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Sakhir podium "very sweet" after seven-race stretch of bad luck - Stroll

Sakhir podium "very sweet" after seven-race stretch of bad luck - Stroll

F1 News

Sakhir podium "very sweet" after seven-race stretch of bad luck - Stroll

Sakhir podium "very sweet" after seven-race stretch of bad luck - Stroll

Racing Point driver Lance Stroll hailed his podium at the Sakhir Grand Prix as "very sweet" after the result broke a string of consecutive difficult races harking back to his previous podium in Monza.

Stroll completed the first double-podium in Racing Point's short history as team-mate Sergio Perez took victory in a chaotic race in Bahrain.

The result could have been even better for the Canadian had he not ran wide when exiting the pits, allowing Esteban Ocon to move past into what would turn out to be second position.

But after such a difficult period of time for Stroll, in which he contracted Covid-19 and scored only two points in the seven races following his third place in the Italian Grand Prix, he revelled in the team's historic result.

"[It's] very sweet," said Stroll in assessing his performance. "Such a great result for the team. We didn’t have the best day [in qualifying].

"In Q2 we picked up some damage on the floor, so we lost a lot of performance in Q3 and that put us on the backfoot but we had great pace on that first stint and managed to go very long in the race.

"Unfortunately, Esteban got the DRS, he pitted a lap earlier and was right behind me coming out of turn two, so he picked up the DRS and got alongside me and managed to get by into turn four. But it was some good wheel-to-wheel action, so had some fun there.

"Then afterwards it just locked up into turn four, which allowed Sergio by, but he had better pace on a fresher set of tyres and managed to get by Esteban, whereas I was struggling a little bit.

"So all-in-all the biggest thing is the fact that both cars are on the podium. Big points, so it really is a great result for the team."

As Stroll eluded to, the foundations of his race were built upon a mammoth 42-lap stint on the soft tyres on which he started the race.

According to Stroll, however, it was compromised by not running the medium tyre sooner, pointing to his team-mate's pace after a forced early stop caused by contact with Charles Leclerc.

"We had great pace, the tyre wasn’t degrading too much but looking back at the race I think the medium was the much better tyre to be on," said Stroll.

"Sergio unluckily got hit after lap one, put the mediums on and he had very good pace. I think it was probably a better tyre to be on. Even though the soft did feel good, there was much better pace on that medium.

"And even Esteban, I think, was closing in on me towards the end on that medium. But yeah, from where we started, I think we did a great strategy. It was a very fun race.

"The safety car at the end spiced things up, so we were all wheel-to-wheel, racing for the podium.

"Sergio pulled away but between the rest of us, I was slowly catching Esteban, not quite enough to get on his DRS but then I had [Carlos] Sainz behind me that was hunting me down.

"He had some good pace so it was very tense there in the last few laps but great to keep the podium."

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