At the Singapore Grand Prix, Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel finished sixth and eighth, giving a good handful of points to Aston Martin, who have risen from ninth to seventh in the constructors’ standings after beating Haas and AlphaTauri.
In Japan, the four-time German champion made a good comeback to be sixth by holding off Fernando Alonso, and those from Silverstone have moved closer to Alfa Romeo in the table. The gap has been reduced from 27 to 7 points in just two tests, and British outfit boss Mike Krack has acknowledged it has been a morale booster, but insisted they need to maintain their progress in all areas.
“Confidence isn’t everything, you also have to have a fast car,” he told Motorsport.com when asked about the impact on Aston Martin of the last two rounds. “Because that alone doesn’t do much.”
“We know where we are with our car, we have made some steps throughout the year, but still, in a normal race, we will fight to be sixth,” he said. “We have to be realistic, there are four more to go. If we manage to score or continue to do so, there is a chance that we can still move up a position.”
“But the situation can also change quickly,” Krack said. “If one of the rival teams scores a lot, then we could lose places. It’s four races, it’s a bit long, and we have to hold on, I think in the last 12 races we’ve scored 10, and you can see there that we’re making good progress.” .
At Suzuka, Vettel was in the gravel after the first corner after colliding with Alonso, and the decision to pit for intermediate tires when the race resumed was the key to his rise up the constructors’ standings.
The only other driver who took the same alternative was Nicholas Latifi, who was able to get into the points zone, which shows that it was the right strategy: “We had talked about it, we had time to discuss it, how we were going to approach it.”
“So we decided together, at the last moment, the driver had to choose, because we don’t see how the track is,” said the Aston Martin director. “From that point of view, he [Vettel] had the last word.”
“We were prepared, and I think that was key, but also that we could pass Latifi, because without that we would not have finished in front of Fernando [Alonso], that was the important thing,” he continued.
Looking ahead to the end of the world championship, Krack assures that, although the four circuits are very different from the ones the team has managed to score points on, they remain hopeful: “The next races are very similar in terms of characteristics, they are not like Baku, Singapore and Monaco”.
“So it will be more difficult for us than the ones I have mentioned,” he said. “We could have rain in Sao Paulo, where there is also a sprint, so there are still opportunities.”
“There is no track where we think it will be really bad for us, so we’ll see,” said the head of the team where Fernando Alonso will stop from 2023 .
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