Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One™ Team scored its first points finish of the 2022 season when Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll finished eighth and 10th respectively in Imola following a race held in changeable conditions.
I am happy that we performed better this weekend and made the most of the opportunities that came our way.
"It has been a positive weekend for the team and it is great to see both cars in the points. It was a well-earned point for us today because there was intense pressure throughout the race, not to mention the changeable weather conditions. At the beginning of the race, we performed strongly. Everyone was battling overheating tyres and a drying track, but we kept [Lewis] Hamilton behind and pressured [Yuki] Tsunoda ahead. Once we switched to the Medium tyre, we continued to show good pace and pulled away from the train of cars behind us. I am happy that we performed better this weekend and made the most of the opportunities that came our way. Qualifying and the race were in cooler and wet conditions, which may have suited us. We will enjoy today but will continue to keep pushing for more in the coming races."
The team did really well today and we maximised everything to finish P8.
"The team did really well today and we maximised everything to finish P8. It is an important result for the team because they have worked so hard in a challenging season so far. It is clear that we benefitted from the cooler and damp conditions on Friday and Sunday, but we still needed to capitalise on the opportunities that came our way. We also achieved that through good strategy, making our pitstop for dry tyres at the right moment. We may not have had the pure pace in this race, but we managed the tyres well and we got both cars into the points. It is nice to get off the mark and get points in the bag and now we are looking forward to Miami."
Both Sebastian and Lance drove faultlessly in today’s tricky race.
"Both Sebastian and Lance drove faultlessly in today's tricky wet-to-dry race. In wet conditions, Sebastian vaulted into ninth on lap one, then comfortably raced inside the top 10 for the whole race. As the track dried, he was one of the very first drivers to roll the dice and switch from Intermediates to the Medium tyre. The team and he judged that stop perfectly and Sebastian then ran smoothly in P7 until the closing laps, when he dropped to eighth. Equally, Lance didn't put a foot wrong this afternoon. He too made a strong start, made up positions on the opening lap, and enjoyed a fantastic, spirited tussle with [Yuki] Tsunoda. After his stop, he settled down in 10th place, withstood race-long pressure from a train of cars behind him and scored his first point of the season. This was an eventful and exciting Grand Prix – and only ourselves and Red Bull Racing managed to bring both cars home in the points today. We know we still have a long way to go, but this afternoon's result is a great boost for the whole team – both here in Imola and back at the factory."
Sprint Report by Aramco
Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One™ Team's Sebastian Vettel battled for a top 10 position in the first F1 Sprint of 2022, only for tyre degradation to impact his Imola race late on.
Your guide to Imola
Insight and Speed
Teams and drivers want to make as few as possible because Imola has the longest pitlane time loss of the season at 28s. Combined with historically low tyre degradation, you're unlikely to see teams make more than one stop in the race.
While the 2022 cars seem to make overtaking easier, it's still tricky at Imola. Short straights, high-speed corners and one DRS zone contributed to just 12 passes after the first lap in 2021 – all but one requiring DRS. The long run from the grid to Turn Two at the start is the best chance to make up ground.
The return of the Sprint format means practice is at a premium as teams seek to refine set-up and balance and understand tyre behaviour. Combined with the new-for-2022 cars, every minute counts in FP1 and FP2, and any setbacks or curveballs could mix up the order come Sunday.
Unlocking the Lap
Picking out the key elements of a lap around Imola is no easy feat considering its series of iconic corners, but few impact lap time as much as Piratella and Acque Minerali.
The Tosa hairpin sets up a run to Piratella, and a good exit is key for taking the corner flat out. Drivers tend to pull right on approach, braking lightly, and then accelerating through a 5G corner with little run-off.
There's no rest, though. Drivers fly out of the exit of Piratella and descend to the flat-out Turn 11 entry, immediately setting the car up for the following corner. Here, there's the immediate challenge of following straight-line braking with a change of direction across multiple gradient changes at Turn 12.
It's then followed by a small kink that tightens on the exit at Turn 13 before drivers use all the traction they can to power up towards Turn 14 and continue their lap.
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