alonso wasn’t surprised by the Reds’ improvement.
“Well, yeah, no. They were also front row in Jeddah, only Charles was punishing there. In general, they were fast but unlucky. Carlos also had a penalty, and Charles was knocked out in Australia. I think they are fast and they showed it today We have to try to be more balanced than them.”
On continuing, he said: “I find it exciting. I get up tomorrow knowing Q1 is coming right away. No warm-up, no practice. We have to prepare for this. But I absolutely love the challenge.” Alonso said.
Hiking doesn’t mind the pace being too tight. “We sleep well and the trial comes straight away in the morning. I’m looking forward to doing more fast laps. I’ve enjoyed this schedule, which we started promptly in the morning and then in the afternoon. I look forward to more action.” Al-Kindi said.
“Wannabe writer. Passionate troublemaker. Award-winning beer buff. Freelance organizer. Friendly tv practitioner. Music maven.”