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Soundbites: Lance and Sebastian preview the Bahrain GP

For the first time in the 2021 Formula One season, Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel sat down to take media questions ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Sebastian 2021 Bahrain GP press conference

With topics ranging from preparations for running at the Bahrain International Circuit, through to the drivers’ favourite James Bond films, actors and cars – Sebastian and Lance answered them all.

There was even a new feature for the 2021 press conference as young fans got their chance to ask the drivers a question, with a local Bahraini fan asking Sebastian and Lance about their ideal road trip.

Q: What is your favourite James Bond film, your favourite Bond actor and favourite Bond Aston Martin car?

Lance: Favourite Bond film? Casino Royale with Daniel Craig. I grew up watching those Bond movies, so that one stands out in my mind. The DB5 is a cool car. It’s not a Bond car, but I also love the DBR1 – it won Le Mans multiple times.

Sebastian: Yeah, I think the DB5 is probably the most iconic car, it's nice that it came back for the more recent films. I think Sean Connery (is my favourite) and, to be fair, Pierce Brosnan, because that's from my youth, like Daniel Craig is for Lance! Sean Connery had great style and I really like the first Bond movie (Dr No.).

Q: Sebastian, what is your first impression of the AMR21?

I'm quite happy and I felt comfortable straightaway, despite the challenges in testing. I got along with the car and there's some things that I still need to work on and get used to, but I think time will take care of these things. Even with more laps in the test, there will still be some things that would need some getting used to. I'm pretty relaxed that we will be okay.

A lap of Bahrain

Go onboard with Sebastian

Click the image to watch the first onboard lap with the AMR21 as Sebastian drives the Bahrain International Circuit.

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Experience the AMR21
Experience the AMR21

Q: Lance, has the team made an encouraging step forward over the last year or so?

I think we're in a great place coming into this year compared to last year. The car was competitive in 2020 and we're heading on the right track. I think that's very exciting going into this season.

Q: Sebastian, how well do you feel you’re prepared for the first race of the season? What are your expectations?

Obviously, we didn't maybe get the amount of laps we we're looking for, but it is what it is. I don't think anyone [in any team] is fully prepared for what's coming. We have a lot of races ahead and we didn't have a great amount of testing [with only three days of running]. I'm confident we will be in good shape. Hopefully we can use the track time well [this weekend] and get ready for qualifying and the race.

Inside AMCF1 pre-season testing

Behind the scenes

Few things in Formula One are more secretive than testing, but we’ve pulled back the veil to give a true insight into the incredible work behind the scenes during testing in Bahrain.

#IAMSTORIES: Testing
#IAMSTORIES: Testing

Q: Lance, you mentioned coming into this round that you didn’t feel you’d shown you and the team’s full potential in testing. Can you expand on that?

It's a test and that’s where we learn. Unfortunately, we had some difficulties, especially with Seb's programme, and we couldn't get all the running in that we planned. We still collected a lot of data and learned a lot, which was important. Conditions were tricky, with the wind, and it looks like it's going to be the same story this weekend. It's great to be back racing and I’m looking forward to the season.

Q: If you had a month-long road trip, where would you go?

Sebastian: Well if it's a month, then I will tackle the UK. I haven't seen that much yet honestly – Silverstone? I'm an expert! But other than Silverstone and the Midlands, I think I would love to explore the north and see more of it. Also, [explore] Scotland, Ireland, Northern Ireland.

Lance: There’s so many beautiful roads in Europe to drive through. There are some beautiful places to see too. It's actually something I've been wanting to do!

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2021 Bahrain GP

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