Aston Martin team owner Lawrence Stroll hopes to see both his son Lance and Fernando Alonso on the podium at his home Canadian Formula One Grand Prix in Montreal this weekend despite Red Bull’s dominance.
Red Bull has won all seven races so far this season, with double world champion and last year’s Canadian GP winner Max Verstappen taking five and Mexican Sergio Perez two.
Spaniard Alonso has made the podium five times in 2023 but Stroll, who started the season with broken wrists after a cycling accident, beat him in Barcelona two weeks ago.
Stroll senior, speaking at an Aston Martin flagship event in New York, told Reuters the aim was to see a Canadian driver on the Montreal podium for the first time since Jacques Villeneuve finished second in 1996.
“Those are exactly the plans. Hopefully get two cars on the podium,” he said.
“I’m extremely confident. I believe the car will be very strong around the Montreal circuit, it suits our car well...so I’m really looking forward to going home and really looking forward to a great race.”
Mercedes jumped ahead of Aston Martin, who use their engines, into second place overall after the Spanish Grand Prix with Stroll and Alonso sixth and seventh and struggling with higher tyre wear than expected.
Mercedes’ seven-times world champion Lewis Hamilton was second in Spain and, while the team are still playing catch-up, has a stellar record in Canada.
The Briton has won in Montreal a record-equalling seven times and the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve was also where, in 2007, he took the first of his 103 career wins.
Lawrence Stroll said Aston Martin understood their shortcomings at the Circuit de Catalunya.
“I believe we are bringing solutions to those and some upgrades into Canada,” he said.
“I think he (Lance) demonstrated in Barcelona he’s now starting, it took six or seven races, to feel better...I believe they (the two drivers) will be equal by the end of the season,” he added.
Stroll hailed double world champion Alonso’s enthusiasm and motivation and said he was a great team mate for Lance, 24, to learn from.
Asked whether Alonso, now 41, might still be with the team when they start a new engine partnership with Honda in 2026, the billionaire ruled nothing out.
“I think most people would never have believed Fernando would be around today,” he said. “Probably a little long to see him around in ‘26 but never say never.”
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