Aston Martin - bird-small
On Track

Sebastian and Lance begin Portuguese GP weekend

Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One™ Team’s Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel took to the Portuguese Grand Prix circuit for the first time this season in challenging conditions for the opening two practice sessions.

Sebastian Vettel Portuguese GP Friday

Lance and Sebastian completed a total of 123 laps between them as they got to grips with the circuit, which proved a challenging track for the Formula One field last season.

As the Algarve International Circuit has hosted just one previous Grand Prix, there is only limited data to pull upon heading into the weekend, making data collection essential.

Last year’s race was also complicated by a low-grip surface, which led to an unpredictable start in 2020, and understanding all the variables of the weekend is important.

The first practice began with both Lance and Sebastian completing longer runs on the Hard tyre to establish a baseline for the AMR21.

Grand Prix preview

Prepare for Portugal

Get ready for this weekend's Portuguese Grand Prix with our in-depth preview. Discover the history of the Portuguese Grand Prix, the challenges of a lap of the circuit and the key talking points for the race.

Read now
Ready to go in Portugal
Ready to go in Portugal

The duo ran similar programmes, meaning they would both switch to Softs for the second half of the session, completing several stints to help understand the tyre for qualifying and the Grand Prix.

Lance and Sebastian would initially run inside the top five times as the tyres operated at peak performance before the former set a best lap time of 1.20.894 for 11th.

Sebastian then finished the session 16th following a personal best effort of 1.21.405.

Lance Stroll
1.20.894
11th
Sebastian Vettel
1.21.405
16th

The second practice session involved a 10-minute delay to proceedings while a drain cover was repaired, and an increasingly strong tailwind also affected the field throughout running.

Again, the two drivers would run a similar programme that began with a short run on the Medium tyre.

There was then a switch in focus to short and long runs on the Softs to complete the programme in order to collect plenty of useful data.

Both drivers would set their best times in the first half of the session and Lance finished inside the top 10 with a 1.20.427 effort, eventually taking ninth.

Sebastian would also improve on his morning’s time and lapped in 1.21.074 to finish the practice in 15th.

Lance Stroll
1.20.427
9th
Sebastian Vettel
1.21.074
15th

Lance: “It's great to be back in Portugal. The track is a lot of fun and the elevation changes are a real challenge inside the car.

“The conditions were not ideal today, which made it quite tricky to find the best balance – but I think everyone would say the same after today’s running. We will all be looking to make gains tomorrow.

“With just six tenths separating the top 10 cars, qualifying should be unpredictable and a great watch for the fans back home. I'm excited to get going tomorrow.”

In Numbers
31.5
Sebastian's lap total
30
Lance's lap total
61.5
Total number of laps
286.15
Kilometres completed

Sebastian: "It wasn't easy to get the laps together out there because although the track surface has more grip than it did in last year's race, it's still quite tricky.

“The windy conditions were also challenging, but it didn't stop us completing plenty of laps and working through the programme.

“Every lap is important for understanding the car and making improvements, so it was positive in that sense.

“Getting the balance right for qualifying and making sure we hook up the laps tomorrow is the focus tonight.”

Round two

Lance vs Sebastian

Insight from Otmar

Inside Seb's mindset