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On Track

The Debrief by Aramco: São Paulo GP

Fernando secures a podium and Lance finishes fifth after an absorbing conclusion to the 2023 São Paulo Grand Prix.

Aston Martin F1

Fernando delivered a podium in astonishing circumstances at Interlagos, with Lance taking P5 at the chequered flag.

A team effort backed up by solid execution saw Lance qualify third and Fernando fourth on Friday.

Both drivers were unfortunate not to make the top 10 during Saturday's Sprint Shootout, but they both made up places during the Sprint; Fernando took P11 and Lance P12 yesterday.

Lance and Fernando began today's race on Soft compounds, but Lance lost two places from P3 to P5 at the start while Fernando stayed in P4.

A red flag was brought out after a Lap One crash and, on the restart, Fernando passed Lewis Hamilton for P3.

Lance pitted for a new set of Mediums on Lap 22, emerging 10th and passing the Mercedes soon after on his way back into the top five. Fernando pitted for new Mediums on Lap 25 and emerged third – holding off Red Bull's Sergio Peréz for his second stint.

Fernando came into the pits for his second stop on Lap 47, switching to a new set of Softs and emerging P3. The Red Bull began to make up ground and was in DRS range of Fernando for much of the final 10 laps, but Fernando put up a staunch and intelligent defence that was broken only on the penultimate lap.

In a nail-biting end to the Grand Prix, Fernando managed to pass the Red Bull and re-take P3 into Turn Four. The battle for the final podium place culminated in a drag race to the line that was split by 0.053 seconds.

Lance's final stop came on Lap 52, but an issue saw him lose time and emerge sixth. A rapid final stint saw Lance secure a top-five finish as the team collected 25 points from São Paulo.

Read what Fernando, Lance, and Team Principal Mike Krack said on Sunday.


F. AlonsoFL: 1:14.442
L. StrollFL: 1:14.007

#14 | Fernando Alonso | Grand Prix

"For the last 30 laps, it felt like I had pressure from Sergio [Pérez]. But when he passed me two laps from the end, I thought the chance of a podium finish was no longer possible.

"Then he braked a bit late into Turn One on the final lap, and I said to myself I would go for it into Turn Four.

"This is a phenomenal result for the whole team. We'd been struggling a little in recent races – especially the last two events – so this podium is for everyone at the track and everyone back at Silverstone.

"It shows that we will always keep fighting until the very last lap, the last corner."

#18 | Lance Stroll | Grand Prix

"Neither of my starts were great – I had a lot of wheelspin and very little traction, so I didn’t get off the line well.

"After that we had a lot of pace – quicker than Ferrari, quicker than Mercedes – and it felt like we were back to where we were at the beginning of the year.

"Today's result gives us the belief that we can go out and fight for points in these final two races.

"Finally, a big shout out to the whole team – the last few races have been tough but today is a real reward and sends us home with smiles on our faces after three weeks on the road.

"I'm looking forward to Vegas!"

Mike Krack, Team Principal

"Today's result was a great reward for a lot of hard work over the last few months and a difficult couple of races.

"Credit to everybody at the track and at the Campus for putting their heads down and working hard: we can all see what is possible with great teamwork.

"Fernando drove with great intelligence and skill – over the last few laps, he showed the world what a great driver he has always been.

"Lance did brilliantly to pass both Mercedes, keep the Ferrari behind and catch Sergio and Fernando at the end.

"It shows what is possible if we provide our drivers with a quick car: they perform exceptionally.

"We will celebrate this result – but the work continues to close the gap to the teams ahead of us. We will give 100 per cent focus to doing everything we can in the last two races."


#14 | Fernando Alonso | Sprint Shootout and Sprint

No time set
SprintFL: 1:15.477

"It was a fun Sprint today with a lot of wheel-to-wheel racing.

"Unfortunately, we didn't score any points after climbing a few positions, but the car felt competitive so that is a good sign for tomorrow.

"We've felt more competitive this weekend and it’s going in the right direction.

"It will be close in the race tomorrow and we know there are a number of fast cars around us, so let's see if we can score some big points."

#18 | Lance Stroll | Sprint Shootout and Sprint

SprintFL: 15.467

"That was a fun race. We didn’t get a break in qualifying this morning, and I feel we started out of position, but then we could overtake a lot of cars this afternoon.

"The car really felt good today; it felt like I was always able to attack the cars in front. We also learnt quite a lot about the car, balance and the tyres – all things we can take into tomorrow's race, and we’ll start from a much better position.

"All credit to everybody in the team for working so hard to get the car into this position.

"Tomorrow's race will be long and unpredictable, but I think we can have some fun out there."

Mike Krack, Team Principal

"Both cars showed competitive pace in this afternoon's Sprint.

"The Soft tyre was the obvious choice today and Fernando and Lance did a good job of managing their pace and looking after the tyres.

"That helped them make some strong overtaking moves in the final phase of the race, which I am sure was very entertaining for the fans.

"Given our starting positions for the Sprint [P15 and P17], it was always going to be a stretch to recover to the points-paying positions, but today's mileage will be helpful for optimising our long-run pace ahead of tomorrow's Grand Prix.”


#18 | Lance Stroll | Free Practice & Qualifying


"It was a good result today – the car felt pretty good throughout the whole session so I'm very satisfied.

"With both cars starting from the second row, we will be aiming for a podium on Sunday but I think that the race will be tricky.

"All the teams are very close and it is difficult to know exactly where we stand.

"We were fortunate when the rain came but we also made the right calls – both Fernando and I were able to get our Q3 laps in early before the rain started to fall.

"The points are awarded on Sunday, so let's see what we can do from a good starting position."

#14 | Fernando Alonso | Free Practice & Qualifying


"We needed that qualifying result today.

"We have experimented a little in the last few races and we were seeking a good result for both cars here in Brazil.

"I think we proved this weekend that we have understood a few things about our car in recent races.

"I hope we have a clean weekend starting with a good Sprint tomorrow.

"We have a very good position to start the race from on Sunday, so we are looking forward to that. Hopefully that is the last of the rain, and we will go again tomorrow in the Sprint."

Tom McCullough, Performance Director

"A very well-executed day by the entire team brings us a strong qualifying result – and full credit to Lance and Fernando.

"We have been competitive from the off and found a good balance with the car during the only practice session this morning.

"On this relatively short track, the margins are really tight across the whole grid, so it was important that we delivered strong laps across Q1, Q2 and Q3 and got the timing right.

"You have to be opportunistic, too, and, with rain approaching, both drivers knew that the first lap in Q3 would be the one that counted.

"Today's result leaves us well placed to race well on Sunday when we will be targeting a good return of points with both cars."

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