Lance Stroll says the progress he has made since his Formula 1 debut has not always been obvious because of the poor car he had last year.
The Racing Point driver came into F1 with Williams in 2017 and took seven points-scoring finishes alongside Felipe Massa, including a podium at Baku. But the team slumped badly the following year and Stroll managed just two points-scoring finishes, for eighth and ninth.
“It wasn’t a good comparison first to second year,” said Stroll. “We had a much stronger package the first year compared to the second year.”
He also had a new team mate as Sergey Sirotkin replaced Massa. Stroll said his performance did improve before he switched teams at the end of the year.
“What I expected from the first to second year was an improvement on my end. That didn’t show on paper due to the package being poor in the second season.
“But I did feel like I was more on top of the car, understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the car and how I can fully unlock it. I think that will be the same in this team. I do believe that.”
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His move to Racing Point means Stroll has his third different team mate in as many years. Sergio Perez is in his sixth season at the team. Stroll believes he will be able to show a greater year-on-year improvement alongside Perez next year.
“For myself, just coming back for a second season in the same environment with more experience, it’s a big, big benefit. That’s for sure, I believe.
“I can only tell you next year, but I do believe that if I could do every weekend over again this year, I could do it a lot better, if you know what I mean, just unlocking the full potential of the car in many ways. It’s tricky in Formula 1 [but] I think experience will definitely help.”
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